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Department of Biological Sciences

Biology is the study of life, from vast continental and marine ecosystems to single microscopic cells. The primary goal of the Department of Biological Sciences at Cal State San Marcos is to help students develop the theoretical, practical, and analytical tools necessary to appreciate the breadth of biology and pursue their specific research interests and career goals. Toward this end, the department offers a diverse selection of small, student-centered courses taught by a faculty devoted to student success. In addition, Cal State San Marcos Biology students have exceptional opportunities to pursue cutting-edge research in well-equipped, modern laboratories. As early as their sophomore year, undergraduates are encouraged to participate in faculty-supervised research projects which provide practical experience in experimental design, data collection and analysis, and oral/written presentation of experimental findings. This experience gives our graduates the skills and knowledge to pursue careers in fields such as biotechnology, natural resources management, and biology education, as well as opportunities to pursue advanced or professional degrees in the life sciences.

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Attention Students who wish to change their major to Biology:

Biology is an impacted program, and students cannot change their major to Biology unless they have completed the lower-division requirements for the degree. There are two methods for completing those classes:

  • You can declare the Biology minor at any time, which will allow you to take lower-division Biology classes if seats are available. If you complete the lower-division classes Minor Requirements in the Minor you will be allowed to declare the Biology Major. However, Minors will have lower enrollment priority than students who require these classes for their Majors.
  • You can complete the lower-division requirements at a Community College. There are no restrictions on transfer admissions to Biology, and if you complete the lower-division required classes for the Biology major Major Requirements at a Community College while you are still a CSUSM student you will be allowed to declare the Biology major.

If you have any questions contact Academic Advising or the Biology Department email

If you have any further questions contact the Department Chair, Dr. William Kristan

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Dept. of Biological Sciences
CSU San Marcos
333 S. Twin Oaks Valley Rd. 
San Marcos, CA 92096

Phone: 760-750-4103

Department Chair
Dr. William Kristan
SCI 1, 307
Phone: (760) 750-8096
wkristan@csusm.edu

Assistant Department Chair
Dr. Matthew Escobar
SCI 2, 123
Phone: (760) 750-8083
mescobar@csusm.edu

Administrative Coordinator
Lori Asaro
SCI 2, 230
Phone: (760) 750-4103
lasaro@csusm.edu