«

»

Human Biology

Choosing a major is not an easy task. Most are unsure of their future careers once entering college, which is perfectly fine. So how exactly does one become sure of what major they want? Simply sit back, think hard and plan. A major with a strategic plan will guide you on your desired career path. The Bachelor of Science in Human Biology major is a great major for interest in careers in the medical field. It also happens to be my major as a first year student at UC Santa Cruz.

What It Is?

So what is Human Biology all about? Well it is a major designed for students interesting in pursuing careers in medicine and biomedical research. This degree is based in molecular, cell and developmental biology and also incorporates chemistry, physics, math and statistics. Ultimately, the Human Biology major satisfies requirements for medical school, which is generally required before entering the world of medicine. This is not a very common major; University of California, Santa Cruz is one a few schools that has it. Each university most likely has a different variation in the major requirements in order to satisfy the degree. UCSC, for instance, requires proficiency in the Spanish language and also a formal internship through UCSC internship programs. Other schools may not require Spanish and an internship; however, these requirements are very beneficial to students. Not only are students well prepared to enter medical school, but they also have skills that will be very helpful in real world situations, especially in the med-field.

Plan and Prepare

Planning and preparation is essential for this major, because it is very demanding and takes a lot of hard work and determination. Coming from high school, one should prepare by having solid backgrounds in biology, chemistry, advanced mathematics (precalculus) and in physics. These courses will be a foundation for some of the early courses for first year students in college. Also, if a high school student is considering a degree in Human Biology, it is highly recommended to take lower division classes – which are general education courses and prerequisites to the major courses – that will satisfy early requirements of the Human Bio B.S. For transfer students, preparation for this major requires a completion of a year of calculus, general chemistry and introductory biology. In order for a transfer to begin their upper division or advanced courses – that are more focused in one’s major -, the following classes must have been taken and pass: organic chemistry, statistics and calculus-based physics. For both first year students and transfer students all classes must be taken with a letter grade, not pass/no pass; the Human Bio major is no easy task, but it is nowhere near impossible.

Human Bio and not Bio?

Why Human Biology? What makes this major different than other biology majors? Not much. This major simply requires more courses and more work, however, it will, without a doubt, prepare someone for medical school and the MCAT or the Medical College Admission Test. This test is like the SAT, it determines admittance into medical schools. The Human Biology is very extensive and thorough in different aspects of biology. I, for one, particularly chose this major because I knew it would set me on a course to become an orthopedic surgeon, which is fancy for a ‘bone doctor.’ The courses that I have to tackle throughout the course of this major will prepare me for any medical school of my choice and also give me real world skills. Spanish is very important, especially in California. An internship will develop better communication skills and provide an actual working environment that will only get me ready for real situations in the future. The Human Biology major is honestly self-rewarding.

The Right School

If you plan on proposing Human Biology as your major of choice, it is very important to understand which schools carry it and which program will benefit you the most. Again, this major is not very common amongst universities across the nation and each university that does have it, has a completely different set of requirements. Schools such as University of California, at San Diego, University of California, at Santa Cruz, Boise State, Michigan State, and Biola all have the Human Bio major. However, each program varies in emphasis of study. Personally, after looking a many of the requirements from other schools, UCSC has the best Human Biology program. All schools have a general demand for biology, chemistry, and math, but UCSC different from the rest because of the required completion of Spanish and an internship. It is so useful to be bilingual in any field of work in today’s society. Learning another language sets one person apart from another. The availability of an internship provides community service, personal growth and professional development, and most importantly, provides first-hand experience in the medical field/health related fields. Have many credentials and actual experience allows you to compete at the highest of levels; especially, when that competition is in regards to getting a job.

Careers

Careers. What jobs are available after graduating with a Bachelors of Science Degree in Human Biology? Honestly, all of them. The medical field is always in demand of jobs. A student with a Human Bio degree can enter the fields of the following: Chiropractics, Dentistry, Medical technology, Medicine, Optometry, Pharmacy, Physician’s assistant, Public health, and Veterinary medicine. These are merely a few of the endless possibilities of fields to explore. Of course, all of these sub-fields are explored because of higher education in medical school and the proper certification. This is just an example of what doors can be opened by Human Biology major.

In Conclusion

Human Biology is a tough major. There is so much hard work and time that has to be put in, in order to reap its rewards. For those that want to get into medicine, this major is good one to have under the belt. It is important to know that there are others in the same boat and everyone needs help and is there to help. Human Biology is a major designed to be a key to open doors for future success in any medical related field.

Questions and Answers

  • What major should you choose?
    • You should choose a major based what your interests and what you seek to do in the future; however, that will not define it.
  • If considering a job in the medical field, what major should be chosen?
    • Majors that deal with the sciences (biology, chemistry, physics, etc.) are the best majors regarding a medical job because the classes are generally prerequisites for future schooling: Medical School.
  • What about expenses?
    • Undergraduate school and future schooling can get very expensive, how might you deal with this avoiding debt? Know that there are plenty of grants and scholarships, whether at your school or on websites like, Fastweb, people are willing to give you money to finish your education.
  • What can you do now?
    • Plan, plan, plan. Planning is so important to stay on task and is also a good way to manage your time. The more planned you are on what you want to do the easier it will become to be focused and accomplish your goals.