Bachelor of Science in Physiology Major

BS Phyisology

When you receive a bachelor of science in Physiology at SPU, you will have gained a solid foundation in understanding how living systems work. You will also receive a strong foundation for a future career in medicine, dentistry, optometry, pharmacy, veterinary medicine, and other health-related and applied biology field. Some students pursue graduate education in physiology.

About the Physiology Major

When you major in Physiology you will study how the human body, including its cells and tissues, works. You will learn about the biological science that gives us the basis for the knowledge we need to understand how the components of our bodies work together.

Career Opportunities

After graduation, you'll be on your way to serving in a position such as:

  • Biochemist
  • Agricultural researcher
  • Food technologist
  • Biomedical engineer
  • Physician
  • Dentist
  • Veterinarian
  • Food industry specialist
  • Forensic scientist
  • Pharmacist

Courses and Requirements

For a bachelor of science in Physiology, you will be required to take a minimum of 105 credits, including at least 35 upper-division biology credits. Review all of the BS in Physiology courses and requirements, as well as a suggested course sequence.

If you are interested in pre-professional health sciences training or graduate school, consult your faculty advisor as early as possible to determine what other courses in chemistry, physics, and mathematics that you should take to meet the demand of your plans or career goals.

As a Physiology major, you must either take one of the specified courses in ethics or complete an Undergraduate Research Project. An ethics course is strongly recommended if you are interested in attending medical school or other professional health science training. The Research Project is essential for you if you're pursuing graduate school.

No more than six credits of courses numbered from BIO 4900 through 4999 may be applied to this major.

To apply to the BS in Physiology major, you must make a formal application through your Degree Status Check page in Banner.

Faculty Contact

Cara Wall-Scheffler

Professor and Co-Chair of Biology
PhD, University of Cambridge

Phone: 206-281-2201
Office: Eaton 107

Jenny Tenlen

Associate Professor and Co-Chair of Biology
PhD, University of Washington

Phone: 206-281-2007
Office: Eaton 113
First Generation student

Students in Environmental Physiology at Seahurst Park

Environmental Physiology students take advantage of a natural laboratory

Students in Environmental Physiology (BIO 4256), taught by Dr. Cara Wall-Scheffler, are able to take advantage of diverse terrestrial and aquatic habitats available in the Seattle area, such as at Seahurst Park in Burien.  In this course, offered as part of SPU's September Session, students investigate how organisms balance acclimation and adaptation as they respond physiologically to their environments.

John Douglass, Assistant Professor of Biology

Why I Teach at SPU

John Douglass, Assistant Professor of Biology

“I love the direct interaction with students. With the small class sizes, we have the ability to address questions and dive into topics as they arise. This makes for lively discussions and helps students explore the exquisite complexity of the natural world. Furthermore, the excellent faculty and top-notch facilities at SPU make it easy to involve our students in meaningful research projects that equip them with both the technical skills and the scientific mindset to tackle their future challenges.”