The overarching goal of the Department of Integrative Biology is to promote the discovery and broad communication of knowledge about living organisms, including their evolution, and their environments.


The Department of Intregrative Biology promotes discovery and learning at all levels of biological organization (molecular, cellular, organismal, population, community, and ecosystem). Our integrative focus reflects the importance of strong disciplinary and interdisciplinary approaches in research and teaching. We strive for excellence and synergy in our coordinated programs of teaching, research, and service. Recognizing the essential roles of science and biology in the lives of citizens today and tomorrow, we emphasize biological literacy in our teaching and outreach programs. 

Strategic Plan


  1. Maintain major research foci and strive for excellence in the areas of cell and molecular, organismal, ecological, evolutionary, and behavioral biology.
  2. Promote and foster integration across these foci (e.g., by recruiting faculty with interdisciplinary and integrative research programs).
  3. Encourage research that has both field and laboratory components.
  4. Encourage research at the interface of empirical and theoretical biology.
  5. Develop and maintain research programs that comprise the foundations for teaching and service, and maintain those activities at the forefront of emerging disciplines.
  6. Disseminate the results of research through publication and persuasive presentations.


  1. Maintain a rigorous, broad-based major in biological sciences that provides a compelling learning experience.
  2. Emphasize general purpose problem solving and analytical abilities that have broad applicability and so foster an ability to adapt to the changing world.
  3. Emphasize the fundamental building blocks in biology that constitute themes of unification and integration.
  4. Pursue outstanding graduate training that includes skillful interdisciplinary communication. 
  5. Devise and maintain a non-major instructional program that captures the attention of students and enables them to understand a wide range of contemporary biomedical, biological, medical, and environmental issues. 


  1. Communicate contemporary biological science in a compelling way to the public through lectures, workshops, service on boards, outreach to schools, interviews with the media, and other appropriate endeavors.
  2. Inform public policy on the pressing problems of the day (e.g., bio-ethics, environment, evolution) through consultations, service on boards, and related endeavors.
  3. Foster the development of science through service with professional societies, editorial boards, foundations, and funding agencies.
  4. Advise undergraduates on the structure of their degree programs, research, and careers.