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Master of Science in Applied and Environmental Biology

Graduate Handbook-May2013 

Academic Program

The Department of Biological Sciences offers an interdisciplinary approach to addressing problems in applied and environmental biology. The program emphasizes research that focuses on understanding environmental responses and adaptations in biological systems at the molecular, cellular, organismal, and ecological levels. In addition to independent efforts, faculty members collaborate with other science and engineering disciplines on the Missouri S&T campus through collaborations with the Ceramic Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Civil Engineering, Computer Science, Computer and Electrical Engineering, Geology and Geophysics, Mechanical Engineering and Metallurgical Engineering departments. This interdisciplinary approach has been productive and beneficial to students in their career development.

The Department of Biological Sciences currently occupies space in Schrenk Hall together with the Departments of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering. Juxtaposition to these departments offers a strong academic environment with ample opportunity for interaction of faculty and students that is appropriate to an interdisciplinary graduate program.


Research Opportunities

Students who participate in the Applied and Environmental Biology Master of Science Degree program in the Department of Biological Sciences have exceptional opportunities for performing the interdisciplinary research critical for understanding and solving environmental problems. An understanding of the environment and associated problems requires background knowledge and applications of modern technology derived from many traditional fields of science, mathematics and engineering. For specific opportunities, please visit individual faculty members' web sites Here

In addition, the unique focus on engineering and the sciences at Missouri S&T offers opportunity for integrated course work and collaborative research dealing with the complexities of environmental biology. In addition, faculty in the Department of Biological Sciences are actively involved in research centers on the Missouri S&T campus such as the Environmental Research Center, the Center for Environmental Science and Technology (CEST), and the Graduate Center for Materials Research.

Equipment items requisite to quality graduate laboratory experiences in the biological sciences are currently available within the department or in the laboratories of collaborators in other disciplines. The Department of Biological Sciences has a 600 sq. ft. environmental toxicology laboratory, a 300 sq. ft tissue culture facility, a 600 sq. ft. biochemistry laboratory, and a 600 sq. ft. molecular biology laboratory. The environmental toxicology contains several desktop centrifuges, an analytical balance, a pH meter, column chromatography, electrophoretic equipment, several pieces of Isco710 automate water sampling device, a multi-parameter water quality meter (SensION156), a Hach complete field water lab, a turbidimeter, a liquid nitrogen cryo storage tank, a solid phase extraction (SPE) system, a PCR machine, and a sonicator. The tissue culture facility contains a sterile hood, a CO2 incubator, phase contrast and inverted microscopes, Zeiss epifluorescence/DIC-microscope, refrigerators, and liquid nitrogen cryo storage tanks. The biochemistry laboratory contains a UV-VIS spectrophotometer, a FLUOstar multi-function spectrophotometer, a refrigerated chromatography cabinet, various centrifuges, fraction collectors, balances, pH meters, and column chromatography and electrophoretic equipment. The molecular biology laboratory contains complete electrophoretic equipment for DNA sequencing, gel electrophoresis, and gel photo documentation. Additional equipment includes a Beckman Ultracentrifuge, Savant speed-vac, incubators, autoclaves and an ultracold freezer. The department also maintains a renovated animal research facility.

Outstanding Facilities

Career Opportunities

After sufficient training in our Applied and Environmental Biology Program, students will be prepared to take advantage of opportunities in the following job markets:

Biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, genomics firms, National Institutes of Health, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, environmental consulting companies, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services, the U.S. Geological Survey, the State Department of Conservation, the State Department of Natural Resources, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and Forest Service.

Financial Assistance

Professional Societies

Each faculty member belongs to one or more professional societies. Students are encouraged to become members of these societies to build up their future career opportunities. The list of the societies is as follows.

American Society for Microbiology

Society of Toxicology

Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry

National Ground Water Association

Ecological Society of America

American Society of Limnology and Oceanography

North American Benthological Society

Society of Integrative and Comparative Biologists

The Herpetologists' League

Society for the Study of Amphibains and Reptiles

The American Society of Ichtyologists and Herpetolgists

Society for the Study of Evolution

Admissions Requirements

The prospective student shall have a Bachelor's degree in a biology-related discipline. The application for admission to the graduate program must be accompanied by a letter, to the Chair of the Graduate Admissions Committee, giving a brief summary of the applicant's background and the specific areas of research interest, if known at the time.

The Verbal, Quantitative, and Analytical Writing portions of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) must be taken. International students should take the examination before admission, and have a Quantitative score of at least 600 and an Analytical Writing score of at least 3.5. National students must take the GRE before enrolling. The Department requires a minimum TOEFL score of 550 from foreign applicants to be accepted to a graduate program.

Other requirements are described in the MS program information which can be found at

Regulations & Procedures


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