Ecology (BS)


The Ecology program is intended for students interested in pursuing a career or postgraduate training in ecology. This major prepares you for careers in areas including forestry, fisheries, agriculture, and wildlife management.

  • A minimum 100 credits are required for this major, including 40 upper-division credits in biology.
  • This major emphasizes undergraduate research.
  • As a part of either core requirements or electives, you are required to take a minimum 3 credits of field biology coursework emphasizing outdoor research and data collection.
  • Students should target a minimum 3.0 GPA in their science coursework if they intend to pursue postgraduate training.

Entering and Completing the Major 

In order to earn a degree, you must complete at least one academic major. SPU encourages students to explore various academic paths, so if you change your mind about a major or minor, or want to include an additional program, you are able to do so, as outlined below.

Note that the University encourages you to enter your chosen major(s) and minor(s) by the start of your junior year. Students who transfer as juniors and seniors should enter a major within their first two quarters at SPU.

  • If this is your first quarter at SPU and you identified the Ecology major as your first choice on your application for admission to the University, you have gained entry to the major. To change or add a major or minor, follow these instructions.
  • If you are an SPU student with an SPU cumulative GPA of 2.0 or better, follow these instructions to enter a major or minor in this department.
  • Students on academic probation (with an SPU cumulative GPA below 2.0) will not be permitted to enter a new major or minor until they regain good academic standing.
  • The University requires a grade of C- or better in all classes that apply to a major or minor; however, programs may require higher minimum grades in specific courses. You may repeat an SPU course only once for a higher grade.
  • To advance in this program, meet with your faculty advisor regularly to discuss your grades, course progression, and other indicators of satisfactory academic progress. If your grades or other factors indicate that you may not be able to successfully complete the major or minor, your faculty advisor can work with you to explore options, which may include choosing a different major or minor.
  • You must complete the major or minor requirements that are in effect in the SPU Undergraduate Catalog for the year you enter the major or minor.

Blakely Island

Blakely Island Field Station

Biology majors can take their upper-division biology courses at SPU’s unique 965-acre Blakely Island Field Station.

Not a Biology major? Some courses at BIFS will meet portions of the Exploratory Curriculum.