Departments & Programs

Human Biology

Major in Human Biology—B.A.

The B.A. Major in Human Biology provides students with a holistic understanding of our species with a focus on our biology, including consideration of how that biology is altered by our evolutionary history and a contemporary environment that includes natural, social, and technological components. Students explore these diverse aspects of humanity while gaining a solid knowledge of our biological foundations. The focus of the B.A. is at the organismal level, with attention to lower levels as needed, and B.A. students are encouraged to investigate human biology with a broad interdisciplinary lens. Students can focus their course work in an area of concentration most suited to their interests. The B.A. degree allows for breadth and flexibility in the curriculum and the possibility for pursuing a double major. Students can also fulfill the requirements necessary for a variety of post-baccalaureate health sciences and graduate school programs.

The Human Biology program is designed around a core sequence of two interdisciplinary 4 credit courses and a 3 credit senior capstone course. In addition to these, students take required courses in a variety of disciplines to gain expertise in the diverse aspects of human biology, and courses in a single area of concentration, that allow for more in-depth study in their area of interest. Each area of concentration includes courses from both the life science perspective and the historical, social, arts, and humanities perspectives.

Required Courses

In addition to the requirements for the B.A. degree in the College of Arts and Sciences, students must complete 38–40 credit hours from the following:

1. Human Biology core courses (all required):

  • HUBI-B 200 The Intricate Human
  • HUBI-B 300 Human Dilemmas
  • HUBI-B 400 Complex Problems of Humanity
2. Additional core course work:
  • One course from PHSL-P 215 Basic Human Physiology, BIOL-P 451 Integrative Human Physiology, ANAT-A 215 Basic Human Anatomy, or ANAT-A 480 Anatomy for Imaging
  • ANTH-B 200 Introduction to Bioanthropology
  • HPSC-X 200 Scientific Reasoning or HPSC-X 102 Revolutions in Science: Plato to NATO 
  • PSY-P 101 Introductory Psychology, or PSY-P 155 Introduction to Psychological and Brain Sciences, or BIOL-L 350 Environmental Biology, or BIOL-L 222 The City as Ecosystem 

3. One course in Statistics from STAT-S 300, S303, PSY-K 300 or K310, CJUS-K 300, ECON-E 370 or ECON-S 370, ANTH-A 306, SOC-S 371, POLS-Y 395, LAMP-L 316, SPEA-K 300.

4. Area of Concentration Courses: 12 additional credit hours in one area of concentration; at least 9 credit hours must be at the 300 level or above. Within the area of concentration, courses must be selected according to the following criteria:

  • One course from the Life Sciences Perspective (List A)
  • One Lecture/Laboratory course (List B)
  • At least two courses must be selected from the Historical, Social, Arts, and Humanities Perspectives (List C)

5. Students who are pursuing the B.A. in Human Biology and the Minor in Medical Sciences can count up to 10 credit hours (usually ANAT-A 215 or 480 and PHSL-P 215) from the Medical Sciences minor toward the B.A. in Human Biology.

6. Courses taken to fulfill core course work within the major cannot be double-counted for the Area of Concentration requirement.


Human Biology Program students are strongly encouraged to take advantage of the opportunities available at IU Bloomington to complement their area of concentration by seeking internships, working in research laboratories, attending seminars, or becoming human biology peer instructors. Students are encouraged to take a course in information literacy (e.g., BIOL-L 301 Information Literacy in Biology).

Students are encouraged to study abroad to gain a global perspective on the human condition. To take advantage of the many opportunities for overseas study, students should contact the Office of Overseas Study, 855-9304. Students should plan their study abroad experience carefully to accommodate HUBI core course scheduling.