» Recommended Classes for First-Year Biochemistry Majors

Here are the classes that we recommend you take during your first year as a Biochemistry major at Chapman.

For your first semester, we recommend taking 12-15 credits (most classes are 3 credits; those with labs are 4). You must be enrolled in at least 12 credits to be considered a full-time status student. The recommended courses below will put you at 13-15 credits per semester (fall and spring).

Introductory Math Requirement

First year students must either waive or complete Math 101/L (Calculus Readiness, with a required lab component) in their first semester. For more information, visit our Math Placement webpage.

Math Sequence

Biochemistry majors must complete one of the two calculus course sequences offered:

Option 1 (complete in two semesters): Math 115 (4 units) + Math 116 (4 units) Note: this sequence is accelerated and should ONLY be taken if you have a strong mathematics background.

Option 2:  (complete in three semesters): Math 110 (3 units) + Math 111 (3 units) + Math 210 (3 units)

General Education Classes

You can choose a General Education (GE) class from any GE category – it’s your choice. In general, the following GE areas are recommended to begin/complete during your first year:

  • GE Language Study (strongly recommended)
  • GE Written Inquiry (ENG 205: Research-Based Writing, strongly recommended)
  • GE Quantitative Inquiry (satisfied with MATH 110, MATH 111, or appropriate AP credit)

You may be able to fulfill some of your GE requirements with classes from your major and/or minor.

You can learn more about general education on our General Education: How it Works page.


The department recommends taking BIOL 204/204L and CHEM 140/140L even if receiving AP credit. It is not recommended to skip CHEM 140/L unless you have a very strong chemistry foundation including extensive laboratory experience.  Some medical schools require a college level courses with a letter grade and will not accept AP credit. It is the student’s responsibility to check the requirements for the medical schools they are interested in.

AP Scores

AP Chemistry: If you received a 4 or higher, take a GE course in the fall instead of CHEM 140/140L

AP Calculus AB: If you received a 4 or higher, take MATH 111 in the fall instead of MATH 110

AP Calculus BC: If you received a 4 or higher, take MATH 210 in either the fall or spring

Fall Semester

Biochemistry is part of the Block Scheduling program for Fall 2022. You should have selected your block via the Block Scheduling survey (open June 6 - June 10) and will be pre-registered in FFC 100B, CHEM 140/140L and Math 115 or MATH 110 and/or BIO 204/204L in late June. You can then build the rest of your schedule around these required major courses.

FFC 100B - Grand Challenges  (Block Scheduled)
Credits: 3

Note: All first-year students at Chapman have to take First Year Foundations. The class will introduce you to college and there is a different topic for every major. As a Biochemistry major, you must select an FFC 100B option from the Schmid and Fowler Colleges’ Grand Challenges in Science and Engineering category.

CHEM 140/140L  (Block Scheduled)
Credits: 4

MATH 115 or MATH 110  (Block Scheduled)
Credits: 4, 3

Note: If you need MATH 101/L, take MATH 101/L in the fall and MATH 110 in the Spring. 

BIO 204/204L  (Block Scheduled) 
Credits: 4

Spring Semester

SCI 150 - Grand Challenges cont. 
Credits: 1

BCHM 100
Credits: 1

CHEM 150/150L  
Credits: 4

MATH 116 or MATH 111 
Credits: 4, 3

Note: If you need MATH 101/L, take MATH 101/L in the fall and MATH 110 in the Spring. 

BIO 208/208L 
Credits: 4