Revealing How Life Works

About the Degree

The bachelor of science degree in biochemistry and molecular biology provides a degree path centered on the molecular basis of living systems with training in molecular genetics, biochemistry, and cell biology, as well as in rapidly developing areas such as bioinformatics.

The degree program was created by OSU's Biochemistry & Biophysics Department and is offered in Corvallis and Bend. You'll study molecular and cellular processes connected with aging, disease and oncogenesis and learn how molecular biology concepts inform research approaches. In addition, you will acquire training in fundamental and state-of-the-art molecular biological experimental strategies, bioinformatics and computer-based analysis of protein structures.

Undergraduate Degree Offered

Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

  • Degree Requirements
  • Biochemistry and Molecular Biology majors select at least one specialty option to complete their major requirements

Options in the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Major

The Advanced Molecular Biology option is designed for students interested in pursuing graduate work in molecular life sciences or entering the workforce in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. It provides advanced training in genomics, epigenetics and other areas of current research in molecular biology, in addition to the core courses in the major. Students are strongly encouraged to participate in undergraduate research, and up to six research credits can be applied to the Upper-division Science Elective requirements. Faculty advisors work with students to help them identify electives, research opportunities, and professional internships that align with their interests.

The Computational Molecular Biology option is designed for students interested in the interface of molecular biology, computer science, and statistics. It provides strong preparation for graduate school in computational biology as well as the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry workforce. This option couples the comprehensive core training in biochemistry and molecular biology with advanced course work in mathematics, statistics, computer science, and bioinformatics. Students are strongly encouraged to participate in undergraduate research, and up to six research credits can be applied to the Upper-division Science Elective requirements. Faculty advisors work with students to identify elective courses, undergraduate research opportunities, and professional internships that support their individual interests.

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology students interested in a career in medicine should choose this option. It may also be suitable for students interested in some other health professions and these students should first consult with their advisor. In addition to offering a rigorous foundation in biochemistry, molecular and cellular biology, chemistry, and genetics, the Pre-medicine option meets the requirements for most medical schools in the U.S. by providing students with training in psychology, ethics and social sciences. Students have a wide choice of medically relevant electives in areas such as physiology, microbiology, and immunology. Students are strongly encouraged to participate in undergraduate research. Faculty pre-med advisors guide students to integrate undergraduate research and other relevant professional opportunities into their undergraduate experience and to prepare themselves as strong candidates for admission to the professional schools of their interest.

Ready for Graduate School

Both prospective and current students expressed interest in degrees that can serve as a path to medical school.

Biochemistry and molecular biology graduates are well prepared for medical and dental schools, graduate schools, pharmacy schools and for careers in healthcare, the biotech industry, the pharmaceutical industry, bioinformatics and data science, and education.

Filling A Workforce Need

OSU-Cascades has long-standing partnerships with the local biotech industry including companies like Thermo Fisher Scientific, Lonza, Grace Bio-Labs and Bend Research. Many of our students intern at these companies and are hired after graduation. Local leaders are excited that this new degree program will provide students with specialized molecular life science training.

Learning Outcomes

  • Demonstrate a core knowledge base in the theory and practice of modern Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.
  • Experimental design and laboratory skills.
  • Read and evaluate primary literature in the discipline.
  • Effectively communicate scientific data and ideas.
  • Use databases, computational tools and other online resources effectively.
  • Demonstrate awareness of ethical issues in the practice of science.

What Can I Do with My Degree?

Careers of recent OSU graduates:

Resident Doctor, Johns Hopkins
Vascular Surgery Fellow, Mayo Clinic
Medical students at Harvard, Oregon Health & Science University and Baylor University
Graduate students at Stanford, UC Davis and New York University
Professor of Neurology at the Mayo Clinic
Research scientists at biotech companies
Emergency Physician and Hospitalist, Hawaii Emergency Physician Association
Dentist, Gentle Dental
Forensic Pathology Fellow, Office of the Medical Investigator
Curriculum Fellow and Lecturer, Harvard
Gastroenterologist, Cleveland Clinic
Associate Veterinarian, Banfield Pet Hospital
Research Scientist, Oregon Health and Science University

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We're here to help! Future students can connect with an OSU-Cascades admissions advisor for admission and program questions.