College of General Studies

Natural Sciences (BS)

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According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the health care and social assistance industry is projected to create about 28 percent of all new jobs in the U.S. economy by 2020—an estimated 5.7 million new jobs.

The natural sciences major is a liberal arts major with a focus on courses from three natural sciences departments. Students customize this major to meet their interests and personal orcareer goals, choosing from a variety of courses with a concentration in three areas, such as anthropology, biological sciences, chemistry, computer science, geology and planetary science, history and philosophy of science, mathematics, neuroscience, physics, psychology, and statistics.

Also available are a premedicine option (for those preparing for medical school or another health professional school) and two pre-education options (for those preparing for teaching careers).

Pre-Medicine Option

This natural sciences concentration incorporates the course work needed for admission to most medical and dental programs. Completion of this concentration does not guarantee acceptance into graduate study. Students pursuing this option can take advantage of the resources of the University of Pittsburgh’s health professions advising team, based in the University Honors College. Night sections of biology, chemistry, and physics courses are available, with seats reserved specifically for CGS students.

Pre-Education Options

The College of General Studies and the Pitt School of Education have collaborated on two concentrations in the natural sciences major that incorporate the prerequisite science course work needed for admission into the certificate programs in earth and space science and general science. These options may be used by students interested in the Master of Arts in Teaching program offered in the School of Education. Completion of the prerequisites for the School of Education does not guarantee acceptance to its programs. Students must complete a minimum of 120 credits (approximately 40 courses) for a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in natural sciences. Of this total, students must take a minimum of 36 credits (approximately 12 courses) according to the specifications. The remaining credits required for the degree are outlined on the Requirements for the Bachelor’s Degree information sheet.

Natural Sciences: Standard Major: 36 credits

Choose a minimum of 36 credits (approximately 12 courses) from any three departments below. All courses taken must be related to natural sciences. At least five courses must be taken from one department, and at least three courses should be taken from each of the two other departments. All courses selected for the natural sciences major must be approved by an academic advisor.

  • Anthropology (natural sciences-related course) 
  • Astronomy
  • Biological Sciences
  • Chemistry
  • Computer science (only courses numbered 0401 and above) 
  • Geology and planetary science
  • History and philosophy of science (natural sciences-related course)
  • Mathematics (only courses numbered 0220 and above)
  • Neuroscience
  • Physics
  • Psychology (natural sciences-related course) 
  • Statistics

 

Premedicine Option: 39 credits

Course NumberTitleCredits
BIOSC 0150Foundations of Biology 13
BIOSC 0050Foundations of Biology 1 Lab1
BIOSC 0160Foundations of Biology 23
BIOSC 0060Foundations of Biology 2 Lab1
BIOSC 1000Biochemistry3
CHEM 0110General Chemistry 1 and Lab4
CHEM 0120General Chemistry 2 and Lab4
CHEM 0310Organic Chemistry 13
CHEM 0330Organic Chemistry 1 Lab1
CHEM 0320Organic Chemistry 23
CHEM 0340Organic Chemistry 2 Lab1
MATH 0220Analytical Geometry and Calculus 14
PHYS 0110Introduction to Physics 13
PHYS 0111Introduction to Physics 23
PHYS 0212Introduction to Laboratory Physics2
Additional recommended courses for premedicine option:
BIOSC 1850Microbiology3
MATH 0230Analytical Geometry and Calculus 24
NROSCI 1000Introduction to Neuroscience3
NROSCI 1070Human Physiology4
STAT 1000Applied Statistical Methods4

Pre-education Options

Earth and Space Science Concentration: 40 credits

Course NumberTitleCredits
ASTRON 0089Stars, Galaxies, and the Cosmos
(or equivalent)
3
CHEM 0110General Chemistry 1 and Lab4
CHEM 0120General Chemistry 2 and Lab4
GEOL 0030The Atmosphere, Oceans, and Climate3
GEOL 0055Geology Labratory2
GEOL 0060History of the Earth3
GEOL 0800Geology3
GEOL 0860Environmental Geology3
GEOL 1000-levelUpper-Level Geology Elective3
MATH 0220Analytical Geometry and Calculus 14
PHYS 0110Introduction to Physics 13
PHYS 0111Introduction to Physics 23
PHYS 0212Introduction to Laboratory Physics2

General Science Concentration: 41 credits

Course NumberTitleCredits
ASTRON 0089Stars, Galaxies, and the Cosmos
(or equivalent) 
3
BIOSC 0150Foundations in Biology 13
BIOSC 0050Foundations in Biology 1 Lab1
BIOSC 0160Foundations in Biology 23
BIOSC 0060Foundations in Biology 2 Lab1
BIOSC 0370Ecology3
BIOSC 1000Biochemistry3
CHEM 0110General Chemistry 1 and Lab4
CHEM 0120General Chemistry 2 and Lab4
CHEM 0310Organic Chemistry 13
GEOL 0800Geology3
MATH 0220Analytical Geometry and Calculus 14
PHYS 0110Introduction to Physics 13
PHYS 0111Introduction to Physics 23

Requirements are suject to change. Check with an academic advisor before registering.

An internship program is available through the College of General Studies. Please see your advisor for additional information.