May 17, 2024  
2020-2021 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog 
2020-2021 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics

Dean: Curtis Bennett

Associate Dean for Academic Programs, Evaluation, and Advising: Krzysztof Slowinski

Associate Dean for Research: Barbara Taylor

Director of Development: Maryanne Horton

Administrative Services Manager: Henry Wu

Assistant to the Dean: Lane Olsen-Cooper

College Office: Hall of Science (HSCI), Room 160
Telephone / FAX: (562) 985‑4707 / (562) 985-2315


Biological Sciences
Dessie L.A. Underwood, Chair (562) 985-4806

Chemistry and Biochemistry
Christopher Z. Brazier, Chair (562) 985-4941

Geological Sciences
Richard Behl, Chair (562) 985-4809

Mathematics and Statistics
Tangan Gao, Chair (562) 985-4721

Physics and Astronomy
Andreas Bill, Chair (562) 985-8616

Science Education
Lisa Martin-Hansen, Chair (562) 985-4801

CNSM Academic Advising Center
Coordinator: Theresa Exum-Lucas
Office: HSCI 164C
Telephone: (562) 985-4334

Jensen Student Access to Science and Mathematics Center

Coordinator: Valerie Bagley
Office: HSCI 164
Telephone: (562) 985-4682

CNSM Science Learning Center
Director, James Kisiel
Office: HSCI-208
Telephone (562) 985-1325

Courses: NSCI  


The College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics (CNSM) provides quality educational opportunities in the life, physical sciences, and mathematics. Alumni of the College demonstrate that science and mathematics graduates are well‑prepared to enter graduate and professional schools or to assume responsible positions in industry or government.

The College takes its responsibilities in teacher preparation in the sciences and mathematics very seriously. It participates in projects that provide a stronger, more rigorous, and more engaging set of teacher preparation programs at CSULB. There is funding from the National Science Foundation, NASA, and the Knight Foundation, and in collaboration with Colleges of Education and Liberal Arts, Long Beach Unified School District, and Long Beach City College.


Biological Sciences  

Chemistry and Biochemistry  

Geological Sciences  

Mathematics and Statistics  

Physics and Astronomy  

Science Education  

College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics’ Academic Advising Center

The CNSM Academic Advising Center located in the Hall of Science, Room 164 (HSCI-164) collaborates with the College’s undergraduate advisors to provide its majors with academic advising and support services so students can achieve their personal, academic, and career goals. Some of the services provided to CNSM majors include information and resources about academic programs; selection and sequence of courses; assistance with enrollment for courses; helping majors develop short- and long-term goals; assistance in navigating academic requirements, policies, and +procedures; and providing appropriate referrals and career planning. The Academic Advising Center staff is available for appointments and some walk-in assistance. Please contact the Academic Advising Center for more information at

Jensen Student Access to Science and Mathematics (SAS) Center and Programs Offered

The Center (HSCI 164) is dedicated to promoting success for students who pursue majors in the College and those who take courses in its departments. It also facilitates several externally funded programs. The Center provides space for studying, tutoring, mentoring, computer access, and meeting sites for student-centered activities. The Center serves as the resource center for health profession advising, graduate school opportunities, and summer research opportunities and fellowships. For additional information please contact

There are a host of activities and programs that strive to involve students and promote their success in science and mathematics. Several federally funded programs, the Center is dependent on external funding, focus on underserved students and address the diversity of our campus. In addition to fostering involvement of students in science and mathematics, they feature an ethnic identity that provides a unique encouragement for our science majors.

MARC/RISE Programs. The College hosts both programs funded by The National Institutes of General Medical Sciences: Minority Access to Research Careers (MARC) and Research Institute for Scientific Enhancement (RISE). Both programs have the goal of increasing the number and quality of students from specifically targeted groups/populations who pursue careers in scientific research. Students supported by these programs carry out state-of-the-art biomedical research projects in conjunction with a member of the faculty. MARC is an honors program (GPA 3.0) for upper division students, while RISE supports students as early as the freshman year and also upper division transfer students. As a result of their research activities, most students present papers at scientific conferences and often co-author publications appearing in leading scientific journals. MARC/RISE students are active in various outreach and mentoring activities.

Beckman Scholars Program. The program focuses on students who have the potential to achieve distinction in their academic fields. Support is provided for students working toward bachelor’s degrees in chemistry, biology, or physics in the form of student stipends, laboratory supplies and funds for travel to appropriate scientific meetings. Students receive rigorous training by faculty members in a variety of techniques involved in nucleic acid research, protein biochemistry, biophysics, etc.

Bridges to the Baccalaureate Program. This program is funded by the National Institutes of General Medical Sciences and its goal is to provide historically underserved community college students with research opportunities in the biomedical sciences and to facilitate transition into baccalaureate and doctorate granting institutions. LS-AMP Program. The College hosts the National Science Foundation’s Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LS-AMP) program. Its goal is to improve the mathematics and science preparation for historically underserved students majoring in the sciences, mathematics, and engineering and to enhance their opportunities for graduate studies.

Physics Teacher Education Coalition (PhysTEC) Program. The CSULB PhysTEC Program, supported by the American Physical Society, National Science Foundation, and the CSULB’s College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, is a collaborative project between the Department of Physics and Astronomy, Department of Science Education, and the Teacher-in-Residence program recruited from local high schools. The PhysTEC Program aims to increase the number of physics majors earning teaching credentials at CSULB by actively recruiting, providing opportunities for early teaching experiences, and continuing the support structures for teachers at all levels. For additional information, please see

Health Professions Advising Office (HPAO)

This office (HSC1-164) provides a wide range of advising and support services for students pursuing preparation and application to professional schools. The HPAO offers individual counseling, academic planning, application assistance, and many other resources designed specialty for students interested in medicine, dentistry, veterinary, pharmacy, optometry, podiatry, chiropractic, physician assistant, physical therapy, and graduate nursing.

College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics’ Science Learning Center

The CNSM Science Learning Center is located in Hall of Science, Room 110 (HSCI-110). The Science Learning Center, under the direction of the Science Education Department, is phasing into utilizing evidence-based best practices in science education and community outreach. SLC operations are under new development and direction. For further information and updates, contact the College at

Student Research Opportunities

Faculty members in the College involve more than 200 students annually, both undergraduate and graduate, in a variety of research activities. Many of these students are supported by research grants, especially during the summer months. Each year many of these students present the results of their research at scientific conferences. It is not unusual for a student to be an author on an article appearing in a major scientific journal. Early each fall semester, the College, in collaboration with the Jensen Student Access to Sciences and Mathematics Center, hosts an Annual Research Symposium for students to present their findings of the research conducted in laboratories of CNSM faculty. The Symposium is open to members of the University and the greater Southern California community.

The Electron Microscopy Facility

The study of the natural sciences requires observation of the macroscopic, microscopic, and sub-microscopic character of our universe. The College has a modern Electron Microscope (EM) Facility, utilizing a Joel-1200EXII transmission electron microscope (TEM), which is used by several undergraduate courses in addition to undergraduate and graduate research projects. The EM Facility also houses additional TEMs and an AMR 1000 scanning electron microscope has analytical capabilities.

Student Organizations

The College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics Student Council sponsors annual events including the Nobel Laureate series and student-faculty-staff mixer. There are various social and academic-related programs that offer peer support, as well as opportunities for students and faculty to interact outside of the classroom.

Other student-led groups offer activities for students who are planning careers in one of the health professions (medicine, dentistry, etc.). The Organization of PreProfessional Students (T.O.P.P.S.) and Association of Pre-Dental Students (A.P.D.S.) have speaker series with representatives from professional schools; the group also holds social functions and provides a peer advising network. Chicanos/Latinos for Community Medicine (CCM) sponsors community outreach activities, an annual workshop on interviewing techniques, and an annual conference on applying to medical/professional schools.

Southern California Marine Institute (SCMI)

The Institute operates a number of research vessels, and provides the mechanism whereby students from CSU Ocean Studies Consortium campuses at Dominguez Hills, Fullerton, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Northridge, Pomona, San Diego, and San Marcos, as well as Occidental College and the University of Southern California can share courses and degree programs. In addition, Institute staff conduct research and facilitate the research of CSU faculty. The major focus is on harbors and coastal areas, with emphasis on environmental issues.

California Desert Studies Consortium

CSULB participates in the California Desert Studies Consortium, which has a Desert Studies Center in the heart of the Mojave Desert at Soda Springs near the town of Baker. The surrounding area consists of typical Mojave Desert with dry lakes, sand dunes, and mountain ranges; it is the gateway to Death Valley and the Kelso Dunes. The Center has facilities for teaching field classes and for research. California State Universities at Dominguez Hills, Fullerton, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Northridge, Pomona, and San Bernardino are the Consortia members.

Institute for Integrated Research in Materials, Environment, and Society (IIRMES)

IIRMES promotes and enhances educational and research opportunities for faculty, graduate and undergraduate students and the greater community at large. The major goals and accompanying benefits include research and scholarly activity; development of instructional programs to provide student training and research; and contribution to community service. IIRMES promotes cross-application of analytical techniques; facilitates access to state-of-the-art instrumentation for researchers; sponsors colloquia, lectures, and conferences; promotes interdisciplinary workshops and collaborations with other universities to create research possibilities for faculty and students; promotes educational programs and research opportunities for CSULB undergraduate and graduate students; provides analytical services for scientific community; and serves as a core CSU facility for elemental microanalysis.

CSUPERB Core Facility for Micro-Chemical Elemental Analysis (FEMCA)

California State University Program for Education and Research in Biotechnology (CSUPERB) has created a core facility for elemental micro-chemical analysis (FEMCA). FEMCA’s principal goal is to enhance the educational and research opportunities of students and faculty members in the CSU system who wish to pursue novel research in biotechnology. The facility builds on strong interdisciplinary ties between the biological, chemical, and physical sciences. FEMCA is housed within IIRMES for molecular and elemental analysis; scanning, transmission and atomic force microscopy; as well as purpose-built clean-room facilities for organic and inorganic extractions and sample preparation.

Center for Education in Proteomics Analysis (CEPA)

A grant from the W.M. Keck Foundation and supplemental funds provided by the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics at CSULB enabled purchase of an Applied Biosystems 4800 Matrix Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization, tandem Time of Flight Mass Spectrometer for protein and polypeptide analysis and identification. CEPA is part of IIRMES’ Facility for Elemental Micro Chemical Analysis (FEMCA), and is the only one of its kind in the USA that focuses on the use of this technology for undergraduate training and research.


    Undergraduate DegreesMinor


      Natural SciencesUniversity Research