Integrated Science 100: Exploring Biology

Course Number: INTEGSCI 100

Credits: 2

Fulfills Requirements:

  • First-year seminar
  • LAS elementary level
  • Breadth, natural science


  • First-year student (first-year freshmen only, no transfer students)

Course Director: Cara Theisen, PhD

A first-year course focused on the core concepts in biology (evolution; transformation of energy and matter; information exchange and storage; structure and function; systems biology), professions in biology, and the foundational skills and knowledge needed for successful academic and post-graduate careers in biology.

In Exploring Biology you will:

    • learn skills and ways of thinking that will prepare you for success in future biology courses;
    • gain new perspectives on broad topics and current research in biology;
    • explore opportunities and careers that can come with a bioscience degree;
    • pick up great tips and advice on how to get the most out of being a bioscience major from upper-level students; and
    • meet new friends and mentors who share your interest in biology.

Quotes from Integrated Science 100 students:

  • “I learned about different aspects of biology, but also things about my campus and the resources that are available.”

  • “This course allows you to explore major biological themes and the different paths you could take if you continue to study biology or any other science.”

  • “The relationships that I built in the class are ones that I expect to keep in the future.”

  • “I learned skills which will be useful in other college courses.”

  • “I learned of the countless activities on campus and how to get involved. I met some very kind and interesting people.”

Note: This course is a topics course intended to be taken before the introductory biology series, and is not an introduction to biology course.

Optional FIG Opportunity

Exploring Biology is part of the First-year Interest Groups (FIG) Program, which creates learning communities by connecting students who are enrolled in a cluster of classes together.


Cara Theisen

Credentials: Ph.D.

Position title: Director of Professional Development in Teaching & Learning