Jul 14, 2024  
2023-2024 Catalog 
2023-2024 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Biology, Thesis, MS

Location(s): WWU - Bellingham

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Department of Biology, College of Science and Engineering

Graduate Faculty

Acevedo-Gutiérrez, Alejandro, PhD, marine vertebrate ecology.
Arellano, Shawn, PhD, marine larval ecology and deep-sea ecology.
Brodhagen, Marion, PhD, chemical ecology, plant-microbe interactions.
Cooper, W. James, Ph.D., Evolution and development of fish feeding mechanics
Dahlberg, Lina, PhD, molecular and cellular biology.
DeChaine, Eric, PhD, evolution and ecology of alpine and arctic flora.
Donovan, Deborah A., PhD, marine invertebrate physiological ecology.
Galati, Nick, PhD, cell biology and quantitative microscopy.
Hooper, David U., PhD, ecosystem ecology and plant community ecology.
Lee, Suzanne, PhD, cellular and molecular biology.
Miner, Benjamin G., PhD, marine invertebrate ecology and evolution.
Moyer, Craig L., PhD, evolutionary molecular microbiology.
Olson, M. Brady, PhD, marine plankton ecology.
Peterson, Merrill A., PhD, insect ecology, evolutionary biology, and diversity.
Pillay, Laura M., PhD, vascular development and integrity; cell and molecular biology.
Pillitteri, Lynn, PhD, eukaryotic cell and molecular biology.
Pollard, Daniel, PhD, quantitative genetics.
Schulze, Sandra, PhD, chromatin structure and nuclear organization.
Schwarz, Dietmar, PhD, ecological genetics.
Singh-Cundy, Anu, PhD, plant developmental biology.
Snyder, Annelise G., PhD, cellular biology and cancer immunology
Templeton, Christopher N., PhD, bioacoustics, animal behavior, and ecology
Wang, Adrienne M., PhD, molecular biology and neurodegenerative disease.
Zinkgraf, Matthew S., PhD, ecological and plant genetics.

Program Advisor: Dr. Shawn Arellano


To offer a first-class research experience for our students that will provide them with the background and skills to enter a variety of professional careers in biology. We aim to provide a stimulating intellectual environment with rigorous scholarship that facilitates multiple opportunities for graduate students.


A bachelor’s degree and departmental permission. Deficiencies in undergraduate courses or those subsequently revealed to the Biology Graduate Committee or to the student’s program committee must be corrected prior to advancement to candidacy. Applicants are directed to the current requirements of the basic BS degree in biology for a summary of expected preparation for graduate work. All students should have completed upper-division courses in genetics, cell biology, ecology and biometrics (or equivalent statistics course), and supporting introductory course work in organismal biology.

Application Information

Admit Quarters: Fall quarter only; spring quarter by petition.

Deadline: The deadline for priority consideration is February 1 for fall quarter. See Graduate School deadlines for other quarters.

TA Deadline: The deadline for applying for a teaching assistantship is February 1.

Supporting Materials: Application with $100 fee; three recent letters of reference; one set of transcripts from every college/university attended; written description of background and research interests, including an indication of potential faculty advisors. Applicants should contact potential faculty advisors to discuss research and position availability in their labs.

Program Requirements

At least 45 total combined credits from the following areas:

Required Coursework (45 credits)

Thesis and Examination

Degree candidates will submit a thesis based on independent and original research on a problem approved by the student’s thesis committee. A final oral exam will be conducted by the advisory committee. Degree candidates will present a seminar based on the results of the thesis research.

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