Department of Biology

Biotechnology


About the Program

What majors and minors are offered?Why should I major in biology?
Why should I choose Missouri Western’s biology program?
What are the admission requirements for the program?
As a high school student, how should I prepare for a biology degree?

What type of student succeeds in the field of biology?
What is the typical class size?
How do students work together with faculty?
What student organizations are available?
What type of awards have your faculty and students received?
What types of grants have your department received?

What majors and minors are offered?
The Bachelor of Science degrees in Biotechnology prepares graduates for entry-level work in the life sciences industry as bench scientists or entry into graduate school.

Why should I major in biology?
Expectations are high for new discoveries and new industries in the life science field.  Just as the 20th century was the “Century of Chemistry and Physics,” the 21st is predicted to be “The Century of Biology.” Creative people with a strong foundation in the life sciences will be needed in agriculture, pharmaceuticals, medicine, environmental science and conservation.

Students are encouraged to critically evaluate information from a diversity of fields and in this way students become “critical thinkers,” capable of succeeding in a variety of jobs.

Why should I choose Missouri Western’s biology program?

  • The professors are dedicated to the students, and are outstanding teachers and researchers. They work very closely with students on research projects, and a high percentage of students present their findings at professional meetings.
  • The department provides a variety of internships, service, research and travel abroad opportunities.
  • Professors are dedicated to advising students through the formal advisement program and through informal meetings. Expectations regarding student performance are high.
  • Grants to support student/faculty research are available within the department and from the university.
  • Faculty members have professional ties with industry and agencies that provide numerous career opportunities for students.

What are the admission requirements for the program?
The entrance requirements are the same as those required by the institution. 

As a high school student, how should I prepare for a biology degree?
High school students who have completed the college-preparatory curriculum including at least three years of high school science, and mathematics through advanced algebra, are best prepared for the field of biology.

What type of student succeeds in the field of biology?
Besides completing the college prep high school curriculum, students that are highly motivated in biology and have a problem-solving orientation are most likely to succeed. 

What is the typical class size?
Although first-semester freshman biology class lectures are large (60 to 100 students), lab sections typically have less than 24 students. Upper division classes often have 10 to 20 students. 

How do students work together with faculty?
Students and faculty work closely on a one-on-one basis during faculty-sponsored internships and student research projects. Faculty members also make every effort to meet with students as they work on projects, study for exams, and plan their schedules during advisement sessions.

What student organizations are available?
Missouri Western has a student chapter of the Wildlife Society. The active group participates in several activities related to their field, including prairie restoration work, deer spotlight surveys at Squaw Creek National Wildlife Refuge, and quail surveys. They earned the Best Chapter Award in the central states in 2004.

The department also hosts the Beta Beta Beta Biological Honor Society, which participates in a number of activities throughout the year. Last year, at a regional Beta Beta Beta meeting, two students were awarded stipend grants to attend and present their research at the national meeting.

Students may also join the Biology Department’s Pre-Professional Club. Along with a variety of activities, students in the Pre-Professional Club may learn current information about professional schools, admission requirements, and pre-professional exams.

What type of awards have your faculty and students received?
Students and faculty in the biology department have recently received the following awards:

  • Four biology students from Missouri Western won awards for their research presentations at the district meeting of the Beta Beta Beta National Biological Honor Society.
  • One faculty member was awarded the Jesse Lee Meyers Excellence in Teaching Award for 2004.
  • Our Student Chapter of the Wildlife Society won the Best Chapter Award in the central states for 2004.

What types of grants has your department received recently?
Programs in the Biology Department have received the following grants in the past three years:

  • Grants from the Missouri Department of Conservation totaling $7,500.
  • Grants from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service totaling $10,000.
  • Grants from the National Institutes of Health totaling $136,000.
  • Grants from the National Science Foundation totaling $61,000.
  • Grants from the Environmental Systems Research Institute totaling $160,000.

One biology professor helped to write, and two biology faculty members were instructors, on an $117,000 Coordinating Board of Higher Education No Child Left Behind Grant involving area secondary science teachers.