- Ecology, Evolution and Behavior
- Genetics, Genomics, and Bioinformatics
- Integrative Evolutionary Biology
- Microbiology and Molecular Biology
- Plant Systems Biology
- Plant Pathology
Ecology, Evolution and Behavior
The graduate program in Ecology, Evolution & Behavior is composed of 20 faculty members that share a fundamental interest in ecological and evolutionary processes.
The EEB faculty has a diverse range of research interests. These include: behavioral ecology, community ecology, ecosystem ecology, evolutionary ecology, life history evolution, molecular evolution, physiological ecology, plant-animal interactions, population ecology, sexual selection and systematics. EEB is particularly strong in the study of plant-animal interactions, behavioral ecology and evolutionary genetics.
Our goal is to develop broadly trained biologists that have both the conceptual tools and expertise in research design necessary to address fundamental ecological and evolutionary questions. To meet this goal, our graduate curriculum includes a series of core courses for first year students, advanced courses in areas of faculty expertise, a seminar series that focuses on research design (BIOS 916), and a seminar series that focuses on completed research.
|Faculty Member||Research Interests|
|Gwen Bachman||Physiological and behavioral ecology|
|Alexandra Basolo||Sexual selection; life-history evolution; predator-prey interactions/Genetics and evolution of color patterns, of life history traits, and of sexually selected traits|
|Chad Brassil||Mathematical modeling of ecological interactions|
|Ryan Bickel||Insect evolution and development|
|Alan Bond||Animal Cognition and Behavioral Complexity|
|Jennifer Brisson||Genetic and environmental contributions to morphological differences within and between species|
Ecological and evolutionary energetics, human population ecology, body size evolution, predator-prey ecology
|Valery Forbes||Aquatic Ecology and Ecotoxicology; Population Modeling; Contaminated Sediments; Risk Assessment|
|Sheri Fritz||Paleoecology, paleoclimatology, and aquatic ecology|
|Robert Gibson||Behavior, ecology and evolution|
|Lawrence Harshman||Life history evolution, reproduction, and biological responses to stress and pathogens|
|Eileen Hebets||Animal behavior: complex signal evolution|
|Alan Kamil||Behavioral ecology of learning and memory|
|Johannes (Jean) Knops||Ecosystem and plant ecology; plant species impact on nutrient cycling|
|Diana Pilson||Ecological genetics of plant-insect interactions|
|Sabrina Russo||Ecology, especially of tropical forests, ecological statistics and modeling|
|Stacy Smith||Evolutionary genetics, molecular phylogenetics, plant-pollinator interactions|
|Jay Storz||Evolutionary genetics, evolutionary genomics, and evolutionary physiology|
|Brigitte Tenhumberg||Population dynamics and optimal decisions in insect behavior and life history|
|William Wagner||Behavioral ecology; sexual selection|
|Karrie Weber||Microbial Biogeochemistry, Microbial Ecology, Geomicrobiology|
|Anthony Zera||Evolutionary physiology; endocrine adaptations; wing polymorphism/Evolutionary genetics of wing polymorphism|
|Faculty Member||Research Interests|
|Rick Bevins||Behavioral neuroscience or biopsychology|
|Peter Calow||Ecological risk management|
|Trish Freeman||Mammalian Systematist and Functional Morphologist|
|Mace Hack||Behavioral ecology|
|Kyle Hoagland||Water Quality, Aquatic Ecology of Lakes, Streams, Reservoirs, Wetlands|
|Dan Leger||Bird song, animal communication, animal behavior, evolutionary psychology, and biological bases of behavior|
|Larkin Powell||Conservation biology and wildlife Ecology|
|Thomas Powers||Evolutionary biology of nematodes|
|Jeffrey Stevens||Behavioral ecology, animal cognition, and decision making|
|Drew Tyre||Statistical ecology, theoretical ecology and special distribution models|
|David Wedin||Plant and ecosystem ecology|
Genetics, Genomics, and Bioinformatics
The graduate program in Genetics, Genomics, and Bioinformatics (GGB) is composed of 13 faculty members that share a fundamental interest in genetics, genomics and bioinformatics processes. The Genetics faculty have a diverse range of research interests. The GGB GREG is particularly strong in evolutionary genetics and bioinformatics.
Most programs are influenced by evolutionary concerns and use tools from bioinformatics to address fundamental questions in genetics. These questions range from gene structure and function to the evolution of plant-insect interactions. Several faculty members use Drosophila and other insects as their research organism. Other faculty members use the model plants maize and Arabidopsis.
Our goal is to develop broadly trained biologists that have both the conceptual tools and expertise in research design necessary to address fundamental biological questions. To meet this goal, our graduate curriculum includes advanced courses covering molecular genetics, developmental genetics, and genomics.
Integrative Evolutionary Biology
The graduate program in Integrative Evolutionary Biology is a new program, formulated in the Fall, 2009. It is a dynamic,
interactive, and well-funded group of faculty sharing a common interest in multidisciplinary studies of evolutionary
biology. The group has diverse research interests that include the following: physiological, biochemical and molecular studies
of life history evolution; genomic- to-physiological investigations of complex adaptations such as dispersal polymorphism;
molecular-population-genetic and functional studies of hemoglobin adaptations in mammals; molecular evolutionary and
bioinformatic analyses of protein functions and multi-gene families, neurophysiological, ecological, and genetic investigations
of invertebrate behavior, with a special focus on sexual selection; and ecological, biochemical, and phylogenetic
investigations of metabolic pathway evolution in plants and animals.
Microbiology and Molecular Biology
The graduate program in Microbiology and Molecular Biology is composed of faculty, postdoctoral fellows and graduate students with research interests that encompass a wide range of research and training opportunities for graduate students in preparation for rewarding careers in sciences.
Programs include emphases in many areas of molecular biology and microbiology including bacteriology, ecology, evolution, extremophiles, genetics, gene regulation, immunology, pathobiology, systematics and virology.
Interdisciplinary training is an essential component of all participatory research groups. A microbiology seminar series (BIOS 915M) provides a common forum for research presentation to both local participants and invited speakers. The Microbiology and Molecular Biology GREG has a strong record of placing its graduates in industry and academics.
Two areas of emphasis include pathobiology and microbial physiology.
The microbiology physiology emphasis focuses on model microbial systems using bioinformatic, proteomic and genomic strategies to get answers about fundamental questions on basic molecular and cellular processes in microbes and between microbes and their environments. Topics include studies on mRNA decay, global gene regulation and silencing, quorum sensing, UV and detergent resistance, lipopolysaccharide function, and evolutionary mechanisms in a range of prokaryotic and eukaryotic microbes. Training in these programs at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln include strong preparation in biochemistry, genetics and molecular biology. Research goals include the development of better strategies for the management and manipulation of microbial systems for basic and applied outcomes.
The comparative pathobiology emphasis addresses recent research findings which have shown unexpected similarities in the fundamental properties of some pathogenic microorganisms, and disease responses pertinent to animals, humans, and plants. The University of Nebraska-Lincoln has maintained a very strong research and teaching program in infectious diseases. This program seeks to explore the commonalties in animal, human, and plant pathogens and their hosts with the expectation of discovering novel infectious disease processes in all organisms. These include mechanisms involved in recognition between host and pathogens as well as adaptive responses in host plants and animals to stimuli generated by pathogens. Research emphasis efforts to improve disease management, decrease costs associated with infectious diseases, improve animal, human and plant health and generate proprietary novel products for commercial development.
Plant Systems Biology
The graduate program in Plant Systems Biology is composed of 16 faculty members that share a fundamental interest in understanding molecular, cellular and developmental processes in plants.
Powerful new methods in molecular genetics, biochemistry, and genomics are applied to analyze nearly every process in plants, such as growth and development, environmental and biotic stresses, photosynthesis, nuclear-organelle interactions, gene expression, DNA repair/recombination, and epigenetic phenomena.
The faculty research interests overlap in these areas and there is much interaction between the various groups. Because of these wide diversity in faculty interests, prospective students are encouraged to pursue the application process regardless of their prior areas of study within the biological sciences.
The program's goal is to provide students with the background and training appropriate for a career in academics, government, or the private sector.
Our graduate curriculum includes two introductory seminars, a set of core courses to be completed within the first year, and initial research training through laboratory rotations. In consultation with faculty advisers, students develop the remainder of their course program and choose a research topic according to their interests and career goals.
The Plant Pathology Department offers a wide range of research opportunities in both basic and applied topics. Our graduate
programs are designed around your own research, extension, and career goals. Opportunities for research at both the M.S. and
Ph.D. levels include: molecular plant pathology, fungal molecular genetics, phytobacteriology, nematology, virology,
epidemiology, biocontrol, disease resistance and soilborne diseases. Inter-disciplinary programs in biotechnology, plant
breeding, microclimatology, plant stress, pest management, and international agriculture are also available. The department has
state of the art facilities and instrumentation to support research interests ranging from the most applied to the most basic.
Laboratory based research is conducted in Plant Sciences Hall with ancillary greenhouses, growth chambers and small plots
available, as needed. Field research problems may be carried out with faculty in Lincoln or the Research and Extension Centers
at Clay Center, North Platte, and Scottsbluff.
For graduate programs, the Department of Plant Pathology is part of the School of Biological Sciences and our graduate degrees are granted through the School. Application forms for admission to the department will be sent upon request. All students are required to take the Graduate Record Exam (aptitude and advanced portion, usually biology) at their own expense before being accepted by the department. In addition, transcripts of Colleges/Universities attended, reference letters and a statement, not exceeding one typewritten page, of your long-term professional goals will be needed. A TOEFL exam score for students whose native language is not English is also required (550 minimum).
Students may apply for entry into the graduate program at any time during the year. Decisions regarding program admission are made monthly, as application files are completed; however decisions regarding Departmental Graduate Research Assistantships are made twice annually, in April and November for funding beginning July 1 and January 1, respectively. In order to fairly consider all applicants for assistantships, 1 March and 1 October have been established as deadline dates. If your file is not complete by these dates it will be held and not be considered for a Departmental Graduate Research Assistant until the next funding period.
A few State funded Departmental Graduate Research Assistantships are available to students admitted in our department.; These assistantships are granted separate from admission to the graduate program and area by the Department Head through individual faculty on a competitive basis. Many individual faculty have grant programs which also provide research assistantships and are awarded by the individual faculty investigator. Applicants may inquire directly to individual faculty about the availability of these funds.
We are a medium-sized department of 16 faculty who are highly interactive and compatible. Our graduates are competitive in the scientific arena and are sought for positions in academe, government and the private sector. We are proud of our graduate program and hope the foregoing comments concerning our department and the University will help you reach a decision to apply to the University of Nebraska for graduate work.
James R. Steadman, Professor & Graduate Advisor
The graduate program in Parasitology is composed of composed of 6 faculty members with a diverse range of research interests, but the GREG is particularly strong in the study of ecology and evolution of parasitision.
Our goal is to develop broadly trained biologists that have both the conceptual tools and expertise in research design necessary to address fundamental questions. To meet this goal, our graduate curriculum includes a series of courses for first year students, advanced courses in areas of faculty expertise, active involvement with Cedar Point Biological Field Station, a seminar series that focuses on research design, and a seminar series that focuses on completed research.