Where is the advising center located?

We are located in the Moffett Molecular Biology Building, MBB, room 1.220.

When should I see an academic advisor?

Academic advising is available on an ongoing basis, and not just during registration. Advisors are available to assist with degree planning and course selection, help students who are struggling academically and provide information about UT's numerous resources.

How can I get into a course that is full/closed?

Please use our Course Access link on the Biology Advising Center mainpage for further details. Advisors CANNOT add students to a course that is already full. Add yourself to the automated wait list option if available, and keep trying to add the course during all the add/drop access periods. Being on a wait list is not a guarantee for getting into a class, therefore it is necessary to have an alternative class planned as a back-up. Students may also attend a course and request permission from the professor after the fourth class day to be added. However doing so does not guarantee registration for the course. Students attending a course they are not registered for should continue attending all their other classes as well, in the event that permission to add the closed course is not granted.


Where do I go to change my major?

  1. Students wanting to change from one biology option to another may contact the Biology Advising Center in NHB 2.606.
  2. Students wanting to change majors out of biology and into another major within the College of Natural Sciences, should contact the CNS Student Division in WCH 1.106.
  3. To change majors out of CNS and into another college, contact the Dean's office of that college. 

What are the required prerequisites for a specific biology course?

Prerequisites for all biology courses are clearly stated in the Course Schedule and Undergraduate Catalog and enforced. 

Can I drop one class after the drop deadline?

Yes, every student in the College of Natural Sciences is allowed a One-Time-Exception Q drop after the deadline. Visit CNS Adding and Dropping Classes

Can I take BIO 325 and another upper-division biology course concurrently?

No. Students must receive a grade of C- or better in BIO 325 before taking another upper-division biology course, unless the course schedule specifies other prerequisites.

How can I complete a minor?

The Bachelor of Science and Arts has an option for a 15-hour minor or a transcript-recognized certificate.  For Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees an unofficial minor is typically 12 hours, 6 of which are upper division. An unofficial minor can be listed on your resume, but it is not listed on an official UT transcript. Students in another major who want biology as a minor should discuss this option with their academic advisor.

Can I take classes at ACC or through University Extension while also taking classes at UT?

Concurrent enrollment refers to the act of enrolling simultaneously at more than one college or university, including through online education. Each college at UT has its own policy for the conditions in which you can be concurrently enrolled. Talk to your academic advisor to ensure you know the policy and options before you consider concurrent enrollment.

In the College of Natural Sciences, summer concurrent enrollment is permitted without conditions. Concurrent enrollment is permitted in limited circumstances during fall and spring semesters. You do not need advance approval if you meet both conditions A and B during a fall or spring semester:

A. You are registered in-residence at UT for a minimum of 9 hours, and
B. You want to concurrently enroll in a non-mathematics or non-science course.

To be certain that your courses will satisfy degree requirements, please consult with your academic advisor prior to any concurrent enrollment.

In addition, you do not need advance approval if you meet both conditions C and D:

C. You are registered in residence at UT for a minimum of 9 hours, and
D. You want to concurrently enroll in a mathematics or science course through UT Extension. However, UT Extension will not allow you to take a mathematics or science course through UT Extenion if you have already enrolled in it twice at UT.

If you feel you have an academically sound reason to seek an exception to the fall and spring conditions, ask your advisor to  initiate a petition prior to enrollment. The Dean's Office will make a final decision and notify you through the Natural Sciences Secure Web Services.

Multiple Degree Seekers: Please note that each college at the University has different policies regarding concurrent enrollment. If you are seeking degrees in more than one college, it is your responsibility to ensure that you are meeting the policies of both colleges.


Can I take science classes over the summer at a community college?

It is strongly recommended that Natural Sciences students take all their math and science courses at the University. If you are pre-med or preparing for any other health-related career, and are worried about how this may impact your candidacy for professional schools, you may discuss this with the Health Professions Office.

Do I have to take a foreign language?

The Bachelor of Science options and the Bachelor of Sciences and Arts degree have several ways for fulfilling the foreign language requirement including taking foreign language culture classes. The Bachelor of Arts in biology requires fourth-semester proficiency in a single language. 

Can I take a course pass/fail?

Students should not take a course pass/fail if it is needed to fulfill a degree requirement. If a degree requirement is taken pass/fail it then becomes an elective. Courses taken pass/fail do not count towards the GPA (unless an F is earned) and may not fulfill prerequisite requirements.

For the 2014-16 catalog, College of Natural Sciences BA students may only count 16 pass/fail hours toward their degree, and may only take two courses pass/fail per semester.  

For the 2014-16 catalog, College of Natural Sciences BSA and BS students may only count 6 pass/fail hours toward their degree, and may only take two courses pass/fail per semester.

Can I repeat a course?

Students are not permitted to repeat a course for which they have already earned a C- or better. In addition, no student may enroll in the same Natural Sciences course more than twice without an appeal. 

If I repeat a course, will the old grade go away?

No. Both grades will remain on a student's transcript and both are averaged into the UT GPA.

What courses are considered upper division?

Courses with the last two digits between 20 and 79 (ex: BIO 320, BIO 325) are upper division courses. Those with the last two digits lower than 20 are lower division (ex: BIO 311C). 

What's an upper division elective?

An upper division elective is ANY upper division course that you take to help reach your required total of upper division hours (36) but that does not fulfill any other specific degree requirements. These can be additional biology classes, but they do not have to be. This is your chance to take something different and personally interesting to you. Search through the course schedule to see what's offered, and be sure to notice if the course is restricted or has specific prerequisites. Upper division electives may be taken pass/fail.

How can I find an upper-division "Writing Flag or WR" flag?

In the course schedule, any upper-division course that indicates "Writing Flag or WR" will fulfill the upper-division writing flag requirement. Every course schedule lists all the writing flag courses offered that semester from every academic department, including biology. 

Do both my writing flag courses have to be upper-division?

They CAN be, but they do not have to be. Students have the option of fulfilling one of their writing flags with a lower division course (typically UGS 302/303 or RHE 309K). Advisors STRONGLY recommend that students take one lower division writing flag course during their freshman or sophomore years.

What is Undergraduate Research?

It gives students the opportunity to work closely with a professor in a lab doing independent research. In some cases independent research may be counted in lieu of an upper division biology lab by petition with faculty advisor approval. Students can get more information the College of Natural Science's research webpage at: http://cns.utexas.edu/research-experience/undergraduate-research

How/When do I apply for graduation?

Students apply for graduation during their final semester at UT before the mid-semester deadline (same as the Q-drop deadline). The application is on the web at: http://cns.utexas.edu/students/degrees-majors-advising/graduation

Students who have 12 credit hours or less remaining during the Summer can apply to walk in the May ceremony. Students should complete the Walk Application during the spring semester, and then complete the actual Graduation Application by the Summer application deadline. Students completing their UT degree requirements at another institution must apply to graduate "In Absentia."