The Department of Natural Sciences
Life and Physical Science Meet in the Department
The Department of Natural Sciences is home to faculty from the areas of life science (biology and environmental science), chemistry, and physics. With research topics including oyster restoration, biofluorescence, cancer treatment, drug synthesis, and high energy physics, our faculty members often conduct interdisciplinary research that crosses the boundary between these areas and other departments on campus.
Registration Instructions for Non-Majors
Completing your pathways requirements: All students must satisfy two science requirements:
1. Scientific World – This requirement is satisfied by the completing a lecture course (for example: BIO1011, ENV 1003, CHM 1003, PHY 1003). In the Natural Science department, these lectures are combined with a small group recitation session to allow for more focused student engagement. The lecture portion of these course is indicated with an L (e.g. ENV 1003 SMWL), while recitation sections do not have an L (e.g., ENV 1003 SMWA)
2. Life and Physical Sciences – This requirement is satisfied by the completing a lab course (for example: BIO 1012, ENV 1004, CHM 1004, PHY 1004)
If you have not completed any of these requirements
Scientific World and Life and Physical Sciences courses are co-requisites, so that you have to register for lecture/recitation and lab in the same subject. So, when you wish to register for these classes:
- To register for the Scientific World (lecture) component, select a a recitation section (e.g, BIO 1011 EMWA). DO NOT CHOOSE A SECTION THAT ENDS WITH X (e.g., BIO 1011 EMWX)! You will automatically be registered for the associated lecture.
- You must also register for a lab course in the same area (look for the same code, like BIO or ENV) to successfully add both class. DO NOT CHOOSE A LAB SECTION THAT ENDS WITH X (e.g., BIO 1011 EMWX).
If you have completed one of these requirements (likely via a credit you transferred to Baruch)
You are eligible to complete the other requirement by selecting a section that end with the letter X (e.g., BIO 1011 EMWX), but this will require department permission.
To gain permission, first find the section you wish to take, then complete the survey found @ https://baruch.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_50x8GbQeDKzmFV3 so we can process your request.
If you aren’t sure if have completed either of these requirements
Complete the survey found @ https://baruch.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_50x8GbQeDKzmFV3 so we can help you process your request.
Registration Instructions for Majors and Minors in science
When you entered Baruch, you may have indicated that you intend to major in Biological Sciences. You must file a Major/Specialization Form to make that official and make class registration easier. The form can be filled out early in your Baruch career and is a plan for future coursework. It can be changed and resubmitted at a later time. The final version must match the courses on your transcript. Please email Prof. Wahlert for the form and guidance (firstname.lastname@example.org).
If you have completed the major form or a related minor, you should now be able to register for a science course, without permission, if you have completed the prerequisite courses. Only Biochemistry (CHM 4900) and Microbiology (BIO 4004) require permission.
Be aware that science courses have prerequisites that you must have completed and co-requisites that you can be taking simultaneously or have completed. This ensures that you have the background needed to do well in the advanced courses. You can look up course requirements in the Baruch Undergraduate Bulletin:
If you need permissions or help, please fill out the online form (https://baruch.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_50x8GbQeDKzmFV3) and indicate your course registration choices.
Do you need an honors section?
Honors students (Macaulay, Baruch, and Provost Scholars) may request an honors section of advanced science courses. You should inform the professor that you would like to take the course for honors credit; in most cases there will be honors-worthy extra assignments. The faculty members should send the names of any students who will be contracting Honors in their sections to Ms. Harmony Osei, Assistant Director of the Honors Program. She will be tracking Honors contracts and will email the faculty members at the end of the semester to ensure that the contracted pieces were successfully completed.
Students in Conservation Biology and Sustainable Development work with NYC Parks and a local environmental group on a restoration project. Photo credit: Mitch Waxman
Majors, Minors, and Course Information
The Department of Natural Sciences houses the biological sciences major and minors in chemistry, physics, and environmental sustainability (in collaboration with other departments in the Weissman School for Arts and Science and the Zicklin School of business), as well as an ad hoc major in the natural sciences and a natural sciences minor that can be designed to address specific intellectual interests or career objectives. Through experiences that occur in and out of the classroom, the Department of Natural Sciences strives to provide educational and research experiences that are rich with opportunities and challenges and that foster an understanding of the scientific method of learning. Students benefit from small class sizes and courses that take advantage of natural and historical sites throughout the city. Check out the student Research Opportunities webpage for chances to get engaged outside of the classroom.
Our programs and courses prepare students for entry into professional schools of medicine, dentistry, and other health care fields. The Department of Natural Sciences has an active Biomed Society that focuses on helping students learn more about medical professions, network with local groups, and navigate the professional school application process. Check here for more information on department recommendation for students interested in professional school. Also, check here for information on acceptance rates and a list of medical and dental schools our students attend.
We also prepare students for graduate study in the natural sciences or their teaching and provide a space for non-major students to grow in scientific literacy and understanding of the natural world as part of their Baruch education. Our faculty also accept graduate students through the CUNY Graduate School programs in Physics, Biology, and Chemistry.
Students interested in puruing majors, minors, or classes within the department should contact Sonia Donaldson in the Department offices, located in room 920 of the 17 Lexington Avenue Building. Students interesting in graduate studies should contact potenial mentors directly.
Updates and Recent Accolades
Upcoming ENV Scholarships!
ALAC SCHOLARSHIP APPLICATIONS (APPLICATIONS DUE MAY 10!)
A new scholarship funded by ALAC International has been established to support students pursuing research in the field of environmental sustainability. The Department of Natural Science will award one or two scholarships in each year. In 2021, applications are due by May 10. You can find more information and the application here.
BARUCH CLIMATE SCHOLAR APPLICATION (APPLICATIONS DUE APRIL 16)
The Baruch Climate Scholars Program, funded by the CUNY Office of Workforce Development, is currently recruiting twelve (12) Baruch undergraduate students of junior or senior status for participation in the second year of the program. The Climate Scholars will explore a wide range of cross-disciplinary climate issues including mitigation, impacts, and resiliency within the contexts of the natural sciences, psychology, business, economics, public policy, migration, and communication.
The Baruch Climate Scholars program will begin May 10, 2021 and end March 30, 2022. Each Climate Scholar will earn a stipend or internship course credit for participation.
Climate Scholars will: 1) participate in weekly seminars led by faculty and guest speakers, 2) engage in cross-disciplinary climate research, 3) participate in a two-month NGO or corporate climate change internship, 4) present their research at Baruch Creative Inquiry Day, and 5) share climate change issues as a team of Scholars in large presentations and in small group settings with middle and high school students in the Baruch STEP (Science and Technology Entry Program) Academy, and with Baruch First Year Seminar students.
More information and application can be found here.
Research Opportunity: Students in Baruch College Natural Sciences Department
Sarah Bengston, assistant professor of environmental science in the Department of Natural Sciences, is the home mentor for the LSAMP Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program organized by the Organization for Tropical Studies.
Please read the following message from Professor Bengston about a wonderful research opportunity for Baruch College science students:
The LSAMP Research Experience for Undergraduates program is an eight week research program in Costa Rica where students work directly with a research mentor at a fully equipped research station to develop and conduct independent research. Also included are tours of areas of interest in Costa Rica, including organic coffee farms and lands belonging to the indigenous peoples. The purpose of this program is to encourage retention of folks who identify as underrepresented minorities in STEM. This program is fully funded including transportation, research supplies, airfare, station fees, food and housing, etc. Accepted applicants additionally receive a $550 weekly stipend that they can keep or send home to their families. They can also receive travel money to present their research at a conference. Students should be interested in grad school and must not be graduating this spring (but as early as next winter is fine!)
If you are interested, please contact Professor Bengston.