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University Catalog

Microbiology Program

5004 Agriculture Building 766-3139
FAX: (307) 766-3875
Program Director: Dr. Gerard Andrews

The Bachelor of Science degree program in microbiology is organized as an interdepartmental major involving the collaborative teaching, advising, and research expertise of more than 20 microbiology faculty from the Colleges of Agriculture, Arts and Sciences, and Health Sciences. The program is administered by a program director and a coordinating committee which represent each of the participating colleges. Students may obtain their degree in either the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources or the College of Arts and Sciences. Students interested in obtaining their degree through the College of Arts and Sciences should refer to that college for additional information regarding college requirements. Students interested in obtaining their degree through the College of Agriculture should contact the program director or members of the coordinating committee directly for more information or formal academic advising within the program. Additional information about the microbiology program may be obtained at the following web site address:

Students pursuing a major in microbiology must be advised by one of the following participating faculty members of the interdepartmental Microbiology Steering Committee:

GERRY ANDREWS, Veterinary Sciences
BERIT BANGOURA, Veterinary Sciences
BLEDAR BISHA, Animal Sciences
BRIDGET DECKER, Molecular Biology
JASON GIGLEY, Molecular Biology
MARK GOMELSKY, Molecular Biology
MYRNA MILLER, Veterinary Sciences
BRANT SHUMAKER, Veterinary Sciences
KERRY SONDGEROTH, Veterinary Sciences
HOLLY STEINKRAUS, Molecular Biology
DANIEL WALL, Molecular Biology
JOHN WILLFORD, Molecular Biology

Microbiology Program

Microbiology is the study of life forms too small to be observed without the aid of magnification; major groups of microbes include the bacteria, fungi (yeasts and molds), protozoa, and algae, as well as the viruses. In addition, related disciplines such as immunology and molecular biology are included because of their historical origins within microbiology.

As such, the science of microbiology is divided into numerous subspecialty areas that reflect not only the individual groups of microbes (e.g., bacteriology, virology, mycology, etc.), but also their significance in applied areas (e.g., medical microbiology/infectious diseases, microbial ecology, food microbiology, industrial microbiology, biotechnology, etc.) or in areas of basic science (e.g., molecular genetics). Throughout its history, microbiology has played a key role in the development of our understanding of basic biochemical and genetic processes, control of infectious diseases, production of increased and improved food supplies, and the production of numerous commercial products. With the development of molecular techniques to construct genetically engineered microbes, microbiologists will continue to make expanding contributions in these and other areas.

Because microbiology is a diverse science, individuals trained as microbiologists find exciting career opportunities in many areas of the basic and applied sciences. Typically, microbiologists are employed in five major sectors: private industry; clinical laboratories; government agencies; universities; and various other settings such as water treatment, food production/inspection facilities, and other public health-related areas. Recent manpower assessment studies at both the national and regional levels have provided evidence for a continuing and expanding need for microbiologists such that successful undergraduate students completing this program may look forward to exciting careers. In addition, undergraduates trained in the microbiological sciences are well prepared for competitive application to graduate school programs and professional programs in human or veterinary medicine, optometry or dentistry.

The microbiology curriculum is organized to provide students with the maximum flexibility in meeting their university studies program requirements. In addition, the curriculum is designed to prepare graduates for the future by combining a firm foundation in the basic sciences with a central core of microbiology classes, followed by the opportunity for students to specialize in areas of microbiology suiting their individual interests via the selection of electives. Prior to graduation, microbiology majors must complete the basic requirements and all microbiology core course requirements as listed below. Finally, to assure breadth of exposure in microbiology, students must complete 6 semester hours of microbiology electives.

Basic Course Requirements for Microbiology Majors (121 total credit hours)

3000-level or above credits - university requirement (42 hours)

Completion of University Studies 2015 Program Requirements (30-36 hours)

Basic Sciences and quantitative reasoning:

Courses Hours
MATH 1450, or 1400 and 1405, or MATH 2200  4-6
STAT 2050 4
LIFE 1010 and 2022 or 2023 8
LIFE 3050 4
CHEM 1020 and 1030 8
CHEM 2420 and 2440 8
PHYS 1110 and 1120 8
MOLB 3000 3
MOLB 3610 or 4600 and 4610 4-6

Microbiology Core Course Requirements

Courses Hours
MICR/MOLB 2021 or MICR/MOLB 2240  4-5
MICR 4321 or MOLB 4320 4
PATB 2220 4
MOLB 4440 3
PATB/MOLB 4400 4
PATB 4710 3
MOLB 4460 3
PATB 4150, or MOLB 4050 (or MOLB 4051 or MOLB 4052) 1 (x2)
MICR Electives 6

Microbiology Electives

In addition to completing the required microbiology courses listed above, students must complete 6 hours of microbiology electives from the following lists.

Medical Microbiology   Hours
PATB 4001, Epidemiology 3
PATB 4110, Diseases of Food Animals and Horses 3
PATB 4120, Diseases of Wildlife 3
PATB 4130, Mammalian Pathobiology 3
PATB 4140, Toxicology 3
PATB 4200, Diagnostic Bacteriology 1
PATB 4240, Disease Ecology 3
PATB 4360, Parasitology 4
PATB 4500, Veterinary Parasitology 3
PATB 4220, Molecular Pathogenesis 3
PHCY 3450, Pathophysiology 4
ZOO 4110, HIV and AIDS 3
Molecular and Cell Biology  Hours
LIFE 3600, Cell Biology 4
MOLB 4260, Quantitative Microscopy 1
MOLB 4450, Developmental Genetics 3
MOLB 4670, Adv. Molecular Cell Biology 3
Environmental and Applied Microbiology  Hours
BOT 4200, Plant/Microbe Interactions 3
BOT 4300, Mycology 4
BOT 4390, Fungal Physiology 3
MOLB 4540, Microbial Diversity and Ecology 4
SOIL 4140, Soil Microbiology 4
PLNT 3220, Plant Pathology 3
PLNT 4000, Plant Disease Control 3
FDSC 4090, Food Microbiology 3
FDSC 4100, Food Microbiology Lab 1

***Students pursuing the B.S. degree in microbiology who wish to pursue a dual major in both microbiology and molecular biology must satisfy the basic science/math and core/elective requirements in microbiology as well as those specified for the B.S. degree in molecular biology PLUS an additional 9 credits of electives in microbiology and/or molecular biology at the 4000/5000 level.

Microbiology (MICR) Courses

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