The bioinformatics curriculum blends foundational courses in biology, math, chemistry and computer science with a core of hands-on, problem-solving bioinformatics courses. It allows undergraduates an unusual opportunity to learn computational biology and data science by actually doing it--reading scientific papers, doing experiments, creating bioinformatics programs, and designing individual and team research investigations. The program includes general training in biology, computer science, and statistics to create a solid bioinformatics core, as well as focused training in a chosen concentration.
In the biological/genomic sciences concentration, students are primarily motivated by biology and have chosen this concentration to focus on upper-level biology topics such as advanced molecular biology and biochemistry.
In the computational sciences concentration, students are primarily motivated by computer science and have chosen this concentration to focus on upper-level computer science courses designed to improve students’ programming skills and understanding of algorithms.
In the quantitative/Statistical Sciences Concentration, students are primarily motivated by problem-solving using math and statistics and have chosen this concentration to focus on mathematical and statistical theory and methods for quantitative modeling and analysis.
Our students learn how to use bioinformatics tools to solve scientific problems through project-based, experiential courses. These experiences mimic what doing molecular/computational science is actually like and provide excellent training for technician-level jobs (universities, institutes, biotech, or IT industry), for training in graduate school or in the health professions. Students interested in a health profession usually specialize in the Biological/Genomic Concentration.
Some students are interested in working close to the health system, while others are more interested in the programming/data analyst route. The technical, analytical and communications skills practiced in the program can transfer to other occupations as well.
Students with the Master of Science degree typically have greater opportunities than those with the Bachelor's degree as the Master's allows the student to gain more relevant skills, content knowledge, and project experience. In this case, greater opportunities refers to both roles with higher pay and although Master of Science graduates typically begin their careers in entry-level positions, they are working at a higher technical level and they will have the qualifications for leadership positions in the future.
Completion of associate degree
Minimum GPA of 2.5
All courses must be completed with a grade of "C" or better
|MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING||GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY||BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE||GET REAL EXPERIENCE||PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE|
|SDV 101||Orientation to STEM Disciplines||UNIV 101||1||Elective|
|ENG 111||College Composition I Note: students with credit for AP English Language and Composition will only receive credit for UNIV 111 at VCU and should take ENG 112 to fulfill the VCU composition requirement.||UNIV 111-112||3||General education|
|MTH 167||Precalculus with Trigonometry (or MTH 161-162 Precalculus I-II)||MATH 151||5||General education|
|Laboratory Science I||CHM 111 General Chemistry I||CHEM/Z 101||4||Major (Ancillary)|
|CSC 155||Computer Concepts and Applications||INFO 160, 161, 162||3||Elective|
|HIS||History elective (select 1): HIS 101 or HIS 121||HIST||3||General education|
|ENG 112||College Composition II||UNIV 200||3||General education|
|MTH 263||Calculus I||MATH 200||4||Major (Ancillary)|
|Laboratory Science II||CHM 112 General Chemistry II||CHEM/Z 102||4||Major|
|HLT/PED||Personal Wellness Elective||VCU equivalent||1||Elective|
|HIS||History elective (select 1): HIS 102 or HIS 122||HIST||3||General education|
|Laboratory Science III||BIO 101 General Biology I Note: students who complete BIO 101 will not be required to take BNFO 251 Phage Discovery I at VCU.||BIOL/Z 151||4||Major (Ancillary)|
|Laboratory Science Elective||CHM 241 Organic Chemistry||CHEM 301||3||Major|
|Social/Behavioral Science||Select 1: PSY 200, 230, SOC 200, 210, PLS 211||VCU equivalent||3||General education|
|Humanities/Fine Arts||Select 1: PHI 111, 220; ART 101, 106; MUS 121; CST 151; any REL||VCU equivalent||3||General education|
|Laboratory Science IV||BIO 102 General Biology II Note: students who complete BIO 102 will not be required to take BNFO 252 Phage Discovery II at VCU.||BIOL/Z 152||4||Major|
|Laboratory Science Elective||CHM 242 Organic Chemistry||CHEM 302||3||Major|
|Humanities/Fine Arts||Select any Humanities/Fine Arts elective||VCU equivalent||3||General education|
|Transfer elective||MTH 245 Statistics I||STAT 212||3||Major (Ancillary)|
|Elective||Approved transfer elective||VCU equivalent||3||Elective|
|Reynolds credits transferred to VCU||63|
|Bachelor of Science: Bioinformatics with a concentration in biological/genomic sciences|
|BIOL 300||Cellular and Molecular Biology||3||Major|
|BNFO 101||Introduction to Scientific Computing||1||Major|
|BNFO 201||Computing Skills and Concepts for Bioinformatics||3||Major|
|BNFO 301||Introduction to Bioinformatics||3||Major|
|BNFO 411||Ethical Issues in Life Sciences||2||Major|
|BNFO 420||Applications in Bioinformatics||3||Major|
|CMSC 255||Introduction to Programming||4||Major|
|STAT 321||Introduction to Statistical Computing||3||Major|
|BIOL/BNFO 540||Fundamentals of Molecular Genetics||3||Major|
|BIOL/BNFO 541 or BIOZ 476||Laboratory in Molecular Genetics or Molecular Capstone Laboratory||2||Major|
|CHEM 403||Biochemistry I||3||Major|
|Select 10 credits of concentration electives (see VCU advisor for course options)||10||Major|
|PHYS||PHYS 207 University Physics I or PHYS 201 General Physics I||4 to 5||Major (Ancillary)|
|Open electives||9 to 10||Elective|
|Credits completed at VCU||57|
|Bachelor's degree total||120|