The Department of Biological Sciences is one of the largest and most diverse on campus in terms of the research interests of its academic staff. This diversity has resulted in numerous collaborations among Principal Investigators as they discover common themes and approaches within their research programs. The Department currently has over 70 professors, 22 adjunct professors and 22 activ professors emeritus, along with a graduate student population of nearly 300 and 75 departmental support staff and over 130 ongoing trust funded staff. 

Research in our department spans a wide range of themes in biology, including:
  • Ecology and Evolution
  • Entomology
  • Genomics
  • Immunology and Infection
  • Marine Biology
  • Microbiology
  • Molecular and Cellular Genetics
  • Paleontology
  • Physiology and Development
  • Plant Biology
  • Study Organisms
This size and breadth of research interests has allowed the Department to build world-class facilities that would be difficult to maintain by a smaller unit. The Department has facilities for terrestrial, freshwater and marine field research at the Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre on the west coast of Vancouver Island. It has extensive collections in plants (Vascular Plant Herbarium), bryophytes (Cryptogamic Herbarium), vertebrates both current (Zoology Museum) and extinct (Laboratory for Vertebrate Paleontology) and insects (Strickland Museum) and provides excellent facilities, complete with support staff, in the FACS facility,Drosophila Unit, Limnology lab, Molecular Biology Service Unit, Biological Sciences Microscopy Unit, Low-Level Mercury Analytical Laboratory, Geographic Information Systems, Digital Teaching Resources Laboratory, and the Fermentation and Protein Production Unit, as well as a comprehensive facility (the Biotron) that supplies and maintains growth chambers for plants, animals, and microbes. The Department also has an extensive aquatic facility for freshwater and marine organisms under the auspices of Biological Sciences Animal Services.

At the Executive level, the Associate Chair for Research administers the facilities and their personnel along with an administrative secretary who deals with grant and contract applications.

Contact our Research Chair:
Keith Tierney
Associate Chair, Research
(780) 492-5172
Contact our Librarian:
Julia Martyniuk
Biological Sciences Librarian
Cameron Science & Technology Library
(780) 492-6653
Library Links
Areas of Expertise:

Canada Research Chairs:

Philip Currie, Canada Research Chair in Dinosaur Paleobiology, Tier 1, October 2005 - September 2019

CIFAR Fellows:
Yan Boucher, Fellow in Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, 2010 - Present

Industrial Research Chairs:

Stanley Boutin, NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Integrated Landscape Management
Mark Boyce, Alberta Conservation Association Chair in Fisheries and Wildlife

iCore Chairs:

Gane Wong, iCORE Chair in Biosystems Informatics, July 2007 - June 2018
Christine Szymanski, iCore Chair in Exploiting Glycomics for Novel Vaccines and Diagnostics, October 2013 – September 2018

CAIP Chairs:
Suzanne Tank, CAIP Chair in Aquatic Ecosystem Health

Grants Application Information

Researchers by Area of Interest

Explore all of the faculty pages of the researchers in the Department of Biological Sciences by clicking on the categories and links below.

Researchers by Study Organism

Explore our researcher pages based on the types of organisms they study by clicking on the categories and links below.