School of Integrative Biology

School of Integrative Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


Honors Concentration in the Integrative Biology Major

...small classes with outstanding faculty
...cohesive group of students in a focused curriculum investigation in the lab and field honors program, not just an honors section

IB Honors Informational Workshop
Thursday, Feb. 13, 2014, 5:30-6:30 –  176 Burrill

IB Honors provides outstanding opportunities for students with true passion for biology. Whether your ultimate goal is medicine, research, conservation biology, teaching or industry, this workshop will let you know how IB Honors can improve your chances of success.  This workshop is for freshmen.

The Honors Concentration in the Integrative Biology major is a complete curriculum - designed to offer outstanding, highly motivated students the chance to experience all that biology has to offer at the University of Illinois.

With enrollment limited to 25-30 students per year and all classes and labs taught by outstanding professors, students are virtually assured the daily interactions with faculty that are critical to developing scientific techniques, critical thinking, and communication skills. Each year, participation in open-ended laboratory and field courses fosters cohesiveness among all the students in the program, creating a mutual support system unique among biology majors.

Three, semester-long core honors courses have one over-arching theme, the integration of biology at multiple levels of organization, from cells and molecules, to organisms, to ecosystems. Supplemented with a strong background in chemistry, the physical sciences, mathematics and statistics, and Independent Study research experiences, IB Honors students are among the best prepared students at the University, whether their career goals be professional schools (Medical, Veterinary, Dental or others), research, conservation, or industry.

Admission to the Concentration

Admission to IB Honors occurs in the Spring semester of the Freshman year. Informational meetings will be held in mid-February. Students desiring the Honors Experience are interviewed individually, and notified of acceptance well in advance of pre-registration for the Fall semester.

To be accepted, students must have a 3.0 GPA by the end of their second semester, show evidence of success in math and science courses, and have a strong interest in biology. General chemistry should be completed before beginning IB Honors courses.

For Additional Information

Phone: 217-333-3044
IBH Blog


requirements for the degree in honors integrative biology

Minimum hours required for graduation: 120 hours
4 IB 150 – Organismal & Evolutionary Biol
4 MCB 150 –Molecular & Cellular Basis of Life
5 IB 270 – Evolution of Molecules and Cells--the major evolutionary transitions of biomolecules and cells, including energy acquisition and metabolism; information inheritance, system regulation, and genomes; the origin of life, the prokaryotic cell, eukaryotic cell, and multicellularity. Lecture and lab.
5 IB 271 – Organismal Biology--integrated study of the diversity and structure and function of plants and animals in evolutionary and environmental contexts. Conceptual themes and techniques of molecular and cellular levels of biological organization will be integrated as well.  Lecture and lab.
5 IB 372 – Ecology and Evolution2--integrated study of ecology, population genetics, and evolution. Conceptual themes and techniques from the molecular, cellular, and organismal levels of biology will be integrated as well. Lecture, Lab, and field work.

MATH 220 or 221 – Calculus I, and
MATH 231 – Calculus II, and
MATH 241 – Calculus III
14-16 Select ONE group of courses:3
CHEM 202 – Accelerated Chemistry I, and
CHEM 203 – Accelerated Chemistry Lab I, and
CHEM 204 – Accelerated Chemistry II, and
CHEM 205 – Accelerated Chemistry Lab II, and
CHEM 236 – Fundamental Organic Chem I, and
CHEM 237 – Structure and Synthesis


CHEM 102 – General Chemistry I,
CHEM 103 – General Chemistry Lab I, and
CHEM 104 – General Chemistry II
CHEM 105 – General Chemistry Lab II, and
CHEM 232 – Fundamental Organic Chem I, and
CHEM 233 – Structure and Synthesis
3 MCB 450 – Introductory Biochemistry
4 BIOC 455 – Technqs Biochem & Biotech
4 PHYS 211 – Univ Physics, Mechanics5
4 PHYS 212 – Univ Physics, Elec & Mag5
3 An approved 300- or 400-level course in statistics4
6 IB 490 – Independent Research (2 semesters)
10 300- or 400-level courses in the biological sciences

Other requirements:

Twelve hours advanced-level courses in the major must be taken on this campus. All LAS General Education requirements must be satisfied. No more than 11 hours of credit in 100-level courses in IB or MCB may be counted toward graduation.

Students may count toward graduation no more than a combined maximum of 10 hours of IB 390 and IB 490 credit offered for independent study. Substitutions or other changes in the requirements given above may be made only by petition to and approval of the director of the Integrative Biology Honors program.


1Students must consult with their integrative biology honors adviser at least once each semester.
2Continuation in the integrative biology honors concentration requires a grade of B or better in each of IB 270, 271, and 372 and a 3.0 GPA.
3The first sequence is recommended, and preference will be given on admission to students following it. Introductory chemistry should be completed prior to enrolling in IB 270.
4NRES 421 is recommended. Other suitable courses are CPSC 440 or STAT 400

5May be substituted by PHYS 101 and 102 and an approved 400-level course that includes physical/math principles (ATMS 421, ANSC 448, or other courses approved by IBH Director).