Prospective Students

Why study biology?

The study of biology is a study of life itself. It’s the study of the physical and biological processes that affect the life and death of genes, cells, individuals, populations, species, and ecosystems. If you are a prospective student who would like to learn more about why you should choose Dalhousie's biology degree program, visit the biology undergraduate program site.

Options, options, options

At the Department of Biology, we offer the widest range of biology classes in Atlantic Canada. You can learn about cell and molecular biology, genetics and evolution - and that's just in one first-year class. You can take advantage of other departments within the Faculty of Science, by taking classes in biochemistry, molecular biology, chemistry, earth sciences, economics, mathematics and statistics, microbiology and immunology, oceanography, physics, atmospheric science and psychology.

You may want to add a minor to your biology major. (business, Canadian studies, community design, environmental studies, computer science, film studies and environmental science are some options for minors.) Or, you may decide to do a combination honours program studying biology and earth sciences, or biology and international development. It's really up to you.

Hands-on approach

Dalhousie's Department of Biology takes a hands-on approach to learning, providing you with a stimulating, first-rate education. You'll get individual attention by faculty, be able to interact with graduate students and often participate in faculty research. And learning isn't limited to the classroom. We'll get you outdoors too.

The Department of Biology is a research and teaching-oriented department. We maintain millions of dollars in research projects in areas ranging from whale behavior to forest tree genetics and bone development. Most of our teaching assistants in undergraduate classes are graduate students who bring their first hand experience in this research to the classroom.

Our research ensures what's talked about in the classroom is current. Research also provide summer and part-time job opportunities for many upper level students and high-level research projects for honours students.

The study of biology is good solid preparation for a career in education, medicine, dentistry, veterinary science, or any of the other health professions.

A small big university

But why Dalhousie? There are big advantages to studying at Canada's "smallest big university." Dalhousie is the smallest of the comprehensive universities in Canada and offers a full range of professional programs such as law, medicine and engineering, in addition to core undergraduate programs and graduate research. But it's not a huge place. Students get to know their professors. They can easily walk between classes. And they'll get quickly acquainted with other students in their programs. 

Dalhousie is a good place to be exposed to a wide range of activities in biology. That'll help you decide what you want to pursue - even if it's ultimately in another discipline. If you have a profession already in mind, Dalhousie provides opportunities to take classes that are highly relevant.

We can accommodate a diversity of interests. For example, you can take classes in drama or music while you study biology. You can even take classes at other degree-granting institutions in Halifax: Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Saint Mary's University, Mount Saint Vincent University. Dalhousie Faculty of Agriculture in Truro, an hour's drive from Halifax, is affiliated with Dalhousie, and students sometimes begin at one institution and, as their interests develop, change to the other.

Plus, Dalhousie is located in a vibrant city. You can take advantage of living in Nova Scotia's capital city - its rich music, fun bars and stimulating theatrical scene. Not to mention that wilderness is never far away: the Department of Biology takes advantage of the nearby seashore, lakes, forests, bogs, marshes and meadows for field study and exploration.