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  • UC Riverside
  • College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences

The Department

The Department of Biology serves three main functions:
Undergraduate instruction
Graduate education
Research in basic biology
The Department is part of the College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, a multidepartmental unit dedicated to instruction and basic research in the Physical and Life Sciences, and also to 'mission-oriented' applied research in the Agricultural Sciences.

The Biology major is a large undergraduate major on the UC Riverside campus, containing approximately 1000 students. Biology also provides much of the undergraduate instruction for majors in other life science departments (such as Biomedical Sciences, Plant Sciences, Biochemistry, Entomology, and the new program in Conservation Biology) and other science majors (such as Environmental Engineering and Soil Sciences). To satisfy University breadth requiremnts, the Department offers a number of popular courses for non-science majors.

The Department's graduate program offers the M.S. degree and the Ph.D. degree. Students seeking the Ph.D. degree may be admitted directly to the Ph.D. program if they have had adequate previous training, or they may be initially admitted to the M.S. program and proceed to the Ph.D. program after satisfactory completion of the M.S. degree.

The Department annually offers a number of graduate seminars in a wide variety of topics. These offerings are designed to permit maximum student/faculty interaction and to encourage collaborative study.

To supplement its course offerings, the Department maintains an active Colloquium. In addition, there are a number of less formal seminars and journal clubs that focus on particular research areas, such as Cell and Molecular Biology, Physiology, and Evolutionary Biology. These seminars are generally given by graduate students and faculty from the department or by other life science researchers at UCR. Additional speakers are often invited from other Universities and research institutions in Southern California.