The biology major is designed to provide a comprehensive study in several areas of modern biology, including cell and molecular biology, ecology, botany, zoology, and physiology. This major will serve as excellent preparation for graduate school, medical school, nursing, dentistry, veterinary medicine, or for employment in research labs, clinical labs, fish and wildlife positions, or science education. Through broad offerings in the biological sciences students will have a foundational understanding of biological systems at the molecular, organismal and ecological levels. Students will also have a fundamental understanding of experimental design, execution and interpretation and will be introduced to research, reading and interpretation of scientific literature, and field studies.

Explore the Biology Program

The study of science is born from the conviction of the fundamental intelligibility of the world. Science at Ave Maria University testifies to the Catholic Church’s confidence in human reason and in its ability to know the truth about God’s creation even apart from the illuminating power of grace. The natural sciences are not simply technological disciplines, but are truly liberal arts education in which we seek to know truth for its own sake. By enabling us to enter the simultaneous complexity and simplicity of physical reality, science instills within the students a deep sense of wonder at the natural universe.

  • Bachelors of Science (B.S.) and Bachelors of Arts (B.A) degrees available.
  • Ave Maria Department of Biology faculty have expertise in a wide range of Biological fields including molecular biology, cell biology, microbiology, marine biology, physiology, ecology, and anatomy.
  • AMU Department of Biology faculty maintains active research laboratories with opportunities for undergraduate research. Undergraduate researchers also regularly present their work at academic meetings and some have published in academic journals.
  • Ave Maria University Department of Biology faculty teach all lab sections, allowing students more personal attention and expert guidance. Most labs are smaller than 24 students.
  • AMU is home to a Tri-Beta National Biological Honors Society chapter, which exceptional students have the opportunity to join.
  • Student led organizations include the Biology club, Science Club, and pre-professional societies like the Ave Maria Pre-Dental Society.
  • The Department of Biology also offers degrees in Environmental Science (B.A.), Health Science (B.A.), Exercise Science (B.A.) and Health Science Administration (B.A.), and minors in Biology, Marine Biology, Environmental Science, Health Science, and Exercise Science.

Required Courses for the B.A. in Biology

  • BIOL 211 Biology I Cellular and Molecular Biology
  • BIOL 212 Biology II Organismal and Population Biology
  • BIOL 220 Zoology
  • BIOL 230 Botany
  • BIOL 303 Genetics
  • BIOL 413 Critical Analysis II or BIOL 497 Directed Research
  • CHEM 125 General Chemistry I
  • CHEM 126 General Chemistry II

Required Courses for the B.S. in Biology

  • BIOL 211 Biology I Cellular and Molecular Biology
  • BIOL 212 Biology II Organismal and Population Biology
  • BIOL 220 Zoology
  • BIOL 230 Botany
  • BIOL 303 Genetics
  • BIOL 305 Molecular Biology or BIOL 410 Cell Biology
  • BIOL 401 Microbiology
  • BIOL 413 Critical Analysis II or BIOL 497 directed research
  • CHEM 125 General Chemistry I
  • CHEM 126 General Chemistry II
  • CHEM 221 Organic Chemistry I
  • PHYS 211 College Physics I or PHYS 212 College Physics II

Elective Options (16 credits required for B.A. – 12 credits required for B.S.)

  • BIOL 105 Environmental Science I
  • BIOL 106 Environmental Science II
  • BOIL 200 Nutrition
  • BOIL 240 General Ecology (with laboratory)
  • BOIL 241 General Ecology (without laboratory)
  • BOIL 250 Health and Wellness
  • BOIL 304 Anatomy and Physiology I
  • BOIL 305 Molecular Biology
  • BOIL 306 Basic and Clinical Pharmacology
  • BOIL 307 Marine Biology
  • BOIL 309 Anatomy and Physiology II
  • BOIL 310 General and Chemical Oceanography
  • BOIL 321 Tropical Ecology and Field Biology
  • BOIL 340 Conservation Biology
  • BOIL 401 Microbiology *(elective for B.A., required for B.S.)*
  • BOIL 402 Microbiological Ecology
  • BOIL 403 Animal Physiology
  • BOIL 404 General Virology
  • BOIL 407 Marine Zoology
  • BOIL 408 Marine Botany
  • BOIL 410 Cell Biology *(only an elective for B.S.)*
  • BOIL 438 Aquatic Ecology
  • EXER 270 Kinesiology and Biomechanics
  • EXER 300 Exercise Physiology

See the Academic Catalogue for course descriptions

  • Biology students at Ave Maria University have research opportunities with departmental faculty, and have participated in national summer research programs. In addition, students have received internships at local companies such as Arthrex.
  • A degree in Biology is ideal for students who wish to attend post-baccalaureate studies in fields of Research, Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary Science, Marine Science, or other Biological related professions. In addition, Biology majors often pursue careers in health care, academia, museums and zoos, education, governmental agencies, environmental conservation, forensic science, industry, and public policy.

Jacob Blanchard, Ph.D. (candidate)

Instructor of Biology 
Education: B.A., Biology, Ave Maria University; Ph.D. (candidate), Biological Sciences, Western Michigan University
Office: Henkels 3034
Phone: (239) 304-7130

Stephen Cronin, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Biology
Education: B.S., Molecular & Cellular Biology, Texas A&M University; Ph.D., Biology, University of California, San Diego.
Office: Henkels 3051
Phone: (239) 280-1617

Nicholas Curtis, Ph.D.

Chair of the Biology Department, Associate Professor of Biology
Education: B.S., Marine Science & Biology, University of Miami; Ph.D., Cell & Molecular Biology, University of South Florida
Office: Henkels 2053
Phone: (239) 304-7132

Brett Feger, M.S.

Instructor of Biology
Education: B.A., Biology, Knox College; M.S., Zoology, Western Illinois University
Office: Henkels 1035
Phone: (239) 280-1637

Craig Flanagan, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Biology
Education: B.S., Exercise Physiology, University of Miami; M.S., Clinical Exercise Physiology, University of Miami; D.C., Chiropractic, Life University; Ph.D., Exercise Physiology, University of Miami
Office: Canizaro Library 313
Phone: (239) 304-7367

Ernesto Quintero, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Biology
Education: B.S., Marine Biology, California State University; Ph.D., Microbiology, University of Maryland
Office: Henkels 3050
Phone: (239) 280-1666

Ladislav Sallai, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Biology
Education: M.S., Pharmacy, Comenius University; Ph.D., Chemistry, University of North Dakota
Office: Henkels 3028
Phone: (239) 280-2418

William Serson, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Biology
Education: B.S., Biology Millersville University, Ph.D., Plant Physiology, University of Kentucky
Office: Henkels 2045
Phone: (239) 280-2433

Thomas Smith, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Biology
Education: B.S., Environmental Biology & Chemistry, Plymouth State University; M.S., Recreation, Western Kentucky University; M.S. Biology, Western Kentucky University, Ph.D., Environmental Biology, University of Louisville
Office: Henkels 3048
Phone: (239) 280-2536