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Those of you who majored in Biology...

speedypear

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    Did you find that in order to do well, you had to be a "natural" at math/calc and the sciences?

    This is what I want to take, but I'm seriously doubting my ability to do well and not end up with a horrific report card upon leaving undergrad! The only science I'm taking for Grade 12 this year is Biology (major regrets about not taking Chemistry + Calculus) and I'm scared that I won't know what to expect when I hit first-year science and flunk out of university.

    My 2nd option is Human Kinetics (like Exercise Science) but I feel like that is taking the easy way out, and I'm not even sure if I'm interested in it. I feel that Biology would give me a better science background, especially to prepare for DAT, while covering most of the dental pre-reqs, but realistically, I would have a higher GPA in HKin, although not as much science experience. I feel like I would only be in HKin for the high GPA...but I'm probably also being unrealistic in thinking that I can survive a Biology major.

    What would you do in this situation? My sister has been talking me out of going into Sciences all year with horror stories of straight-A highschool students flunking out, but part of me still wants to go for it. I would appreciate any opinions/advice, anything! Just scared of making a wrong decision that will affect everything in the future. :confused:
     

    KY2007

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      Calculus was not my strong point and I graduated with B.S. in Biology. At most undergrad programs you only have to take up to Calc I. Trust me it's not that hard. Biology can be pretty tough so you will probably study more than you are use to in high school. If you are wanting to get into dental school you probably want to keep your g.p.a. in the 3.4 to 3.5 range. People get in with lower g.p.a.'s but they are the exceptions and not the rule.
       

      Biogirl361

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        I'm a bio major.. as far as math/calc I only had to take 3 semesters of math: intro trig/algebra, calc1, and intro statistics. all three were unbelieveably basic and easy.
        I'm not sure i'd call myself a natural at science.. in high school and on my ACT's my natural smarts were in english and reading. as a senior in college I now have a 3.8 in the Biology major. everyone I know, no matter how smart says that the science classes we take are tough. there is no arguing that. but I also think anyone could do well if they just put in the time and effort. I have not encountered any classes impossible to do well in. most of my friends in Bio have around 3.4's and still manage to have tons of fun and free time to do stuff. the people you heard about who flunked the bio major i am willing to bet they had terrible time management, didn't study enough, etc. so yes, if you want to party every weekend and glide through college in my opinion wasting your time and money, then take the easy major... but there's no doubt you can definitly "survive" biology if you put in any reasonable amount of effort!
         
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        Biogirl361 said:
        I'm a bio major.. as far as math/calc I only had to take 3 semesters of math: intro trig/algebra, calc1, and intro statistics. all three were unbelieveably basic and easy.
        I'm not sure i'd call myself a natural at science.. in high school and on my ACT's my natural smarts were in english and reading. as a senior in college I now have a 3.8 in the Biology major. everyone I know, no matter how smart says that the science classes we take are tough. there is no arguing that. but I also think anyone could do well if they just put in the time and effort. I have not encountered any classes impossible to do well in. most of my friends in Bio have around 3.4's and still manage to have tons of fun and free time to do stuff. the people you heard about who flunked the bio major i am willing to bet they had terrible time management, didn't study enough, etc. so yes, if you want to party every weekend and glide through college in my opinion wasting your time and money, then take the easy major... but there's no doubt you can definitly "survive" biology if you put in any reasonable amount of effort!

        I agree. I am one of those people with a 3.4 who still manages to have fun :). Then again though, I started out with a 2.0 cum my freshman year. Which means that I have been doing a little bit better than 3.4 in all of the following semester so i could bring it up ;). But yeah, it hasn't been impossible, but it has been challenging. You can do it, just put in the time.
         

        Irene010

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          Same story here...I also had to take only 3 semesters of Math, and they were all pretty basic. You'll encounter a lot of math in your chemistry classes, but its nothing too complicated...don't worry about being a "natural"...I'm definetly not, and I did just fine. If you are going to be pre-dental, you'll have plenty of biology and chemistry that you'll have to take as pre-reqs for dental school, so being a Bio or Chem major helps you kill two birds with one stone. Like everyone else says, there is no major in the sciences that is easy, mainly because the information that you learn isn't just common sense that you can figure out without studying...its information that you have to actively study and memorize. But as long as you put in the effort and get all your reading done, you'll surely get by...you seem like you have your priorites straight. There might be a shock factor at first, because its definetly not high school anymore...there is a lot more responsibility and obligation to learn a lot of material on your own and in a short period of time...I experienced that...I came out of high school with a 4.0 and get C's in my first 3 Bio classes! Talk about a blow to my confidence! But then I really improved my time management skills and I'm now in my last semester of undergrad with a 3.7. Not to mention that you'll have TONS of bio to take in dental school, so you might as well do yourself a favor and become familiar with a lot of it in undergrad. It might not be easy, but it will be well worth it! Good luck! :)
           

          reLAXgirl

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            I feel your story is exactly me. I had awful math/chem grades my first year because I didn't study (I did homework but didn't understand the difference btwn studying and homework) and had a hard time recovering. If you put the time in, talk to TA's, instructors, etc, you'll be fine. You'll have to take chem and the sciences for the DAT anyway. If you are really concerned about doing well I don't think you will fail. It is hard to fail if you are actually trying.
             
            reLAXgirl said:
            I feel your story is exactly me. I had awful math/chem grades my first year because I didn't study (I did homework but didn't understand the difference btwn studying and homework) and had a hard time recovering. If you put the time in, talk to TA's, instructors, etc, you'll be fine. You'll have to take chem and the sciences for the DAT anyway. If you are really concerned about doing well I don't think you will fail. It is hard to fail if you are actually trying.

            I can totally relate! I had a tough time adjusting to college, thats for sure. I hope that doesn't happen again when I go to dental school...oh man!!! :)
             

            BeachLuvr

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              I am a biology major, and if I had to do it all over again, I'd probably pick something different. I chose biology because I was interested, and still am...I am grateful for the degree because I will be familiar with a lot of the concepts presented in the first two years of dental school; however, you will be bogged with science out the caboose...you might as well major in whatever you are truly interested in outside of the sciences. You'll be more passionate about it :) All majors have their difficult courses, you'll pull through!

              As for calculus, my degree requires Cal I, II, and III. Why????

              Do what you love :)

              Beach
               

              OpenWide

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                If you major in something else, you'll still have to take the BCP courses that are required for admission, anyways, so you might not be padding your GPA as much as you think by not going bio. Also, think about specializing (zoology, micro-, etc). That way, the upper-level bio classes you take actually interest you. I'm an environmental bio major and no schools I talked to seemed to have a problem w/ it.
                 

                Pikeyman

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                  You will have to take the following as a bio major:

                  - Calculus I & II (Some schools require you to take those as pre-dental req's despite your major req's. Go to your Pre-Health office and find out.)
                  - Statistics (It's a joke compared to Cal.)
                  - Physics I & II (These can be harder than Calulus if you smell in mathmatical concepts.)

                  Don't take on Bio major just to look good on your AADSAS. You will only end up cursing and blaming every one of your bio professors for everything that is wrong in your life. Or start kicking them in the testicles yelling "Let go of my purse. I don't know you".

                  I'm going to use a cliche here: major in something you like.
                   

                  speedypear

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                    Thank you for all your help everyone!!! It really helps to hear all of your experiences. I've decided to apply to Human Kinetics and not Science...I just don't think I'm cut out for a Biology major. I don't have a passion for the sciences, and I'm not a genius...I think you have to have at least one of those things to really succeed in a pure science major, especially at UBC, which is a total "science school". I don't want to be going into Science just so it will look good to the dental schools.

                    I'm only worried about the DAT...is it really possible to score well having only taken the bare minimum of dental prerequisites?
                     

                    xxJuiceDxx

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                      speedypear said:
                      Did you find that in order to do well, you had to be a "natural" at math/calc and the sciences?

                      This is what I want to take, but I'm seriously doubting my ability to do well and not end up with a horrific report card upon leaving undergrad! The only science I'm taking for Grade 12 this year is Biology (major regrets about not taking Chemistry + Calculus) and I'm scared that I won't know what to expect when I hit first-year science and flunk out of university.

                      My 2nd option is Human Kinetics (like Exercise Science) but I feel like that is taking the easy way out, and I'm not even sure if I'm interested in it. I feel that Biology would give me a better science background, especially to prepare for DAT, while covering most of the dental pre-reqs, but realistically, I would have a higher GPA in HKin, although not as much science experience. I feel like I would only be in HKin for the high GPA...but I'm probably also being unrealistic in thinking that I can survive a Biology major.

                      What would you do in this situation? My sister has been talking me out of going into Sciences all year with horror stories of straight-A highschool students flunking out, but part of me still wants to go for it. I would appreciate any opinions/advice, anything! Just scared of making a wrong decision that will affect everything in the future. :confused:

                      Dude, honestly, anything is possible as long as you put forth the effort. I graduated from high school with a 4.1 gpa but did sh!tty in undergrad. Why? I thought I could get by with minimum effort. Thus, I became lazy, partied, and spent all my time at the gym like a 'dumb meathead' (as my gf used to describe me when she first saw me at the campus gym).

                      As long as you learn to balance studying with extracurricular activites, a 4.0 gpa in college is definitely not out of reach. The trick to succeeding in college is to study. No joke. :idea: I guess there really is no substitute for hard work...haha! Good luck! :thumbup:
                       

                      amartins02

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                        At my college bio majors need Intro to college math I and II and thats it. Do you guys think I should take at least Calc I? I mean it isn't required for D school so if I can avoid it I will but, will it look bad?
                         

                        IWuvTeef

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                          Speedy, in my opinnion, you need to consider your ultimate goal as far as majors go. Don't shy away from biology just because you heard it was hard. If you think you can't handle bio, you need to consider if you will be able to handle dental school (which is probably more difficult than the bio major). Work hard now. Get used to the course load you will experience as a bio major because you will see alot of it in dent school.

                          But in the end, choose a major you will like. Don't be afraid to challenge yourself.

                          Good luck :luck:
                           

                          speedypear

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                            IWuvTeef said:
                            Speedy, in my opinnion, you need to consider your ultimate goal as far as majors go. Don't shy away from biology just because you heard it was hard. If you think you can't handle bio, you need to consider if you will be able to handle dental school (which is probably more difficult than the bio major). Work hard now. Get used to the course load you will experience as a bio major because you will see alot of it in dent school.

                            But in the end, choose a major you will like. Don't be afraid to challenge yourself.

                            Good luck :luck:

                            Thanks for your advice IWuvTeef...now I'm really questioning my decision again! You just said everything that was at the back of my mind. I actually want to major in Biology, but have no confidence in being able to do well (I'm not even getting straight A's in high school! Well, just 1 B.) I have terrible study habits, and my sister (who is pushing me towards Human Kinetics) "knows" I will do horribly in a Bio major because all of her friends who got straight-A's in highschool thought they could handle first-year sciences but in the end flunked or dropped out. I'm just sick of being so easily influenced...if she had never said anything to scare me away from my decision I would have applied without a question. And I'm only taking Biology 12 this year so I have no idea what to expect in Chemistry, Calculus, Physics. I'm just so confused...I've been debating whether or not to go into Sciences and risk bad grades since last year and the application deadline is coming up on Feb. 28. I don't know who to ask now for a second opinion...maybe my biology teacher?

                            I just can't decide between these 2 programs...whenever I start thinking about this my head pounds and I feel like I'm going insane. :scared:
                            http://students.ubc.ca/calendar/index.cfm?tree=12,215,410,418
                            http://students.ubc.ca/calendar/index.cfm?tree=12,205,352,317
                             
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                            beastly115

                              Don't be intimidated. I was in your position last year and Here I am a Bio major and i'm doing great. I had horrible work ethic in high school, I took a bunch of honors courses (as opposed to AP) and never studied at all and cruised through with all A's. My senior year I took 3 classes and was lazy all year.

                              You might be a bit overwhelmed at first but that's how most people are their freshman year. I know that's how I felt, but I learned to adjust about 1/4-1/2 way through the first semester. You can try it out for a semester and always switch your major. It's all about time management. Just know that you'll have to make more sacrifices (time wise) as a bio major than a human kinetics major. There will be times when your friends go to the bar and you have to study for a test the next day.

                              My .02.
                               

                              IWuvTeef

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                                speedypear said:
                                Thanks for your advice IWuvTeef...now I'm really questioning my decision again! You just said everything that was at the back of my mind. I actually want to major in Biology, but have no confidence in being able to do well (I'm not even getting straight A's in high school! Well, just 1 B.) I have terrible study habits, and my sister (who is pushing me towards Human Kinetics) "knows" I will do horribly in a Bio major because all of her friends who got straight-A's in highschool thought they could handle first-year sciences but in the end flunked or dropped out. I'm just sick of being so easily influenced...if she had never said anything to scare me away from my decision I would have applied without a question. And I'm only taking Biology 12 this year so I have no idea what to expect in Chemistry, Calculus, Physics. I'm just so confused...I've been debating whether or not to go into Sciences and risk bad grades since last year and the application deadline is coming up on Feb. 28. I don't know who to ask now for a second opinion...maybe my biology teacher?

                                I just can't decide between these 2 programs...whenever I start thinking about this my head pounds and I feel like I'm going insane. :scared:
                                http://students.ubc.ca/calendar/index.cfm?tree=12,215,410,418
                                http://students.ubc.ca/calendar/index.cfm?tree=12,205,352,317

                                Speedy: let's take a breath together... in...out. Now just relax. You have not even entered college yet. Forget about the horror stories you have heard. Everyone is different. Your sister and her friends are not you, so naturally, they will have different college experiences than you.

                                You have 4 years to show the dent schools what you're made of. I know you can do it. Guess what? I never got straight As in highschool (I had Bs with some As), and I have never been a straight A student in college. I have 4 Cs on my transcript and 3 withdrawls. I worked 20 hours per week in a grocery store throughout college. But, look how far I have gotten! I maintained an average GPA, did okay on my DAT, and I got 3 interview invites!

                                You will do fine as a bio major if you have the passion to do it. In college, it's not all science classes. You will have general ed classes mixed in there. It will balance out the course load. If anything, you will probably have 2 science classes plus 2 gen ed classes each semester. It's not as bad as it sounds. You will have the time to study. Just don't go partying every night! Make friends in your classes and form study groups. It helps tremendously.

                                For your application, make sure you join predent clubs at your school, shadow a dentist, and do some type of community service in your town during your 4 yrs in college.

                                Don't lose hope! You have a long journey ahead of you, but it's all worth it in the end...at least it was for me.

                                Good luck!
                                 
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