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Undergraduate Resources

Undergraduate Resources

Note: Starting Fall 2023, students in Biochemistry will choose one of three specializations: Research & Biotechnology; Pre-Medicine; or Biophysics. Thus, all of the information below may not apply to students entering before Fall 2023. Please contact your Advisor, Faculty Mentor, or the BBMB Undergraduate Program Coordinator if you have questions about your program of study.


Each BBMB undergraduate is supported by an Academic Advisor and a Faculty Mentor.

  • Meet BBMB's Academic Advisors. You can find your assigned Advisor in the Navigate app, where your Advisor will be listed as part of your Success Team. You can also find your Advisor in Workday (instructions).
  • You can find your Faculty Mentor in the Navigate app. Your Faculty Mentor will be listed as part of your Success Team.
    • Biochemistry majors are assigned a Faculty Mentor during their first semester, which is discussed in BBMB 1100.
    • Faculty Mentors support student decisions about career paths, research or internship options, and program of study.
    • Students get to know Faculty Mentors through Faculty visits to Learning Community and Mentoring Program events such as pop-up campus tours and Trivia Night.


Quick Links

Biochemistry Major and Specializations

Biochemistry majors choose their specialization after they start at ISU.


What are my choices for specialization?

Each specialization prepares students for their area of interest while meeting core biochemistry-major requirements. 

For detailed specialization requirements, see Biochemistry (CALS) Requirements, Biochemistry (LAS) Requirements, and upper-level core course electives for each specialization.

What's the difference between specializations?

The core and general education courses that differ between specializations reflect strategic preparation for your professional interests. For example, students focusing in pre-medicine will take psychology course as part of their gen eds to meet medical school admission requirements, whereas students focusing in biophysics will take a computer science course as one of their core courses. Students may switch specializations at any time.

Regardless of specialization, every biochemistry student will build a rigorous foundation of core courses in biochemistry, biology, chemistry, math, and physics. 

Regardless of specialization, every biochemistry student has access to extracurricular opportunities like BBMB Club, Stupka Symposium, and research.

What about other ways to customize my learning, like a minor or double major?

Minors and double majors may not be added until a student has already started at ISU. These options will be discused in Learning Community.

Biochemistry Major and College

Biochemistry majors choose their College before they start ISU.

What are my choices for College?

You may study Biochemistry in either the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) or the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (LAS). All three biochemistry specializations are available in both CALS and LAS.

What's the difference between Colleges?

As colleges, CALS and LAS have different structures and focuses. To learn more about the student experience and resources in each college, check out these pages:

Within biochemistry, the upper-level core course electives for each specialization differ slightly to reflect each College's priorities, focus, and strengths.

CALS and LAS have slightly different requirements outside the core Biochemistry major. For example, CALS has a speech fundamentals requirement and LAS has a World Language requirement. 

Regardless of College, all undergraduate students seeking a degree from Iowa State University complete a common set of general education requirements.


What if I'm a transfer student?

BBMB welcomes transfer students and provides options for making efficient use of your previous study. More information:

General Education Requirements

All Iowa State University Students must meet the U.S. Diversity Requirement (renamed in Spring 2024 to U.S. Cultures and Communities; list TBA) and International Perspectives Requirement.

Each College also has general education requirements:

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (LAS)

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS)

  • Humanities (3 cr. req'd)
  • Social Science (3 cr. req'd)
  • Ethics (3 cr. req'd)
  • CALS Life Science, Math, Physics, and Statistics requirements may be met by biochemistry-major core courses.

For general questions about the BBMB undergraduate program not addressed by the above, contact Claire Kruesel, BBMB Undergraduate Program Coordinator: