5: Graduate School of Arts and Sciences

General Information | Programs and Degrees Offered | Admission Information
Financial Assistance | Graduate Academic Regulations
Requirements for Specific Graduate Degrees | Departments and Programs | Faculty

Non-Departmental | Anthropology | Art | Asian and Middle Eastern | Asian Studies | Astronomy
Biochemistry | Biology | Biological and Physical Sciences | Biophysics | Cell and Molecular Biology
Cell Biology | Chemistry | Classics | Commerce | Drama | Economics | English | Environmental Sciences
French | German | Government and Foreign Affairs | Health Evaluation Sciences | History | Linguistics
Mathematics | Microbiology | Molecular Physiology and Biological Physics | Music | Neuroscience
Pharmacology | Philosophy | Physics | Psychology | Religious Studies | Russian and East European Studies
Slavic | Sociology | Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese | Statistics | Surgery

Department of Biology
Course Descriptions | Departmental Degree Requirements

Course Descriptions

Note   BIOL 201, 202, 203, 204 or equivalent are prerequisite for all advanced courses.

BIOL 501 - (4) (Y)
Biochemistry

Prerequisite: CHEM 241, 242 or permission of instructor
Study of the structure and function of the major chemical constituents of cells—proteins, nucleic acids, lipids and carbohydrates—and their relationship to cellular metabolism and self-replication. Lectures and discussion.

BIOL 504 - (4) (IR)
Advanced Cell Biology

Prerequisites: BIOL 301 or BIOL 501 and permission of instructor
Study of the structure, development, and function of plant and animal cells as demonstrated by modern studies in molecular biology, cell fine structure, and genetics. Lectures and discussion.

BIOL 505 - (3) (IR)
Temporal Organization of Living Systems

Prerequisites: BIOL 419 or graduate standing
Study of biological cycles at several levels of organization. Explores both the adaptive significance of biological cycles and the mechanisms that generate them, emphasizing unanswered questions and unresolved issues.

BIOL 508 - (4) (Y)
Developmental Mechanisms

Prerequisites: BIOL 301 and 311, or equivalent and BIOL 405 or permission of instructor
An analysis of the cellular and molecular basis of developmental phenomena, reviewing both classical foundations and recent discoveries. Lectures focus on the major developmental systems used for analysis of embryogenesis (for example, mouse, frog and fly) and concentrate on several themes that pervade modern research in this area (e.g., signal transduction mechanisms). Readings are mainly from the primary research literature, but are supplemented by textbook assignments as well. Lectures and discussion.

BIOL 509 - (2) (SI)
Current Topics in Plant Molecular Biology

Prerequisites: BIOL 301 or permission of instructor
A discussion of current literature and selected topics on the biochemical and molecular genetic basis for plant cellular growth and differentiation. Weekly readings and student presentations.

BIOL 512 - (3) (Y)
Comparative Biochemistry

Prerequisites: Organic chemistry, BIOL 301, and permission of instructor
Examination of the biochemical adaptations which have arisen in organisms in response to physiological demands. Topics drawn from recent advances made in elucidating molecular mechanisms of metabolic regulation.

BIOL 517 - (3) (SI)
Electronics for Biologists

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
Consideration of electronics and electronic design for the biologist. Covers both analog and digital circuits, emphasizing the design of equipment useful for the biological laboratory. One class hour, five laboratory hours.

BIOL 536 - (3) (Y)
Techniques in Light and Electron Microscopy

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
Topics include elementary theory of light and electron optics, theory and practice of specimen preparation, interpretation of micrographs, scientific photography, and use of specialized techniques such as tracer methods, immunocytochemistry, morphometric analysis, and image enhancement techniques. Laboratory sessions demonstrate techniques and instruments available in the department.

BIOL 540 - (3) (IR)
Sensory Neurobiology

Prerequisite: BIOL 417 /817, or the equivalent
In-depth examination of the organization and physiology of the diverse sensory systems found in vertebrate and non-vertebrate animals. Focuses on the functional rationale for receptor organization and the manner in which the central nervous system processes incoming sensory information. Emphasizes visual, auditory, somatosensory, and electrosensory information processing, primarily in vertebrates.

BIOL 701 - (3) (Y)
Evolutionary Biology

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
Exploration of an evolutionary approach to population ecology and ecological genetics. Topics include the principles of natural selection and the evolution of the phenotype, population regulation and life history evolution, mating systems, speciation, and phylogeny reconstruction.

BIOL 711, 712 - (1-4) (Y)
Independent Study in Biology

A member of the biology faculty must supervise and approve all components of this course. The student must take and pass one or more courses offered by the Department of Biology at the 300 level or above. In addition, for each course taken, the student writes at least a 10-page paper on a topic relevant to the course. Prior approval of the topic must be obtained from the faculty advisor. The number of credits to be earned is designated by the faculty advisor prior to enrollment.

BIOL 714 - (4) (IR)
Plant Cell Physiology

Prerequisites: BIOL 301 or permission of instructor
An in-depth analysis of cell structure and metabolic activity during plant cell growth and differentiation. Emphasizes understanding the biochemical and molecular genetic factors regulating important plant and cellular physiological activities.

BIOL 723 - (3) (Y)
Animal Physiology

A diversity of examples are used to identify general principles in physiological adaptation of animals to environmental challenges.

BIOL 747 - (3) (IR)
Light in Biological Systems

Advanced laboratory course providing upper-level undergraduate and beginning graduate students with an intensive examination of the role light plays in controlling diverse biological activities. Through a series of laboratory exercises students receive instruction on the theories and principles underlying the detection and measurement of light quality and quantity, and the analytical instruments and procedures used to probe structure-function relationships in macromolecules, the effects of light on cellular physiology, and light as a stimulus in controlling behavior. Topics includes absorption and difference spectroscopy, structure and biology of mammalian photoreceptors, action spectra of photoreceptors, UV sensitivity and repair mechanisms, and chromatic adaptation. In addition to preset laboratory exercises, students design and implement their own experiments examining some aspect of photobiology. Additional reading and papers are required for the graduate-level course.

BIOL 801 - (2) (Y)
Colloquium in Developmental Biology

Prerequisite: Permission of staff
Student reports covering various aspects of development are presented for discussion. The direction taken by the course changes each year so that this course may be taken repeatedly for credit. Conference one day a week.

BIOL 802 - (2) (Y)
Colloquium in Physiology

Prerequisite: Permission of staff
Student reports covering various aspects of physiology are presented for discussion. The direction taken by the course changes each year so that this course may be taken repeatedly for credit. Conference one day a week.

BIOL 803 - (2) (Y)
Colloquium in Genetics

Prerequisite: Permission of staff
Student reports covering various aspects of genetics are presented for discussion. The direction taken by the course changes each year so that this course may be taken repeatedly for credit. Conference one day a week.

BIOL 804 - (2) (Y)
Colloquium in Biology

Prerequisite: Permission of staff
In this interdisciplinary course student reports covering various topics that cross development, genetics, and physiology are presented for discussion. Direction taken by this course changes each year so this course may be taken repeatedly for credit. Conference one day a week.

BIOL 805 - (4) (Y)
General and Molecular Genetics

Study of the organization, transmission, function, and regulation of prokaryotic and eukaryotic genes. (This course is cross-listed as MICR 805 and is cooperatively taught with microbiology staff members.)

BIOL 806 - (2) (IR)
Colloquium in Neurobiology

Prerequisite: BIOL 817 or permission of instructor
Readings and student seminar preparations in neurobiology, usually organized around one coherent topic, which changes from year to year. Examine topics of timely experimental and theoretical importance in the areas of membrane physiology, synaptology, simpler neuronal networks, cellular basis of behavior, sensory physiology, and developmental neurobiology. Two hours of seminar presentations.

BIOL 807 - (2) (IR)
Colloquium in Population Biology

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
The colloquium is arranged around a current topic in population biology. The direction taken by this course changes each year so that this course may be taken repeatedly for credit. Conference one day a week.

BIOL 811 - (5) (Y)
Gene Structure, Expression, and Regulation

A study of the molecular biology of bacterial and eukaryotic cells, emphasizing the application of recombinant DNA for elucidation of gene structure, the mechanism of gene expression, and its regulation. (Course is cross-listed as MICR 811 and is cooperatively taught with microbiology staff members.)

BIOL 814 - (2) (SI)
Developmental Genetics

An analysis of the role of genes in development and an examination of the idea of differential gene action during development. Discussion sessions.

BIOL 817 - (4) (Y)
Neurophysiology

Analysis of nerve and muscle function. Topics include Nernst and Goldman theories of biological membrane potentials; Hodgkin-Huxley theory of the nerve impulse; passive electrical properties of nerve and muscle membranes; analysis of function in restricted neural networks; and mechanisms in neuronal development. Lectures and discussions.

BIOL 820 - (3) (Y)
Structure and Regulation of Eukaryotic Genes

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
An in-depth discussion of the structure, regulation, and evolution of eukaryotic genes including a review of current literature and ideas in this field.

BIOL 825, 826 - (1) (Y)
Analysis of Current Biological Literature

Oral presentation and analysis of research articles. Required of all first-year graduate students in biology. Includes presentations.

BIOL 841 - (4) (Y)
Molecular Biology and Genetics

Prerequisite: BIOL 311
The structure and regulation of prokaryotic, eukaryotic and viral genes are examined at the molecular level. Experimental approaches in molecular biology that address mechanisms of replication, transcription, RNA processing and translation are emphasized. Discussion of current advances in genetic research. Three lecture hours and one hour discussion section.

BIOL 849 - (2) (IR)
Advanced Drosophila Genetics

Prerequisite: BIOL 311 or equivalent
Examines the repertoire of sophisticated genetic techniques available in Drosophila. Topics include segregation and use of translocation heterozygotes in the generation of segmental anueploids; segregation and use of compound chromosomes including their use in the half-tetrad analysis of gene conversion events; a survey of the large variety of methods for making mosaics; methods for P-element induced mutagenesis including site directed mutagenesis; P-element mediated transformation; the use of enhancer traps.

BIOL 880 - (2) (SI)
Selected Topics in Genetics

Reports from the recent literature on the nature of the gene and gene action. Conference one day a week.

BIOL 881 - (2) (SI)
Selected Topics in Evolution

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
A study of current problems in the evolution of living organisms with reviews of the recent literature. Conference one day a week.

BIOL 882 - (2) (SI)
Selected Topics in Developmental Biology

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
A discussion of current problems.

BIOL 884 - (2) (SI)
Selected Topics in Physiology

A discussion of current problems.

BIOL 885 - (2) (SI)
Selected Topics in Molecular Genetics

A seminar on current problems in molecular genetics with reports from the recent literature. Conference one day a week.

BIOL 886 - (2) (SI)
Selected Topics in Cell Biology

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
A discussion of current problems.

BIOL 887 - (2) (SI)
Selected Topics in Developmental Genetics

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
A discussion of current problems.

BIOL 888 - (2) (SI)
Selected Topics in Biochemistry

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
A discussion of current problems.

BIOL 890 - (3) (SI)
Selected Topics in Developmental Botany

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
A discussion of current problems.

BIOL 897 - (3-12) (S)
Non-Topical Research, Preparation for Research

For master’s research, taken before a thesis director has been selected.

BIOL 898 - (3-12) (S)
Non-Topical Research

For master’s thesis, taken under the supervision of a thesis director.

BIOL 901, 902 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Genetic Development

BIOL 903, 904 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Yeast Genetics

BIOL 907, 908 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Molecular Genetics

BIOL 909, 910 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Developmental Biology

BIOL 911, 912 - (1-12) (S)
Research on Protein Structure

BIOL 915, 916 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Biochemistry

BIOL 923, 924 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Neuroethology of Electric Fish

BIOL 925, 926 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Population Biology

BIOL 927, 928 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Plant Physiology

BIOL 929, 930 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Plant Biology

BIOL 933, 934 - (1-12) (S)
Research in the Circadian Organization of Vertebrates

BIOL 935, 936 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Cell Structure and Function

BIOL 937, 938 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Gene Expression During Development

BIOL 939, 940 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Behavior Neuroendocrinology

BIOL 945, 946 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Evolutionary Biology

BIOL 947, 948 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Neurophysiology and Developmental Neurobiology

BIOL 951, 952 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Cell Structure and Function

BIOL 963, 964 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Drosophila Neurobiology

BIOL 965, 966 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Ecological Genetics

BIOL 967, 968 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Animal Cell Growth

BIOL 977, 978 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Molecular Aspects of Development

BIOL 979, 980 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Development and Function of Neuronal Networks

BIOL 981, 982 - (1-12) (S)
Research in Developmental Genetics and Morphogenesis

BIOL 983, 984 - (1-12) (S)
Research in the Neurophysiological Basis of Circadian Rhythms

BIOL 991, 992 - (4) (Y)
Rotation Research

Required of all first-year graduate students in biology.

BIOL 996 - (1-12) (S)
Research

BIOL 997 - (1-12) (S)
Non-Topical Research, Preparation for Doctoral Research

For doctoral research, taken before a dissertation director has been selected.

BIOL 999 - (1-12) (S)
Non-Topical Research

For doctoral dissertation, taken under the supervision of a dissertation director.


Continue to: Departmental Degree Requirements
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