Whatever your scientific interests, be ready to hit the ground running in the Department of Biology and Earth Science.

Department of Biology & Earth Science

Be ready to hit the ground running in the Biology and Earth Science department! We offer a rigorous curriculum that provides a strong foundation in the sciences, while preparing students for a variety of exciting postgraduate endeavors, including employment and graduate or鈥痯rofessional school. From the very first year, students are actively engaged in the classroom, laboratory, and field as they take classes in each of the diverse areas offered by the department:

To keep up with the latest news in the Department of Biology, .

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From painting with bacteria to microscopic pop art鈥攅xplore a gallery of scientific artwork created by Otterbein's STEM community.

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Student, Faculty, & Alumni Spotlights


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Dr. Bennett has been very important in shaping my academic experience 鈥 the opportunity to join her lab, help with the path to medical school and she helped me get a poster presentation accepted at the ASM Microbe conference.

John Peck 鈥21

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
John鈥檚 learned that 鈥渘o task is too great if you’re willing to work hard and surround yourself with the right people.


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Otterbein has not only prepared me academically for the rigor of medical school, but has taught and stretched me in what is more important than a GPA: service. Otterbein has given me tools to meet people where they are.

Megan McClain 鈥21

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Calling Otterbein a safe and supportive environment, Megan says 鈥淥tterbein focuses on not just making a great student, but a great person.


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Otterbein is preparing me to take my next steps by providing me with world-class internship opportunities that are furthering my career in meaningful ways. Only at Otterbein have I been able to branch out from my major with the flexibility to discover and explore new passions.

Aidan Tansey ’22

Zoo & Conservation Science
Aidan says Otterbein鈥檚 real world skills, professional experiences and networking opportunities make it hard to imagine going anywhere else.


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The support from faculty, my peers, and the university has given me the confidence to travel to places ranging from Thailand to North Dakota to develop my career while working to solve real-world problems.

Abbey Dunn ’19

Biology, Environmental Science, Zoo & Conservation Science Triple Major
Otterbein has helped me grow into the young professional I am today. I am so grateful to call Otterbein my alma mater!

Photo For When Students Publish
You will have the opportunity to join research projects as early as your first year at Otterbein and may also present your work at a national conference or publish it in a peer-reviewed journal.

Learn more >


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Mindful connections in a community of Otterbein peers and integrative studies fostered Mina Makary鈥檚 creative growth by teaching him different ways to think. Dr. Makary continues to honor what he learned at Otterbein by utilizing “outside of the box鈥 thinking and creative skills as an interventional radiologist, where medical imaging is used to guide minimally invasive surgical procedures that diagnose, treat and cure many kinds of conditions.鈥

Mina Makary ’09, MD, DABR

Learn more about this 2020 Otterbein Alumni Research Achievement Award Winner >

Mina Makary


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I really value the close, personal relationships that I鈥檓 able to have with my students. A critical aspect of my teaching happens outside the classroom when I collaboratively work with students both in the lab and field on undergraduate theses.

Dr. Sarah Bouchard, Professor

2020 Otterbein Teacher of the Year

Learn more about Otterbein鈥檚 2020 Teacher of the Year, Dr. Bouchard and her work as a physiological ecologist and researcher. >


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Congratulations to Professor Casey J. Tucker for receiving the 2020 Teaching in General Education award at 澳门开奖现场.

Dr. Casey J. Tucker, Adjunct Faculty

Learn more about Dr. Tucker鈥檚 thoughts as an educator who considers himself a door-opener to help students fulfill their own goals. >


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Connecting with students is energizing. Conducting and publishing research keeps me fresh. Seeing the surprise and questions that students have when engaging with new findings that challenge what they鈥檝e learned so far keeps me inspired to keep the cycle going.

Brandon Sinn, Assistant Professor, Department of Biology and Earth Science

2022-2023 Otterbein New Teacher of the Year

Learn more about Brandon Sinn >

Department Features & Student Opportunities

012 Books


We believe in investing in talent 鈥 from research funding to travel support to scholarships that will fuel your discovery and learning.

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020 Library


Explore the state-of-the-art Science Complex and its聽96,000 square feet聽of聽discipline-specific聽laboratories, research space and classrooms.

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You are encouraged to take advantage of Otterbein’s聽many聽connections and partnerships聽for professional internships聽that literally span聽the world.

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Biology Earth Science Student Research

Student Research

鈥淩esearch helped me think critically and develop skills 鈥 it also taught me that life will always be a learning process.鈥 What will you discover?

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Travel Opportunities

Student Organizations

Whether it鈥檚 a BMB Tea to chart Oreo flavors or traveling to offer global medical relief, we have many student organizations and other ways to get involved.

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Jill And Sam

Travel Experiences

Count the shark population off the coast of Africa. Explore the coral reefs and rainforests of Belize. Prepare medicine from local plants in Costa Rica.

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Birderbeins Florida Spring Break

Birderbein鈥檚 Florida Spring Break was all Fun and Sun… and Birds!

News - March 25, 2024
By Maggie Nicol 鈥25 While some students hit the beach for spring break, Otterbein鈥檚 student bird watching and conservation group, Birderbein, hits the best spots for viewing bucket-list birds. In 2023, Birderbein traveled to Nebraska to watch the Greater Prairie Chickens perform their singing and mating dance. They also saw Sandhill Cranes and Snow Geese. This year, Birderbein traveled to Florida to visit the White Oak Conservation. This alternative spring break allowed students behind the scenes to look closely at鈥

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Photograph of Towers Hall at 澳门开奖现场.

National Media Recognize 澳门开奖现场 for Programs and Values

News - September 18, 2023
澳门开奖现场 has been collecting honors this fall, as it is recognized in national publications for its programs and values, including U.S. News & World Report, Colleges of Distinction, and Washington Monthly. US News & World Report 澳门开奖现场 has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report for its academic excellence, commitment to undergraduate teaching, and focus on affordability, student success outcomes, and experiential learning. In the 2024 Best Colleges rankings by U.S. News & World Report, Otterbein has鈥

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Otterbein Marching Band

Fast Track Innovation Fund Lets Community Shape Otterbein鈥檚 Growth

News - July 31, 2023
澳门开奖现场 is using an innovative approach to grow enrollment and revenue by 鈥渃rowd sourcing鈥 ideas from its own community and investing in the best ideas with $1 million approved by the Board of Trustees. Under the Fast Track Innovation Fund initiative, seven projects proposed by Otterbein faculty and staff in May have been funded and are already being implemented on campus. 鈥淭his investment in Otterbein鈥檚 future demonstrates our trustees鈥 commitment to allowing every member of our community to be heard鈥

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Programs of Study in Biology & Earth Science


B.A. or B.S.


Bio Aquarium 01

B.A. or B.S.

Zoo & Conservations Science Program: Aquarium Track

Biochemistry staff member combining solutions for a laboratory experiment

B.A. or B.S.

Biochemistry & Molecular Biology

Alligator Skull


Biology & Earth Science

Bio Student In Field

B.A. or B.S.

Environmental Science

Pre Professional Health Studies

B.A. or B.S.

Pre-Professional Health Studies

Bio Student 2

B.A. or B.S

Zoo & Conservation Science

Bio Student In Field 04


Sustainability Studies

Our Institutional Partners

Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine (Name and Logo)

Contact Us

Science Center 236
155 W. Main St
Westerville, OH 43081

Administrative Assistant

Donna Rhodeback

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“Otterbein is so much more than the place where I received an education. It was there where I found a community that accepted me, friends that became family, and professors that inspired me to attend graduate school. I found myself at Otterbein, and that made all the difference.”

Troy Neptune 鈥17, Zoo and Conservation Science and Studio Art double-major