Program Overview

Purpose of the Program

The Biology Department at Hamilton has as its mission the enabling of all students, whatever their background, interests, and aspirations, to advance their understanding of the biological sciences through their participation in challenging classes and the research programs of individual faculty. We help students gain the knowledge and skills required for pursuing a lifetime of learning whether as a professional within the biological sciences or as a concerned citizen in a rapidly changing society.


Areas of Focus

The Department supports four concentrations at Hamilton through the courses and collaborative research offered by its faculty: Biology, Biochemistry/Molecular Biology, Neuroscience, and Environmental Studies. Within each, we provide a thorough background for those students planning to continue in graduate school, the health professions, or other careers in biology. Entry into each major includes either a two-course Principles of Biology sequence (Bio 101: Genetics and Evolution, Bio 102: Cells to Ecosystems) or, for students advanced in biology, a single thematic course (Bio 115 Biology: Fundamentals and Frontiers).


Why Biology?

The Biology Concentration allows students to pursue interests in a variety of subdisciplines in biology, which can include genetics, plant physiology, anatomy, invertebrate biology, marine biology, development, cell biology, biochemistry, neurobiology, paleontology, vertebrate physiology, endocrinology, ecology, bioinformatics, and evolution. The Neuroscience and Biochemistry/Molecular Biology concentrations are jointly run programs with Psychology and Chemistry departments, respectively. The Environmental Studies program is jointly run with a number of departments, including Geosciences, English, Philosophy, Government, Religious Studies, and Economics.

During the senior year in all concentrations, all students become actively engaged in research with one or more faculty through the senior thesis program.