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Undergraduate students help a grad student electroshock for trout in a winter stream

Biology Department

If you have an interest in living organisms, Northern’s Biology Department has a major for you. What interests you most? The interactions of plants and animals in ecosystems, understanding how organisms work at the systems or cellular level, or understanding the development or evolution of living things? Our programs will give you the opportunity to develop a broad-based biological foundation while concentrating on an area of specialization.

Experience Learning

At NMU, you won’t just read about research in your desired field, you’ll be a researcher conducting science projects. Students engage in biology research through classwork and laboratories, research projects, and independent experiences with faculty mentors.  You can participate in field experiences in Marquette, around the U.S., and oversees.  You might be able to work in a research lab studying cancer... or learn how to tag black bears! 

Career Excellence

The choices for biology-related careers are abundant: biochemist, bio-engineer, botanist, conservation officer, environmental analyst, science educator, field ecologist, geneticist, microbiologist, natural resources manager, park naturalist, museum curator, fisheries or wildlife biologist, and more. Many of our graduates also go on to get medical, dental, chiropractic, or veterinary degrees or complete graduate work in a biology-related graduate program.

Welcome to Brandon Gerig (Lake Fish Biologist) and Diana Lafferty (Wildlife Ecologist), who are joining the Biology faculty this fall!NMU students participated in a Field Marine Biology course to St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands over Spring Break 2016.  Students explored the marine diversity of the island, learned about conducting science in the ocean environment, and learned about tropical marine ecology.Students at NMU routinely work on research projects of their own design and share the results at academic conferences or in professional publications. NMU biology students conduct research and internships around the world, including in Zambia (pictured), the U.S. Virgin Islands, Brazil, and elsewhere.

Degrees Offered

Science Student

What you'll do at NMU

Most of your classes will be in NMU’s Seaborg Science Complex, a well equipped science facility that will enable you to connect with caring faculty. Among the departmental resources are dozens of teaching and research labs, animal rooms, a greenhouse, an aquatics laboratory, an herbarium, cell culture facilities, a confocal laser scanning microscope for cell imaging, and equipment for genetic analysis. A wide range of field sites nearby are used as an outdoor classroom and for conducting research. Students are researching native fishes, identifying invasive species in Lake Superior, tracking migratory patterns of loons, using mice as models for neuromuscular disease, studying mammals and associated parasites in arctic and subarctic regions of the U.S., Siberia and Canada, and much more. Join one of seven biology related student groups and meet others who share your passions.

Biology Departmentbiology@nmu.edu906-227-2310

If you have college credit and want to find out what will transfer to NMU, please visit www.nmu.edu/transfercredit