University of Vermont

2013-2014 Catalogue

Biology (Doctor of Philosophy)


Faculty research interests fall into two broad groupings: A) cell and molecular biology, physiology and behavior; B) ecology and evolution Current research projects under the first group include: molecular biology of cilia; visual system development in zebrafish; smell and taste receptor cell function using molecular biology, calcium imaging and electrophysiology; olfactory and taste driven behavior; muscle development using biophysical, molecular and proteomic approaches; proteomics, biochemistry and cell biology applied to molecular mechanisms of signal transduction governing neuronal positioning. Current research projects under the second group include: community ecology and evolutionary ecology of carnivorous plants; phylogenetics to study evolution and biogeography of spiders and other groups; genetics of malaria parasites using classical parasitology, field studies and molecular biology; ecology, zoogeography and conservation of small mammals; modeling and analysis of complex biological and environmental systems; multi-species interactions among plants, their mutualist pollinators and antagonists that include herbivores, seed predators, and competitors; developmental plasticity interactions with extreme sexual size dimorphism in spiders; evolution, ecology, and behavior of social insects; ecology and evolution of disease.

General Requirements

Specific Requirements

Requirements for Admission to Graduate Studies for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy

Satisfactory completion of: college level courses appropriate for science majors including a year of mathematics, a year of physics, organic chemistry, at least one year of biology; scores from the Graduate Record Examination, general (aptitude) section; and acceptability to the faculty member with whom the candidate wishes to do dissertation research or rotations. Deficiencies in prerequisites may be made up after entering the program.

Requirement for Advancement to Candidacy for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy

The diagnostic examination prior to registration for the first semester; proposal writing examination; the comprehensive exam; minimum requirement course work of thirty credits and additional courses as required by the advisor and studies committee; at least one academic year of graduate study at the University of Vermont.

Minimum Degree Requirements

There are seventy-five required credits, of which at least thirty credits must be earned in graduate courses including six credits of Graduate Colloquia. The selection of courses will be designated for each student by the advisor and studies committee. At least twenty, but not more than forty-five, credits must be earned in dissertation research. Each candidate must participate in the teaching of at least one undergraduate course.