Microbial Sciences Minor

Structure of the Minor in Microbial Sciences

The minor in microbial sciences is intended for students who are either not enrolled in the Biology Major or who are taking a concentration other than Microbiology within the Biology Major. To fulfill the minor, Students must

  • Students must take at least of 15 credits in microbiology courses.
  • At least 2 courses must be in Basic Microbiology (from Group A) to gain important background in microbiological sciences.
  • At least 1 course must be in Microbial Ecology and Environmental Microbiology (from Group B)
  • At least 1 course must be in Applied and Pathogenic Microbiology (from Group C).

Group A–Fundamental Biology of Microorganisms (2 course required)

  • BioMi 1100 — Locker Rooms, Kitchens and Bedrooms: The Microbiology of College Life (3 cr, S)
  • BioMI 2900 – General Microbiology Lectures (3 cr; F, S)
  • BioMI 2911 – General Microbiology Laboratory (2 cr; F, S)
  • BioMI 4850 – Bacterial Genetics* (2 – 3 cr; F)

Group B – Microbial Ecology, Diversity and Environmental Microbiology (1 course required)

  • BIOMI 1120 — Microbes, the Earth, and Everything (3 cr; F)
  • BioMI 3500 – Marine Microbes & Disease (3 cr, S)

Group C – Applied and Pathogenic Microbiology (1 course required)

  • BioMI 2500 – Public Health Microbiology (3 cr, F)
  • BIOMI 2600– Microbiology of Human Contagious Diseases (3 cr, S, SU)
  • BIOMI 2950- Biology of Infectious Disease: From Molecules to Ecosystems (3 cr, F)
  • BioMI 3210 – Human Microbes and Health* (3 cr, F)
  • BioMI 3310 – General Parasitology (2 cr, S)
  • BioMI 3940 – Applied and Food Microbiology* (3 cr, F)
  • BioMI 4040 – Pathogenic Bacteriology* (2 – 3 cr, S)
  • BioMI 4090 – Principles of Virology* (3 cr, F)
  • BioMI 4310 – Medical Parasitology (2 cr, F)
  • BIOMS 4340– Cellular and Molecular Microbial Pathogenesis (3 cr; S)

*Note that BioMI 2900 is a pre-requisite for most advanced classes in Microbiology

*All classes taken toward the major may not count towards the minor

Enrolling in the Minor in Microbial Science

The Minor in Microbial Science is open to all students in all majors other than Biology. Biology Majors should pursue the curriculum for the Concentration in Microbiology. The Minor is available to students in all Colleges at Cornell University.

There is no formal enrollment process for the Minor in Microbial Science. Students interested in pursuing the Minor should contact the Microbiology Undergraduate Program Coordinator, Ian Hewson (hewson [at] cornell.edu), to arrange a meeting with a member of the Microbiology Curriculum Committee. During this meeting, students will review planned courses with a Minor Advisor in Microbiology (assigned at that time).  Students are responsible for planning their minor program of study in conjunction with their advisor in their major.

To complete the Minor in Microbial Sciences, students must complete the form, “Minor Program of Study in Microbial Sciences” available in 102 Wing Hall (Department of Microbiology Administrative Office) or online at this site no later than January 31 prior to the May graduation deadline, or no later than September 30 prior to the December graduation deadline. After submitting their form, the student must make an appointment with their Minor Advisor. Students should take their Application to Graduate form, and bring a copy of his or her transcript (it need not be an official copy) to verify completion of the minor. Upon satisfactory review of the application and transcript, the Minor Advisor will sign the form and notify the registrar of successful completion.

Students wishing to count subjects taken while on study abroad should contact their Minor Advisor, or the Undergraduate Program Coordinator (hewson [at] cornell.edu). Students should be prepared to provide a syllabus for the course and the name and contact details for the course instructor. The Minor Advisor will review the syllabus and contact faculty at Cornell teaching similar subjects to check appropriateness of credit. Generally speaking, courses which cover the same material as on-campus courses will be considered for credit.

The Microbiology Curriculum Committee periodically reviews courses available at Cornell for inclusion in the Minor in Microbial Science. Should you be interested in a subject that is not currently listed, please contact the Undergraduate Program Coordinator, Ian Hewson, at hewson [at] cornell.edu. Only courses which are microbiology, and courses which pertain to the four focus areas of the minor – Introductory Courses in Microbiology, Biology of Microorganisms, Microbial Ecology, Diversity and Environmental Microbiology, and Applied and Pathogenic Microbiology will be considered. Students must complete at least one course in each of these four groups.

BioG 2990/4990 in a Microbiology Laboratory may count towards the Laboratory Course requirement, subject to approval by the Undergraduate Program Coordinator. Students should submit a detailed description of the work carried out,  the faculty who oversaw the work, and how the work was assessed (e.g. paper, presentation) to their Minor Adviser.

Students and advisers in other departments should contact  the Undergraduate Program Coordinator (Ian Hewson, hewson [at] cornell.edu) if they have questions about Microbiology courses.