Slider photo credits: Adam Haberski (Slide 1), JR Ancheta (Slides 2, 3,& 5), Peter Mather (Slide 4)



in the Classroom


Margaret Murie Life Science Building LobbyThe Biology and Wildlife Department is located in the Margaret Murie Building with state-of-the art classrooms and laboratories where students engage in inquiry-based learning and are challenged to pursue their own research passion in a capstone experience. 

We have online courses too!

in the Field


Field work with snowshoe haresUAF is America’s Arctic University. Students and faculty in the Biology and Wildlife Department are at the forefront of documenting and understanding the changing Arctic – its people, plants, animals, and landscape.  

in the Community


Handing out hand lenses in ShishmarefTeaching and research in the Biology and Wildlife Department are intertwined and embedded within the Alaskan communities where we work. Faculty and students endeavor to improve the lives of Alaskans – from developing diet interventions to minimize chronic disease, to understanding how climate change is impacting subsistence resources.


UAF is Alaska’s premier research university and the only PhD-granting institution in the state.  Research in the Department of Biology and Wildlife spans the breadth of the biological sciences, from molecular biology to ecosystem science.  Investigating emerging viral pathogens, microbes that detoxify environmental contaminants, the molecular genetics of obesity and diabetes, impacts of climate change on polar organisms and ecosystems, and more, our faculty work alongside graduate, undergraduate and high school students to address key issues of vital interest to Alaska and beyond.


  • Outstanding TA Nominations

    Nov 28, 2022

    Have you had an excellent Biology and Wildlife TA this fall?  If so, please nominate them for the B&W Outstanding Graduate Student TA award (click the link). Nominations are open until Friday, December 9th at 5pm, but don't wait! Nominate a great TA today!

  • Biology & Wildlife Scholarships are open until Feb 15!

    Nov 15, 2022

    View our scholarships opportunities under the Resources tab above or follow this link: Biology & Wildlife Scholarships

  • Graduate School Spotlight: Scott Leorna

    Aug 2, 2022

    Scott Leorna is a PhD student studying wildlife biology. Read about his journey in this Graduate School Spotlight.

  • Biology professor hunts COVID-19 variants

    June 2, 2022

    Read about Dr. Devin Drown's work tracking variants of the COVID-19 virus in the Aurora magazine

  • Outstanding members of the Department of Biology & Wildlife

    April 28, 2022

    This year's winners are:

    Outstanding Undergraduate in Biological Sciences: Hannah Glesener

    Outstanding Undergraduate in Wildlife Biology & Conservation: Sophia Bracio

    Outstanding Instructor: Denise Kind

    Outstanding Teaching Assistant: Sarah Swanson

    Congratulations to these remarkable members of the department!

  • Exciting changes to the Biological Sciences Bachelor of Arts degree

    April 12, 2022

    Are you interested in the intersection of science and societal issues?

    The updated Biological Sciences B.A. degree program (catalog year 2022-23) is an interdisciplinary degree that invites students to combine coursework in biology with a minor and other subjects of interest in the social sciences or humanities. 

    New Capstone: BIOL F410 Integrative Capstone in Biological Sciences (3 credits, starts spring 2023). Learn and apply concepts in interdisciplinary integration across the sciences, arts, humanities, and social sciences. Then, combine the biological sciences with another discipline (e.g. your minor) in a creative independent project that fulfills the B.A. capstone requirement. 

    BIOL F410 will be taught in spring 2023! Students under older catalog years may petition it for capstone credit.

    Also new: an optional concentration in Environmental Change. Take the new interdisciplinary Environmental Change minor, including courses like Global Change Biology, to complete this concentration.

  • Animal Behavior students publish their  capstone research

    June 2, 2022

    Two former Biological Sciences students who took Animal Behavior (BIOL F441) with Dr. Alexander Kitaysky recently published their capstone research projects in peer-viewed journals. 

    Monica Mikes worked on diet and mass gain by pre-hibernating arctic ground squirrels; you can read her paper here.

    Kimberly Fitzgerald's capstone research contributed to a larger study that introduces a minimally-invasive way to sample stress hormones in nestling birds. You can read her publication here.

  • Learn about mushrooms this summer!

    April 12, 2022

    If you are curious about how to identify mushrooms in the local environment, consider taking Mushrooms and Other Fungi, BIOL 195P, during summer session II (June 27 - 4 Aug; CRN 53274).

Murie Building
Sunrise reflected in the Margaret Murie Life Science Building. Photo credit: Diane Wagner 2014