Department of Biological Sciences


Welcome to the Department of Biological Sciences

Biological sciences delve into the world of living organisms — from microbes, to human beings, to entire ecosystems. It is the science of life on, under and above earth.


The Department of Biological Sciences provides you with hands-on learning, moving you beyond textbooks and lectures to engaging research projects. Biology is a research-intensive science that can lead to a wide range of study areas, like environmental work, medicine, microbiology or agriculture. Exploring the nature of life leads biologists out into the world where they study how organisms interact with their environment, how they function and how they evolved over time.

Department Highlights

Research study to focus on the environmental impacts of effluent release

“The goal of this project is to understand the impacts of land use on the health of the Little Bow watershed, with a focus on the role that the Frank Lake wetland plays in processing effluent in this economically important region,” says Bogard, an assistant professor of biology and Canada Research Chair. “We want to provide all stakeholders with scientific knowledge and data to help manage the watershed as best as possible.”

Around the world, people use wetlands to help treat wastewater. University of Lethbridge researchers will look to better understand how these complex systems work by studying the Frank Lake wetland and its watershed near High River, Alberta.

With base funding from Cargill Limited and matching funds from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) of Canada Alliance program totalling approximately $1.5 million, the research team will embark on a five-year project.

Jean-Denys Hamel

Canada Research Chair appointments support U of L expertise in water and agriculture

Two University of Lethbridge researchers have earned Canada Research Chair appointments, as announced by the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry on Jan. 12.

Dr. Jean-Denys Hamel, an assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry, has been appointed a Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Organofluorine Chemistry and Catalysis. Dr. Steve Wiseman, an associate professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, has been reappointed a Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Aquatic and Mechanistic Toxicology.

“We’re extremely pleased to see both Dr. Hamel and Dr. Wiseman recognized and supported for their excellent work,” says Dr. Dena McMartin, the University’s vice-president (research). “Dr. Hamel’s research has far-reaching applications in agriculture and pharmaceuticals, while Dr. Wiseman’s work is essential in helping maintain the health of our extremely valuable aquatic environments. Their appointments highlight the importance and impact of the work of our faculty members to southern Albertans and society as a whole.”

Compound found in tires toxic to certain fish

As the treads on tires wear down, small particles of rubber fall off onto roadways where they react with oxidants such as ozone. And when it rains, these particles get flushed down storm drains and into waterways where they can be toxic to certain species of fish.

“For some time now, we’ve seen coho salmon along the west coast of the United States die after rainfall events,” says Dr. Steve Wiseman, a University of Lethbridge biology professor and Canada Research Chair in Aquatic and Mechanistic Toxicology. “Research suggested that tire-related chemicals might be responsible for this.”

Shining Student Amy Henrickson

Shining Student Amy Henrickson (BSc Co-op '17) chose to pursue her grad studies at uLethbridge as she was interested in the work of one of our new professors and excited to learn …

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Darren Van Essen will cross the stage in recognition of his degree received in 2020

We recently caught up with Darren Van Essen (BSc '20) to find out where the world of medicine has taken him since graduating in 2020, and what it means to him to …

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Dr. Marta Gerasymchuk reflects on her ULethbridge experience

Dr. Marta Gerasymchuk (PhD '22) spent many nights studying in the library for her PhD in biomolecular science, often sleeping on a yoga mat between study sessions.

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Career Bridge: Centre for Work-Integrated Learning and Career Development

Career Bridge


Put Your Knowledge to Work 

Whether you’re looking for a more in-depth learning experience by assisting with research projects on campus or by testing your knowledge in a real-life work setting, we can help! The University of Lethbridge is proud to offer you an exceptional opportunity to explore professional development through academic programs and services designed to give you a competitive edge in a fast-changing world.

You have a bright future — experience it via Career Bridge at uLethbridge!

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