Biology

Research at IWU

As an IWU biology student, you have the chance to design and conduct original research. By partnering with faculty and staff , you can work on an independent research project or earn credit in off-campus research , directed study , or research honors . Student research is showcased each spring at the  John Wesley Powell Student Research conference .

Student Research Spotlight: Alan Brus '12

A new species of frog (Strabomantidae: Pristimantis) from Peru with comments on its ectoparasites (Acari: Trombiculidae)

Alan Brus '12
Alan Brus '12

Working with Professor of Biology  Edgar Lehr, Alan Brus describes his research honors project that classified a new specifies of frong that was discovered in Peru by Professor Lehr. They also identified the ectoparasites infesting the species.  Read more here.

Peru has a high degree of biodiversity, resulting from the complex geographic regions characteristic of the country. Continued efforts are required to classify new species so that they can be protected and the human impact on these remote environments can be better understood.
-  Alan Brus

Student Research Spotlight: Jason Murphy '14

Corrosion casts: A novel application of a polyurethane resin (PU4ii) for visualizing eggshell pore morphology

Undergraduate Research: Jason Murphy, biology major, compares eggshell structure of different bird species.

Along with fellow student Mark Swanson, Jason was lead author of  a paper describing the research technique they developed in The Auk: Ornithological Advances,  one of the top ornithological journals in the world (DOI 10.1642/AUK-14-158.1). The technique may help shed light on avian evolutionary history.  Full story

Currently Jason is working as a lab technician the Neuro-Oncology Laboratory at the University of Chicago, where his research focuses on the use of nanomagnets for targeted cancer cell destruction.

 

John Wesley Powell Research Conference

John Wesley Powell 25th Annual Research Conference
 
Biology major Elizabeth Smith '14 is among students discussing their research at the John Wesley Powell Research Conference.

The  John Wesley Powell Student Research Conference  was established as an annual event in 1990. Held in April each year, the conference provides an opportunity for students who are pursuing individual research projects to present those projects in a public forum. Research projects pursued by students at any level – freshman through senior – and in any academic program throughout the University, are eligible to participate. Research can be presented either in a poster session format, or in a (15-min) oral presentation.