Biology is a broad, rapidly changing scientific discipline. The eleven faculty members and five teaching associates are all broadly-trained biologists. Collectively, we provide expertise in all levels of biology, from biomolecules to communities. We are dedicated to providing a modern, integrated and broad education for our majors.
Here is our mission statement:
The Biology Department ensures that students gain a wide diversity of
biological knowledge and become proficient in the methods of
scientific inquiry. Our course offerings and faculty research
pursuits provide a broad and comprehensive approach to the biological
sciences. Our curriculum emphasizes the study of plants, animals, and
microorganisms at the molecular to the ecosystem level. Inquiry-based
learning is an integral part of our educational mission. Through
laboratory and field experiences, and the opportunity to carry out
original research, students gain proficiency in gathering,
interpreting, and communicating scientific knowledge. The biology
major prepares students to thrive and make important contributions in
a world where scientific understanding is increasingly important.
We believe that first-hand experience in research is the best way for students to become first-rate biologists. Virtually all of the laboratory components of our courses involve independent projects where students generate hypotheses and conduct self-designed experiments to test those hypotheses. In addition, students may become research assistants with Biology faculty during the academic year or during the summer.
Our facilities are excellent. Special facilities include a four-capillary DNA sequencer, a microscopy suite, a flow cytometer, several laboratory microcomputer clusters, a well-equipped GIS laboratory, a cell culture facility, two greenhouses, herbarium, numerous environmental chambers, and animal and aquarium rooms. All of these facilities are available to Colby Biology majors. The Perkins Arboretum and the Colby-Marston Bog provide excellent habitats for field studies.
Department graduates enroll in all fields of biology and in medical schools, dental schools, and veterinary colleges. Others are employed as research assistants, as teachers, and by private firms and government agencies.