Bio4520 Protein Function in Model Cellular Systems
The goal of this 3-credit laboratory course is to train students in the scientific method.  Throughout this course, lab members will study a protein involved in a cellular process.  Students, working in small groups, will use bioinformatics to identify this protein in a number of species, then use this information to hypothesize which residues of the protein are important for its function.  Over the course of the semester, students will test their hypotheses in a model system for studying cellular function – the unicellular eukaryote Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

The weekly lecture will give students the background necessary to understand and perform their experiments, including information on a variety of bioinformatics tools, phylogeny, protein structure, molecular techniques, cell biology, and microscopy.  In addition, students will use primary literature to understand the role their assigned protein plays in their cellular process.  Prerequisites:  BIO2960, BIO2970; Credit:  3 credits; enrollment limited to 12 students.

Enrollment in BIO4520 is by permission of the instructor only.  Please e-mail Prof. Strader ( to inquire about course enrollment.

Meeting Times:  Tues/Thurs                        1 pm – 4 pm in Rebstock 101.


Bio5491 Advanced Genetics
Advanced Genetics provides an overview of basic concepts and techniques in genetics and their use in answering fundamental questions in biology.  The lectures focus primarily on studies carried out in yeast, C. elegans, Drosophila, mouse, and humans to illustrate the power of genetics as an experimental tool.

For more information, click here.


Bio572 Plant and Microbial Biosciences Journal Club
A biweekly discussion of modern and classic research in plant and microbial biology, including topics in molecular genetics, development, biochemistry, physiology, population dynamics and plant-pathogen interactions.  Credit will be contigent on regular attendance and active and informed participation in group discussions and in an online format. 

Goals of Bio572 include 1- development of students’ critical reading skills and preparation for the peer review process, 2- provision of an in-depth discussion of both classic and important new papers in the areas of plant and microbial biology, and 3- increasing student experience in explaining scientific concepts in a casual atmosphere.

For more information, click here.


For a complete listing of biology courses, click here.

For the Department of Biology handbook for majors, click here.