PLBL banner 2

Plant Biology



PLBL small pic

Plant Biology is the field of science dealing with the study of the form, function, development, genetics, diversity, reproduction, evolution, and uses of plants and their interactions with the biosphere. The B.S. and B.A. degrees in Plant Biology completely fulfill the undergraduate science requirements for medical and professional schools and provide students with a solid background in the modern principles and practices of plant biology, along with an area of specialization. Students choose from these areas: Plant cellular, molecular, and developmental biology; Plant genetics, breeding, and biotechnology; Ecology, evolution, and systematics; Plant pathology, nematology, and pest management.

Plant biologists work in biotechnology, medical, pharmaceutical, agricultural or energy industries; environmental protection, land management or agri-business; the USDA, National Park Service, and other state and national agencies; and public and private schools, colleges, and universities. A degree in plant biology is an excellent background for students wishing to enter graduate school and other professional schools such as education, pharmacy, medicine, law, or journalism.

Visit the Botany & Plant Sciences Department website

Plant Biology Advising

Click on the drop-menus below for more information and materials related to the Plant Biology major.

  • Change of Major Criteria for Plant Biology
    To declare a major, student must be in good academic standing (quarter and cumulative GPAs at 2.0 and above).  Life Science Core GPA must be 2.0 or higher with a grade of C- or better in any major requirement.  If upper-division courses have been taken, a minimum upper-division GPA of a 2.0 is required.  Must be able to complete the degree within 216 units.  AP/IB units or transfer units earned prior to graduating high school are excluded when determining unit range for change of major criteria and 216 unit maximum. Students with more than 164 units have been earned, may require consultation with the Plant Biology Undergraduate Faculty Advisor. and Divisional Dean's approval to declare.

    Freshman (up to 44.9 units)

    Sophomore (45 - 89.9  units)

    Junior (90 - 134.9 units)

    Senior (135 units & above)

    Completion of...

    • CHEM 001A
    • CHEM 01LA
    • MATH 007A/ 009A

    Completion of all previously listed criteria and the following:

    • CHEM 001B
    • CHEM 01LB
    • CHEM 001C
    • CHEM 01LC
    • BIOL 005A
    • BIOL 05LA
    • BIOL 005B
    • MATH 007B/009B
    • ENGL 001A* 
    • ENGL 001B* 
    • ENGL 001C*

    * grade of C or better

    Completion of all previously listed criteria and the following courses with a grade of C- or better

    • CHEM 008A
    • CHEM 08LA
    • PHYS 002A
    • PHYS 02LA
    • BIOL 104*

    *grade of C or better

    Completion of all previously listed criteria and the following courses with a grade of C- or better

    • BCH 100 or BCH 110A
    • Upper Division Science GPA in major required courses must be a 2.0 or higher
  • Additional Information About the Plant Biology Major
  • Course Planning Materials for Plant Biology
    Plant Biology Degree Summary Sheets


    Plant Biology Sample Four-Year Course Plan
    • Updated plans coming soon!


    Plant Biology Schedule of Course Offerings
  • Minor in Plant Biology
    To declare a minor, students must: be in good academic standing (quarter and cumulative GPAs at 2.0 and above); complete 2 upper-division courses required for the minor with a C or better; and be able to complete both your major and minor within the 216 unit maximum.  *AP/IB units or transfer units earned prior to graduating high school are excluded when determining 216 unit maximum.   Minors must be declared no later than 2 quarters prior to a student's expected graduation term.   A minimum of 16 upper-division units must be unique to the minor; additional upper-division units beyond those unique 16 may also be used toward major requirements if applicable.

    Plant Biology Minor Requirements

    The minor in Plant Biology allows students majoring in other departments to obtain in-depth training in Plant Biology.
    1. BIOL 104/BPSC 104 (4 units)
    2. One course (4–5 units) from the following:
      • BIOL 132/BPSC 132, BIOL 138/BPSC 138, BIOL 143/BPSC 143, BPSC 133
    3. 12 to 20 units from the following:
      • BCH 183/BPSC 183, BIOL 132/ BPSC 132, BIOL 138/BPSC 138, BIOL 143/ BPSC 143, BIOL 148/BPSC 148, BIOL 155/ BPSC 155, BIOL 165/BPSC 165, BPSC 133, BPSC 134/ENSC 134, BPSC 135, BPSC 146, BPSC 150, BPSC 166, BPSC 190, BPSC 195H, BPSC197, BPSC 198-I, BPSC 199, PLPA 120/BIOL 120/MCBL 120, BPSC 109/CBNS 109, BPSC 149.  Note: No more than 4 units of BPSC 190–199 may be used to fulfill this requirement. The course used to fulfill the requirement in 2 cannot also be used to fulfill the requirement in 3.

Plant Biology Academic Advisors

CNAS Professional Academic Advisors provide students with individual guidance throughout their academic careers at UCR and help them achieve realistic academic goals.  Professional Academic Advisors can assist you with declaring or changing your major or minor, course repeats, the process for taking courses outside of UCR, taking a leave from UCR, and questions about withdrawing or readmitting to UCR.

Norma Alt Scotty
Norma Palacios
Plant Biology Advisor
Advising Caseload: A - Z
Phone: 951-827-4857

Plant Biology Lead Faculty Advisor

A Lead Faculty Advisor is assigned for each major.  Faculty advisors are available to assist students with guidance regarding graduate or professional school, opportunities to participate in research, independent study, or internships.  Faculty advisors also may provide students with advice and mentoring regarding career goals.

Dr. Exequiel Ezcurra
Plant Biology Lead Faculty Advisor
Phone: 951-827-4368
PLBL LFA Rasmussen
Dr. Carolyn Rasmussen
Plant Biology Lead Faculty Advisor
Phone: 951-827-4415
Let us help you with your search