BIO 106 Cells
A detailed study of cells as fundamental units of living systems from structural and molecular levels of organization.
Coursework, facilities and research opportunities will prepare you for the most competitive graduate schools, professional schools and science-related jobs. Almost every course has a hands-on lab. Our location in coastal New England gives you access to estuaries and salt marshes and the ability to interact with industry scientists at nearby research facilities. Areas of faculty-student research include cell and molecular biology, genetics and evolution, developmental biology, ecology and physiology. Major supporters of this research include the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health. You are encouraged to work with one of your professors on an independent research project, and many students publish papers with faculty in peer-reviewed journals and present research at conferences.
You will be encouraged to work with one of your professors on an independent research project. Many students present their research at conferences and publish papers with faculty in peer-reviewed journals. Our location in coastal New England gives you access to estuaries and salt marshes and the ability to interact with industry scientists at nearby research facilities. Many biology students participate in the Connecticut College Summer Research Program, where they receive a stipend and free campus housing while working on independent research projects with a professor. Recent student projects have included investigating bacterial populations in a nearby salt marsh using molecular tools, mapping genes that affect flight in fruit flies, studying cancer-associated proteins involved in cell division, tracking the nesting of birds along power lines, and studying genome-wide expression during embryogenesis. Some students also work on research projects during a semester program at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Massachusetts. Our proximity to Pfizer Central Research and major medical centers at Yale and in Boston allow research collaborations for faculty and students.
We offer hands-on experiences with electron and fluorescent microscopes, digital image analysis, cell culture and real-time polymerase chain reaction in our well-equipped labs located within our newly renovated Science Center. Our equipment and spaces are complemented by an equally impressive living laboratory — the College’s 750-acre Arboretum — and the resources of our interdisciplinary Goodwin-Niering Center for the Environment.
Bob Askins teaches courses in ornithology, animal behavior, ecology and conservation biology. He is nationally recognized for his research of the ecology of migratory birds and the impact of forest fragmentation on their populations.
Phillip Barnes is interested in the genetics and evolution of complex quantitative traits, such as flight in insects. Such traits involve multiple morphological and physiological components of the organism. He is particularly interested in the interaction between genotype and environment in determining the individual's adaptation to the environment in which it is reared, its ability to acclimate to new environments and the evolutionary consequences of such genotype-by-environment interaction for a population.
The overall goal of Anne Bernhard's research is to understand the relationships among changes in environmental conditions, microbial communities, and nutrient cycling in coastal ecosystems, particularly salt marshes and estuaries.
Deborah Eastman is interested in the conversations that cells have during the process of development. In her research, Eastman uses molecular and genetic techniques to study how different cell types are determined. She is currently interested in the gene regulatory mechanisms that are involved in specifying particular cell types of the sensory organs in Drosophila.
Martha J. Grossel was selected in 2006 as a “Woman of Innovation” in the field of research by the Committee of the Connecticut Technology Council. After her doctoral dissertation at Tufts Medical School, Professor Grossel was a postdoctoral research fellow at Harvard Medical School where she studied cancer and the cell cycle.
Kristine Hardeman teaches cells labs, genetics labs and preparation. She also teaches a seminar on genetically modified crops.
A former provost and dean of the faculty, Loomis believes that cryobiology, especially natural freezing tolerance, is a perfect topic for research at an undergraduate institution. He includes students in research projects ranging from the ecology of freeze tolerance to molecular biology and biochemistry.
Kate McDonald is interested in the neurobiology of learning and memory. For her doctoral dissertation, she studied song learning in the zebra finch. Her research focused on investigating the link between the dendritic morphology of neurons that control song production and the development of song. In addition, she explored the role of social experience on neuronal morphology in the adult songbird.
Sardha Suriyapperuma serves as a lecturer and a lab instructor for both the botany and biology departments. She has conducted research in various disciplines including physiology of mycorrhizal fungi, DNA fingerprinting of turf grass, gene expression of cytoskeleton proteins, linkage mapping of adult-onset primary open angle glaucoma and gene expression using microarrays.
As a lecturer with the biology department, Warren teaches laboratories for general biology and serves as faculty adviser for first-years and biology majors. She is very interested in teaching techniques that will enhance the biology laboratory curriculum.
Stephen Winters-Hilt's research focuses on fundamental methods in the analysis of data, and in the practical and efficient implementation of such methods for analysis of biological data and for signal processing. Winters-Hilt has authored 49 journal publications, 21 patent filings and one book (with three more books in process).
A: I have always been very interested in animals and the environment, so fields like conservation biology fascinate me.
A: The faculty are wonderful – I've liked every single science professor I've had so far. I also really appreciate the chance to connect my academics to the local ecosystems by studying the botany of southeastern Connecticut and using the College's arboretum during labs.
A: Last summer, I worked with a professor and another student doing ornithology research in the Arboretum. We conducted bird surveys, continuing a study that has been in progress since the 1950s. We also monitored nests of Eastern Bluebirds and Chimney Swifts around campus. There were a lot of mornings when I was up before 5 a.m. It was a great introduction to real fieldwork.
A: My most rewarding class has probably been "Conservation Biology." I loved the opportunity to learn about conservation issues in the modern world and the ecological concepts that lie beneath them.