Undergraduate Catalog 2021-2022

Molecular Biotechnology, Bachelor of Science (738)


Program Coordinator

Ajay Srivastava, ajay.srivastava@wku.edu, (270) 745-6008

Molecular biotechnology uses molecular and genetic tools to improve the human condition either directly through medical improvements or indirectly through improvements of the environment and agriculture. It does so through modification of nucleic acids and proteins.

The molecular biotechnology major allows students to be part of some exciting new developments like genomics, personalized medicine, cloning, organoid research, and genome editing. The skills acquired may be applied to the development of new pharmaceutical drugs or other medical products, industrial chemicals, food products, energy sources, pollution-control products, or agricultural products. Employment can be found in industry, but graduates of this program will also have the broad science training necessary to enter graduate programs.

Program Requirements (55 hours)

A baccalaureate degree requires a minimum of 120 unduplicated semester hours. More information can be found at www.wku.edu/registrar/degree_certification.php.

Students who began WKU in the Fall 2014 and thereafter should review the Colonnade requirements located at: https://www.wku.edu/colonnade/colonnaderequirements.php.

This major requires a minimum of 55 hours of molecular biotechnology – related courses in biology that involve subjects such as genome discovery, molecular biology, microbiology, bioinformatics, and research experience or an internship, among others. At least 28 of these hours must be at the 300 or higher level. No minor is required.

Core Courses
BIOL 120
BIOL 121
Biological Concepts: Cells Metabolism and Genetics
and Biological Concepts: Cells, Metabolism, and Genetics Lab
4
BIOL 122
BIOL 223
Biological Concepts: Evolution, Diversity, and Ecology
and Plant Biology and Diversity Lab
4
BIOL 212Genome Discovery Exploration2
BIOL 226
BIOL 227
Microbial Biology and Diversity
and Microbial Biology and Diversity Lab
4
BIOL 312Bioinformatics4
BIOL 319
BIOL 322
Introduction to Molecular and Cell Biology
and Introduction to Molecular and Cell Biology Laboratory
4
BIOL 327
BIOL 337
Genetics
and Genetics Laboratory
4
BIOL 350Introduction to Recombinant Genetics3
BIOL 369Cooperative Education in Biology3
or BIOL 399 Research Problems in Biology
BIOL 382Introductory Biostatistics3
BIOL 388Contemporary Issues in Biotechnology 11
BIOL 411Cell Biology3
BIOL 446
BIOL 447
Biochemistry I
and Biochemistry Laboratory
5
BIOL 489Professional Aspects of Biology1
Select 10 credit hours from the following electives:10
Plant Biology and Diversity
and Plant Biology and Diversity Lab
Animal Biology and Diversity
and Animal Biology and Diversity Lab
Evolution: Theory and Process
Immunology
Animal Physiology
Animal Physiology Laboratory
Neurobiology
Plant Physiology
Molecular Basis of Cancer
Techniques and Theory of Electron Microscopy
Virology
Cell Biology Laboratory
Introduction to Toxicology
Developmental Genetics
Endocrinology
Biochemistry II
Pathogenic Microbiology
Plants as Alternative Therapeutics
Molecular Genetics
Plant Biotechnology
Total Hours55

Because an understanding of mathematics, chemistry, and physics is required for a full understanding of Molecular Biotechnology and because an understanding of workplace-related issues is important for a successful application of molecular biotechnology, students are required to complete the supporting courses:

Required Supporting Courses
MATH 117Trigonometry3
or MATH 136 Calculus I
CHEM 120
CHEM 121
College Chemistry I
and College Chemistry I Laboratory
5
CHEM 222
CHEM 223
College Chemistry II
and College Chemistry II Laboratory
5
CHEM 340
CHEM 341
Organic Chemistry I
and Organic Chemistry Laboratory I
5
PHYS 231
PHYS 232
Introduction to Physics and Biophysics I
and Laboratory for Physics and Biophysics I
4
PHYS 332
PHYS 233
Introduction to Physics and Biophysics II
and Laboratory for Physics and Biophysics II
4
MFGE 371Quality Assurance3
or SEAS 390 Project Management
or MFGE 430 Technology Management / Supervision / Team Building
Total Hours29

Finish in Four Plan

First Year
FallHoursSpringHours
BIOL 120
BIOL 121
4BIOL 122
BIOL 123
4
MATH 116 (or higher)3MATH 117 (or higher)3
ENG 1003BIOL 3124
BIOL 2122CHEM 120
CHEM 121
5
BIOL 388*0BIOL 388*0
COMM 1453 
 15 16
Second Year
FallHoursSpringHours
BIOL 226
BIOL 227
4BIOL 319
BIOL 322
4
BIOL 327
BIOL 337
4BIOL 388*0
BIOL 388*0BIOL 399
BIOL 369**
2-6
CHEM 222
CHEM 223
5CHEM 340
CHEM 341
5
Colonnade - Social & Behavioral Science3ENG 2003
 HIST 101 or HIST 1023
 16 17-21
Third Year
FallHoursSpringHours
BIOL 3503BIOL 3823
BIOL 388*0BIOL 388*0
BIOL 399 or BIOL 3691BIOL 399 or BIOL 3691
CHEM 342
CHEM 343
5BIOL 446
BIOL 447
5
PHYS 231
PHYS 232
4PHYS 332
PHYS 233
4
Colonnade - Arts & Humanities3Colonnade - Writing in the Disciplines3
 16 16
Fourth Year
FallHoursSpringHours
BIOL 388*0BIOL 3881
BIOL TECH Elective3BIOL 4891
BIOL TECH Elective3BIOL 4113
Colonnade - Connections3BIOL TECH Elective3
Colonnade - Connections3MFGE 371, SEAS 390, or MFGE 4303
 Colonnade - Connections3
 12 14
Total Hours 122-126