Biology department tools and sketches


Coronavirus & Cabin Fever Survival Guide

Dr. Janna Andronowski’s lab created a Coronavirus & Cabin Fever Survival Guide for students

What is coronavirus?

Dr. Hazel Barton leads an introduction to viruses, virology, and what the coronavirus is, and a discussion about where we think the virus comes from, how it causes disease, and where we are in dealing with it.

Think of this as a short virology course for someone with no background in biology.

Visit us!

We have special visit days planned, as well as other opportunities for you to see all that Akron has to offer!

Student's voice: Why Akron for biology?

Logan Usher Logan Usher

“The Department of Biology at Akron is absolutely fantastic and is so more than just classes. The opportunity to work with professors on research has completely defined my undergraduate career. One thing that really helps the process of getting involved with research is the Tiered Mentoring program. I got involved in the summer between my sophomore and junior years, and I have stuck with the lab since. Tiered mentoring pairs an undergraduate student with a graduate student of a lab and allows them to work on research, then help the next group of undergraduates learn as well. I’m currently working with Dr. Astley on snake locomotion and biomechanics and it has taught me so much about the research process, technology and how to work with animals. Plus, the Tiered mentoring program has options for anyone in biology, from working with bones and cadavers, to zebrafish or bacteria! I couldn’t recommend a program more for how much it has helped me develop professionally and how much fun it has been!”


UA biology major student works on undergraduate research.

The Andronowski Lab is currently researching the effects of one of our country's costliest and fastest growing epidemics--opioid addiction--on bone remodeling, the body's continuing process of formation and destruction of bone tissue. Andronowski and her team, including undergraduate students like Gina Tubo, are using innovative 3D X-ray imaging technology to describe how opioids impact the microscopic bone structures used to estimate age-at-death in forensic anthropology.


UA’s Biology Department is diverse and vibrant with an array of biology courses to support varied interests for our two undergraduate degree programs, Master's program and Integrated Bioscience Ph.D. We have 16 tenure-track faculty, with interests ranging from neurobiology to pregnancy to plant/animal interactions.

Our engaging bachelor's of science program offers over 75 undergraduate classes encompassing medicine, microbiology, physiology, zoology and ecology. Biology is a hands-on discipline, and our courses are reflective of our commitment to field and laboratory experiences. Many of our classes have laboratory components, including many field courses. Additionally, we offer summer biology courses to the Bahamas, Virginia Beach, and Maine for marine biology classes. All of our biology programs allow for excellent research opportunities including the tiered mentoring program.

See what some of our recent undergraduate students are doing:

UA biology alumni

Faculty Research Spotlight
Spider research by Dr. Blackledge

Dr. Henry Astley

What kinds of technical expertise do students who work in your lab gain?

Students in the Astley lab gain expertise in a variety of techniques for analysis of animal locomotion, such as force sensors, high-speed video, and in vitro muscle testing, as well as experience in robotics and 3D printing.

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Han, biology graduate student at The University of Akron

If there is any constant in my multidisciplinary explorations, it would be a playful curiosity about patterns and the physical world. While an undergrad in physics engineering satisfied such curiosity in part, chickens were interpreted as unsettling solid spheres: the field was not “real-world” enough. After a sharp turn for industrial design and makerspaces, avian concepts finally had familiar materiality and organic contours, but functionality was reduced to ergonomic empty boxes. And then I was unexpectedly summoned by the biological world: a recording of FESTO’s jellyfish prototype…flying better than the chickens...

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Dispatch from Tahiti

UA students researched geckos and fish in Tahiti as part of a 2019 vertebrate zoology course.

What can we learn by studying how snakes move?

Dr. Henry Astley, assistant professor of biology, describes how his research on how snakes move could help save lives after an earthquake and help with exploration of other planets.