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Biological Sciences Major (B.S. in Biological Sciences) [offered through Honors Tutorial College]

Program Overview

The Honors Tutorial College program in biological sciences offers exceptional students the opportunity to study the many aspects of biology in one-on-one interaction primarily with Biological Sciences and Biomedical Sciences faculty members. Maximum opportunities will be provided for the student to excel well beyond the material found in conventional courses. The primary purpose of the tutorial program is to serve as preparation for graduate or professional study. Students will receive the degree of Bachelor of Science from the Honors Tutorial College.

Tutorials and Honors Thesis

Students are required to complete six tutorials on topics related to biological and biomedical sciences in their first three years. A typical tutorial will meet on a weekly basis for a minimum of one hour and be combined with lab and/or field work. The student and the tutor will discuss seminal as well as current publications, discuss problems and solutions, debate, and offer critical analysis.  The tutor continuously evaluates the progress of the student. A final grade is made based on many facets of evaluation available to the tutor: written assignments, written exams, oral exams, discussions, presentations by the student, field work, etc. Each student will receive letter grades for the tutorial, and tutors complete semester based tutorial descriptions and evaluations of each student's tutorial work.

During their senior year, they will complete two tutorials devoted for their own research project and write an Honors Thesis. The honors thesis is a reflection of the student's special interests. The research project will be conducted in the laboratory of a faculty mentor. The thesis work will be monitored and approved by his or her thesis mentor, the director of studies, and the Dean of the College. It is expected that the research will be original and independent work with a high quality.

In addition to the tutorials, the student must complete one Written Communication course (ENG 1510) and one Advanced Writing course (FAW), all core courses not covered by tutorials, and an appropriate number of approved electives. Through the tutorials and biological sciences core courses, students must demonstrate their sophisticated understanding of the fields of biology. Internships and/or study abroad may be included within the program with special permission from the director of studies. Honors Tutorial College students take a minimum of 15 hours per semester.

Advising and Evaluation

Each student receives advice from the director of studies regarding courses, choice of a thesis advisor, and other procedural matters every semester. Students throughout the program earn letter grades consistent with the University grading system and are expected to maintain a GPA of 3.5 or higher. Students who earn less than a B (3.0), or who maintain less than a 3.5 GPA will need to confer with the director of studies and/or the Dean of the College. In addition to excellence in their academic work, students must meet high expectations as a member of the HTC community with professional work ethics and responsibilities.

Admissions Information

Freshman/First-Year Admission

Applicants are selected by the director of studies of the biological sciences tutorial program and the Honors Tutorial College on the basis of superior academic ability and the potential for self-motivated study and research. Applicants typically are required to submit additional essays, and an interview with the director of studies is required for admission. More information, including materials and deadlines, is available at www.ohio.edu/honors/tutorial-programs/apply.

Change of Program Policy

First year students at Ohio University may apply to transfer into the biological sciences honors tutorial program and the Honors Tutorial College. These students must meet the same entrance requirements as entering freshmen with good academic standing in his or her first semester at Ohio University. 

External Transfer Admission

First year students at another institution may also apply to transfer into the biological sciences honors tutorial program and the Honors Tutorial College. These students must meet the same entrance requirements as entering freshmen. 

Opportunities Upon Graduation

Successful graduates of the biological sciences honors tutorial program are highly competitive applicants for graduate school or professional school (medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, physical therapy, etc.).

Academic Catalog

The academic catalog provides additional information about curriculum and courses for this major.
Academic Catalog

Program Details

Bachelor of Science


Honors Tutorial College 
35 Park Place
Athens, OH 45701
Phone: 740.593.2723
Fax: 740.593.9521

Administrative Contact

Soichi Tanda, director of studies/contact person