Molecular Biology Major

The Molecular Biology major is one of the larger concentrations at Princeton, with 60 to 70 sophomores joining the department each spring.  Our introductory Cell and Molecular Biology courses, together with courses in chemistry, physics, and statistics, prepare students for three upper level core courses covering fundamentals of modern experimental biology – genetics, biochemistry, and cell and developmental biology – and an intensive project lab course. A diverse set of elective courses allow students to delve into more specialized topics like immunology, cancer biology, genomics, and drug discovery.  Students with interdisciplinary interests can combine the Molecular Biology major with certificates such as biophysics, neuroscience, global health and health policy, and quantitative and computational biology.

From classes you will learn how science is applied in research and medical advancements. In the junior and senior independent work, you will solidify your skills and apply them first hand by performing your own original research. During the junior year, you will learn to critically analyze the research literature and formulate a detailed research plan in preparation for embarking on your senior thesis. Many students choose a hands-on laboratory experience for their senior thesis research, although non-laboratory projects are also possible. A unique program for rising seniors to conduct laboratory thesis research during the summer maximizes the educational experience of our majors.