Science at Humboldt State

Humboldt State University is an incredible place to study biology. Our faculty are dedicated to teaching excellence and hands-on learning, instructing courses that utilize specialized equipment, impressive natural collections, laboratory facilities, and the ecologically diverse field sites of our region. Extensive opportunities for research prepare our students for a wide range of careers in biology. Come be inspired!

Choose from Three Majors

In the Biological Sciences Department, you can choose to major in Biology, Botany, or Zoology.



A class of students in the forest surrounded by large redwood trees

Biology majors study organisms and how they function in the natural world. You can be a general biology major or focus your studies by choosing a concentration in one of five specialty areas: Cellular and Molecular Biology, Ecology, Marine Biology, Microbiology, or Science Education.


Professor Tomescu working with two students in the greenhouse

You will learn and appreciate the biological processes unique to plant life with a dedicated learning community and the best botanical collections in the CSU system.


Comparing fish on a clipboard

You will take courses in physiology, ecology, anatomy, and classification of animal groups, with many opportunities for field research in our diverse local habitats, as well as laboratory study.

Graduate Program

Graduate students in the Master of Science program in the Biological Sciences at Humboldt State can choose to pursue investigations with an emphasis in the laboratory, forests, marine habitats, or a variety of other settings.

Pre-Professional Health Programs

If you choose one of our pre-professional health programs, in either pre-medical, pre-dental, or pre-veterinary, you will receive a core education based in biology, chemistry, physics, zoology, and mathematics.

Featured Alumni Profile

Michael Lopez-Torres, 2014

Life science research professional,

After graduating from Humboldt State I had the privilege of being awarded an intern position for the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine through Humboldt State. As an intern, I worked in a lab that studied the stem cells that make our bones and cartilage.

Career Options

Biological scientists are in high demand. Our graduates have gone onto careers in private and public sectors, and tribal and nonprofit conservation agencies. They have earned doctorate degrees, hold leadership positions at laboratories and institutes, have conducted research worldwide, and teach at major universities.

Here are a few possible career options:

Biology Careers

  • Anatomist
  • Physiologist
  • Taxonomist
  • Systematist
  • Herpetologist
  • Entomologist
  • Mammalogist
  • Developmental Biologist
  • Museum Curator or Manager
  • Naturalist
  • Science Educator
  • Veterinarian
  • Veterinary Assistant
  • Professor
  • Scientific Writing
  • Scientific Outreach
  • Scientific Illustration
  • Consulting

Botany Careers

  • Herbarium Curator
  • Naturalist
  • Plant Physiologist
  • Technical Writer
  • Plant Ecologist
  • Environmental Consultant
  • Botanist
  • Horticulturist
  • Science Librarian
  • Plant Pathologist

                  Zoology Careers

                  • Zoologist
                  • Technical Writer
                  • Laboratory Technician
                  • Museum Curator
                  • Entomologist
                  • Health Technician
                  • Ornithologist
                  • Animal Nutritionist
                  • Ichthyologist
                  • Anatomist
                  • Embryologist
                  • Pathology Technician
                  • Science Librarian