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Students can create their own path with new ASU Online biology degree

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October 06, 2022

This fall, more students will have the opportunity to advance their science degree.

ASU Online launched a Master of Science in biology, offered by The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, expanding its roster of graduate online biology classes for those seeking an alternative to on-campus education. 

The new degree offering enables students to deepen their knowledge about the life sciences and encompasses a broad range of applications, from addressing public health challenges to climate change.

The flexibility the program offers, both in pace and content, meets learners where they are geographically and in their professional careers. 

“This degree is applicable to a broad audience,” said Stephen Pratt, professor in the School of Life Sciences. “Courses in this program do not focus on laboratory skills or techniques, but instead on building strong conceptual foundations in frontier areas of modern biology.”

Students are prepared to fill roles in the medical, pharmaceutical and biotechnology fields, as well as pursue teaching roles at various levels, and the program equips students with problem-solving and critical thinking skills, transferable to any profession. 

“Secondary school teachers reaching for a higher level of education, biotechnicians who want to add conceptual depth or analytical abilities to their laboratory skills, or writers who want to expand their scientific expertise — all can elevate their expertise with this degree,” he said.

Interdisciplinary in nature, students can tailor their biology degree, exploring the intersection of their interest areas and creating a unique educational experience. The program offers students a variety of courses for many biological science passion areas, including evolutionary medicine, genetics and genomics, and biotechnology. 

“Students can craft a course sequence that meets their particular educational needs. The program has only a handful of core classes, with the rest of the curriculum free for the student to assemble from available courses,” he said. 

Students can complete the degree in one to two years, as it was designed with working professionals in mind. Students can study at a pace that fits their lifestyle and their personal and professional responsibilities.

“We are delighted to offer (the school's) strengths in graduate training to a broader audience,” Pratt said. “Our charter is about who we include and how they succeed, and this program is a great step in continuing to support student success and enabling them to advance their career at any stage of their life.”

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