Biological Sciences

Associate Degrees for Transfer

A.S.-T. in Biology

The Associate in Science in Biology for Transfer is designed to prepare students for transfer to a baccalaureate degree program at the California State University in biology or the biological sciences, including molecular biology, cell biology, marine biology, botany, zoology, ecology, environmental science, evolution, genetics, microbiology, and agricultural science. Upon completion of the Associate in Science in Biology for Transfer, students will seamlessly transfer with junior standing to the California State University system.

The Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT) student completion requirements (as stated in SB1440 law):

(1) Completion of 60 semester units or 90 quarter units that are eligible for transfer to the California State University, including both of the following:
(A) The Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum (IGETC) or the California State University General Education-Breadth Requirements (CSU GE-Breadth).
(B) A minimum of 18 semester units or 27 quarter units in a major or area of emphasis, as determined by the community college district.

(2) Obtainment of a minimum grade point average of 2.0.

ADTs also require that students must earn a “C” or better in all courses required for the major or area of emphasis.

The Associate in Science in Biology for Transfer is intended specifically for students planning to transfer to a California State University. It is critical for all students to meet with an SCC counselor and to consult with the transfer institution to determine if any university program is impacted or has additional pre-transfer requirements. Completion of the Associate in Science in Biology for Transfer may not prepare students to transfer to the University of California or other colleges or universities offering a degree in biology or in the biological sciences, as these baccalaureate degree programs may have different requirements. If a student intends to transfer to the University of California, additional courses in chemistry, physics, and math may be required.

Catalog Date: June 1, 2020

Degree Requirements

Course Code Course Title Units
BIOL 402 Cell and Molecular Biology 5
BIOL 412 Plant Biology 5
BIOL 422 Animal Biology 5
CHEM 400 General Chemistry I 5
CHEM 401 General Chemistry II 5
MATH 350 Calculus for the Life and Social Sciences I 3
PHYS 350 General Physics 4
PHYS 360 General Physics 4
PSYC 300 General Principles (3) 3
   or PSYC 480 Honors General Principles (3)
Total Units: 39

The Associate in Science in Biology for Transfer (AS-T) degree may be obtained by completion of 60 transferable, semester units with a minimum 2.0 GPA, including (a) the major or area of emphasis described in the Required Program, and (b) either the Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum (IGETC) or the California State University General Education-Breadth Requirements.

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this program, the student will be able to:

  • apply the scientific method to pose questions and test hypotheses about the natural world.
  • evaluate the design, analysis, and interpretation of scientific experiments.
  • successfully perform biological laboratory techniques, including microscopy, and understand laboratory safety protocols.
  • define and correctly use a core set of scientific terminology relevant to biological organisms and principles.
  • write clear, well organized essays or research papers that demonstrate the ability to integrate the chemical, cellular, organismal, population, and ecosystem levels of biological organization into explanations of biological processes.
  • demonstrate an understanding of biological evolution by explaining the diversity and unity of life in terms of evolutionary mechanisms including natural selection.
  • apply biological principles to successfully complete upper division coursework in general biology, cell biology, molecular biology, genetics, botany, zoology, marine biology, anatomy, physiology, ecology, and evolution.
  • apply the process of science and scientific skills in order to successfully participate in supervised research in a biological science.

Career Information

Biologists work as laboratory technologists, x-ray and respiratory technologists, physical therapists, physicians, nurses, and researchers in the medical field; as foresters, wildlife and fisheries biologists, field ecologists, ethnobiologists, botanists, entomologists, and others in field biology and ecology; as veterinary technicians, researchers, and doctors in veterinary medicine; as agronomists, plant pathologists, enologists, and pest management specialists in agriculture; as educators in K-12 schools, community colleges, and universities; and in many other careers.

Associate Degrees

A.S. in Biology

Biology is the scientific study of life, from molecules to cells, and organisms to ecosystems, including their evolution and interactions with the environment. The Biology A.S. degree is designed to give students a flexible academic foundation to meet transfer requirements for upper division coursework in the biological sciences, participate in the workplace, or meet personal goals. The Biology major is also designed for students planning to pursue careers in medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, or veterinary medicine. For all students pursuing transfer to any four-year program or professional school, it is critical that students meet with a counselor because major and general education requirements vary for each college/university. For students who plan to complete a baccalaureate degree in biology or similar major at a California State University (CSU), The Associate in Science in Biology for Transfer (AS-T) degree is the recommended transfer pathway.

Catalog Date: June 1, 2020

Degree Requirements

Course Code Course Title Units
CHEM 400 General Chemistry I (5) 5
   or CHEM 305 Introduction to Chemistry (5)
   or CHEM 309 Integrated General, Organic, and Biological Chemistry (5)
A minimum of 10 units from the following: 10
BIOL 402 Cell and Molecular Biology (5)
BIOL 412 Plant Biology (5)
BIOL 422 Animal Biology (5)
BIOL 430 Anatomy and Physiology (5)
BIOL 431 Anatomy and Physiology (5)
BIOL 440 General Microbiology (4)
A minimum of 8 units from the following: 8
BIOL 100 Introduction to Concepts of Human Anatomy and Physiology (3)
BIOL 305 Natural History (4)
BIOL 308 Contemporary Biology (3)
BIOL 309 Contemporary Biology Laboratory (1)
BIOL 314 Dinosaurs and the Science of Life (3)
BIOL 315 Dinosaurs and the Science of Life Laboratory (1)
BIOL 320 Field Botany (3)
BIOL 326 Ethnobotany (3)
BIOL 327 Ethnobotany Laboratory (1)
BIOL 330 Introduction to Entomology (3)
BIOL 332 Introduction to Ornithology (4)
BIOL 342 The New Plagues: New and Ancient Infectious Diseases Threatening World Health (3)
BIOL 350 Environmental Biology (3)
BIOL 360 Environmental Regulations (3)
BIOL 362 Field Methods in Ecology (4)
BIOL 364 Restoration Ecology (2)
BIOL 370 Marine Biology (4)
BIOL 402 Cell and Molecular Biology (5)
BIOL 412 Plant Biology (5)
BIOL 422 Animal Biology (5)
BIOL 430 Anatomy and Physiology (5)
BIOL 431 Anatomy and Physiology (5)
BIOL 434 Pathology: The Study of Disease (3)
BIOL 440 General Microbiology (4)
Total Units: 23

The Biology Associate in Science (A.S.) degree may be obtained by completion of the required program, plus general education requirements, plus sufficient electives to meet a 60-unit total. See SCC graduation requirements.

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this program, the student will be able to:

  • use the scientific method to pose questions and test hypotheses about the natural world.
  • evaluate the design, analysis, and interpretation of scientific experiments.
  • demonstrate an understanding of the process of biological evolution by the mechanism of natural selection.
  • use and understand biological laboratory techniques and safety protocols.
  • recognize and define a core set of biological terms and principles.
  • compile and analyze data generated through experimentation.

Career Information

Biologists work as laboratory technologists, x-ray and respiratory technologists, physical therapists, physicians, nurses, and researchers in the medical field; as foresters, wildlife and fisheries biologists, field ecologists, ethnobiologists, botanists, entomologists, and others in field biology and ecology; as veterinary technicians, researchers, and doctors in veterinary medicine; as agronomists, plant pathologists, enologists, and pest management specialists in agriculture; as educators in K-12 schools, community colleges, and universities; and in many other careers.

Certificate of Achievement

Field Ecology Certificate

The Field Ecology Certificate program provides the training and education necessary to succeed in government agencies, private businesses, and non-profits that provide field ecology services. The certificate provides the opportunity to learn ecological field methods including identification of flora and fauna, quantitative assessment methods, wetland delineations, regulatory processes, restoration ecology, and geographic information systems. In addition to field methods, students will receive education in general ecological principles.

Two pathways to obtain the certificate exist for this program (students will choose only one of these pathways). Both pathways require the same core courses and only vary in their elective components. Pathway 1 is oriented toward students pursuing their Associate in Science degree in Biology and allows use of either BIOL 412 (Plant Biology) or BIOL 422 (Animal Biology) to partially meet unit requirements for elective courses in the program. Pathway 2 is oriented toward students not pursuing their Biology degree; and unit requirements for elective courses are entirely obtained from the list of elective courses in the program.

Catalog Date: June 1, 2020

Certificate Requirements

Course Code Course Title Units
BIOL 305 Natural History 4
BIOL 320 Field Botany 3
BIOL 360 Environmental Regulations 3
BIOL 362 Field Methods in Ecology 4
Subtotal Units: 14
Pathway 1 (For students also pursuing an Associate in Science Degree in Biology)
Course Code Course Title Units
BIOL 412 Plant Biology (5) 5
   or BIOL 422 Animal Biology (5)
A minimum of 5 units from the following: 5
BIOL 321 Advanced Field Botany (3)
BIOL 326 Ethnobotany (3)
BIOL 327 Ethnobotany Laboratory (1)
BIOL 330 Introduction to Entomology (3)
BIOL 332 Introduction to Ornithology (4)
BIOL 350 Environmental Biology (3)
BIOL 352 Conservation Biology (3)
BIOL 364 Restoration Ecology (2)
BIOL 370 Marine Biology (4)
BIOLFS 310 Natural History Field Study: Mojave Desert (2)
BIOLFS 311 Natural History Field Study: Advanced Study of the Mojave Desert (2)
BIOLFS 350 Natural History Field Study: Sierra Nevada Plants (2)
CHEM 320 Environmental Chemistry (4)
GEOG 331 Exploring Maps and Geographic Technologies (3)
GEOG 334 Introduction to GIS Software Applications (3)
GEOL 345 Geology of California (3)
Pathway 1 (For students also pursuing an Associate in Science Degree in Biology) Units: 10
Total Units: 24
Pathway 2 (For students pursuing only the Field Ecology Certificate)
Course Code Course Title Units
A minimum of 10 units from the following: 10
BIOL 321 Advanced Field Botany (3)
BIOL 326 Ethnobotany (3)
BIOL 327 Ethnobotany Laboratory (1)
BIOL 330 Introduction to Entomology (3)
BIOL 332 Introduction to Ornithology (4)
BIOL 350 Environmental Biology (3)
BIOL 352 Conservation Biology (3)
BIOL 364 Restoration Ecology (2)
BIOL 370 Marine Biology (4)
BIOLFS 310 Natural History Field Study: Mojave Desert (2)
BIOLFS 311 Natural History Field Study: Advanced Study of the Mojave Desert (2)
BIOLFS 350 Natural History Field Study: Sierra Nevada Plants (2)
CHEM 320 Environmental Chemistry (4)
GEOG 331 Exploring Maps and Geographic Technologies (3)
GEOG 334 Introduction to GIS Software Applications (3)
GEOL 345 Geology of California (3)
Pathway 2 (For students pursuing only the Field Ecology Certificate) Units: 10
Total Units: 24

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this program, the student will be able to:

  • describe the basic principles of ecology, particularly in the context of field oriented biology.
  • identify flora and fauna of the region.
  • assess ecosystem evaluation methods and demonstrate competence in ecosystem analysis methodologies.
  • examine the regulatory processes and agencies involved with environmental regulations at the local, state, and federal levels.
  • apply the evolutionary process to its role in ecosystems.
  • collect biological and ecological data during field work opportunities.
  • record data in a field notebook and on data sheets.
  • operate equipment used for the field work component of the program (e.g. nets and other collecting equipment for fishery surveys, nets and sorting trays associated with benthic macro invertebrate surveys for rapid bioassessment, and soil extraction tools for assessment of wetland hydric soils.)
  • analyze data collected during field experiments and investigations (e.g. fishery data collected from captured species, percentages of cover of native and non-native plant species from an experimental vegetation plot, determination of water quality characteristics based on sensitivities of benthic macro invertebrate taxonomic units).
  • formulate strategies and methodologies for data collection in various field situations.

Career Information

The Field Ecology Certificate can fulfill the needs of agencies and private businesses, and non-profits for entry-level ecological and environmental technicians and field biologists. Entry-level jobs can be found in government resource agencies at the federal, state, and local levels and in private environmental consulting businesses and private non-profit environmental organizations. This certificate program will provide advancement opportunities to those currently employed in the environmental and resource professions. In addition to updating job skills, this certificate will provide new training and education opportunities for returning and continuing students.