Top Features of the Loras College Biology Program
  1. Hands-on Learning – Almost every biology class has a lab where students learn by doing, by close observation and by testing hypotheses through direct experimentation. It is in lab where structure meets function, where learning by direct comparison and touch occurs. These labs help the students learn how to use equipment, do statistics, write results and explain implications of their findings. It is here that the scientific method comes to life…..literally.
     
  2. Proven Effectiveness - Graduates from the Biology program have gone on to be successful in many fields. Doctors, dentists, researchers, physician assistants, physical therapists, high school biology teachers, county conservation leaders, veterinarians, and many more. Please check out the alumni news section of our website to see specific jobs of past Loras graduates in Biology.
     
  3. Small Class Size and Personal Attention – Our class size averages around 20 students. Many classes have labs with 15 students or less. Each lab is set up and run by a faculty member. We have no teaching assistants here. The faculty get to know the students well, on a personal basis and the students get to know the faculty as well. Students are encouraged to contact a Biology faculty member early in their first year so that their academic needs and career aspirations can be planned for.
     
  4. Local Connections – We have 2 large hospitals in Dubuque in which many of our students work part time during the school year or full time during breaks. We have many local private health clinics that students volunteer and work in. Many of these are available to spend hours in our Field Experience program where students can get 1 cr. for following a professional around to get an on-the-job perspective of what this person does each day. Other connections in city government, county conservation and high school science departments allow for students to be in the work place to get an idea of what the job is like BEFORE they commit to further classes and training toward that end.
     
  5. Laptop Computers – Laptop computers help students personalize the data acquisition process and allow direct, 24/7 access to the world wide web. Animations of biological processes and GIS generated vegetation maps are used in our labs for student projects.
     
  6. Experienced, Student-centered Faculty – All of our faculty have Ph.D.s and have 15, 16, 20 and 22 years of teaching and research experience with undergraduate students. Our one-on-one research programs and instruction has proven to be very effective at getting students to understand the depth as well as the broad applications of biological topics.
     
  7. DNA Lab in the building – A recent upgrade includes a Recombinant DNA laboratory which gives the students hands-on experience with the latest molecular and genetic technology including DNA fingerprinting, protein gel analysis and DNA sequence amplification (PCR).
     
  8. Regional and National Connections – We send students on a regular basis to summer research experiences and internships at large universities throughout the country. Many times they receive a large stipend for their hands-on work in a lab AND receive room and board free! Opportunities with the Nature Conservancy, with state Departments of Natural Resources and with other environmental agencies allow students to make important personal connections that can be used later for permanent employment.
     
  9. Flexibility – The first 3 semesters in Biology contain courses that are able to be used in prerequisites for many professional training programs. They serve as a basis for many fields of science. Thus, specific decisions about where to use your knowledge don’t need to be made until your sophomore year. The first 2 years should be a time to explore the possibilities of your training in Biology at Loras.
     
  10. A Variety of Outdoor, Field Classes – We offer outdoor trips and field classes to get students out of the classroom into the natural environment to see how all living things indeed live together. Trips go to Florida and Wyoming. Local field classes in Ornithology and Vertebrate Biology take advantage of the variety of local habitats along the Mississippi River and inland.

For Specific Examples of Where Loras Biology Graduates are NOW go here

Please come to Dubuque for a visit. Contact Admissions at 563-588-7236, or 1800245-6727 or Tom Davis, Program Chair, at 563-588-7767 or tom.davis@loras.edu for further information.

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