IB/OEB

Thinking of concentrating in Integrative Bio?  We'd love to have you join us!  Get in touch with concentration advisor Andrew Berry to set up a meeting, and we'll take it from there.

(Some of) OEB/IB's Class of '16.  Congratulations!

Integrative Biology (IB), formerly known as Organismic and Evolutionary Biology (OEB), embraces Biology as a whole, aiming to make sense of, and connect, the many different levels—molecular, cellular, genetic, developmental, anatomical, physiological, ecological, phylogenetic—at which biological systems are analyzed. In particular, the focus is on evolution, the historical process that ties together all of biology: from the adaptive consequences of a single amino acid substitution in a protein to grand events in the history of life, such as the Cambrian Explosion, when, 540 million years ago, animal life evolved rapidly from simple to complex. Adaptive evolution is a response to the demands of the environment, whether this is the environment within a cell or an ecological community of interacting organisms. Integrative Biology therefore is inherently inter-disciplinary, encompassing mathematical and computational biology, genetics, evolution, and ecology as well as functional and genetic approaches to morphology and development.  

IB offers students opportunities for learning and for doing original research both in the lab and in the field, with, for example, courses every year taking students to the Tropics for fieldwork. OEB faculty members’ research interests range from human health and disease to evolutionary theory, genomics and organismal biology and ecology.  For more information, see faculty pages on the OEB departmental website.

Students who are considering IB as a concentration are encouraged to complete the three introductory courses (Life Sciences 1a, 1b, OEB 10) by the end of their sophomore year. From the firm foundation of a series of introductory courses, students explore one or more areas in depth by taking upper-level courses. Students are encouraged to follow their own interests through the concentration, but we have put together some "suggested pathways" (i.e., suggested combinations of mid-level and upper-level courses) for perennially popular areas: