Major in Microbiology

Microbiology is the study of microorganisms (bacteria, archaea, protists, fungi) and viruses. The Department offers a BS in Microbiology with research opportunities to conduct original research and investigate different aspects of microbial structure and function.

Microorganisms were the first living things on earth, and they remain the most abundant and the most diverse of all organisms. They can cause diseases of plants, animals and humans; they play critical roles in biogeochemical cycles and bioremediation; and they are important in the food and biotechnology industries.

As a microbiologist, students will be on the cutting edge of developments in public health, industrial production processes, biotechnology, and drug discovery. The Microbiology major prepares students for a variety of careers in the fields of microbiology, virology, molecular biology, biotechnology, and health related professions, for graduate studies in medical microbiology, industrial microbiology, environmental microbiology, microbial biotechnology, and molecular biology, and for professional studies in pharmacy, dentistry, and medicine.

Honors in the Major

Students in microbiology who meet all of the following criteria are awarded honors in the major upon graduation:

  1. A 3.5 cumulative GPA in all UWM graded credits;
  2. A 3.75 GPA in UWM courses counting toward the microbiology major; and
  3. The completion of laboratory or field research, independent study (Bio Sci 697, 698, or 699) or internship (Bio Sci 489).

Students who believe they may qualify for honors should apply to the Department during their last semester of study.