Advising

The guidance you need to succeed

Take the confusion out of pursuing a degree in the biological sciences by using our advising resources.

Most important 

  • Know your catalog. The requirements for your degree are listed in the catalog when you start your college education, and you are responsible for meeting these requirements.
  • Visit the Biological Sciences Advising Center in the Biological Sciences Building (building 21), rooms 244,  257 and 258. Our full time academic adviser and several biological sciences faculty advisers are here to help you.

We suggest taking an average of 15 credits per semester to earn your degree in eight semesters (four years).

Take prerequisite courses first and build on your knowledge as you progress.

Planning your undergraduate courses: 

Using the NAU index please visit the degree Progression Plans site  

First year  

  1. Get an early start on your BIO 181/L and BIO 182/L foundational courses.
  2. Use the General Chemistry sequence; this will make it much easier to understand the pathways that molecules take inside cells and throughout the body.
  3. Your MAT 125 course will assure your in future chemistry and biological sciences courses.
  4. English foundation course(s) will prepare you for the writing you will do in all of your classes.

Second year 

  1. Balance your lab sciences with other classes that don't have labs. Hold yourself to two labs per semester.
  2. Statistics will help you analyze the data you obtain in your lab courses.

Third year 

  1. Enroll in upper division courses that build from previously taken foundational course work.  Now you have a chance to focus on your area of interest, whether it is humans, plants or other animals.
  2. You will discover how a single cell changes into a mature organism and how these processes reveal common properties among different groups of organisms.
  3. Physiology will show you how complex organisms function in a coordinated way.
  4. For your major electives, pick courses that are interesting to you and  will add a dimension to your education. Consider art, music, or explore new subjects with your choice of general electives to broaden your experience.

Fourth year 

  1. Fourth-year courses will tie together all the prior information you've learned, and give you the big picture of your field of specialization. Take the time to develop your own insight into biological sciences.
  2. Physics will provide information that will help explain how biological and chemical systems function the way they do.
  3. In the semester before you graduate, turn in your Undergraduate Application for Graduation to the Biological Sciences Advisement Center.

Degree checklists can be found here

For freshmen or future biological sciences students

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For undecided majors or freshmen who are considering biological sciences as a field of study, visit the Gateway Student Success Center to pick your courses and seek degree advisement.

Transfer students

If you are transferring to our program from another institution and want to receive credit for coursework completed at that institution, request approval by contacting the Biological Sciences Advisement Center. Use the www.aztransfer.org  link to view those courses transferable from the Arizona Community College System to NAU.

If you intend to take biological sciences course from another Out of State institution please request approval from the Biological Sciences Advisement Center before you take the course.

Waiving a course

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Under some circumstances you may be able to substitute one course for another required class.  To do this, you must request to modify your program using our Class Waiver/Substitution form.

If you receive approval for a deviation from the catalog requirements, you must meet with your biological sciences advisor to make certain the request has been approved and entered into our degree progress report.

Graduation

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Undergraduate 

You’re required to complete your Graduation Application the semester before you are to graduate.

  • Please fill out the online application found on the Registrar’s website under Graduation. Submit this online.
  • Print a hard copy of the one page application form sign it and be sure to have the  signature(s) for any minor(s) you list prior to handing it in to the Biological Sciences Advisement Center (BLG 21, rm. 257).

As a helpful tip, use the Degree check function in Louie to make sure you have all of your degree requirements fulfilled.

Graduate 

For detailed instructions on how to make sure you’re ready for graduation, visit the Graduate College website for checklists for master’s and doctoral programs, forms, and the next steps you’ll need to take to file for graduation.

Questions?

You may drop by during normal hours and meet with Ms. Teresa Del Vecchio (Teresa.DelVecchio@nau.edu), Ms. Lourdes Giordani (Lourdes.Giordani@nau.edu) or Ms. Jennifer Monks (Jennifer.Monks@nau.edu) at the Biological Advising Center in the Biological Sciences Building 21, room 257-258 or room 244. For simple questions, email one of them!