The Department of Biology is one of the largest academic departments on campus, with nearly 1,400 majors enrolled at any given time. It’s our goal for all of our to students to succeed in and out of the classroom, which is why we provide specialized advisors, support our student organizations and keep you up-to-date with important upcoming dates and deadlines.

Connect With Us

Keep in touch with us and stay up-to-date on what’s happening in our department. We post announcements for all of our upcoming events and regularly highlight accomplishments from our students and faculty.



Biology Advisors

As a first-year student at Ball State, you will initially be assigned a freshman advisor who will be your first point of contact when you have questions about your courses and schedules.

Starting your sophomore year, we will assign you one of our specialized advisors in biology, all of whom possess a graduate degree in biology to ensure you get the guidance you need to navigate your academic journey from underclassman to college graduate.

Julie Ridgway

Academic Advisor for Biology
765-285-1868 | View email | CL 125B

A pre-health professions advisor will be assigned to students pursuing one of the following programs:

  • Pre-Medical Major
  • Pre-Dental Major
  • Medical Technology Major
  • Pre-Pharmacy
  • Pre-Optometry
  • Pre-Physician Assistant
  • Pre-Veterinary
  • Pre-Chiropractic
  • General Biology Concentration
  • Teaching Major in Life Sciences Education
  • Cellular and Molecular Biology
  • Genetics

In addition to having Julie as your advisor, Dr. Jennifer Metzler will serve as your faculty advisor, who can assist you with specialized pre-health professions questions, MCAT preparation, and admissions requirements for schools in the health professions, such as medical school and dental school.

Need to schedule an appointment?

Call or email Adam or go to MyBSU and select AdvisorTrac under the Additional Tools section to get in touch.

Sarah McKillipSarah Williams

Academic Advisor for Biology
765-285-1620 | View email | CL 125A

Sarah will be your point of contact after your first year if you are in one of these programs:

  • Aquatic Biology and Fisheries
  • Field Botany
  • Microbiology
  • Wildlife Biology and Conservation
  • Zoology
  • General Biology Concentration
  • Teaching Major in Life Sciences Education
  • Cellular and Molecular Biology
  • Genetics

In addition to having Sara as your advisor, you will also be assigned a faculty advisor in your area of study who can answer specialized questions and provide academic and career guidance.

Need to schedule an appointment?

Call or email Sarah or go to MyBSU and select AdvisorTrac under the Additional Tools section to get in touch.

The Department of Biology is home to several official Ball State University student organizations that meet regularly to discuss and coordinate academic and professional development opportunities for nearly all areas of study in biology.

Our current student organizations include:


Foundational Sciences Library

Located on the first floor of the Foundational Sciences Building (FB) in room 141, the Foundational Sciences Library (FSL) provides access to collections and services supporting research in the sciences including biology, chemistry, environment, geology, natural resources, physics and astronomy, physiology.

Explore the Library

Undergraduate Research and Travel Grants

The Josie and Geoff Fox Fund supports the expenses of research projects as well as travel to professional meetings for undergraduate biology students studying some aspect of environmental biology. If you are interested in applying for grant funding, please see our informational PDF that describes criteria, eligibility and application procedures.

Grant Application Guidelines

Departmental Honors in Biology

If distinguishing yourself through quality course performance and participation in undergrad research is a personal goal, then you should consider earning Departmental Honors in Biology. You can earn the departmental honor on your official university records by completing the requirements stated below. This achievement will be properly noted in the commencement program and in departmental records.


  • Overall GPA above 3.5
  • Completion of 3 credit hours of BIO 498 (Undergraduate Research), HONRS 490, or HONRS 499
  • A presentation of the research findings at an internal or external professional meeting

Obtaining Honors Designation

After meeting these criteria, you must submit a Departmental Honors Credit form from the Department of Biology office or from the Honors College and have it signed by your faculty research mentor. Departmental Honors designation will be indicated on your transcript and diploma. In order for this achievement to be recognized at an event hosted by the university president and included in the commencement program, deadline dates apply within the semester of graduation. Consult the Department of Biology or Honors College to determine these dates. For questions, please contact Patricia Kleeberg.