Genetics and genomics are central to all aspects of the life sciences. Genetics is the branch of biology that deals with heredity, variation of genes among individuals in a population, and the expression and regulation of genes. Genomics focuses on determining the structure and function of genomes and includes the mapping of genes, high-throughput DNA sequencing, and investigating the molecular mechanisms by which genetic and environmental factors contribute to phenotypes. Every day, scientists are using the tools of genetics and genomics to make exciting discoveries in fields such as molecular medicine, cancer research, biodiversity, and sustainability. The Genetics (GEN) major has two options: Genetics and Genetics:Genomics. The option in Genetics provides a solid foundation in biology, biochemistry, microbiology, chemistry, physics, math, and cell biology. Students also take advanced courses in molecular genetics, bioinformatics, molecular evolution, genomics, and laboratory techniques. There are many opportunities for interested students to gain research experience through formal or informal research projects in faculty members' laboratories. The Genetics:Genomics option provides additional training in genomics, evolutionary genetics, and computer programming for bioinformatics.
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