Frequently Asked Questions
Bachelor of Science
Biochemistry BS with Honors
Brandeis students intending to be Biochemistry majors should take in their first year:
Starting in the fall 2018 semester, an appropriate score on the advanced standing exam in biology will be considered the course equivalent of BIOL 15b. This means that students admitted for the Fall 2018 (or after) that claim advanced standing exam credit for Biology (AP, IB, French Bacc., A-level) cannot also enroll in BIOL 15b at Brandeis. The advanced standing score in biology will fulfill the BIOL 15b requirement for the Biochemistry major.
Students admitted to Brandeis prior to fall 2018 will be permitted to claim advanced standing credit and also take BIOL 15b at Brandeis, OR these students can claim advanced standing credit in biology and use the advanced standing exam as a course equivalent to BIOL 15b towards their major requirements. When claiming their advanced standing exam credit at the Registrar's Office, these students should indicate which set of rules they would like to use. Any questions can be directed to the Office of the University Registrar.
The Advanced Introductory Biochemistry course, BCHM 100, does not have an associated lab. Most biochemistry majors do independent research in a professor’s lab for their honors thesis, but that is optional.
Your choice of courses to satisfy the major requirements must be approved by the department. Please obtain approval before starting the course so that you will be certain that it will satisfy your elective requirement.
All electives must be courses numbered 100 or higher* on a subject at least somewhat related to Biochemistry, but they need not be Biochemistry Department courses. When your elective choice is approved you will be notified by email; please keep a copy of this email for your records.
Register for 99a the first time you take the course and 99b the second. In general you should not register for 99e; that is a special 8-credit course that is taken only in unusual circumstances. (If you think “unusual circumstances” applies to you, please discuss your situation with the UAH, whose signature is required to register for 99e).
The requirements that apply to you are the ones in effect when you entered Brandeis. If the current requirements are more lenient, you can request permission to satisfy the current requirements instead.
BS/MS students typically take 99a and 99b in their Junior year and 150a and 150b in their Senior year. Since 99 has a corequisite of Bchm 100, this plan requires that students take Bchm 100 no later than Fall semester Junior year.
In unusual cases where it is not possible to take both 99a and 99b, students can request permission from the UAH and their advisor to take 99e, an 8-credit course that counts as two semesters of lab research. Students wanting to take 99e should discuss this with the UAH as far in advance as possible.
The BS/MS degree requires four semesters of research courses (consisting of one or two semesters of BCHM 99 plus two or three semesters of BCHM 150). However, many BS/MS students will need to take two semesters of BCHM 150. For a four-year BS/MS, the university requires (see Bulletin) four additional graduate courses beyond those required for the BS. Normally BS/MS students satisfy this requirement by taking 102, 150a, 150b, and the required elective.
If you are in the BS/MS program, you need a second elective for your MS degree in addition to the one approved for your BS degree. Please obtain approval before starting the course so that you will be certain that it will satisfy your elective requirement.