Biology (Biology and Society), PhD

In the biology and society concentration of the PhD program in biology, students examine topics with biological and social dimensions that are best understood together, rather than in isolation. The concentration provides plans of study tailored to individual needs and interests. It encompasses a solid grounding in life sciences and related sciences and provides a rigorous analytical and interdisciplinary education. Students may further specialize in one of four tracks:

Bioethics, policy and law
This track focuses on pressing moral, policy and legal issues raised by biosciences and biomedicine, and on the methods needed to address them.

History and philosophy of science
This track focuses on the conceptual foundations of science, especially the epistemological and methodological assumptions that shape science and its progress.

Ecology, economics and ethics of the environment
This track focuses on the theory and empirical methods for understanding, analyzing and shaping policy that steer us toward a more productive, equitable and sustainable ecological future.

Biology education research
This track focuses on using education research to identify ways to broadly improve undergraduate biology education.

Degree Offered

Biology (Biology and Society), PhD
Liberal Arts & Sciences, College of


Plan of Study

The Plan of Study is the required curriculum to complete the program.

View Plan of Study