The Department of Biology at Appalachian State University has 28 full-time faculty members with doctorates that represent the full breadth of biological specializations, from molecular genetics to landscape/ecosystem ecology. Approximately 1000 undergraduate Biology majors are enrolled in the Department’s educational programs and another 2700 Appalachian State students annually fulfill their general education science requirement taking introductory biology courses aimed at their needs. To support our teaching efforts, the Department employs six lecturers with M.S. or Ph.D. degrees and five teaching/technical staff members with M.S. degrees. Our teaching faculty provide excellent instruction in both the classroom and the laboratory.
Teaching and research activities of the Department of Biology are housed in the Rankin Science complex located in the heart of the ASU campus. All of the Department’s physical facilities were constructed or renovated in the last ten years. Biology facilities include several lecture halls, eleven teaching laboratories, twenty-three research laboratories, a greenhouse, the I.W. Carpenter Herbarium, a computing laboratory, and two off-campus natural areas. Other facilities utilized in the Rankin complex include the College of Arts and Sciences’ Dewell Microscopy Facility (housing state-of-the-art light transmission, confocal, scanning and transmission electron microscopes and managed by a Biology research faculty member), the College’s Animal Care Facility, and the College’s Scientific Visualization and Computing Laboratory. Located nearby on campus is the Appalachian State University Nature Preserve which serves as a convenient venue for many field-oriented classes. The Department is also associated with the University of North Carolina System’s Highlands Biological Station, the Southern Appalachians Cooperative Ecosystem Studies Unit, and the Western North Carolina Office of the N.C. Biotechnology Center.
Appalachian State University’s Department of Biology, in collaboration with our undergraduate and graduate students, seeks to be a community of teacher-scholars. We are dedicated to providing outstanding undergraduate instruction, but we also understand that research and discovery inform the science that we teach and invigorate us as teachers. Through a wide disciplinary range of courses with active hands-on laboratories and involvement of students in faculty research, we seek to produce graduates with sound scientific knowledge, the skills to create new knowledge, and the excitement and appreciation of scientific discovery.