Biology is the Study of Life


Biologists study the living world including, animals, plants, microbes and viruses at various levels ranging from molecules and cells to organisms and populations. They also study how organisms interact with each other and with their environment. The Biological Sciences Department offers two majors: Microbiology and Biological Sciences with options for specialization.

  1. The Major in Microbiology (Micro) is for those interested in studying the genetics and molecular biology of microorganisms (such as bacteria, archaea, fungi) and viruses, and the roles they play in human, animal, and plant health and disease, as well as in biotechnology.
  2. The Cellular and Molecular Biology (CMB) option in the Biological Sciences Major is for those interested in studying the structure and function of organisms and biological processes at the level of cells and the macromolecules that define them (DNA, RNA, protein, lipid, and carbohydrates).
  3. The Ecology, Evolution, and Behavioral Biology (EEB) option in the Biological Sciences Major is for those interested in studying the mechanisms governing interactions among organisms and between organisms and their environment.
  4. The General Biology Option in the Biological Sciences Major is for those who find all areas of Biology exciting and want to explore diverse interests in multiple areas of study.

Click here to declare a Biological Sciences major or minor.

Advising materials can be found here. 

Undergraduates can do research as early as their freshman year and become a part of amazing scientific discoveries.

Undergraduate Research

One of the advantages of studying biology or microbiology at UWM is the opportunity to work side-by-side with faculty researchers and graduate students. You can work in a research lab and learn first-hand what it takes to become a scientist and take part in new discoveries. You will be part of a team working on ideas such as finding treatments for plant disease, identifying and analyzing frog communication patterns, studying how bacteria cause disease, and much more. Learn more about how you can get involved in research here.


Job Outlook

There is broad demand for biologists and microbiologists in both the private and public sectors. Examples include farming, food processing, environmental stewardship, as well as in the biomedical and biotechnology fields. A degree in biology or microbiology also prepares you for professional schools like medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, and veterinary science, in addition to advanced graduate studies in any of the life sciences areas.

You’ll Find UWM Biology Alumni at…

Many of our alumni work at local companies and research institutes such as the Blood Center of Wisconsin, the Milwaukee County Zoo, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Thermo Fisher Scientific, and Aurora Healthcare. Our graduates also have positions at the US Environmental Protection Agency, Lockheed Martin, Abbott Laboratories, and many other corporations, government agencies, and nonprofit organizations.