Many careers in the life sciences are founded on an understanding of biology. If you’re interested in areas like ecology, genetics, exercise science, and health science, a specialized associate degree in biology can be an important first step toward new career opportunities.

About Salem’s Biology Associate Degree

Salem’s Associate of Science in Biology program equips graduates with the scientific knowledge and skills to pursue entry-level scientific career opportunities or to advance to our bachelor’s degree in biology program. You can choose to complete your biology degree online, at our campus in Salem, West Virginia, or through a blended program that incorporates both on-campus and distance education courses.*

We’ve designed a rigorous associate degree in biology curriculum that will challenge you to explore foundational biology concepts using scientific approaches and methodical problem-solving. We embrace qualitative and quantitative approaches that support decision-making with integrity. Biological sciences are STEM Designated Degree Programs by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, signaling the importance of these studies to the nation and the world.

*Blended programs of study may be arranged with the approval of the program director.

What Can I Do With an Associate Degree in Biology?

The broad nature of the field of biology means that it’s a degree that can be applied to a number of different health professions and career tracks. You could find yourself working as a technician, lab associate, research assistant, or other entry-level position in fields like:

  • Exercise Physiology
  • Coaching
  • Corporate Fitness/Wellness
  • Public Health
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Clinical Laboratories
  • Environmental Science
  • Agricultural and Food Science

What Will I Learn in Salem’s Associate Degree in Biology Program?

The goal of our associate degree in biology program is to prepare you to either successfully step into a life science-based career or continue your studies in the field. Whether you pursue your biology degree online or on-campus, you will explore the foundational aspects of general biology, anatomy and physiology, general and organic chemistry, and more and build upon that classroom knowledge with hands-on lab work. We want our Associate of Science in Biology graduates to develop strong critical thinking skills that they can apply to diverse occupations and settings using evidence-based approaches.

Graduates will demonstrate:

  • Knowledge and skills to develop scientific approaches to global science issues
  • Knowledge and skills to be employed in biology- and health-related fields
  • The application of scientific approaches for success in technical careers related to biology
  • Knowledge and skills to meet graduate school admissions requirements
  • The ability to communicate scientific information in written, oral, and graphic scientific formats

What Biology Classes Will I Take?

The on-campus and online degree in biology requires the completion of 60 semester credits — with at least 24 general education credits and at least 15 credits from the Biology core, which includes:

  • BIO 110 and BIO 111 General Biology 1 & 2
  • BIO 210 and BIO 211 Anatomy & Physiology 1 & 2
  • CHM 110 and CHM 111 General Chemistry 1 & 2
  • CHM 210 and CHM 211 Organic Chemistry 1 & 2
  • CHM 350 and CHM 351 Biochemistry 1 & 2
  • PHY 110 and PHY 111 General Physics 1 & 2

All hours earned in the on-campus and online biology associate’s degree program can be applied to our bachelor’s degree in biology program.

How Long Will It Take to Get My Biology Associate Degree?

On average, a full-time student can earn their on-campus or online degree in biology in approximately 20 months. However, we recognize every student is different, with different circumstances. It’d be best to contact one of our admissions advisors to discuss your specific questions and goals.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Choose Salem University?

Since 1888, Salem University has built upon our tradition of accessible, affordable higher education by constantly innovating and looking to the future. We aim to develop lifelong learners who embrace problem-solving with a global perspective. We offer:

  • Accelerated undergraduate and graduate programs of study with continuous enrollment via distance education or on-campus
  • A unique one-course-a-month format that allows students to focus on a single subject at a time and build their knowledge in a way that feels natural
  • Online courses are structured to work within the constraints of full-time employment, allowing you to earn your degree with minimum disruption to your busy schedule
  • Supportive faculty and staff who serve as thought leaders and mentors
  • A beautiful 100-acre campus situated in the Smoky Mountains where programs of study are available for campus residents and commuter students

Admission Requirements

Admission to Salem is open to all qualified applicants regardless of race, color, creed, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, or ability/disability. Anyone wishing to attend Salem can obtain the necessary application from the Office of Admissions or apply online. The completed application should be submitted to the Office of Admissions at the earliest possible date. The University admits students on a rolling, monthly start basis. Acceptance is within the discretion of Salem University; some programs have additional admissions requirements.

Take the Next Step

If you’re interested in getting started on your Associate of Science in Biology degree online or on-campus from Salem University, now is a great time to request more information or, better yet, chat with us live.