Do you like Biology? Are you the type of person that likes to work with animals that other people would find down-right loathsome? If either of these questions has the answer of “yes”, then I think that the Washington State University School of Biological Sciences is for you. Located in Pullman, Washington, it is a school located within the buildings of Abelson, Heald, and Eastlick. If you are looking for the main offices, they are located in Abelson Hall, Rm 312. It is an open office between the hours of 8am and 5pm during the year, and can be contacted at 509-335-3553 if any further information is needed about the department itself, or the classes that are offered within the WSU campus.
The specific realms of study with the School of Biological Sciences are also quite vast. You can major in several different fields depending upon your interest, and there is an Undergraduate as well as a Graduate program available to incoming students. For those looking for the specific degrees that are offered, here is a quick list:
Biology — General Option
Biology — Allied Health Option
Biology — Botany Option
Biology — Education Option
Biology — Entomology Option
Zoology — General Option
Zoology — PreVet and Animal Care Option
Zoology — PreHealth Option
It is also possible to have Biology as a minor Biology, by completing a minimum of 20 hours in biological science courses including 12 hours in the upper division courses offered. The requirements for getting a degree vary, depending on which option you are going after, but all require 120 credits to graduate with that degree. To put it in perspective, most classes at WSU are 3 credits (4 with a lab), and it is common practice to take 5 classes each semester totaling around 15 to 16 credits. This completes the degree easily within 4 years, and gives a little bit of margin for error to finish even quicker if you are really on top of your game. For more information on the specific courses that are required for each major, you can find that information at http://www.sci.wsu.edu/sbs/academics.
The School of Biological Sciences also offers MS and Ph.D. degree programs in Botany and Zoology, with a non-thesis MS option in Biology. They provide research specialties in ecology and evolution, physiology, systematics, and molecular biology for plant and animal systems. All of the graduate students are fully-funded; most receive teaching assistantships, and some receive research assistantships and fellowships. A major focus for the faculty in the school is graduate research and it is easy to directly contact individual faculty members or direct your questions to the graduate secretary within the School of Biological Sciences. As with the main office, this person can be reached at 509-335-3553. Everyone within these offices is willing to answer anything that comes to mind, and their mission is to help students further their learning in the science of Biology.
The real bonus with the Department of Biological Sciences, are the fun classes that are always being offered during the school year. At the bottom of this review, I have listed the courses that are offered through WSU, and the list is always growing, so take a look if you have further interest. There have been forensics courses that have also started being offered by one of the Professors which is very interesting itself. For people who are into CSI on television, this course goes into the specifics of the techniques that they cover in the show. That is just one of the vast numbers of courses that are offered through the department, and if you are in love with the topic of biology or zoology, then there is surely going to be something very interesting to you in the list of what is being taught.
The faculty within the department is also a bonus to students coming through the program. Nearly all of them also double as advisors to students, so they are able to steer prospective job-seekers to the right courses, and then give them advise for what they will do after school ends. There are a lot of fields of work to go into with the degrees offered at WSU’s School of Biological Sciences, and it just comes down to a choice for what students want to do with their lives after college. Many of the majors lead to high paying jobs in fields of research and development once the students hit “the real world.” It’s not the easiest field to get into, nor is it the easiest major to be a part of, but if you put in the hard work, there can be plenty of rewards for you in this field of work.
In addition to everything else that is offered in the school, the facilities are a large part of what students enjoy about it. In addition to the labs, the plant growth chambers, the greenhouses, and the farms just off campus, SBS also provides access to the Electron Microscopy Center. The EMC is a research and training facility for the study of biological and non-biological materials. It is an independent facility available to all WSU researchers, including faculty and students in the School of Biological Sciences. The EMC provides electron microscopy and light microscopy equipment for observation and analysis of a diverse array of specimens. Basically you can use these high powered microscopes to view anything from a plant cell to a cell form an animal. It can provide knowledge as to the inner workings of nearly anything, and the staff within the center is always willing to go the extra mile to help out new researchers and students alike.
There are a million great things that the Washington State University School of Biological Sciences has to offer to new incoming students. For more information on the University itself you can click here : Washington State University. If it’s more information that you are seeking about this specific department you can go here: http://www.sci.wsu.edu/sbs. On there you will find information that includes faculty and their contact information, class listings and the degrees they apply to, facilities that are available for use, and many more interesting aspects of the department. If you are looking to work in a field that involves biology and topics surrounding it after your schooling, I think that the WSU School of Biological Sciences is exactly what you are looking for.
List of Courses Offered in SBS
Direction in Biological Sciences
Introduction Biology: Organismal Biology
Introductory Biology: Cell Biology and Genetics
Introduction to Botany
Animal Natural History
Introductory Human Physiology
Gross and Microanatomy
Introductory Plant Physiology
Principles of Animal Development
Principles of Organic Evolution
Biology and Management of Fishes
Principles of Fisheries Management
General Plant Pathology
Methods of Teaching Science
Cell Physiology Laboratory
Professional Seminar in Physical Therapy
Physical Therapy Clinical Experience
Internship in Biology, Botany, and Zoology
Special Problems and Reports
Proposal Defense Seminar
Principles of Organic Evolution
Fish Population Ecology
Modern Methods in Systematics
Development and Plasticity of the Nervous System
General and Cellular Physiology
Topics in Ecology and Evolution
Advanced Topics in Zoology
Advanced Topics in Botany
Seminar in Molecular Plant Sciences
Master’s Research, Thesis, and/or Examination
Master’s Special Problems, Directed Study and/or Examination
Doctoral Research, Dissertation, and/or Examination