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Biological Sciences at Magdalen

Ever since its foundation in the 15th century, Magdalen has had a strong tradition of research and teaching in the natural sciences. We are one of the larger colleges in the University for Biological Sciences and typically admit six or seven undergraduates for this subject each year. Biologists at Magdalen tend to be highly motivated and go on to pursue many diverse and interesting careers, including a large proportion who continue with postgraduate degrees in biological subjects. One of the key reasons for this commitment to biology at Magdalen is that we have a large group of fellows and tutors involved in teaching, creating a vibrant and exciting environment in which to study all aspects of this subject. Our core teaching team comprises three tutorial fellows based in three different University departments: Professor Andrew Smith, who is a plant scientist specializing in physiological and biochemical adaptations to environmental stress; Professor Kevin Foster, who is an evolutionary biologist specializing in cooperation in bacteria and other organisms; and Professor Stephen Goodwin, a tutor in Biomedical Sciences, who teaches genetics. The teaching expertise of our three tutors is enhanced by two professorial fellows: Liam Dolan, who is Sherardian Professor of Botany and Keeper of the Botanic Garden; and Stuart West, a professor in Zoology who is an expert on social evolution in humans and other animals. Furthermore, our colleague Professor Laura Fortunato is a tutor in Human Sciences who has overlapping interests in evolutionary biology.