Undergraduate Catalog 2015-2016


Environmental Microbiology (EMB)

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)

8 Semester Plan

120 Credit Hours

CIP Code: 26.0101 (Track 1 of 2)

College of Arts & Sciences


Major Description

Students majoring in Environmental Microbiology study the roles that microorganisms play in the environment. The program of study explores the diversity, community structure, and ecological functioning of microorganisms. The objective of the program is to provide students with a firm foundation in basic biology and the tools necessary to function as professional biologists, with special emphasis on microorganisms in natural ecosystems and human-engineered systems. The program will prepare students for further education (microbiology, environmental science, conservation biology) or for careers in fields such as environmental monitoring and safety, characterization and control of pathogenic microorganisms, and bioremediation.

State Mandated Common Course Prerequisites

Students should complete the following prerequisite courses listed below at the lower level prior to entering the university. If these courses are not taken at the community college, they must be completed before the degree is granted. Unless stated otherwise, a grade of C- is the minimum acceptable grade.

  • BSC X010/X010L Biology I with Lab or BSC X010C or BSC X040/X040L
  • BSC X011/X011L Biology II with Lab or BSC X011C or BSC X041/X041L or ZOO X010/X010L or BOT X010/X010L or BOT X013/X013L
  • CHM X045/X045L General Chemistry I with Lab or CHM X045C or CHM X040 and CHM X041
  • CHM X046/X046L General Chemistry II with Lab or CHM X046C
  • CHM X210/X210L Organic Chemistry I with Lab and CHM X211/X211L or (CHM X210C and CHM X211C) or (PHY X053/X053L and PHY X054/X054L) or (PHY X048/X048L and PHY X049/X049L)
  • MAC X311 Calculus I or MAC X233 or MAC X253 or MAC X281 or MAC X241
  • MAC X312 Calculus II or MAC X282 or MAC X234 or STA X023 or STA X024 or STA X321

Total Major Hours: 67-72 Hours

Major Core Courses - 60-63 Hours

Biology Core: (16 hours)

Environmental Microbiology Core: (12-13 hours)

Choose two of the following courses:

Supporting Courses in the Natural Sciences and Mathematics: 32-34 credit hours

Students must receive a C- or better to meet requirements for degree (for progression in Math and CHM, a C is required)

Major Elective Courses - 7-9 Hours

Elective Courses (minimum 7-9 hours):
    Integrative Biology or Cell, Molecular and Microbiology courses, with the exception of those intended for non-majors.

Research Opportunities

Undergraduate research is a great way to get hands-on experience in what you are studying and learning in your courses, and even to advance biological knowledge. Many students have authored articles based on their participation in on-going research in the Department. Undergraduate research also is a great way to boost your resume and to enhance your application to graduate school or health professional school. Several ways are available to get involved; see http://biology.usf.edu/ib/ug/research/.

To be eligible to receive credit for undergraduate research (BSC 4910), students must have Junior standing, a 3.0 USF GPA, and a 3.0 major GPA. A maximum of 4 credit hours BSC 4910 may be applied to the major electives; see http://biology.usf.edu/bioadvise/ug-research/credit.aspx.

Optional Accelerated Program

B.S./M.A.T. Environmental Microbiology/Science Education

This program intends for students to complete a B.S. in Environmental Microbiology (College of Arts and Sciences) and an M.A.T. in Secondary Science (College of Education) over the span of five years. Students completing this program will be eligible for high school and/or middle school science teacher certification. Completion of this program requires students to complete 12 credits toward the M.A.T. in Science Education during the senior year of their B.S. in Environmental Microbiology.

Target students and expected outcomes

The accelerated B.S. in Environmental Microbiology to an M.A.T. in Science Education program is a collaborative effort between the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Education. This program is an attractive and viable career path for students majoring in Environmental Microbiology that results in secondary science teacher certification. Students who complete this program receive the necessary science content and pedagogy coursework to be highly qualified biology teachers at the secondary level.

Description and Requirements

For admission to the program a student must:

  1. Have completed 15 hours in the B.S. Environmental Microbiology major upon applying and thirty (30) semester hours in science (includes twenty-five (25) semester hours in biology plus 5 hours of upper-level work in math or supporting science content area) with associated laboratory experiences to be fully admitted as a graduate student in the M.A.T. Science Education program. Evidence of successfully completing all sections of the General Knowledge Test (GKT) is also required for full admission to the graduate program.
  2. Have a minimum 3.0 GPA overall; and
  3. Have a minimum undergraduate 3.25 GPA in the major.

Undergraduate Degree Requirements for the B.S. in Environmental Microbiology

Environmental Microbiology Major Degree Requirements

All Environmental Microbiology major students will complete graduation requirements listed in the undergraduate catalog.

University and College Requirements:

  • 120 hours
  • 36 hours of general education coursework
  • 6 hours upper-level core curriculum (Writing Intensive Capstone and Capstone Experience)
  • 48 hour upper-level rule
  • Summer rule
  • USF Residency - Students must complete 30 hours of the last 60 hours in USF coursework.
  • FLENT (Foreign Language Entrance Requirement)
  • Gordon Rule Communication and Computation

Specialization Requirements for Certification in Separate Areas of Science (Grades 6-12):

In order to be eligible for certification in a separate area of science, students must complete a minimum of thirty (30) semester hours in science to include twenty-one (21) semester hours in the area of desired specialization (chemistry, biology, physics, earth-space science).

Environmental Microbiology Major Requirements: 72-74 hours total

  • Must receive a C- or better to meet major requirements.
  • Cascading prerequisites are strictly enforced. CR = co-requisite, courses that can be taken concurrently.
  • Must have fewer than 3 D and/or F grades in the Biology major and supporting science requirement lectures
  • Must complete a minimum of 50 percent (20 credit hours) of Environmental Microbiology major requirements at USF Tampa

Biology Core Curriculum: 16 credit hours

  • BSC 2010 & 2010L Cellular Processes/Laboratory
  • BSC 2011 & 2011L Biodiversity/Laboratory
  • PCB 3043 & 3043L Principles of Ecology and Laboratory
  • PCB 3063 & 3063L General Genetics and Laboratory

Environmental Microbiology Core Curriculum: 24 hours

  • MCB 3020 General Microbiology
  • MCB 3020L General Microbiology Laboratory
  • MCB 4404/MCB 4404L Microbial Physiology & Genetics and Laboratory

Advanced Micro Core option, Choose 2 from:

  • BSC 4933 Selected Topics: Applied/Environmental Micro
  • BSC 4933 Selected Topics: Epigenetics
  • BSC 4933 Selected Topics: Microbiology of Waterborne Diseases
  • MCB 4202 Ecology of Infectious Diseases
  • BSC 4444 Genomics
  • ZOO 4233 Parasitology

Choose 10 additional hours of Biology Major courses from Tampa Campus IB Department or CMMB Department courses (course code prefix of BOT, BSC, MCB, PCB, or ZOO), with the exception of BSC 4905 and courses labeled as “not for major credit”.

  • Must complete remaining credit hours necessary to meet the total 40 hours of biology required. If 15 hours completed in the rest of the environmental micro core requirement, then must complete 9 hours in the advanced curriculum.
  • Most advanced biology courses are not offered every semester and there are no set offerings for summer semesters.
  • A maximum of four credit hours of BSC 4910 Undergraduate Research can apply.
  • BCH 4033/3023L Introduction to Biochemistry and Lab are the only approved options not offered by IB or CMMB.

Supporting Sciences and Mathematics: 32-34 credit hours

Students must receive a C- or better to meet requirements for degree (for progression in Math and CHM C is required)

  • CHM 2045 & CHM 2045L General Chemistry I and Lab
  • CHM 2046 & CHM 2046L General Chemistry II and Lab
  • CHM 2210 & CHM 2210L Organic Chemistry I and Lab
  • CHM 2211 & CHM 2211L Organic Chemistry II and Lab
  • Calculus I: MAC 2241 or MAC 2311 or MAC 2281
  • Statistics or Calculus II: STA 2023 or MAC 2242, or MAC 2312 or MAC 2282
  • One of the General Physics sequences:
    • PHY 2053/L & 2054/L General Physics I and II/Labs
    • PHY 2048/L & 2049/L General Physics Calculus Based I and II/Labs

Graduate Degree Requirements for Accelerated M.A.T in Science Education


All M.A.T. programs include as an admission requirement the passing of all sections of the General Knowledge Test (GKT). Applicants who can document they lived outside the state or country and did not have access to take the GKT before the application deadline may submit passing Praxis scores or GRE scores to be considered for admission. Whether admitted with passing Praxis scores or acceptable GRE scores, the applicant must submit passing scores on the GKT before the last day of classes of the semester of first enrollment, or admission to the College of Education will be revoked.

Total Minimum Program Hours 39 hours minimum

The courses required for the M.A.T. in Science Education are listed below. Please check with the program for other program requirements.

Core Requirements

  • SCE 5325 Methods of Middle Grades Science Education
  • SCE 5337 Methods of Secondary Science Education
  • SCE 6456 Teaching Secondary School Physical and Earth Science
  • SCE 6938 Topics in Science Education: Field Practicum
  • EDF 6432 Foundations of Measurement
  • ESE 5342 Teaching the Adolescent Learner
  • ESE 5344 Classroom Management for a Diverse School and Society
  • SCE 5564 Reading and Communication in Science Education
  • SCE 6416 Teaching Secondary School Biology
  • SCE 6634 Current Trends in Secondary Science Education
  • SCE 6947 Internship in Secondary Education for Social Science
  • (PR: CI and passing scores of FTCE exam)
  • TSL 5325 ESOL Strategies for Content Area Teachers
  • Comprehensive Examination
    • Student’s participation in the internship experience in classes that correspond to the specific area in which he or she will be certified.
    • Passing score on the appropriate subject area exam.
    • Student’s content degree or equivalent (an admission’s requirement).

Comprehensive Examination

A written narrative exam tailored to the individual student. Exam needs to be completed by two weeks before final exam week of the student’s graduating semester. Exams will only be accepted during fall or spring semester, unless previous contract is established with the student’s advisor.

COURSES (http://ugs.usf.edu/course-inventory/)

Timeline and benchmarks:

  1. To be considered for acceptance into the Accelerated B.S. Environmental Microbiology/M.A.T. Science Education program students must have completed a minimum of 15 credit hours in the Environmental Microbiology undergraduate major.
  2. Students must have a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 overall, and a minimum GPA of 3.25 in the major and passing scores on all sections of the General Knowledge Test (GKT) to be eligible for the accelerated degree program. Information on the General Knowledge Test on the Florida Teacher Certification section may be found on the webpage: http://www.fl.nesinc.com/
  3. Following completion of a minimum of 15 hours in the undergraduate major, students may be considered for acceptance into the accelerated program through faculty nomination or student self-nomination, via submission of an Accelerated Program Application Form. Both B.S. and M.A.T. programs will review the applications and approve the nominations. All applications require the approval of the College of Education Graduate Program, the College of Arts and Sciences, and the USF Graduate School.
  4. To be promoted to graduate status, students must meet all admission requirements of the M.A.T. in Science Education in the College of Education. Specifically, the following materials must be submitted:
    1. Undergraduate transcripts;
    2. Evidence of possessing a degree in a science discipline (Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Geology, etc.) that is taught in a middle or high school, or comparable coursework in a science teaching field acceptable to the program faculty;
    3. A bachelor's or higher degree in biology or a bachelor's or higher degree with thirty (30) semester hours in science to include twenty-one (21) semester hours in biology with associated laboratory experiences.
    4. Documentation of GKT scores.
  5. Students must earn a minimum of a “B” (3.00) in all graduate courses. Failure to earn at least a “B” in a graduate course will result in academic review by the graduate program. Failure to maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA will result in academic probation, according to the procedures of the USF Office of Graduate Studies.

A comprehensive plan of study to complete the accelerated B.S./M.A.T program will be developed with the guidance of an advisor and a faculty member. A possible plan of study could be as follows:

Note: Summer sessions may also be included in the study plan.

First and Second Year

  • Courses and credits as designated for freshman and sophomore years

Third Year

  • Apply for Admission to the Accelerated B.S./M.A.T. program

Fourth Year

Student accepted in M.A.T. in Science Education program complete the following credits:

  • SCE 5325 Methods of Middle Grades Science Education
  • SCE 5337 Methods of Secondary Science Education
  • SCE 6456 Teaching Secondary School Physical and Earth Science
  • SCE 6938 Topics in Science Education: Field Practicum

Fifth Year

  • EDF 6432 Foundations of Measurement
  • ESE 5342 Teaching the Adolescent Learner
  • ESE 5344 Classroom Management for a Diverse School and Society
  • SCE 5564 Reading and Communication in Science Education
  • SCE 6416 Teaching Secondary School Biology
  • SCE 6634 Current Trends in Secondary Science Education
  • SCE 6947 Internship in Secondary Education for Social Science (PR: CI and passing scores of FTCE exam)
  • TSL 5325 ESOL Education in Content Areas
  • Comprehensive Examination

Additional Major Information

Major Advising

BioAdvise: SCA 203; (813) 974-3250
Email: bioadvise@usf.edu

Major Faculty

Chairperson: V. Harwood; Professors: S. Bell, T. Crisman, V. Harwood, E. McCoy, P. Motta, H. Mushinsky, P. Stiling; Associate Professors: S. Deban, G. Fox, J. Rohr, K. Scott; Assistant Professors: L. Johnson, M. Lajeunesse, D. Lewis, L. Martin, L. Prevost, C. Richards; Instructors: C. Begin, C. Osovitz, B. Predmore.

  More About this Major

  Accelerated Program

This major has an accelerated track that confers an undergraduate and graduate degree upon completion.


  Research Opportunities

There are research opportunities associated with this major.


  Additional Requirements

There are additional requirements for this major such as grade, GPA, foreign language, and/or general education requirements.

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  Additional Information

There is more information available for this major such as faculty, advising, and/or accreditation information.