Biology Undergraduate Retention Program

Why You Should Be Concerned With Retention

  • The nation retention rate for all college students as been a relatively constant 74% over the past two decades and the figure is lower for students entering the sciences.
  • Of the students leaving universities, most do so during or immediately following freshman year.
  • Leaving college has a significant negative person impact on many students.
  • In many instances the decision to leave rests on the student’s lack of success in the curriculum, particularly for freshman who enter the setting unprepared personally and academically.
  • It is a daunting task to make the transition from high school to university life.

Niagara University Freshman Biology

  • Students are advised into BIO102 Introductory Biology or BIO121 General Biology based on SAT/ACT scores and successful participation in high school science courses.
  • BIO102 is a course tailored to the needs of the less prepared students. It is two lectured and one one-hour laboratory period per week. Emphasis is on basic biology concepts and writing to communicate in the sciences,
  • BIO121is a general biology course for students who are well founded in science and math from high school.  It is three lectures per week and is accompanied by BIO 123, a one-credit, two and a half hour per week lab course.  Emphasis is on the scientific method, interpreting and designing experiments and scientific literacy.
  • All freshman biology majors have a co requisite of Biology Undergraduate Mentoring. This is for three hours per week and is non credit bearing.
  • Groups of up to eight students are led by a junior or senior student biology major in sessions that are supervised by faculty.

Topics of BIO Mentoring

Team building, science current events, critical thinking, academic success, campus resources & activities, academic integrity and classroom etiquette, reading textbooks (Office of Academic Support) time management (Office of Academic Support)

Will BIO102 Mean an Extra Semester?

  • No. Students placed in BIO102 will complete the sequence: BIO102 (freshman, fall), BIO122 (freshman, spring) and BIO121 (sophomore, fall).
  • In their sophomore year, students are able to take the standard biology curriculum and are on track for graduation after four years at NU.
  • B.U.R.P. Works!
  • After the first year of BURP mentoring, student retention in the biology major jumped by 17% and retention of these students at the university increased by 15%.
  • The primary goal of B.U.R.P. is retention of students at the university.  Retention in the major is secondary.
  • Many students soon realize that they are better suited to other disciplines and many switch majors in their first year with help from the mentoring program.
  • It takes intuition, time and patience to find your true passion and success area. This is what B.U.R.P. is all about.