The BioFrontiers Institute is dedicated to the interdisciplinary biology education of the next generation of scientists and engineers.

Biology is immensely complex and we have the opportunity to unravel its complexity and apply our new knowledge to understanding and treating disease, overcoming environmental challenges, and building a better and stronger global community. These efforts require a new kind of scientist who can work together with colleagues across traditional disciplines to address the major challenges emerging across the biosciences.

Class of 2017 IQ Biology PhD Students gather to see the eclipse during their Orientation Bootcamp Coding Week at BioFrontiers Institute.

IQ Biology Program

The IQ Biology program seeks to attract talented, diverse and curious students eager to come together to form a cohort with sufficient biological, computational, and mathematical knowledge to fully assess modern scientific problems.

Participating students come from diverse educational backgrounds that include Biology, Bioinformatics, Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Computer and Electrical Engineering, Computer Science, Industrial Biotechnology, Mathematics, and Physics. Many of our students have previously explored interdisciplinary learning through undergraduate minors, double majors, and Master's degree programs.

The diverse student backgrounds, unified by a common passion for quantitative biology, makes for a dynamic and collaborative learning environment.


There are several ways you can participate in the BioFrontiers Institute's activities around interdisciplinary biology education:

  • Prospective graduate students may apply to our IQ Biology Ph.D. Certificate program, in tandem with their application to PhD programs in participating departments at CU-Boulder to complete their interdisciplinary biology education. If you are currently a PhD student at CU, you may also apply to the program.
  • CU Boulder undergraduates can apply to the Computational Biology (CBIO) Minor. The CBIO Minor teaches students to combine computational thinking and algorithms to study biological problems and systems.
  • Graduate students and qualified undergraduates may take our core courses, attend weekly seminars, and participate in many of the events run by and for students.
  • You are invited to attend the Biotechnology Opportunity Seminar Series to learn from and network with biotechnology industry leaders, as well as participate in the student group that develops these seminars. In addition, students can be paired with executives from the local biotech community as mentors.
  • CU Cafe is a student-run seminar series that focuses on inspiring students from underrepresented backgrounds to be successful academics. This group highlights minority scholars to serve as role models to members of the campus community, and to provide guidance and professional opportunities to the students of CU-Boulder and the surrounding community.
  • There are research opportunities available for graduate and undergraduate students. Please check with individual faculty members for available opportunities.


Undergraduate Research Program Opportunity

This Education Abroad Undergraduate Research Program will provide CU Boulder students with a summer of research at the University of Regensburg and an opportunity to explore the history and culture of this region of Germany.  The successful applicants will receive a scholarship to defray a substantial portion of the airfare, tuition, fees, and living expenses for the summer in Regensburg. Visit the Regensburg page for additional information on this scholarship program, and the Education Abroad site for more information on the overall University of Regensburg exchange program.