Department of Biological Sciences

Discover how life works.

Enjoy the rich experience of learning biology through innovative courses and hands-on training specifically developed to prepare you for graduate or professional school and employment in your desired profession.  

Here, students learn to think like a scientist for greater success in research, graduate studies, or on the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). And you’ll be up to your elbows in hands-on learning opportunities, whether it’s in one of our research laboratories or at our nationally-known Rosario Beach Marine Laboratory. You’ll have access to advanced equipment and the latest technology, and study in an Christian environment that fosters teamwork and cooperation over competitiveness. Graduates of WWU’s Adventist biology program have entered a variety of careers and maintain a high acceptance rate into medical and other health professional schools. 

Student Spotlight

Meet Judy, a junior biology major who takes us along on a day of the summer she spent studying at our Rosario Beach Marine Laboratory campus in Anacortes, WA “Rosario has given me an opportunity to not only learn more about the world we live in, but to see the animals I’m learning about up close.”

College Experience

What will your college experience look like as a biology major?

Classes: You will take courses that echo the increased focus on biostatistics, biochemistry, and cell and molecular biology in both science and medicine. Popular biology courses include cancer biology, computing for biology and bioinformatics, and human ecology. In addition, a low student-to-faculty ratio means your professors will provide personalized support while you tackle rigorous academics.  

Research opportunities: Join the high percentage of students who are co-authors of peer-reviewed research publications in national and international journals, and attend regional and national research conferences to present findings.  

Clubs: Develop strong experiences in reading, understanding, and evaluating primary literature through the journal clubs with credible faculty supervisors who are actively engaged in their own research and publishing. Attend social events and activities with the active Biology Club and the Pre-Professional Club. 

Rosario Beach Marine Laboratory: Visit the only Seventh-day Adventist marine laboratory in North America, where students, staff, and faculty can take spring or summer courses or do research. Rosario’s facilities are comparable to other premier laboratories in the U.S. 

Scuba diving: WWU is the only Adventist institution of higher education that is a member of the American Academy of Underwater Sciences (AAUS). Take advantage of our scientific diving class and learn safe, underwater research techniques.  



Career Path

What can your career path as a biology major look like?


Most of our graduates enter medical, dental, or veterinary schools, and are very successful professionals. Graduates are also well-prepared to enter Ph.D. programs and many are now employed as professors at Adventist institutions and medical schools. Such careers can require three to seven years of study after completing an undergraduate degree.  

In addition, biology graduates may enter a wide range of science careers including research technicians, high school and community college teachers, scientists, and zookeepers. Many have found work in marine aquariums, conservation, and environmental assessment. Employment prospects in these fields can improve by gaining hands-on experience through research and internships. 



News & Updates


Excellence in thought
July 16, 2024

Excellence in thought

WWU relaunches annual academic excellence symposium

Marine biology major
May 06, 2024

Marine biology major

New degree track to offer rare opportunities in marine biology

'From Penguins to Plankton'
March 19, 2024

'From Penguins to Plankton'

McClintock to present Young Memorial Lecture on changes in the Antarctic

Improving technology
February 26, 2024

Improving technology

A successful collaboration between WWU's computer science and biology departments

School by the sea
August 16, 2023

School by the sea

WWU's marine biology lab hosts students for summer classes