Biology and Marine Biology

(Axel Boer) #1

Graduate Seminars in Marine Biology (2 credit hr each; minimum of three required (6)
BIO 601 Oceanography and Environmental Science
BIO 602 Ecology
BIO 603 Physiology and Biochemistry
BIO 604 Cellular and Molecular Biology
BIO 605 Evolution and Biodiversity
BIO 690 Seminar (1)
BIO 694 Practicum in College Biology Teaching (2)
BIO 699 Dissertation (12)
Required of all students: Prerequisite: Biological Oceanography (564) or equivalent

In addition to the above requirements, each student in consultation with his/her dissertation committee,
shall select a minimum of 27 hours of elective credit that may include graduate courses and research hours
(BIO 698).

Course descriptions of core and elective courses can be found in Appendix 1, and may also be viewed in
the on-line catalog at:

The graduate programs in the Department of Biology and Marine Biology have an extensive and
well documented history of promoting the missions of the department, the College of Arts and Sciences,
and the University, including but not limited to the seven strategic goals of UNCW. The educational aims
of the graduate programs form the foundation upon which all other objectives rest. At the heart of the
educational mission is the relationship between the faculty mentor and the graduate student. The mentor
provides a research context and support in the form of lab supplies, equipment, and assistantships, as well
as training in technical methods, safe laboratory practices, analytical approaches, and critical evaluation of
data and the published literature. This intensive learning environment is reinforced by the faculty thesis
committee, which offers the student a breadth of knowledge and expertise to draw upon during their thesis
research while also promoting academic rigor.
This process yields a number of tangible products. Perhaps the most important contribution our
graduate program makes to the University, the state of North Carolina, and society at large, is creating a
pool of highly trained alumni who are well prepared to be responsible citizens, and who are positioned to
succeed in an increasingly technical work environment. In addition, many of our top students are attracted
to our graduate programs from other states, and they often remain in North Carolina after graduation. The
multidisciplinary nature of modern biological research means that these graduate students undergo study
that encompasses many fields, including biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics and computer science.
The high quality of the graduate programs, in turn, helps the department attract top level faculty who
reinforce the educational and research missions of UNCW. In addition, the faculty serves as a resource to
the community at large by providing professional expertise in a variety of fields, serving on state and
federal panels, and conducting research of regional or national interest.
One of the unique properties of our departmental graduate programs is that undergraduates,
master’s students, Ph.D. students, post-doctoral trainees and faculty members work together in many labs
as an integrated research team. That is, the graduate students not only have the opportunity to work with
more experienced scientists, but they also learn leadership and team building skills by mentoring
undergraduate students. The graduate students also typically gain extensive experience in a formal
teaching setting, usually as a laboratory TA, which further enhances leadership and organizational skills.

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