The Department of Biological Sciences came into being in 1988 when the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta was established. Initially, the Department offered BSc Biological Sciences with options in Microbiology and Applied Biology. After initial accreditation of courses in the Department, the curriculum was reviewed with more course options made available to students. Degrees were then awarded with specialization in Botany, Zoology and Microbiology. In 2001, the Department of Microbiology was created out of the Biological Sciences Department.
Thus, presently, the Department of Biological Sciences offers BSc Biological Sciences degree programme with options in Botany and Zoology. Usually, students are admitted into the Department as students of Biological Sciences until their second year (depending on their mode of entry) when they commence studies in the various course options.
The relevance of study and understanding of nature (plants and animals), their physiology, anatomy, genetics, ecology etc. to agriculture cannot be over-emphasized. The Department is therefore directly related to the aim for setting up UNAAB. Like most other Departments in the College of Natural Sciences, registered students of the University in their first (and perhaps second) year must take courses in the Department of Biological Sciences. The Department is therefore important for the provision of necessary basic knowledge that prepares students for the various Agricultural programmes.
At the Post Graduate level, the Department offers M.Sc. and Ph.D in sub-disciplines of Botany and Zoology, particularly, Plant Physiology, Cytogenetics and Parasitology. It is worthy to note that on the staff list of the Department are Dr S. O. Sam-Wobo, Dr. U.F Ekpo and late Dr. A.A.S. Amusan, who are among the first set of Post graduate students to bag Ph.D. degrees of the Department. The Department of Biological Sciences has been involved in collaborative research with other Departments of the University such as COLPLANT (College of Plants Science) and in Agricultural Extension and Rural Development in COLAMRUD (College of Agricultural Managemen and Rural Development), and has carried out Consultancy Services for Epidemiology Unit of The State Ministry of Health. The University has just signed a Technical Service Agreement with APOC/WHO of study on Blackfly movement between Benin Republic and Nigeria border and its implication on Epidemology of Onchocerciasis to be hosted by the Department. It has also hosted the Annual Conference of the Botanical Society of Nigeria as well as that of Nigerian Society for Parasitology.
PHILOSOPHY AND OBJECTIVES
In educational planning or any planning at all levels, planning must relate to population distribution and trend. It is therefore important that training of Biological Science graduates should be focused on human resources development with broader goals of social, political and technological modernization thereby contributing to national development and integrity. It is with this in mind that the Biological Sciences degree programme of the College of Natural Sciences was designed particularly with the following objectives:
(i) To deepen the knowledge of students in general and applied areas of Biological Sciences.
(ii) To give training to students on scientific research and studies.
(iii) To provide high level manpower relevant to national needs in university, industries, research institutes, etc.
(iv) To train students in skills and abilities relating to intellectual tasks including problem solving.