Professor: Morrison (Department Chair); Associate Professors: Mitschler and Parrish; Assistant Professors: Huang and Staab; Laboratory Coordinator: Burley; Laboratory Manager: Yust.
Areas of particular teaching interest: Dr. Mitschler: parasitology, immunology; Dr. Morrison: cell biology, vertebrate diversity; Dr. Parrish: molecular biology of the gene; Dr Huang: developmental biology and genetics; Dr. Staab: comparative anatomy and physiology. The Biology Department offers a major that provides the essential background for students who wish to pursue graduate or professional studies and those who wish to find careers in biological research, as well as those who wish to gain certification for secondary school (middle/high school) teaching. From its founding, the College and the Biology Department have prepared men and women to enter medical school and graduate programs in the life sciences.
Biology offers courses to prepare students for a variety of careers. Faculty advisors recommend additional courses for particular careers. These include, but are not limited to, allied health fields, environmental biology, molecular biology, graduate study, and teacher certification. The faculty of the Biology Department believes that students must work both in and beyond the classroom in order to develop a personal perspective of biological knowledge. The faculty understands its role to be that of teachers, mentors, and friends who guide students to knowledge and help them comprehend it.
Many Biology students find employment and enjoy successful careers with a bachelor’s degree. They enter a variety of fields such as genetics, marine science, cancer research, environmental analysis, or work as laboratory research associates. Students may prepare themselves to pursue a career in research which could lead to postgraduate training at the master’s or doctoral level. Our undergraduate course offerings cover the basic requirements for most graduate programs. Students should be aware that many doctoral programs require calculus (MAT 1117), two semesters of organic chemistry (CHE 2217, 2218), and two semesters of physics (PHY 1101, 1102) in addition to the courses required by the Department. Specific requirements should be discussed with the student’s faculty advisor.
Students may decide to pursue a career in such health science fields as medicine, dentistry, optometry, physical therapy, pharmacy, or veterinary medicine. Our curriculum, coupled with pre-professional advising, enables students to meet the course requirements for these programs. Students interested in health careers should consult Dr. Ralene Mitschler for specific advice early in their undergraduate studies.
Students interested in environmental studies may follow our environmental biology specialization within the department, or they may choose to major in Environmental Studies. Students should consult Dr. Mona Becker for specific advice.
Students interested in molecular biology may follow our molecular biology specialization within the department and should consult Dr. Susan Parrish for specific advice.
Students may elect to minor in elementary or secondary education for teacher certification. Biology students interested in a career in education should consult: 1) the Education Department section in this Catalog and work with natural sciences advisor in that department; 2) the biology basic major and work with the formal biology department advisor as assigned by department chair .
Biology majors with interests in academic areas outside the sciences are encouraged by the Biology Department to develop these talents. Our students have graduated with double majors in Art (medical illustration, graphic design), Business and Economics, English (journalism), History, World Languages (French, Spanish), Physical Education (sports medicine, physical education trainer), and Philosophy. The department also has a Dual major with the Mathematics Department. Other Educational Options in Biology: Through an added system of advising, internships, and suggested ancillary courses in a preprofessional curriculum for the health sciences, the Biology Department assists those who wish to enter professional schools (in medicine, dentistry, veterinary science, optometry, nursing, etc.).
Please see teacher certification requirements in Biology .
Please see the dual major option in Biology – Mathematics Dual Major .
Honors in Biology
Honors in Biology will be awarded to graduating seniors who have earned at least a 3.50 grade point average in all courses taken in the major and who are recommended by the Department. Departmental recommendation is based on evaluation of a paper describing a laboratory or field research project done by the student, a poster presentation, a 15-minute research presentation. Students may pick up guidelines in the Department Office.
ProgramsUndergraduate MajorUndergraduate Minor