This department offers an undergraduate major under the bachelor of science degree program. The basic requirements of this curriculum include: two years of chemistry, one year of physics, one year of general biology and one of general genetics or two years of Biocore, one semester of calculus, and biostatistics. The major requirements include: introductory biochemistry, laboratory experience, and 12 credits of genetics and genetics-related courses chosen from an approved list.

Genetics is a bachelor's program for students seeking a broad knowledge of heredity in relation to human, animal, and plant breeding, and for students preparing for teaching and research in genetics. A B.S. degree with a major in genetics prepares students for many jobs in the growing biotechnology industry. Some of these jobs are in research and technical support, technical writing, quality control, assay development, and sales or marketing.

Many graduates continue their education by pursuing an advanced degree. Genetics students are competitive for admission to medical schools, veterinary schools, and graduate schools throughout the country. Graduate students may elect a Ph.D. program to prepare for careers in research, academia, and industry. Others may elect an M.S. program for a career in genetic counseling.

Because of the diversity and quantity of research activity on the Madison campus, the discipline of genetics provides an extraordinary number and range of opportunities for undergraduate majors to gain experience in research, a virtual prerequisite for admission to the top graduate programs in the biological sciences and for entry level positions in the biotechnology industry.


Anderson, Phil; Carroll, Sean; Doebley, John (chair); Engels, Bill; Gasch, Audrey; Ikeda, Aki; Laughon, Al; Masson, Patrick; Payseur, Bret; Pelegri, Francisco; Perna, Nicole; Prolla, Tom; Schwartz, David; Wassarman, David;  Yin, Jerry

Associate Professors

Chang, Qiang; O'Connor-Giles,Kate; Skop, Ahna

Assistant Professors

Hittinger, Chris;  Loewe, Laurence; Pool, John;  Zhong, Xuehua

Faculty Associates

Tilmann, Kit; Vermillion Kalmon, Katie

Undergraduate Advisors

Reck, Martha; Tilmann, Kit; Vermillion Kalmon, Katie