The most important feature of the Biology Department is its excellent faculty, all members of which hold the doctorate. They are dedicated to excellence in teaching and are active in basic and applied research and other scholarly activities. The department currently has more than $1 million in private foundation, federal and international research grants. Another attractive feature of the department is its small class size. This allows students to interact frequently and effectively with instructors both within and outside of class. It also permits instructors to easily identify students in need of additional assistance, and to supply such assistance.
The Biology Department's teaching and research facilities are modern and well equipped. Special facilities and equipment that are available for student use include a tissue culture laboratory, controlled temperature rooms, a greenhouse and two natural areas, a wetland and a bioswale. In addition to on-campus facilities, students may study marine biology and desert biology through the use of facilities available in the Southern California Ocean Studies Consortium and the Desert Studies Consortium. Excellent computer and library facilities also are available.
Since the Biology faculty maintains several diverse research programs that are well supported with public and private funds, the department can provide both undergraduate and graduate students with unusual opportunities to actively participate in research. Biology students have been successful, not only in conducting research, but in presenting reports at scientific meetings, publishing their findings and in receiving national recognition for the high quality of their work.