Mission, goals and objectives


The students and faculty of the Biology Department are a community of learners who use inquiry-based methods to investigate the breadth of biology, its connection to other disciplines, and its relevance to individuals and to society.

Goal 1:  As a community of learners, faculty and students will work collaboratively to expand their understanding of biology.

  1. Faculty members will maintain research programs that involve mentoring students.
  2. Faculty members and students will collaboratively explore current scholarship in biology.
  3. Faculty members and students will communicate their scholarship with their peers and the public.

Goal 2:  Students will recognize biology as a diverse discipline unified by fundamental themes.

  1. Students will explain the process of evolution and how it underlies both the diversity and unity of life.
  2. Students will recognize and explain relationships between structure and function in biological systems.
  3. Students will understand that interactions within biological systems can produce complex, novel properties.
  4. Students will explain how biological systems use energy and materials.
  5. Students will explain how living systems store, retrieve, transmit, and respond to information.

Goal 3:  Students will use inquiry-based methods to investigate biological systems.

  1. Students will analyze, evaluate, and apply information from the Biological literature.
  2. Students will develop a diverse collection of investigative skills that they will use to study biological systems.
  3. Students will communicate their conclusions effectively both orally and in writing.

Goal 4:  Students will recognize that a comprehensive understanding of biological systems requires the application of knowledge and skills from multiple disciplines.

  1. Students will receive training in a variety of disciplines that will improve their abilities to effectively engage in biological inquiry.
  2. Students will apply their competence in these disciplines to investigate biological systems.

Goal 5:  Students will recognize the linkages between the discipline of biology and human social systems.

  1. Students will explore the impact of the biological sciences on society and individuals.
  2. Students will explore how social influences impact biological investigation.
  3. Students will explore ethical issues raised by advances in biological understanding.
  4. Students will investigate and assess societal challenges from a biological perspective in order to contribute to solving these problems.