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Our Degree Offerings

The Department of Biological Sciences offers students opportunities for study in General Biology, Cell and Molecular Biology, and Teacher Certification / Licensure using state-of-the-art equipment.

A Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, and Ph.D in Biological Sciences are offered.

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Twenty-one full-time faculty members, of whom 86% have terminal degrees.


300-400 majors, approximately 90% of whom are undergraduates and 10% of whom are graduate students. The strength of the program is best demonstrated through the success of graduates. During the past decade, more than 90% of the departments graduates have gone on to graduate and professional schools have performed successfully and have entered society to provide service and leadership as life scientists.

Facilities and Location

The Department of Biological Sciences occupies modern teaching and research facilities on both the Main Campus and the Avon Williams (Downtown Nashville) Campus. In support of its teaching and research programs, the Department is well equipped with the latest in audio-visual and state-of-the-art scientific equipment. Through these holdings, students are afforded the use of extensive teaching aids, as well as hands-on experience in the use of modern scientific instrumentation.

The Department office is located on the main campus.

Our Mission/Vision

The mission of the Biological Sciences program at Tennessee State University is to provide training in the basic biological sciences leading to the bachelor of science in biology degree for pre-health professionals, for entry into life science graduate training programs, for acquisition of entry level positions in the job market, or for students seeking certification for secondary teaching careers; to provide graduate training leading to the master of science and doctor of philosophy degrees for students interested in higher level studies of biological processes; to teach service courses for other degree programs of the University; and to raise the level of understanding of and interest in life science processes in the scientific and general communities.

About Biological Sciences

The Department of Biological Sciences was established in 1927; at the time there were five faculty members. At its inception courses were offered in various disciplines, such as zoology and botany. The focus of the Department gradually changed from preparing students for careers in secondary education to preparing them for entry into professional and graduate schools.

The Department was housed in the Administration Building until 1928, when Harned Hall was completed. In 1948, the department was approved to offer the Master of Science degree, and later in 1997 the doctor of philosophy. Today, the department consists of 20 faculty, 55% of whom are actively engaged in ongoing research programs. A variety of courses in the botanical, microbiological, molecular biological and zoological life science areas are offered at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.


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