Be experimental

Postdoc and undergrad in the lab

Plant biology is key to the future prosperity of the human population. In the same way that basic medical researchers seek clinical solutions to fundamental challenges  in human health care, as plant biologists we seek to provide the insights that make it possible to feed, clothe, and shelter our ever-larger population in spite of intensifying environmental concerns, especially climate change. Today's students will make decisions critical to the future of our species, which must be informed by our insights into plants, the source of all sustenance.

Students may major in Plant Biology through the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) or through the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS). The Plant Biology major requirements for students in both colleges are the same; the College-level requirements are different. Students may petition the department to substitute similar courses for those listed. Study of modern foreign languages is encouraged for those attracted to the many international career opportunities in plant biology. All undergraduate students must meet University and College requirements as well as the requirements specific to the Plant Biology major.

Learning Objectives
for the Plant Biology Major

Plant Biology Major
4-Year Plan (PDF)

Major requirements

Beyond the classroom

Undergraduate Research

Students have the opportunity to assist faculty with current research as well as to design and implement their own research projects. Almost all Plant Biology students work in a laboratory to gain experience in a chosen field. Professors take the time to teach undergraduate students laboratory procedures and techniques and to introduce them to the culture of scientific research. Many graduating students cite research as the most formative aspect of their education at UVM.

UVM unique in offering Plant Biology

We are the only basic plant biology program in the State of Vermont, and we're one of only 22 plant biology departments in the nation.


  • Botanist
  • Biochemist
  • Geneticist
  • Naturalist
  • Biomedical Technician
  • Professor
  • Science Teacher
  • Ecologist
  • Plant Growth Entrepreneur
  • Agricultural Engineer
  • Plant Pathologist

Where alumni work

  • New York Botanical Garden
  • Green Mountain Antibodies
  • University of Massachusetts Amherst
  • Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden
  • Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History
  • Trinchero Family Estates
  • University of Vermont
  • Harvard Medical School
  • UMass Medical School
  • Whitehead Institute
  • University of Mississippi Medicinal Plant Garden
  • The Nature Conservancy
  • Department of Environmental Protection
  • New England Wild Flower Society
  • Massachusetts Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program
  • Framingham State University
  • The Field Museum
  • Ball Horticultural Company

Graduate Schools

  • University of Arizona
  • University of Vermont
  • Brown University
  • University of Connecticut
  • University of Massachusetts Amherst
  • Yale University
  • Cornell University
  • Harvard University
  • Howard University
  • University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
  • Indiana University
  • Yale University
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • New York Botanical Garden/City University of New York
  • University of New Mexico
  • University of Georgia
  • Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Germany
  • Royal Botanical Garden/University of Edinburgh, Scotland
  • North Carolina State University

Related Information