Renee Godard, chair
P.O. Box 9615
Roanoke, VA 24020
Biology is the study of life, so students at Hollins go live with their learning, through field study, research, and internships. From the first course, study of biology at Hollins is more engaging, more real. Rather than starting with a perfunctory yearlong survey course, biology majors take four courses in different disciplines. This gives students a chance to practice biology by applying theory and using scientific techniques, rather than just memorizing a litany of facts.
Field studies range from the ecodiverse Appalachian Mountains in West Virginia to the estuaries and basins of the Virginia coast.
Many biology students spend a semester or summer abroad.
Biology majors work side by side with faculty members on research projects. As a result of such research opportunities, a Hollins alumna, who finished her M.S. at North Carolina State University in just a year and a half, says she felt much more prepared than fellow students who came from larger universities, where the laboratories are often taught by recipe with little room for individual research. Recent research includes:
Each year, the Hollins Science Seminar highlights the many research projects Hollins students have carried out during the academic year. Students in psychology, biology, chemistry, mathematics, and environmental studies present posters that summarize their independent research initiatives, from field projects in the Caribbean to modeling interesting mathematical phenomena.