Graduate Programs in Biology
The Dallman Lab uses the zebrafish to study how genetic mutations implicated in human nervous system disorders disrupt behavior. A relatively simple neuronal circuit that underlies stereotypic behaviors makes zebrafish an excellent model to understand the functional link between genes and behavior.
The Skromne lab is interested in how two fundamental developmental processes, segmentation and patterning, are regulated and coordinated during vertebrate embryogenesis to generate morphological complexity. We use the zebra fish and chicken as model systems.
Research in the Uy lab explores the origin of biological species, using tropical birds as study organisms. We use a combination of observational, experimental and molecular approaches to study populations that are on the verge of becoming new species, providing us with unique and natural experiments to understand how new species evolve.
The Sternberg lab is interested in how natural processes occurring at the organismal level scale up to communities and ecosystems. We use the natural abundances of carbon, nitrogen, hydrogen and oxygen stable isotopes as a scaling tool. These isotopes are used as natural tracers of biochemical, physiological and ecosystem processes.
The general goal of the Tokarz lab is to understand the causal mechanisms and functional outcomes of various aspects of male and female reproductive behaviors. We use anole lizards as research subjects because they have highly stereotyped reproductive behaviors that can be easily studied in both the field and laboratory.
The broad interest of the Wikramanayake lab is to understand how an embryo develops from a fertilized egg. In particular, we are interested in elucidating the mechanisms by which developmental information that is maternally loaded into the egg is partitioned in a reproducible manner in the early embryo to initiate pattern formation
The Wilson Lab works on plant sap feeding insects. In particular we apply ecological, genetic and genomic approaches to studying the nitrogen metabolism of these tri-trophic systems at two interfaces: the plant/insect interface and the insect/symbiont interface.
Research in the Browne Lab is focused on investigating patterns of change underlying organismal diversity. We employ a wide range of experimental approaches to explore the relationships between genotype and phenotype from both developmental and evolutionary perspectives.
The Searcy Lab conducts research on the behavioral ecology of birds, including work on animal communication, sexual selection, and mating systems. Much of our recent work has focused on the songs of song sparrows and swamp sparrows.
The long-term goal of the Sullivan-Sealey Lab is to better understand coastal processes in the tropical carbonate islands of the Bahamian archipelago
The Whitlock Lab studies the diversity of plants at many different scales, from DNA sequences of genes, to populations, species, and communities of plants. Research in the our lab often uses a phylogeny as a framework for addressing the origins of biodiversity.
Research in the Horvitz Lab concerns demographic analysis of tropical plants and of their interactions with animals (mutualists and enemies) and with non-native species (including plants).
The Lu Lab is interested in sensory neurobiology with a primary focus on comparative studies of the auditory systems of vertebrates.
The Chiba Lab’s interest lies in the emergence of intelligence. We use Drosophila model and study the basic rules of cellular complexity and neural network formation in the brain.
The Gaines Lab interests include the effect of habitat fragmentation on small mammal populations, the effects of habitat patchiness on source-sink dynamics and the genetic structuring of populations, the evolution of mating systems in mammals, and conservation genetics of threatened and endangered mammalian species.
The Janos Lab focuses on the roles of mutualistic root-associates, especially mycorrhizal fungi and nitrogen-fixing bacteria, in tropical forests and agro-ecosystems.
Work in the Hurt lab explores the processes of diversification in marine invertebrates and the implications that these processes have on conservation of biodiversity. To address these questions, we employ a wide diversity of molecular tools including DNA sequencing, as well as next-generation tools such as transcriptome sequencing and reduced genome sequencing.
Work in the Baker lab explores the mechanisms that regulate and underlie ciliary development in animals (Drosophila in particular). While cilia are ubiquitous on animal cells and intriguing for their fantastic ultrastructure, they have only recently been recognized as having fundamental roles in development and human disease. We seek to understand one of the earliest steps in cilia formation, how the centrioles, a component of the microtubule-nucleating centrosome, are respecified to initiate cilia formation
The DeAngelis lab is interested in population dynamics, age and size structure of populations, food web theory, ecosystem theory, forest dynamics, nutrient cycling, modeling of animal behavior and movement, and evolutionary theory.
The Department of Biology aims to train graduate students in integrative research, with a curriculum that exposes students to the major sub-disciplines of biology and a program that allows enough flexibility to develop interdisciplinary work. Our major strengths include tropical biology, ecology & evolutionary biology, developmental biology and neuroscience. Our department has strong ties with the Department of Mathematics, Rosenstiel School of Marine & Atmospheric Science, the Miller School of Medicine, the Abess Center for Environmental Science & Policy and the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden. Students can be co-sponsored by faculty from these programs.
We currently have three graduate programs:
- Ph.D. in Biology. Our PhD program centers on students developing a dissertation project that explores fundamental questions in biology. We encourage projects that are multidisciplinary in nature. The Ph.D. requires 60 graduate credits, a research proposal with an oral defense, and a dissertation with an oral defense.
- The M.S. in Biology. Our M.S. program has two tracks requiring 30-36 of graduate credits: Masters with a thesis (including a proposal and oral defenses of original thesis), or Masters without thesis.
- A B.S./M.S. in Biology. The joint B.S/M.S. program allows students to concurrently work on their B.S. and M.S. in Biology degrees through a five-year program. The degree requirements for the BS degree are unchanged (set Undergraduate Page link), the MS is a research intensive degree to be completed during the Senior year and one additional year. For more information visit: www.bio.miami.edu/msbs
Students must choose their faculty mentor before entering the program and later select an independent research topic that associates them closely with their faculty mentor(s). To find a possible faculty mentor, contact one or more of our faculty before submitting your formal application View our faculty