UG Newsletter


Undergraduate Newsletter
Department of Biology
May 2019 Issue

Now that exams are over it is now time to relax a little and start thinking about course registration for 2019-20.    Over the next month we will work on updating our course offering web page, but unfortunately we cannot give you a heads up on the scheduling of any of our 2019-20 BIOL offerings until the official timetable is released (sometime in June).  We are available year round with the exception of vacation leave.  Normally we close for 2 weeks in mid-August (Arts and Science staff hiatus period), we will include the dates in the next newsletter.  Here are just a couple of reminders and links covering the registration process.

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

Note:  The Second Year of the Biology Undergraduate curriculum has gone through an exciting transformation ready for this coming fall (September 2019).

The new second year curriculum will now give you more hands-on experience, more active learning, and a reduced workload compared to our old second year curriculum – advancing career-building skills even earlier.

Details on the new second year biology curriculum 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 2019-20 Arts and Science Calendar is now available on the web at:

Arts and Science important academic dates, deadlines and special events

Incoming 4th year BIOL Students
BIOL 5XX Seminar Courses  2019-20 descriptions and application form is now available on our web site at:
Applications are due no later than May 24, 2019.

BIOL 537 – keep exploring!
Although the first and second selection rounds occurred, BIOL 537 is still open for further offerings until early September.  If you are still interested, you are encouraged to be independently proactive in seeking and securing arrangements.  The advice is to do your homework and be professional with your contacts and interactions with potential supervisors.

And let’s not forget about BIOL 538- 540 – Research Mentorship Opportunities!

Admission to 400 and 500level Biology Courses
Admission to 400‐ and 500‐level Biology courses requires a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 in any previously taken courses from the Biological Foundations List (BIOL_FNDS). Requests for special consideration must be submitted to the Chair of Undergraduate Studies.

BIOL_FNDS BIOL 102/3.0; BIOL 103/3.0; BIOL 200/3.0; BIOL 201/3.0; BIOL 202/3.0; BIOL 205/3.0; BIOL 206/3.0; BIOL 212/3.0; BIOL 300/3.0; BIOL 330/3.0; BIOL 334/3.0; BIOL 339/3.0; BIOL 341/3.0; BIOL 302/3.0; BIOL 303/3.0

BIOL 404 - Summer 2019
BIOL 404 will be offered again in August.  Don't forget to register.  This course fills fast!
Start: Friday August 16th, 10am
End: Friday August 30th
Final: Tuesday September 3rd

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.

Biology Degree Plans

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

Follow us on our new MeWe BIOLOGY UNDERGRADUATE OFFICE network!


You can follow us on matters related to your studies and careers, either on your computer and/or using the MeWe app!

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
Mon to Friday 8:30 to noon and 1:00 to 3:00pm
Rm. 3109d, BIOSC Complex


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