Program mission statement
Biology explores unity, diversity, complexity, and evolution in the
living world. The mission of the Saint Martin's University Biology
Department is to instill the spirit of scientific inquiry and critical
thinking skills from the perspective of a biologist. Thus, the
department's course of study is designed to develop the students’
ability to formulate questions in the biological sciences and conduct
research using appropriate methodologies and techniques. To that end,
the curriculum does the following:
- Lays a foundation of basic facts and theories in biology.
- Develops the ability to critically read peer-reviewed
experimental journal articles.
- Provides extensive opportunities for hands-on laboratory
experiences culminating in the design and execution of an original
- Develops writing skills (begun in the general education
curriculum) to communicate scientific concepts, methodologies,
findings, analysis, and conclusions to both technical and
In support of the liberal arts tradition of Saint Martin's, the
department offers courses for non-major students to introduce them to
ideas from the biological sciences as well as promote an appreciation
for the role of scientific inquiry in modern society.
Program goals, objectives and outcomes
The student will have enhanced understanding of the fundamental
principles of biology and will understand:
- Eukaryotic and prokaryotic cell structure and function.
- The role of evolution in generating the diversity of species
present on modern earth.
- The interrelationships of organisms with their environments.
- The historical development of basic biological principles.
Students will be able to conduct independent studies in biology and will
be able to:
- Carry out independent research
- Understand and evaluate the research of other scientists
- Work collaboratively with other scientists
Biology majors will have the ability to apply the scientific method as a
problem-solving tool and will understand:
- How to formulate a scientific hypothesis.
- How to use basic laboratory equipment.
- How to collect and analyze experimental data.
- How to draw conclusions from experimental data.
Biology majors will have the ability to clearly express themselves in
written and oral communication and will be able to:
- Write scientific papers using modern nomenclature and
- Write appropriate standard lab reports.
- Present their scientific work to others using oral
- Use modern technology in the communication of their work to
Biology majors will have an awareness and understanding of the ethical
issues involved in scientific endeavors and will understand:
- How ethical considerations have influenced past scientific
- Modern ethical issues and apply their knowledge of these issues
to their own scientific work.