Studying Life Sciences

Studying the life sciences at Cornell may make your next four years the most exciting of your life so far. As we venture further into the 21st century, our body of biological knowledge in a variety of biological disciplines is expanding at a dizzying pace.

“Much of this new knowledge is unfolding at Cornell, where the researchers who make the discoveries are teaching undergraduates studying life sciences at Cornell means coming into daily contact with pioneers who increase our understanding of the living world. But what’s so special about the life sciences at Cornell?

  • Hundreds of topflight scientists associated with over a dozen different life science majors are engaged in teaching and research at Cornell.
  • Brand new courses are added every year in life sciences, replacing dated information with up-to-the-minute facts.
  • Advisors help you choose courses that suit your interests, and help you select and apply to co-curricular, internship and fellowship opportunities.
  • Advisors help you determine which post-baccalaureate path may be right for you, such as advanced professional training in the health sciences or graduate study in basic and applied areas of life sciences, industry, education, government, NGOs, etc.
  • Students majoring in life sciences are consistently competitive for prestigious fellowships.
  • Graduates of the life science majors pursue many different career paths
  • Every year hundreds of students earn academic credit for their scientific work. The research done by undergraduates is frequently published in scientific journals with students listed as coauthors, and many present their findings at national scientific meetings.
  • You can take part in weekly department seminars in which speakers from Cornell, other research institutions, and industry reveal their own recent findings.

Student Research Projects

Research opportunities give you more than just a hope for a firsthand crack at the thrill of scientific discovery. Contributing to the creation of new knowledge is mighty impressive on your grad, med, or vet school application. And you can establish some rock-solid contacts for when you venture out into the real world.

Choosing the major that best fits your interests

  • There are over a dozen majors at Cornell that focus on different aspects of the science of life. Some are broader, others are more specific. Choose the one that best suits your passion and goals. Majors are offered in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences; the College of Arts and Sciences; the College of Engineering, and the College of Human Ecology.  Some of the majors are offered in more than one college.  For majors offered in more than one college, the courses, specializations, and requirements for those majors are the same. Rather, it’s the college-level requirements and some co-curricular offerings that differ.  If you are considering a major offered in more than one college, we advise you to make your college choice according to college-specific requirements and your secondary interests.