Ashland University’s Biology programs are designed to prepare you for a future as a scientist.


Request Information


One program, unlimited opportunities.

The demand for skilled biologists is growing with each year. Whether you’re looking to go into the medical field, teach at the middle or high school level, work at the cutting edge of new breakthroughs in a lab setting directly out of college or pursue a graduate education, Ashland University’s Biology programs are known for producing successful scientists across a wide array of disciplines.

AU - Undergrad Microsite - Feather 01-01-min

Find the right program for you.

Graduates from biology programs are increasingly in demand. That is especially true when it comes to graduates of programs dedicated to meeting the highest educational standards. Many colleges and universities offer programs in biology; the key for you is to find the right one that fits your interests, needs and goals and offers you the opportunity to specialize in areas that align with your passions.

Ashland University’s Biology programs are designed for students looking to gain the knowledge and skills necessary for careers in research, medicine, or industry, all within a collaborative environment that positions your success as the main focus.

Our Biology programs set the bar for equipping you to succeed in a world that needs skilled life scientists more than ever. With small class sizes, access to professional state-of-the-art facilities and laboratories, award-winning professors who are personally invested in your success and an emphasis on internship opportunities designed to build your professional network and open doors after graduation, we will have you prepared for whatever path you choose.

Learning by doing.

Ashland University’s unique approach to biology education means you will learn by doing. Our four-year programs are designed to provide you with intensive classroom education that you can apply to real-world, hands-on research and field experiences. Within our biology department, we offer five life science bachelor of science degree tracks: Biology, Toxicology, Life Science Education, Medical Lab Science, and Forensic Biology. Each degree track allows you to specialize according to your passions and interests while still learning in hands-on settings that expand on classroom learning and set you up for success, no matter which path you choose after graduation.

Within our biology learning model, you'll experience:

  • Numerous opportunities to carry out research at an undergraduate level working closely with outstanding faculty

  • Being a part of a strong pre-professional program with an excellent track record. Since 2004, for example, over 90% of biology majors who’ve applied to health professional schools have been admitted within one year of graduation.

  • Working collaboratively with other students in a culture of support and individual attention. When you come to Ashland, you belong.

  • Opportunities to gain incomparable real world experience with summer research internships at prestigious research universities, governmental organizations and on Ashland University’s campus.

  • Access to unique facilities, including:

    • Four laboratories dedicated to collaborative research

    • A greenhouse and facility for housing research animals

    • Five local environmental preserves

    • Modern science instrumentation

Explore Biology programs.



Explore big and small biology including zoology, botany, and microbiology through Ashland University’s hands-on Biology program. Our program provides a breadth of individual and collaborative research opportunities in our four laboratories, greenhouse and five local environmental preserves to prepare you for any path whether that be graduate school, medical school, or post-grad employment.



Toxicology is the study of poisons or toxic agents within a specified system, which can include a person or environment. The study of toxicology can be approached from a medical angle, as well as from an environmental or agriculture perspective. Ashland University’s Toxicology program is one of only twelve such programs in the United States offered at the undergraduate level.


Life Science Education

Ashland University’s Life Science Education program is designed for students with a passion to teach life sciences for grades 7 through 12. Students in this program take many of the same classes as our biology majors and are able to participate in research opportunities and gain biology field experience. Life Science Education graduates are licensed to teach in either middle or high schools.


Medical Lab Science

If you’re looking to fill a critical role in healthcare, our Medical Lab Science major will prepare you for a career in hospital or private clinical laboratories. You’ll take three years of classes at the main AU campus before applying to either the Cleveland Clinic or Akron Children’s Hospital for your fourth year of clinical courses. At the end of the program, you not only receive a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology but are also eligible for Medical Laboratory Scientist licensure testing rather than waiting several years to gain the necessary experience.


Forensic Biology​

Through our program, we provide a strong foundation in biology, chemistry and criminology and, upon graduation, you will be prepared to do the real work required within this ever-evolving scientific application. Hands-on learning and internships will ensure you have every opportunity to prepare for a successful career in Forensic Biology.

Internship opportunities.

Ashland University Biology students regularly complete summer internships at medical, research, and industry laboratories. Recent internships sites include the Cleveland Clinic, the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC), Charles River Laboratories, the Medina Raptor Center and Smucker’s.

AU - Undergrad Microsite - Feather 03-min

Benefits of Ashland University’s Biology programs.

Benefits Slider #1

Prepared for success

Our award-winning faculty make your success their highest priority. Combining a rigorous classroom environment with hands-on application, you will learn science by doing science and set yourself up for success now and into the future.

Benefits Slider #2

Learn the skills you need within an intimate educational setting with direct mentorship opportunities available throughout this four-year program.

Individualized attention

Benefits Slider #3

Choose from a variety of career paths

Picking the program best suited for your goals and with the tools and knowledge gained through a degree in our biology and life science programs, you’ll be ready to take on the challenges you’ll meet at the next level.

Benefits Slider #4

Access state-of-the-art tools and facilities including four laboratories dedicated to collaborative research, a greenhouse and facility for housing research animals, five local environmental preserves and modern science instrumentation.

Facilities for your needs

Benefits of Ashland University's Biology program.

What to expect from Ashland University’s Biology programs.

In these programs, you will:

  • Receive personal attention from each of your professors, with many opportunities to participate in classroom activities with small class sizes.
  • Access state-of-the-art tools and facilities including four laboratories dedicated to collaborative research, a greenhouse and facility for housing research animals, five local environmental preserves and modern science instrumentation
  • Learn from distinguished, experienced faculty. Our award-winning faculty make your success their highest priority.
  • Gain real world experience with internship opportunities at local and regional medical and scientific research institutions so you’ll be prepared for the next step in your journey.
  • Work collaboratively with other students in a culture of support and individual attention.
Ashland University Undergrad students walking down the stairs
Ashland University Undergrad students walking down the stairs

Fall 2021 is special.

Ashland University recently announced that for Fall 2021 face-to-face instruction and activities will be expanded. While safety protocols still remain in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19, starting in August of this year, the college experience at Ashland will feel closer to what it’s been traditionally.

But that’s not the only reason why Fall 2021 will be special. We’re also creating brand new opportunities for Ashland University students to succeed.

Tuition Relief Scholarship

The pandemic has dramatically increased the burden of paying for an education. Out of our commitment to making education affordable, Ashland University is offering a one-time Tuition Relief Scholarship available to first-time, full-time residential students for the 2021-2022 academic year. The Tuition Relief Scholarship is powerful and simple: enroll this fall, pay your first semester’s tuition after other financial aid has been applied, and AU will pick up the bill for your tuition in Spring 2022 (as long as the student maintains a 2.0 GPA).

Dean’s Scholarship

The Dean’s Scholarship was created to enhance the undergraduate academic experience for new first-time and transfer students enrolled in the College of Arts and Sciences in the following disciplines: Computer Science, Cybersecurity, Journalism and Digital Media, and the Natural Sciences.

Benefits include a merit-based, renewable scholarship of up to $3,000 “stacked” on other merit awards received. In addition, students will have the opportunity to participate in unique academic communities created around engagement with faculty and a focus on career coaching and preparation.

To qualify, applicants must have a minimum high school or transfer GPA of 3.5. The scholarship is renewable for up to four years with a GPA of 3.0.

Choose Ohio First Scholarships

Ashland University has been awarded a grant from the State of Ohio to provide Choose Ohio First Scholarships. Renewable, add-on scholarships of $3,000 will support academically strong students from Ohio high schools with interests in the STEM disciplines.

About Ashland University.

Founded in 1878, Ashland University continues to have a rich tradition as a private, comprehensive institution preparing students for exciting, impactful professions and careers. Your success is our goal, not just while you are a student but for the rest of your life as a member of the Eagle family.

We place a great emphasis on the importance of each member of our community. The phrase “Accent on the Individual” has been our motto for many years and characterizes well the nature and content of both the online and campus environment.

We promise to teach you how to think, not what to think. We promise to work with you to create an individualized plan for your future, and we promise you an affordable education. We promise you will be guided by mentors invested in you as an individual. They will, within a diverse community of respect, design personalized transformative experiences to develop you as a person who works, serves and leads with integrity. And we promise you a lifelong commitment as we continue to help you discern your life calling and make a positive impact on your family, community and the world at large.


Scribble Graphics

Testimonial #1

My time at Ashland University has played a key part in my success today as the first female Director of Emergency Management at The Johns Hopkins Hospital. One of the most influential opportunities I took part in at Ashland was undergraduate research in the Department of Biology/Toxicology. The individualized training I received by the Posner Lab helped develop the skills needed to excel in a competitive research fellowship at the National Institutes of Health post-graduation, which then further opened doors as my career progressed. The best part of my undergraduate experience was the life-long friendships I made while at Ashland University. I am thankful for my time at Ashland University, which was foundational for where I am today.

‘13, Director of Emergency Management at The Johns Hopkins Hospital

Mary R. Brown, MPH, CHEP

Testimonial #2

—Kelly Murray

AU is a great place to study science. The professors care deeply about their students and small class sizes provide an excellent environment for learning about and discussing science. There are many professors who work closely with research students in a variety of research areas, and having the opportunity to work in a research lab was invaluable to my development as a biologist and in preparing me for grad school.

‘17, Ph.D. candidate in the Graduate Field of Biochemistry, Molecular, and Cell Biology at Cornell University

Testimonial #3

—Carrie LaCava-Lee, DVM

‘07, Veterinarian

The single most important part of my science education at AU was the personalized experience. It was great to feel comfortable enough with each professor to ask for help when needed and get individual attention. I also distinctly remember lab time and how we could get such hands-on experience with experiments and equipment in small groups. The labs that took us outdoors were really beneficial to me in my field. I use a microscope every day and I continually remember Dr. Posner instructing us in the basics of how to use them! Lessons on animal behavior from Dr. Stoffer were also incredibly formational. I will always be grateful for my education at AU. It’s a great community.


Take the next step toward your future.

Start your career as a life science professional at Ashland University as you build up your professional network in a culture of belonging, seize opportunities for growth throughout your four years within the Biology programs and learn the skills you’ll need to succeed no matter where your career goals take you in the future.