Cell and Molecular biology (B.S.)

The Department of Cell and Molecular Biology at the University of Rhode Island offers a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Cell and Molecular Biology (CMB). CMB is the study of cells and the macromolecules (DNA, RNA, protein, lipids, carbohydrates) that define their structure and function. The B.S in CMB provides students with a solid foundation in cell biology, molecular biology, microbiology, biochemistry, and molecular genetics. Further, experiential learning is an integral part of this degree program. This training will enable students to make meaningful contributions to global medical and environmental issues including the study of the molecular basis of cancer and infectious disease, heart disease, the development of next generation biofuels, and the genetic engineering of crops for increased productivity and improved disease resistance.

A B.S. in CMB will prepare students for exciting laboratory or administrative positions in the biotechnology and biomedical/pharmaceutical industries, health care as well as the federal government (EPA, FDA, USDA). The B.S. in CMB also provides an excellent foundation for pursuing an advanced degree or attending a professional school, e.g. dental, medical or veterinary schools. The major automatically satisfies the minimum pre-health course requirements and provides excellent preparation for successful completion of the medical college admission test (MCAT).

Learning Outcomes for Cell and Molecular Biology Majors

  1. Students will be able to understand and integrate knowledge of chemical and biological principles of living systems.
  2. Students will develop quantitative skills in order to collect, analyze and interpret experimental data.
  3. Students will develop cell and molecular biology laboratory skills necessary to produce reliable and valid results in addressing fundamental research questions.
  4. Students will gather, analyze and synthesize existing scientific literature in order to communicate scientific information in written and oral presentations for targeted audiences.

The following is an example of the typical course schedule for the first 4 semesters for a student majoring in CMB.  These are recommended course selections for CMB majors in University College; there will be variation based on course availability and schedule restraints.  Some classes are not offered every semester.  It is important to plan ahead and consult with your advisor to allow yourself time to enroll in the classes you wish to take.

Semester I (Fall)

URI101 Freshman at URI1
CHM101/102 Chemistry I, Lab4
BIO101/103 Principles of Biology I4
MTH111 or MTH131 or MTH1413/4
General Education3/4

Total credits:14-17

Semester III (Fall)

CMB211 Introductory Microbiology 4
CHM227 Organic Chemistry I 3
PHY111/203 Physics I 3
PHY185/273 Physics Lab I 1
General Ed. or Elective 3/4

Total credits: 14-15


Semester II (Spring)

BIO102/104 Principles of Biology II4
MTH131 or MTH141 Calculus3/4
CHM112/114 Chemistry II, Lab4
General Education3/4

Total credits:14-16

Semester IV (Spring)

CHM228 Organic Chemistry II3
CMB311 Introductory Biochemistry3
PHY112/204 Physics II3
PHY186/274 Physics Lab II1
General Ed. or Elective3/4

Total credits:16 – 18