Transfer Student FAQs
This page lists Frequently Asked Questions relevant to students who are considering transferring to the University of Illinois to major in Integrative Biology. Other FAQs on the SIB web site are relevant to:
1) How is IB different from MCB?
As the name implies, the School of Molecular and Cellular Biology (MCB) has a heavy emphasis on cells and the molecules that make them function, including DNA. Integrative Biology (IB), on the other hand, has an emphasis on systems biology, in which the relationship of one component is studied in relation to other components. IB is closest to what most people think of as biology.
2) Can I still graduate in four years?
Yes, if you come in as a sophomore. The University has recently adopted a policy of admitting transfer students after their freshmen year, so IB transfer sophomores may begin our core courses requirement just like freshmen who started here at UI.
3) How much of my course work will transfer?
College level course work will transfer to UI. It is nevertheless advisable to finalize any course articulations with an academic advisor.
4) Do I have to take both MCB 150 and IB 150 equivalents before transferring to UI?
Yes, students must satisfactorily complete course work equivalent to these two courses prior to admission.
6) Can you outline what my remaining semesters look like?
Yes, an academic advisor will work with you to make sure all requirements are being met in a timely manner. This depends on many things, such as studying abroad, research, and your academic goals.
7) Do I need summer school to catch up?
If you transfer to the UI as a sophomore you should be able to complete degree requirements in four years without needing summer school, although, many students do elect to take some course work over the summer. In any case, you should consult with an SIB academic advisor and with your admissions/records office at LAS Student Academic Affairs to learn exactly how your transfer credits are being applied to your Illinois degree.
8) If I go to summer school, can I take these courses anywhere or do I have to take them here?
This depends on the number of credit hours transferred to UI. The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences requires a certain number of credit hours to be earned here on campus. If you take summer courses here, these will count toward these residency requirements. You should contact your LAS Records Officer in the Student Affairs Office for more detailed information.
9) Can I go to medical school with an IB degree?
Yes! Medical school and MCAT requirements can easily be met in the IB major. An academic advisor can assist you with career planning.
10) What are IB advising options?
Advising options are a set of recommended courses for students who wish to follow a particular academic path or prepare for a particular career. The list of options and an explanation of what purpose each serves may be found here.
11) Must I follow one of the IB advising options?
No. The options are sets of suggested courses to meet specific educational or career goals. They are entirely optional.
12) What kind of jobs can I get with this degree?
Many careers are open to IB majors. Check out the web pages dealing with careers for a sampling.
13) How do I get tutoring assistance in biology, chemistry, physics, and math?
Each department offers academic assistance to students. Check out the departmental websites bulletin boards near the departmental offices for details. For help in IB, see an academic advisor to find out about tutoring. Check out these links for help in math, physics, and chemistry.
14) Can I study abroad as a transfer student?
Yes, we have had several IB transfer students go abroad to earn credit hours toward graduation. Some great opportunities exist in Costa Rica, South Africa, and Australia; many more have also served as sites for our IB majors to study abroad.
15) Can I get research experience even though I'm a transfer?
Yes. Faculty make no distinction between students who started at the UI and those who transferred from elsewhere. Check out the web page that describes undergraduate research.
16) What minors are available to me?
Interdisciplinary minors are available to all UI students. Though students may choose any minor, many IB students have supplemented their academic records with minors in a foreign language, Anthropology, Chemistry, and the Environmental Fellows Program. Click here to find out more about getting a minor in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
17) Will I be as prepared for advanced courses (or SIB core courses) as a student who started here as a freshman?
Yes. As an admitted transfer student, your introductory Biology courses have been reviewed and approved as equivalent to our two introductory courses, IB 150 and MCB 150. These two courses prepare you for our four required core courses, IB 202, 203, 204 and 302.
18) How do my general education courses transfer and how do I find out which ones I have left?
As a transfer student, you may need to meet with an academic advisor and LAS Records Officer to review your final transcript. Sometimes a course description and syllabus may be required from your previous institution for final evaluation. Check out the u.select web site, a national web site that helps you see how your current courses may transfer to the University of Illinois.