Master's in Biology Education

Master of Science in Biology with an Emphasis in Education

Offered By: College of Science, Engineering, & Technology

Explore your Passion with an MS in Biology Education

A Master of Science in Biology with an Emphasis in Education degree from Grand Canyon University supports students with biology backgrounds as they pursue careers in education. This program prepares students to balance biology content with pedagogy and classroom techniques; uniquely providing advanced training in the field of biology while satisfying the requirements for ongoing professional development.

Colleges are in needs of highly qualified STEM instructors. Graduates of this master’s in biology education degree program will be prepared to teach undergraduate biology courses at two and four-year institutions. In addition, the preparation they receive through their MS in biology coursework allows grads to teach in online environments.

To get started with the Master of Science in Biology with an Emphasis in Education program at GCU, you will need to meet a few prerequisites. These prerequisites include:

  • A bachelor's degree in biology, microbiology, physiology biochemistry, cellular/molecular biology or genetics; or
  • A bachelor's degree in secondary education with a specialization or emphasis in biology; or
  • A bachelor's degree and a completion of one year of undergraduate General Biology

The master's in biology education degree program at GCU focuses on development of both biological knowledge and teaching skills. Teachers at the postsecondary level are required to work with many stakeholders, including students, colleagues and department leaders. They must have strong written and verbal skills for both classwork and continued scientific inquiry. Courses in the MS of biology education degree program cover topics such as:

  • Ecology
  • Biological systems (both cellular and molecular)
  • Physiology
  • Microbes
  • Curriculum design
  • Adult learning theories

The Benefits of an MS in Biology Education

The need for postsecondary teachers is on the rise. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook estimates job growth for postsecondary teachers to increase by about 9% from 2019 to 2029, much faster than average, accounting for an estimated increase of 121,500 jobs in the field.* Grand Canyon University's Master of Science in Biology with an Emphasis in Education degree program is designed to provide graduates with the training they need to fulfill the openings in this field.

The reason behind the need for postsecondary biology teachers is the growth in STEM-related fields. Future scientists, technologists, engineers, and mathematicians will need to take biology at the college level. As STEM fields continue to grow, so too will the needs for biology teachers. According to the BLS, biological science teachers are most highly concentrated in junior colleges. This means that people from all walks of life — from recent grads to people looking to start a second career — will need quality biology teachers to prepare them for the future.

Earn Your Master's in Biology Education Online

A perk of studying at Grand Canyon University is the ability to earn an online master's of biology education degree. This degree is perfect for working professionals or people who are juggling the demands of work and family. Full-time faculty and trained adjunct instructors will support your own blossoming academic career. Online master's in biology courses can be taken anytime, from anywhere.

Building on the solid biology background they already have, students in the GCU MS in biology education program continue their scientific studies and learn teaching techniques to help them thrive in the classroom. Both research and practical application of biology topics and teaching skills are at the heart of this master's degree program.

Advance Your Career in Biology Education

This biology teaching degree at GCU prepares students to teach biology at the postsecondary level. This means you may find work teaching at:

  • Universities
  • Colleges
  • Junior/community colleges
  • Vocational/technical/trade schools
  • Science research/development institutions

If you are hoping to advance your career by building on your biology background, teaching might be your next step. Join like-minded scientists who want to make a difference in the MS in Biology with an Emphasis in Education degree program at GCU.

*COVID-19 has adversely affected the global economy and data from 2020 may be atypical compared to prior years. The pandemic may impact the predicted future workforce outcomes indicated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics as well. Accordingly, data shown is based on 2019, which can be found here: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Postsecondary Teachers

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Total Credits: 34
Online: 8 weeks
[More Info]
Up to 12 credits or 1/3 of the total program requirements in transfer (whichever is less)
Online: $572 per credit [More Info]

Course List

34 credits
Total Degree Requirements:
34 credits

Core Courses

Course Description

This course is designed to prepare students for the graduate learning experience at Grand Canyon University. Students have opportunities to develop and strengthen the skills necessary to succeed as graduate students in the College of Science, Engineering, and Technology. Emphasis is placed on utilizing the tools for graduate success.

Course Description

This course will give a broad overview of the classification of organisms, including prokaryotes, protists, fungi, plants, and animals. Students will discuss the importance of the various types of organisms in global and human ecology. This course will also address principles of ecology with regard to populations, communities, and global ecology. Ecological research will be analyzed, and conservation and restoration efforts will be evaluated through the use of case studies.

Course Description

This course will cover an overview of properties of cellular organization using molecular, genetic, and cell biological approaches. This course will provide a comprehensive study of the composition, structure, energetics, regulation, and growth of eukaryotic cells. Students will also become competent in DNA structure and function, protein synthesis and gene regulation and will also learn the molecular tools for studying genes, gene cloning, and gene activity. From this fundamental perspective, students will be reviewing important scientific literature on the subject of cell biology and will examine the information through discussions, presentations, literature based essays and presentations. Prerequisite: Students should have completed an undergraduate course in cellular/molecular biology.

Course Description

This course covers adult learning theory and instructional practices that are research-based and proven effective in higher education. Technology, online learning, and effective instructional methods for online and traditional instruction are emphasized. Participants research learning models, personalized learning and andragogy and apply their knowledge to improve student engagement and achievement in higher education.

Course Description

This course presents a selection of complex physiological mechanisms which will be explored and analyzed to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of human physiology. Topics will be introduced through a system-based approach with the inclusion of application scenarios to enhance the understanding. Prerequisite: BIO-510.

Course Description

This course continues the study of complex physiological mechanisms which will be explored and analyzed to provide students with a deeper understanding of human physiology. Topics will be introduced through a systems-based approach with the inclusion of application scenarios to enhance the understanding. Prerequisite: BIO-515.

Course Description

This course applies learning theories to classroom instructional methods and strategies. Effective communication, creating learning goals, developing student outcomes and assessments, and giving effective feedback are emphasized. Participants are asked to develop activities, assessments, and lesson plans that would be appropriate for a course taught at a community college or university. Prerequisite: EDU-534.

Course Description

This course provides an introduction to the principles and applications of microbiology and a study of the general characteristics of microorganisms, their activities, and their relationship to humans. Students will be introduced to developing an understanding of microbial cell structure and function, microbial growth, bacterial genetics, characteristics of viruses, interaction of microbes and humans with reference to immune responses, related pathologies, and antimicrobial control medications. Prerequisite: BIO-505, BIO-510.

Course Description

The objective of this course is to survey basic biochemical principles, including the composition, structure, and function of proteins, nucleic acids, lipids, and carbohydrates. Important biochemical principles, including structure-function correlation, kinetics and equilibrium, thermodynamics, membrane structure and function, and metabolic energy pathways, will illustrate the key concepts of biology and chemistry.


GCU Online Student

Pursue a next-generation education with an online degree from Grand Canyon University. Earn your degree with convenience and flexibility with online courses that let you study anytime, anywhere.

GCU Evening Student

Grand Canyon University’s evening programs cater to the demands of working professionals who prefer an in-person learning environment. Our night classes meet just once per week and offer the interaction and discussion of a typical college classroom.

* Please note that this list may contain programs and courses not presently offered, as availability may vary depending on class size, enrollment and other contributing factors. If you are interested in a program or course listed herein please first contact your University Counselor for the most current information regarding availability.

* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Programs or courses subject to change.

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