52 hours of graduate credit including:
Graduate students are also required to attend all of the seminars presented in the department’s Seminar Series.
Core Areas of Study
Ecology, Evolution, and Population Biology
Genetics, Cell and Molecular Biology
Physiology and Neurobiology
BIO 490 SPECIAL TOPICS, as appropriate, may also be approved in one of the three core areas.
Advancement to Candidacy
Based upon the results of a qualifying examination taken near the end of the third quarter of the student’s first full year and earning grades of B or better on graduate courses taken during the first year. Participation in undergraduate laboratory instruction is strongly encouraged.
Results based upon an independent laboratory investigation.
Final Examination Requirement
An oral examination, including presentation of a seminar based on the M.S. thesis research, and a period of questioning on the thesis, the area of research which the thesis addresses, and basic biology as it relates to the thesis area.
DEVELOPMENT OF TOPICS FOR RESEARCH
The purpose of this course is to help graduate students in formulating research questions and design methods while improving written expression and oral presentation skills. Students will, with the guidance of a faculty member, undertake a detailed investigation of a topic, formulate a potential research project in that area, and present their proposal orally to the faculty at the end of the quarter.
INTRODUCTION TO GRADUATE STUDY
Presents the biology faculty and facilities. Various research and teaching methods in biology will be explored. Consideration of such topics as laboratory safety, handling of radioactive chemicals, instrument and equipment use, handling living organisms, library and computer use, etc. Required of all graduate students. Autumn quarter only. Two quarter hours.
RESEARCH FOR MASTER'S THESIS
Original study of a specific biological problem leading to a thesis. Autumn, Winter, Spring, Summer. Laboratory. Two or four quarter hours. Lab fee.
TOPICS IN ECOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 315)
The focus of this course is to read and critique classic papers in ecology and to connect their foundational ideas with modern research and understanding.
AQUATIC BIOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 317)
The study of biological, physical and chemical phenomena in fresh water and marine environments. Emphasis on organisms and their interactions. Lecture-laboratory. Lab fee.
This course will explore key roles that microorganisms play in life on earth and how they are being used in biotechnology. This is a lab course, which will enable students to study processes used in the enrichment, isolation, and identification of microorganisms from various environments.
MOLECULAR METHODS IN ECOLOGY AND EVOLUTION
This course will provide hands-on experience in methods of detecting and analyzing molecular variation in nature. By the end of the course, students should be competent employing molecular markers to answer a wide variety of basic questions in ecology and evolution. Cross-listed with BIO 321.
MYCOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 333)
This course provides an opportunity for students to integrate their knowledge of cell biology, genetics, ecology and physiology at the organismal level by focusing on fungi. Students will gain an appreciation of the biological diversity within the major groups of fungi and their role in the environment, research and biotechnology. Lecture-laboratory. Lab fee.
CONCEPTS IN EVOLUTION (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 335)
Study of evolution and diversity in the living world. Lecture only.
TOPICS IN PALEOBIOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 345)
A seminar course examining various topics in paleobiology (the study of ancient life) including morphological concepts, macroevolutionary processes, extinction events, phylogenetic systematics, paleoecology, paleobiogeography, and the adequacy of the fossil record. Readings include classic and recent articles in the fields of paleobiology.
TOPICS IN MEDICAL BACTERIOLOGY
This course will address current topics of concern and research in medical bacteriology. Students participating in this course will explore key concepts used in bacterial pathogenesis and learn how to critically appraise recent research papers in the field.
PLANT PHYSIOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 309)
A study pf the functional and developmental aspects of flowering plants. Lecture-laboratory. Lab fee. Cross-listed as BIO 309.
CELLULAR EVENTS IN THE IMMUNE RESPONSE
Analysis of cellular and subcellular interactions in the immune response. Lecture, seminar, discussion. BIO 470 recommended.
A survey of developmental phenomena in animals from fertilization to sexual maturity. Topics include gametogenesis, early cell divisions, organ formation, metamorphosis, regeneration, birth defects, stem cells, reproductive technology and mammalian cloning. Lecture-laboratory. Lab Fee.
THE BIOLOGY OF INFECTION
This course will provide students with detailed knowledge of medically important bacteria. The course will first examine common events in infections and the body's responses to infection. We will highlight in these studies the changes in both hosts and pathogens as strategies of infection and immunity evolve relative to one another. Within this framework we will examine a spectrum of infectious diseases in detail. BIO 470 is recommended.
PROBLEMS IN CELL MOTILITY
Analysis of contemporary problems in cellular movements, with emphasis on the biochemistry, biophysics and regulation of cell and organelle movements. Lecture, seminar, discussion.
This course will deal with the study of agents that damage the genome or alter the proper functioning of the genome that can lead to disease in humans. Topics covered will include basic spectrum of genetic damage and chromosomal effects, mechanisms of mutations, DNA repair, genetic assays used for evaluation of genetic toxicology, health consequences of genetic damage, including cancer and inheritable mutations, and the current position of US government and global regulatory agencies on the issues of genetic toxicology.
BIO 260 is a prerequisite for this class.
MOLECULAR BIOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 360)
Study of biology at the molecular level, focusing on the regulation of gene expression and the principles of genetic engineering. Lecture-laboratory. Lab fee. Cross-listed as BIO 360.
BIOINFORMATICS FOR BENCH SCIENTISTS
Study how high-throughput technologies like whole-genome sequencing have changed biological research, and learn to use computers in real research tasks such as primer design, DNA sequencing, homology searches, sequence alignment, and more. Cross-listed with BIO 362.
TOPICS IN MOLECULAR BIOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 361)
Discussion and seminars in selected areas of molecular biology.
IMMUNOBIOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 370)
Basic factors governing immune phenomena and antigen antibody reactions. Lecture-laboratory. Lab fee.
INTRODUCTION TO PHARMACOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED WITH BIO 375)
Introduction to Pharmacology will explore the relationships between an organism and its response to an administered drug. This will include: 1) How drugs are administered to the body 2) What is their fate once in the body, i.e. Pharmacokinetics 3) What their mechanisms actions are - i.e. Pharmacodynamics, and 4) Adverse reactions to drugs. We will explore these relationships in different physiological systems of the human body including (but not limited to) the nervous system, circulatory system, digestive system and endocrine system. Lastly, this course will provide an understanding of the pharmaceutical system by providing a framework to explore how drugs are discovered, produced, tested, and regulated. Cross-listed with BIO 375.
CANCER BIOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 380)
This course will explore the cellular and molecular aspects of cancer. Topics will include the pathology and epidemiology of cancer, the origin and spread of cancer, hereditary and familial cancers, cancer associated genes and strategies of cancer therapy.
Occasional courses offered at the graduate level. See schedule for current offerings. Two or four quarter hours.
CELLULAR NEUROBIOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 339)
A study of the cellular and molecular mechanisms of the nervous system and the role they play in neural signaling and neural development.
SYSTEMS NEUROBIOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 340)
An examination of the ways in which neural systems underpin behavior with an emphasis on vertebrates. In this course, behavior is understood in its broadest sense, from the functioning of organs and organ systems to the activities of whole organisms. Lecture-Laboratory. Lab Fee.
TOPICS IN NEUROBIOLOGY
A seminar course examining current topics in neurobiology. Original readings will include both current review and classic articles in the fields of neurobiology, neuroethology and the related neurosciences. BIO 439 or BIO 440 is recommended.
ADVANCED COMPARATIVE PHYSIOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 352)
Comparative and environmental approach to the function and mechanisms of vertebrate organ systems. Selected topics in comparative physiology will be addressed using a lecture/discussion/seminar format.
PRINCIPLES OF TOXICOLOGY
A study of the adverse effects of chemicals on living organisms, including the chemical natures, kinetics, dose-response relationships, metabolism, and mechanisms of action of various toxins and toxicants.
Molecular, cellular, physiological, and behavioral aspects of mammalian reproduction. Mechanisms and strategies used by mammals in reproductive processes including sexual differentiation, gamete production, puberty, reproductive hormone cyclicity, neuroendocrine control mechanisms, pregnancy, parturition, and reproductive behavior. Cross-listed with BIO 385.
INTRODUCTION TO ENDOCRINOLOGY (CROSS-LISTED AS BIO 386)
A study of hormones as chemical regulators of development, growth, metabolism, homeostasis, reproduction, response to stress, and behavior; as well as hormone synthesis, chemistry, mechanisms of action, and endocrine gland structure.