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Do you see yourself researching new treatments for diseases like diabetes or cancer? Maybe you want to help schoolchildren fall in love with science, or you dream of spending your days caring for patients as a physician. Majoring in biology, the study of living organisms, is great preparation for careers in scientific research, teaching, medicine, dentistry, or veterinary science.

The backbone of Hofstra's biology program is research, meshing the theory of science with its practical application to real-world problems. You'll get the chance to participate in research as early as your first year, playing an integral role in projects that will inspire you, build your resume, and have meaningful scientific impact. Our students work alongside professors studying ecology at the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge; examining the microorganisms that promote the growth of beach grass protecting Long Island beaches; and studying biofuels and sand dunes, cancer cell migration, and pathogenic bacteria.

Hofstra's unique relationship with Northwell Health, one of the country's largest healthcare systems (and our partner in the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell and the Hofstra Northwell School of Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies) means our students also have the opportunity to pursue research projects with mentors from Northwell's Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research, where more than 1,500 scientists and researchers are working on groundbreaking discoveries in many medical fields.

On campus, you'll use state-of-the-art laboratory instrumentation, develop analytical and problem-solving skills, and build your writing and presentation techniques, even co-writing articles with your research mentor for publication in scholarly journals. Hofstra's sophisticated labs and technology include a Cell and Molecular Lab, a Microbiology Teaching Lab, an imaging center with light and electron microscopes, 3D motion analysis systems, professional portable GPS units fully compatible with GIS, an advanced molecular techniques center, animal care facilities, and two automated greenhouses. In addition, we actively promote research across scientific disciplines, thanks to a new, multidisciplinary lab called the Collaboratorium.

Biology bachelor’s degree recipients in the New York region earn an average annual salary of $57,458, and job growth for this major is projected to increase about 15% by 2026, according to New York area labor market data retrieved in July 2018 by Burning Glass Technologies.

Our students have found that their rich undergraduate research experiences set them apart when applying for competitive fellowships, medical and graduate school admission, or helped them move quickly into rewarding careers in private industry.


Hofstra offers two undergraduate biology degrees, depending on whether you plan to pursue a career in scientific research or medicine, or aspire to teach at the K-12 level.

The BA in Biology is a more general degree, with a strong liberal arts component, that requires 36 semester hours of biology coursework. It's ideal for teachers, or if you plan to begin a career or graduate program in business, law, or engineering.

The BS in Biology requires more biology – 45 semester hours' worth – and is designed for students who have plans to go on to medical, dental, or veterinary school, or graduate school in biology. As part of this degree, students choose a specialization: Cell and Molecular Biology; Ecology and Evolution; Marine Biology; Pre-Medical, Pre-Dental, and Pre-Veterinary Studies; and Secondary Education.

Up-to-date information about required classes and more is available in the Hofstra Bulletin.

BA in Biology Requirements BS in Biology Requirements

A minor in Biology is available, as are a major and minor in neuroscience and BA and BS in Urban Ecology.

We also offer a several graduate and dual-degree programs:

Students may also apply for the 4+4 BS-BA/MD program, a highly selective program offered in conjunction with the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell.

Recent Alumni Outcomes

Our graduates work in laboratories, pharma companies, government agencies, and nonprofits.

Some of the places they have reported finding employment include:

  • Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories
  • Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research.
  • Hitachi Chemical Advanced Therapeutic Solutions
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
  • Montefiore Medical Center
  • Mount Sinai Health System
  • Mt. Sinai South Nassau
  • Northwell Health
  • NY Department of Agriculture and Markets
  • NYC Department of Education

About 39% of our biology alumni are pursuing graduate and professional degrees at institutions such as:

  • Albert Einstein College of Medicine
  • Columbia University
  • George Washington University
  • Harvard Medical School
  • Hofstra University
  • New York University
  • SUNY College of Optometry
  • University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  • University of Southern California
  • Yale University
93% are employed, grad school or both
94% accept a position within six months
$45K median salary*
Get More Info on Program Outcomes
*Represents median salary for the first year following graduation

Experiential Learning and Internships

Our professors are active researchers and journal authors who are experts in a variety of fields, including applied and environmental microbiology, behavior and ecology of aquatic animals, molecular biology and evolution, plant and soil ecology, developmental genetics, and tissue-specific gene regulation.

At any given time there are a number of research projects taking place, from studying terrapin behavior in Jamaica Bay, microbiology at Long Island vineyards, or proteins released from the endothelial cells that line human blood vessels.

Students also have the opportunity to take a January session course that takes them either to the Galapagos Islands and Ecuador for field studies in ecology and evolution, or to Belize for field studies in marine biology. The programs alternate from year to year. We also offer a 10-week, on-campus research fellowship with a $4,000 stipend.

Internships also are an important part of Hofstra biology majors' experience. Our recent students have completed internships at places such as Brookhaven National Laboratory, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories, Columbia University Medical Center, Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research, Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Mount Sinai Health System, Nassau University Medical Center, Oyster Bay Fish Hatchery, and St. Francis Hospital - The Heart Center.

In addition, you can meet like-minded new people, share ideas, and organize service-learning opportunities through student organization such as TriBeta, the biology honors society; the Biology Club; and the American Medical Students Association. Biology Seminar Series hosts scientists from Hofstra and other institutions for public lectures about their research.



Javier Izquierdo, PhD, assistant professor of biology, is a microbiologist who talks about his work hunting for beneficial microbes on Long Island. He’s also a musician who plays several instruments and uses songs to communicate scientific theories and concepts to his students.

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