Mission and History

old research

The Division of Biology is home to internationally recognized scientists and educators, who are leading discoveries in the biological sciences through cutting-edge research and instruction. We strive to provide the next generation of scientists with the skills to succeed in diverse careers and tackle the challenges faced by our society. The Division of Biology was formed in 1967 by merging the formerly separate departments of Zoology, Botany, and Bacteriology, with inclusion of a biophysics group from the Department of Physics. This reorganization recognized that life processes are highly similar across diverse forms and established an intellectual environment embracing the natural integration across biological levels, from molecules to ecosystems.

Faculty research areas span the life sciences and include: molecular, cellular, and developmental biology; microbiology and immunology; and ecology and evolutionary biology. Our research programs are well supported through grants from the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the US Department of Agriculture, the Departments of Energy and Defense, and additional federal and state agencies. The Division of Biology is also home to several interdisciplinary research initiatives and service centers that facilitate scientific inquiry.