UG Newsletter

Undergraduate Newsletter
Department of Biology
May-June 2022 Issue

Now that most exams are over it is time to relax a little and start thinking about course registration for 2022-23. Over the next month we will work on updating our course offering web page, but unfortunately, we cannot yet give you a heads up on the scheduling of any of our 2022-23 BIOL offerings until the official timetable is released in July. We are available year-round except for vacation leave. Normally we close for a week or two August (Arts and Science Registration Hiatus period), we will include the dates in the next newsletter. Below is what we know now, we will do our best to keep you up to date.  Please have fun and stay safe!


The Faculty of Arts & Science has developed a COVID-19 Related Absence Reference Guide for students who have COVID-19 symptoms or are identified as a close contact. This reference guide outlines all aspects involved with applying for Academic Consideration. Please refer to this document when needed. For more information, please visit:


BIOL 404 - Summer 2022
BIOL 404 will be offered this coming summer. It will be offered twice, once in May and again in August. If you are interested, let us know so that we can register you manually this year. 

Please note that because these are two week courses the add/drop dates are different from full term summer offerings.
BIOL 404: August 15 to August 26, the last date to add or drop the course is August 15 at mid-night.

Course details can be found at:

BIOL 404/3.0 ⇒ Techniques in Molecular Biology
Intensive laboratory work (8h/day) to be carried out over two and a half weeks in May. Practical work includes DNA isolations, DNA cloning, PCR, production of proteins, biochemical and immunological analysis of proteins. NOTE Priority to students registered in BIOL Major and Specialization degree Plans. See course website for details.
LEARNING HOURS: 112.5 (100Lb;12.5P)
PREREQUISITE: (BCHM 218/3.0 or BIOL 330/3.0) and a minimum GPA of 2.0 in the Biological Foundations List.

BIOL418 – Summer 2022

BIOL 418 will be offered this coming summer. The course starts Sunday, May 8, 2022, and finishes Saturday, May 21, 2022. If you are interested, let us know so that we can register you manually this year. 

Please note that because these are two-week courses the add/drop dates are different from full-term summer offerings.

BIOL 418: the last date to add or drop the course is May 8 at mid-night.

BIOL 418/3.0 ⇒ Fisheries Techniques

This course will introduce students to many “hands-on” techniques currently used in fisheries. This will include fish identification, different capture techniques for fisheries assessment, bioacoustics, environmental monitoring, techniques for ageing fish, diet analysis, fish tracking (biotelemetry approaches), and data management.

LEARNING HOURS:120 (30Lb;10T;40G;40P)

PREREQUISITE: BIOL 316/3.0. and a minimum GPA of 2.0 in the Biological Foundations List.


PLAN SELECTION for 1st Year Arts and Science Students ⇒ The plan selection period will open on SOLUS from May 16 to May 27, 2022

CHANGES TO YOUR PROGRAM, PLAN, OR CERTIFICATE ⇒ Sometimes life throws a curve ball and you have to adjust. The most important thing is to stay on track during your transition - this will help make sure you have a smooth transition. The Change of Plan period is May 16-27 & June 13-July 1.


Queen’s China Alumni Scholarship

Established in January 2017 by Queen’s alumni and friends of China and revised in March 2022. Awarded in the Fall on the basis of academic excellence to Chinese international students entering second, third or fourth year of a Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree in the Faculty of Arts and Science with an academic plan in Biology or Environmental Science. Preference will be given to students who have completed, or will be doing, a field course or field research at Queen's University Biological Station. Selection will be made by the Faculty of Arts and Science Awards Committee based upon nomination from the Department of Biology. Value: $2,700

  1. Chinese international students are defined as international students whose home address is China, Hong Kong, or Taiwan.


1st Year students interested in a degree in BIOLOGY
Details and deadlines for selecting a degree plan for next year can be found at:

Upcoming registration details and deadlines for all students
Course registration details and deadlines can be found at:
Unfortunately at this time timetabling information is not available.

The 2022-23 Arts and Science Calendar when ready will be available on the web at:

Arts and Science important academic dates, deadlines, and special events


Are you going into 4th year 2022-2023 – here are a few reminders! 

BIOL 500 Seminar Courses 
The 5XX seminar course offerings for next year are available! The application is ready for you to fill out and for submission by May 13th, 2022.

BIOL 537
You can still explore BIOL537 opportunities until the last day to add in September 2022.



Did you know?

In order to encourage students to explore subject matter outside their program of study and to promote interdisciplinary study, all upper-year Arts and Science students will be permitted to designate up to 6.0 units of degree-credit courses for pass/fail grading, thereby minimizing any risk to the students’ GPA.  Such courses designated for pass/fail grading will be referred to as Personal Interest Credits (PICs).

Wondering about how many courses you can take from other Faculties and Schools towards your degree plan/program?
A maximum of 6.0 units from courses offered by other Faculties and Schools may be counted towards the Program and/or Plan requirements of any degree in the Faculty of Arts and Science, in addition to any such courses allowed as either Core or Option course requirements.

The courses listed in the document below are approved for students in the Faculty of Arts and Science.

What is the “AAR”?

The AAR is the Academic Advisement Report. It is a handy tool that reviews your degree requirements, track plan progression, and it tells you what you have satisfied and what you still need to complete for your core degree plan requirements. Click here to Run an AAR: Students are expected to run their AAR both prior to and after registration. The AAR will help to flag potential concerns with respect to your registration and degree requirements.

Course Mapping Worksheet → This worksheet will help you set up a detailed road map for your courses so you can stay on track to meet your degree requirements.


Biology Degree Plans 

Review your degree plan requirements and make sure you are selecting courses you need.  Degree plan requirements can be found at:

Biological Foundations List - IMPORTANT!
It is very important to keep this GPA requirement in mind throughout your program, starting with first year.  To be admitted to 400 and 500 level Biology courses, you will need a minimum GPA of 2.0 in any previously taken courses from Biological Foundations list.

The Biological Foundations List is BIOL 102, 103, 200, 212, (
201, 202), 205, 206, 300, 330, 334, 339, & 341 (302, 303).  

To be admitted to BIOL 400 and 500 level Biology courses you will need a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 in any previously taken courses from this list.


Need help with your studies? 
Please visit Student Academic Success Services (SASS) at SASS offers academic support to students who wish to develop their skills in critical thinking, reading, learning, studying, writing, and self-management. 

Looking for a job?
Wondering about career options or maybe considering Graduate School…then you need to visit:


Wondering how to contact your course program associate regarding work associated with the lab component of core courses?

BIOL 102:

BIOL 103:

BIOL 200:

BIOL 205:

BIOL 206:

BIOL 212:

BIOL 300: 

Helpful Links
Information on Applying for a Course Prerequisite Waiver
Arts and Science Academic Deadlines
Arts and Science Calendar
Frequently Asked Questions

QUBS Quick Links

Looking for a job?  Quick Link
Looking for study and travel opportunities?  Quick Link

BIOLOGY Undergraduate Office 
Monday to Friday 9:30am – 12:00pm & 1:00pm – 3:00pm
Rm. 3109d, BIOSC Complex

Past Newsletter Issues

June/July 2021

August 2021

September 2021

October 2021

November 2021

December 2021

January 2022

February 2022

March 2022

April 2022

I've spent more time than many will believe [making microscopic observations], but I've done them with joy, and I've taken no notice those who have said why take so much trouble and what good is it?

Antonie van Leeuwenhoek

It's a parts list... If I gave you the parts list for the Boeing 777 and it had 100,000 parts, I don't think you could screw it together and you certainly wouldn't understand why it flew

Eric Lander

What is true for E. coli is also true for the elephant

Jacques Monod

The world becomes full of organisms that have what it takes to become ancestors. That, in a sentence, is Darwinism

Richard Dawkins

Shall we conjecture that one and the same kind of living filaments is and has been the cause of all organic life?

Erasmus Darwin

Nature proceeds little by little from things lifeless to animal life in such a way that it's impossible to determine the line of demarcation


Cells let us walk, talk, think, make love, and realize the bath water is cold

Lorraine Lee Cudmore

In the distant future I see open fields for far more important researches. Psychology will be based on a new foundation, that of the necessary acquirement of each mental power and capacity by gradation. Light will be thrown on the origin of man and his history

Charles Darwin

It is my belief that the basic knowledge that we're providing to the world will have a profound impact on the human condition and the treatments for disease and our view of our place on the biological continuum

J. Craig Venter

Imagine a house coming together spontaneously from all the information contained in the bricks: that is how animal bodies are made

Neil Shubin

A grain in the balance will determine which individual shall live and which shall die - which variety or species shall increase in number, and which shall decrease, or finally become extinct

Charles Darwin

The stuff of life turned out to be not a quivering, glowing, wondrous gel but a contraption of tiny jigs, springs, hinges, rods, sheets, magnets, zippers, and trapdoors, assembled by a data tape whose information is copied, downloaded and scanned

Steven Pinker

We wish to discuss a structure for the salt of deoxyribose nucleic acid. (D.N.A.). This structure has novel features which are of considerable biologic interest

Rosalind Franklin

We are biology. We are reminded of this at the beginning and the end, at birth and at death. In between we do what we can to forget

Mary Roach

The systems approach to biology will be the dominant theme in medicine

Leroy Hood

I've always been interested in animal behavior, and I keep reading about it because it's so surprising all the time - so many things are happening around us that we neglect to look at. Part of the passion I have for biology is based on this wonderment"

Isabella Rossellini

Because all of biology is connected, one can often make a breakthrough with an organism that exaggerates a particular phenomenon, and later explore the generality

Thomas Cech

Nothing in Biology makes sense except in the light of evolution

Theodosius Dobzhansky

Biology is now bigger than physics, as measured by the size of budgets, by the size of the workforce, or by the output of major discoveries; and biology is likely to remain the biggest part of science through the twenty-first century

- Freeman Dyson

Nothing can be more incorrect than the assumption one sometimes meets with, that physics has one method, chemistry another, and biology a third

- Thomas Huxley