The Bachelor of Science is offered as a four-year Honours degree (BSCH) or a three-year General (BSCG) degree. You have the option of choosing an area of specialization (a major) only in the Honours degree program. Honours B.Sc. students may also add a minor to their program, but this is entirely optional.

Honours B.Sc. Degree

There are 27 different majors to choose from in the Honours Bachelor of Science degree program for the 2017/18 admission cycle. Please follow the links below for further information regarding each of our majors.

Biological Science majors:

Physical Science majors:

Additional majors:

1st Year Science Core

An advantage of the University of Guelph B.Sc. program is the flexibility in switching majors after your first year. All students entering into first year will take a similar set of core courses in your first and second semesters. This includes courses in Biology, Calculus, Chemistry and Physics. Most majors will also take an Arts and Social Science Elective. Click here to view the Approved Arts and Social Science Electives for science students.

The University of Guelph runs on a semester system. Incoming students from high school would choose their Semester 1 courses for the Fall semester (September - December), during the New Student Course Selection period (mid-May to early July). Semester 2 courses would be chosen in October for the Winter semester (January - April). Students generally take 5 courses each semester, with each course worth 0.5 credits. An honours degree requires a minimum of 20.0 credits to graduate (some majors require more).

B.Sc. students who have not taken Grade 12 Physics (SPH4U in Ontario) will take a course in fundamental physics instead of one of the usual first year required Physics courses. If you are lacking Grade 12 Chemistry, you must take an Grade 12-equivalent course (CHEM 1060) in your first semester, which will be applied as a Science Elective. Students lacking Grade 12 Biology should consult a Program Counsellor for advice, but may be able to proceed directly to university-level Biology or take a Grade 12-equivalent course (BIOL 1020). Only one Grade 12 equivalent course (CHEM 1060 or BIOL 1020) may be applied towards your degree, as a Science Elective. This applies to students in both the physical and biological sciences.

Therefore, if you do not have Grade 12 Chemistry, all B.Sc. students must take CHEM 1060 in Semester 1 instead of Chem 1040. You will then take Chem 1040 in Semester 2 and CHEM 1050 in Semester 3 (at the start of second year). CHEM 1060 is offered in Semester 1 (the Fall semester) by Distance Education format only (ie: it is taught on-line, with no scheduled class times).

If you do not have Grade 12 Physics, students must take PHYS 1300 in Semester 1 as a replacement for PHYS 1070. You will then take PHYS 1080 in Semester 2 (Winter). Students in the Physical Sciences should contact their Program Counsellor for advice.

Co-op Options

Several majors within the B.Sc. degree offer a co-operative education option (see major list above) that combines classroom learning with work terms in business, government, or industry. These programs allow you to alternate your semesters on campus and in the work force to help you gain valuable work experience, develop technical and communication skills, and network with professionals.

Throughout your degree, Guelph's Co-operative Education & Career Services supports you by facilitating your transition between academic studies and work experiences, providing you with employment related services and helping you to define your career goals. Faculty Advisors, field co-ordinators and Peer Helpers are available to assist with your co-op experience.

Co-op work and academic term sequencing varies between the different majors. Please follow the links to the Undergraduate Calendar for the co-op programs in the above majors lists.

If you are interested in co-op program you can apply directly from secondary school. If you are not admitted into the co-op program, the University of Guelph will automatically considered you for the regular degree program. There is a possibility of transferring to co-op after first or second semester, depending on grades, major and the availability of openings.


If you are in the Honours program you also have the option of declaring a minor in science or non-science subjects (a minor is not required). You do not declare a minor when you apply to the University of Guelph - but you can do so at any time once you have begun your studies. You may want to talk to the Faculty Advisor for the minor or your Program Counsellor before you do declare a minor. Follow the links below to the minor requirements in the current Undergraduate Calendar (requirements for some minors are listed after those for the major, so please scroll down).

Biological sciences:

Mathematical sciences:

Physical sciences:

Environmental and other sciences:

The following Arts or Social Science minors are available:

General B.Sc. Program Requirements

The General B.Sc. degree requires the successful completion of 15.00 credits. Normally 2.50 credits (usually 5 courses) are taken in each semester so that the degree may be completed in 6 semesters. This degree is designed to give a broad general training in biological science, chemistry, physics and mathematical science. This is achieved by requiring each student to take a minimum of 1.0 credits (usually 2 courses) in each of the above areas, and an addition 0.5 credits in 3 of the 4 subject areas. The courses to be taken in semesters 4 to 6 may be selected to allow a broad study of the sciences.

Course Requirements for the General B.Sc. degree are as follows:

  1. The first year Science core (4.00 credits): a minimum of 1.0 credits (usually 2 courses) beyond the Grade 12 or 4U level, in each of:
    • biological science
    • chemistry
    • mathematical science
    • physics
  2. An additional 0.5 credits from 3 of the 4 subject areas given above (1.5 credits).
  3. Additional Approved Science Electives (6.50 credits) - these may include only 1 of BIOL 1020, CHEM 1060, PHYS 1020.  Note: At least 2.50 credits (usually 5 courses) of the Approved Science Electives must be at the 3000 or 4000 level.
  4. Approved Arts/Social Science Electives - 2.00 credits (usually 4 courses) 
  5. Additional acceptable credits ("Free Electives") - 1.00 credits (these may include Arts, Social Science, Science or other electives)

Total: 15.00 credits (generally 30 courses)