The Department of Zoology was established in 1972. Over the decades, by virtue of the commitment and the good work done by the staff, the department has become one of the star Departments of Bishop Heber College. The Department provides the right platform for the students to have a strong fundamental knowledge on the biology of animals, the way they live and interact, develop, carry out vital functions and evolve as different groups. The strong foundation that the students acquire in the department help them excel in their academic endeavours and professional careers.
As a part of Nation Building and to create job opportunities, DAMLT, Diploma in Advanced Medical Lab Technology, an UGC career-oriented programme, was started in 2008, M. Sc. Zoology was started in 2012 and the department was upgraded to a research Department in the year 2018. The increase in the number of students seeking admission in the UG programme led to start an additional B.Sc. programme in the same year. In these years, the Department of Zoology has established excellent faculty strength, State of art Lab, a first-rate infrastructure and an amiable ambience for the students to undergo good education. The recent areas of interest in Biology are incorporated into the curriculum to make the students compete globally.
To make education ‘student centric’, all Skilled Based Elective Courses – Sericulture, Pisciculture, Vermiculture, Wildlife Ecology and Economic Entomology – are converted into practical oriented programmes. These courses promote practical skills, entrepreneurship and employment. As a part of the DAMLT programme activities, Medical Camps are organised for the benefit of the staff and students of the college and for the villagers and school children too.
The Zoology Association invites experts from varied fields of biology to give better exposure to students on the recent areas of interest. DBT, DBT-STAR College and TANSCET funded International Conferences, Workshops and awareness programmes are organised in the diverse field of life sciences. Field visits and educational tours to reputed National Institutions and Wildlife sanctuaries are regularly arranged for the students. The Department conducts WINGS, a state level intercollegiate event, annually, as a mark of Wild Life Week Celebrations and International Tiger Day. Its objective is to bring out the hidden talents of the students and help them explore new frontiers.
The department has signed MoUs with the MAHSA University, Malaysia and Trichy Research Institute of Biotechnology for collaborative research. Collaboration with the CSI Mission hospital for the DAMLT programme, Department of Environmental Biotechnology, Bharathidasan University, Butterfly Park, Srirangam and Karaivetti Bird Sanctuary, Ariyalur, promote research and training, by providing in-plant training, internships, documentation of birds and butterflies, project works, field visits and publishing field guide.
Faculty members are actively involved in research activities, and a total of Rs. 59,90,000/- to carry out major, and minor projects was received from the Department of Science and Technology (DST), University Grant Commission (UGC), and the management. Faculty members publish research papers in the peer reviewed journals with high impact factors and publish books. Faculty members were members of the Board of Studies and were the reviewers in the reputed journals. They have received awards and delivered lectures in many institutions.
The department promotes quality teaching, as a result, the students have bagged top most university ranks consecutively from 2008, and the pass percentage of the students have increased progressively. To enhance the research aptitude and learning process, students are encouraged to present papers in the conferences and to publish books. Students have excelled in sports, NSS, participated in inter-collegiate competitions, won trophies and brought laurels to the department.
As a core discipline in biological sciences, the UG curriculum encompasses a wide-ranging scientific area which plays an important role in modern developments like biotechnology, immunology, bioinformatics and genetic engineering. The department arranges frequent field trips that gives on-field experience to the students on the biodiversity of animals, study of fossils and hands-on experience in the field of Vermiculture, Sericulture and Pisciculture. This skill based elective course (SBEC) empowers students to become entrepreneurs. The well-equipped laboratories and the experienced faculty members provide satisfactory learning experience to the students in the latest fields.
M.Sc. Zoology was started in the year 2012. The Autonomy status of the college has made the department to frame a need-based curriculum. The programme offers several innovative courses like Animal behaviour, Animal Biotechnology, Molecular Biology, Nanotechnology and Research Methodology. These courses are taught to the students efficiently by the experienced members of teachers. The comprehensive curriculum which encompasses the CSIR NET syllabus and enables the students to appear for competitive exams conducted by various research institutions. State of the art laboratories enable the students to undergo their projects within the campus. Visits to Industrial and Research Institutes inspire the students’ knowledge across diverse fields of Zoology. The Department’s association with various universities and organisations contribute to achieve the course outcome.
Envisage quality higher education and research in the field of animal sciences with global perspectives by promoting discovery and learning contemporary fields in Zoology inculcating social values for the holistic development and to conserve nature thus contributing for nation building.