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Program Overview

The Human Biology programs are available to students entering their second year of study. Our multi-disciplinary programs integrate topics from the medical sciences, biological and social sciences, as well as the humanities. The goal of each Human Biology program is to provide a broad education focused on an area of biological science relevant to humans. Students will receive a solid foundation in life science courses together with insight from the humanities and social sciences. Graduates of our programs will be equipped with a broad range of knowledge and skills to pursue careers or further study in research, health sciences, biotechnology, law, education, and administration.

Programs of Study

We offer multiple Specialist programs, and a variety of Major programs. Each program enables students to study specific aspects of human biology. Students can combine a Human Biology Major program with other Science, Social Sciences or Humanities Major and/or Minor programs.

Four areas of study available as both Human Biology Specialist and Major programs:

  1. Fundamental Genetics and its Applications programs focus on various aspects of genetics, including options in molecular and population genetics, and how genetics applies to the emerging fields of bioengineering and of biotechnology.
  2. Global Health programs provide worldwide perspectives on health and medicine encompassing social, political, and economic environments.
  3. Health & Disease programs examine the functioning of living organisms and how they respond to environmental conditions, both internal and external, that cause disease.
  4. Neuroscience programs, relevant to all aspects of the nervous system, cover topics as diverse as mechanisms of learning and memory, pain, Alzheimer’s disease and movement disorders such as Parkinson’s and Lou Gehrig’s disease.

Also as a Major program only:

  1. Human Biology Major program provides a broad and flexible course of study in the basic medical sciences as well as other life sciences.

I intend to graduate – could someone assess my eligibility to graduate?
Yes! If you intend on graduating and have submitted your graduation request through ROSI we can assess your HMB program using Degree Explorer. If you are enrolled in more than one subject post, you will have to visit those departments as well. Then visit your college registrar to have them confirm your eligibility.

I don’t intend to graduate this year, but could someone assess my program progress and advise course selection for my program?
Yes! First please check Degree Explorer for your program progress. Once you have specific questions relating to your HMB subject post drop by the HMB program office and speak with a Student Advisor during business hours or make an appointment with an advisor by emailing

Degree explorer is not recognizing some courses I took for my program (eg. Transfer credits, extra credits, joint courses, etc…), what can I do?
Email an advisor ( with your student number so that we can check that the courses count for your program and degree explorer can be manually updated.

Can I graduate with two HMB majors?
No. The course calendar states that enrolment in only one HMB major is permitted, so you will not be able to graduate with two Human Biology majors. Students can combine a specialist and a major in human biology.

Can I switch from one HMB program to another?
It is possible to switch following normal PoST enrolment instructions. If considering switching, please consult with a student advisor to determine the feasibility of completing the program in a timely manner.

Can I switch from a major to a specialist?
If you meet the requirements and the specialist program is not full, you can apply again during the next spring subject post enrolment. Admission will be based on all courses completed.

Can I enrol in HMB courses if I don’t fit the enrolment category?
This depends on the enrolment indicator:

  • R – No, this course is restricted and will not open up.
  • P – Wait for priority to lift (usually early August) and enrol on ROSI (spots fill quickly)
  • E – You must apply, and if admitted, the program staff will enrol you in the course. Please note that only students in a Human Biology program  who has completed their HMB200-level core course may enrol in HMB395Y1, and  only students in a Human Biology program who have completed their HMB200-level and their HMB300-level core couse may enrol in HMB496Y1 and/or HMB499Y1.

I was unable to enrol in any HMB400-level courses, and I need one for graduation. What should I do?

Contact the HMB program office at  as soon as possible.  The program will help you find an alternative course.

What do I do if I miss a midterm test or assignment deadline?

Step 1: obtain documentation (read here for more information)
Step 2: submit original copy of documentation to the HMB office. All documentation will be verified by the Human Biology Program. Make-ups, weight re-distributions, and exemptions are at the discretion of the instructor of the affected course.

Can I make an appointment with one of my HMB course instructors?
Yes! Appointments can be made by contacting the instructor directly, not through the HMB program office. Contact information can usually be found on the course syllabus, along with office hours.



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