Botanical Research

This program provides a broad background in the biology of plants, from the molecular to the whole-plant level. Botany students study anatomy, biochemistry, ecology, genetics, physiology, taxonomy, and molecular biology of plants. This flexible major combines the faculty and resources of two UF colleges to prepare students for career success.

About this Program

To graduate with this major, students must complete all university, college, and major requirements.

This option provides a strong background in the basic sciences and research, and is intended for students who plan to attend graduate school. Minimum grades of C are required in the foundation and botany major requirements. 

Small classes are taught by faculty who have a commitment to undergraduate education. Students participate in mentored research, assisting faculty with research projects on campus and abroad. The major prepares students for careers in industry and government agencies, for graduate and professional schools, and for teaching jobs in high schools.

General Botany

For students who may not intend to pursue a graduate degree but are interested in a career in plant biology. This specialization provides some flexibility in tailoring the courses needed in order to pursue specific interests. Students are encouraged to consult with an advisor and botany faculty member when deciding on which courses to take.

Botanical Research

For students who intend to pursue a graduate degree and requires research with a faculty member. This specialization provides some flexibility in tailoring the courses needed in order to pursue specific interests. Students are encouraged to consult with an advisor and botany faculty member when deciding on which courses to take.

Coursework for the Major

Required coursework is dependent upon the specialization. Coursework for each specialization can be found below under Critical Tracking and Model Semester Plan.

Relevant Minors and/or Certificates

Students majoring in botany can minor in most other disciplines, and this is a good way to organize students' electives around areas of interest. Note that botany majors cannot minor in biology, nor can biology majors minor in botany (the curricula for the botany and biology majors are too similar).

UFTeach Program

There is a severe shortage of qualified secondary science teachers in Florida and nationwide. Students interested in becoming part of this high-demand profession should see a botany advisor or the UFTeach advisor. UFTeach students complete the UFTeach minor in science teaching with their B.S. in botany and have the coursework and preparation for professional teacher certification in Florida when they graduate.
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Research

Botany majors are strongly encouraged to participate in research, and research is required for the Botanical Research specialization. Research experience is valuable on many levels: it diversifies the college experience; it teaches students how scientists apply the knowledge gained in the classroom to real world questions; it provides the opportunity to work with and get to know researchers who are the best in their field; it introduces students to cutting edge scientific questions and techniques; it can enhance a student's resume/CV when applying to graduate or professional school; and finally it is essential in helping students determine if science is a good career choice.
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CALS botany majors may participate in research for course credit, as a scholar (e.g., University Scholar, Science for Life Scholar, Beckman Scholar), as a volunteer, or, in rare cases, as a paid research assistant. Please visit Undergraduate Research for information regarding course credit. Students who plan to enroll for course credit must contact potential research mentors, develop a project, and turn in the required application and proposal no later than the week before drop/add. If the window is missed, students should still contact potential research mentors, if only to discuss upcoming opportunities.

Required Foundation Courses

Required Foundation Courses
Introductory Botany/Biology7-8
Select one option:
Option A (preferred)
Introductory Botany (preferred) 1
Plant Diversity 1
Option B
Integrated Principles of Biology 1
and Integrated Principles of Biology Laboratory 1
Integrated Principles of Biology 2
and Integrated Principles of Biology Laboratory 2
Chemistry16-18
Select one option:
Option A
Organic Chemistry/Biochemistry 1
General Chemistry 1
and General Chemistry 1 Laboratory
Organic Chemistry Laboratory
Option B
Organic Chemistry/Biochemistry 1
and Organic Chemistry/Biochemistry 2
Organic Chemistry Laboratory
Mathematics7
MAC 2311Analytic Geometry and Calculus 14
Select one:3
Introduction to Statistics 1
Computer Programming Using JAVA (or equivalent)
Computer Programming Using C (or equivalent)
Physics8-10
Select one option:
Option A
Physics 1
and Laboratory for Physics 1
Physics 2
and Laboratory for Physics 2
Option B
Physics with Calculus 1
and Laboratory for Physics with Calculus 1
Physics with Calculus 2
and Laboratory for Physics with Calculus 2
Required Courses for the Botanical Research Specialization
AGR 3303Genetics3-4
or PCB 3063 Genetics
PCB 4674Evolution4
BOT 2710CPractical Plant Taxonomy3
BOT 3503
3503L
Physiology and Molecular Biology of Plants
and Physiology and Molecular Biology of Plants Laboratory
5
BOT 4911Undergraduate Research in Botany2
BSC 3911Entering Research in Biology 21
BSC 4936Critical Analysis of Biological Research2
Ecology and Florida Biodiversity
Select two:6-8
General Ecology
Plant Ecology
Local Flora of North Florida
BSC 3307CClimate Change Biology4
Cells and Tissues
Select one:3-4
Special Topics (Plant anatomy)
Essential Cell Biology
Introduction to Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Biodiversity Breadth
Select one:3-4
Plant Diversity 1
Vertebrate Biodiversity
Special Topics in Zoology (Mammalogy)
Invertebrate Biodiversity
Principles of Entomology
and Principles of Entomology Laboratory
Topics in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation (Mammalogy)
Fundamentals of Plant Pathology
Basic Fungal Biology
Microbiology
and Microbiology Laboratory
Basic Biology of Microorganisms
and Laboratory for Basic Biology of Microorganisms
Total Credits81-91
1

Students who choose BOT 2011C to fulfill the foundation requirements may not use BOT 2011C to fulfill the biodiversity breadth requirements for the major.

2

Must be taken prior to or concurrently with BOT 4911.

Critical Tracking records each student’s progress in courses that are required for progress toward each major. Please note the critical-tracking requirements below on a per-semester basis.

Equivalent critical-tracking courses as determined by the State of Florida Common Course Prerequisites may be used for transfer students.

Semester 1

Semester 2

  • Complete 1 additional critical-tracking course, including labs
  • 2.0 UF GPA required

Semester 3

  • Complete 1 additional critical-tracking course, including labs, with a 2.5 GPA required for all critical-tracking courses
  • 2.0 UF GPA required

Semester 4

  • Complete 1 additional critical-tracking course, including labs, with a 2.5 GPA required for all critical-tracking courses
  • 2.0 UF GPA required

Semester 5

  • Complete all 5 critical-tracking courses, including labs, with a 2.5 GPA required for all critical-tracking courses
  • 2.0 UF GPA required

Semester 6

  • Complete at least two Required Courses for the Botanical Research specialization
  • 2.0 UF GPA required

Semester 7

Semester 8

  • Complete all remaining major course requirements
  • 2.0 UF GPA required

Students are expected to complete the writing requirement while in the process of taking the courses below. Students are also expected to complete the general education international (GE-N) and diversity (GE-D) requirements concurrently with another general education requirement (typically, GE-C, H or S).

To remain on track, students must complete the appropriate critical-tracking courses, which appear in bold. These courses must be completed by the terms as listed above in the Critical Tracking criteria.

This semester plan represents an example progression through the major. Actual courses and course order may be different depending on the student's academic record and scheduling availability of courses. Prerequisites still apply.

Plan of Study Grid
Semester OneCredits
Quest 1 (Gen Ed Humanities) 3
BSC 1920 First Year Introduction: Biology at UF (recommended elective) 1
CHM 2045
2045L
General Chemistry 1
and General Chemistry 1 Laboratory (Critical Tracking; State Core Gen Ed Biological and Physical Sciences)
4
MAC 2311 Analytic Geometry and Calculus 1 (Critical Tracking; State Core Gen Ed Mathematics) 4
State Core Gen Ed Composition; Writing Requirement 3
 Credits15
Semester Two
AEC 3033C Research and Business Writing in Agricultural and Life Sciences (Writing Requirement) 3
Select one: 3-4
Integrated Principles of Biology 1
and Integrated Principles of Biology Laboratory 1 (Critical Tracking; Gen Ed Biological Sciences)
Introductory Botany (Critical Tracking; Gen Ed Biological Sciences)
CHM 2046
2046L
General Chemistry 2
and General Chemistry 2 Laboratory (Critical Tracking; Gen Ed Physical Sciences)
4
State Core Gen Ed Social and Behavioral Sciences 3
Gen Ed Composition; Writing Requirement 3
 Credits16-17
Semester Three
Quest 2 (Gen Ed Social and Behavioral Sciences) 3
Select one: 4
Integrated Principles of Biology 2
and Integrated Principles of Biology Laboratory 2 (Critical Tracking; Gen Ed Biological Sciences)
Plant Diversity (Critical Tracking; Gen Ed Biological Sciences)
CHM 2210 Organic Chemistry 1 (Critical Tracking; Gen Ed Physical Sciences) 3
State Core Gen Ed Humanities 3
Elective 2
 Credits15
Semester Four
AEC 3030C Effective Oral Communication 3
CHM 2211
2211L
Organic Chemistry 2
and Organic Chemistry Laboratory
5
Select one: 3
Introduction to Statistics 1 (Gen Ed Mathematics)
Computer Programming Using JAVA (or equivalent)
Computer Programming Using C (or equivalent; Gen Ed Mathematics)
Python Programming for Biology
Gen Ed Mathematics 1 3
 Credits14
Semester Five
Select one: 3-4
General Ecology (Critical Tracking)
Plant Ecology (Critical Tracking)
Local Flora of North Florida (Critical Tracking)
Climate Change Biology (Critical Tracking)
PCB 4674 Evolution (Critical Tracking) 4
PHY 2053
2053L
Physics 1
and Laboratory for Physics 1
5
Gen Ed Humanities 3
 Credits15-16
Semester Six
BOT 2710C Practical Plant Taxonomy (Critical Tracking) 3
Select one: 3-4
Special Topics (Critical Tracking; Plant Anatomy)
Essential Cell Biology (Critical Tracking)
Introduction to Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (Critical Tracking)
PHY 2054
2054L
Physics 2
and Laboratory for Physics 2
5
Foreign language 5
 Credits16-17
Semester Seven
Select one: 3-4
Economic Issues, Food and You (Gen Ed Social and Behavioral Sciences)
Principles of Food and Resource Economics (Gen Ed Social and Behavioral Sciences)
Principles of Microeconomics (Gen Ed Social and Behavioral Sciences)
AGR 3303
Genetics (Critical Tracking)
or Genetics
3-4
BOT 4911
BSC 3911
Undergraduate Research in Botany
and Entering Research in Biology (Critical Tracking)
4
Select one: 3-4
General Ecology (Critical Tracking)
Plant Ecology (Critical Tracking)
Local Flora of North Florida (Critical Tracking)
Climate Change Biology (Critical Tracking)
 Credits13-16
Semester Eight
BOT 3503
3503L
Physiology and Molecular Biology of Plants
and Physiology and Molecular Biology of Plants Laboratory
5
BSC 4936 Critical Analysis of Biological Research 2
Biodiversity breadth course 3-4
Electives 6
 Credits16-17
 Total Credits120
1

Gen Ed Mathematics; if COP 2800 taken for computational requirement; or elective.


The botany major is offered by both the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences. This major provides a foundation in the life sciences with emphasis on plant systems. Students will learn the diversity of life, the structure of organisms and ecosystems and how they function (i.e., the acquisition, flow, organization and uses of information, energy and nutrients in living systems). Students will learn the scientific method and how it facilitates the discovery of new knowledge in botany and biology, including how to critically evaluate hypotheses and conclusions.

Before Graduating Students Must

  • Achieve acceptable performance in all required botany courses.
  • Complete requirements for the baccalaureate degree, as determined by faculty.

Students in the Major Will Learn to

Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)

Content

  1. Identify, describe and explain the basic terminology, concepts, methodologies and theories used within the biological sciences.

Critical Thinking

  1. Analyze biological information and develop reasoned solutions to problems using the processes and applications of scientific inquiry.
  2. Discriminate ethical behavior from unethical behavior in scientific research.

Communication

  1. Communicate knowledge, ideas and reasoning clearly and effectively in written or oral forms appropriate to the biological sciences.

Curriculum Map

I = Introduced; R = Reinforced; A = Assessed

Courses SLO 1 SLO 2 SLO 3 SLO 4
BOT 2011C R R I
BOT 2710C R R R
BOT 3503 and BOT 3503L R/A R/A R/A
BSC 2010 I I I
BSC 2011 I I
PCB 3601C R/A R/A R/A R/A
PCB 4043C R/A R/A R/A R/A

Assessment Types

  • Major field test for biology
  • Bioethics quiz
  • Scientific paper