Research Tools for
Biological and Environmental Coursework

This page is designed to help you access resources for coursework in biology, environmental science and other sciences.

Part 1: Internet Sites

The following internet sites are sponsored by professional or scientific organizations. The site listings are divided into categories for convenience, but information on a single topic may be found in all categories. Not all of the links on the sites listed here will lead to sites that are appropriate for your use. Make sure any site you use meets the criteria in the Alverno Guide for Writing in Biology and/or those provided by your instructor.

Biology or all science | Animal Behavior | Botany | Chemistry | Cell Biology | Ecology | Environmental Science | Evolution | Genetics | Microbiology and Virology | Physiology and Health | Population Biology | Zoology | Teacher Resources

Biology or all sciences

Citing Sources

APA Citation Guide from Purdue

Alverno's Electronic Databases Includes several science databases

Academic Journals Searchable

Biologists talk about their careers

Encyclopedia of Life Sciences

Ethics Sponsored by the Online Ethics Center for Engineering and Science

Evolution Resources

Highwire Press Free full-text biology journal articles

Integrated Taxonomic Information System All kingdoms included

Links to journal home pages Some have searchable indices

Mill Hill Essays on science

Molecular Universe

National Agricultural LibraryUSDA Agricultural Database, searchable

National Biological Information Infrastructure Biological data sets (used for meta-analysis)

National Center for Biotechnology Information

PubScience Search many science journals, sponsored by US Government

Second law of thermodynamics

Second law of thermodynamics Q&A

Unit conversions

US Geological Survey Maps of US: many types

Web Elements Information, clips, etc. on all chemical elements

World Biodiversity Database over 200,000 species, mostly marine

Animal Behavior

Animal Behaviour Journal, Search index

Animal Behavior Society

Behavioral Ecology Journal, Search index

Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology Journal, Search index


National PLANTS Database Sponsored by the USDA

Integrated Taxonomic Information System

Phytochemicals and ethnobotany Plants in chemistry, medicine and culture

eNature Field guides to trees and flowers

Tree of Life Phylogeny and biodiversity

UW-Madison Botany site Photos, information, resources

Cell Biology

Cells Alive!


Molecule of the Month

Periodic Table

Royal Society of Chemistry Journals Searchable

Web Book on Chemistry



Ecological Society of America

Ecoregion maps

Ecoregions National Geographic Society

National Interagency Fire Center

Terra Server USGS Aerial photos of anywhere in the USA

Weather Conversion Calculator

Weather: Relative humidity Calculator

World Climate Data

Environmental Science

American Rivers

Aquatic Network

Biodiversity hotspots 

Bureau of Land Management

Biodiversity links Sustainable Communities Network

Committee for the National Institute of the Environment

Encyclopedia of Earth

Endangered Species Maintained by the US Fish and Wildlife Service

Endangered Species Maintained by the World Conservation Union

Endangered Species Maintained by EE Link

Environmental Career Opportunities

Environmental News Network

Environmental Protection Agency

EPA Sector Notebooks Quick profiles of various industries and potential pollutants

EPA site on Environmental Impact Statements

Electronic Environmental Resources Library

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

Global system for sustainable development

Global Warming EPA Site

National Council for Science and the Environment

National Wildlife Federation

Natural Resources Conservation USDA

NatureServe Association of Biodiversity Information

Oceanographic data NOAA data from over 40 years of research

Pollution Engineering

The Virtual library of ecology and biodiversity

Surface Water Data Viewer Map surface water in an area

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

UN Earth Summit Report Includes profiles of countries

US Fish and Wildlife Service

USDA Economic Research Economics and Agriculture

US Forest Service

The Virtual library of ecology and biodiversity

The Water Page

Watershed Delineation/ Long-Term Hydrologic Impact Assessment (L-THIA)

Web Soil Survey Map the soil in an area

World Biodiversity Database over 200,000 species, mostly marine


BBC Evolution site

Becoming Human Human Evolution

Teaching Evolution National Center for Science Education

Understanding Evolution Berkeley

Talk Origins

World of Richard Dawkins


DNA From the Beginning Great learning tools

Genetics education center

Genetic Science Learning Center

Human Genome project

Online Mendelian inheritance in man

Microbiology and Virology

Physiology, Health and Medicine

AIM for a healthy weightNIH

AIDS Education Global Information System

American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology

Anatomy Activities (Suggested by Ms. Hayes' Class)

Bad Bug Book Food-borne illnesses, USFDA

Blood cells, photos of normal and diseased

American Cancer Society

ACLS Resources

US Centers for Disease Control Extensive information on health

Reports of the US Surgeon General

ConsumerLab Results of testing of dietary supplements

Food and Drug Administration, US

Food and Drug Administration Center for Food Safety & Applied Nutrition


The Heart

Medical Biochemistry Page

Medline Journals and links

Multidemensional Human Embryo See inside with MRI

National Cancer Institute

NIH Office of Dietary Supplements

Neuromuscular Disease Center

Neurosciences on the Internet

USDA Food, Nutrition and Health

Oncolink Cancer site, U. of Pennsylvania

Rx List Drug index, side effects, warnings, etc.


Population Biology

Cemetery Demography

Cemetery Demography, Pennsylvania

Cemetery Information, International

US Census Bureau Population data for the US

Population data for the world, US Census Bureau

Population data for the world, United Nations

Population Index, Princeton

Population Pyramids from the US Census Bureau

Poupulation Reference Bureau


All About Birds Cornell U.

American Society of Mammalogists

AmphibiaWeb Berkeley

Animal Diversity web Info on animals,U. of Michigan Museum of Zoology

Animal Info Information on endangered species

BirdSource All about birds, Sponsored by Cornell U.

Cephalopods Smithsonian

eNature Field guide to animals

Entomology index of Internet resources

Entomology Resources All about insects

Insect Record Book

Integrated Taxonomic Information System

Mammal Species of the World (taxonomic information)

Mouse Atlas Mouse development/embryology

Net Frog Virtual frog dissection

North American Breeding Bird Survey

North American Mammals Smithsonian

NMNH entomology database library

PrimateLit Search for information on primates

Tree of Life Phylogeny and biodiversity

World Biodiversity Database over 200,000 species, mostly marine

Teacher Resources
Some are great for their purpose, but they would not be acceptable as technical references.

Access Excellence Collection of classic discoveries and famous people, searchable

Bug Bios All about insects

FDA Kids' Page

The Mad Scientist Network Ask a new question or search for past ones

Net Frog Virtual frog dissection

NIH Education page

Thinkfinity (Formerly Marco Polo) Teacher resources

U of Arizona Biology Project Problem sets and tutorials for high school and college (some in Spanish)

UCSB ScienceLine Ask a new question or search for past ones

The Why Files Includes search for past questions

Part 2: Periodicals in the Alverno College Library

The following periodicals are available in the Alverno College Library. You can browse these materials or use their indices to find information on your topic.

Unless otherwise noted, these periodicals are primary literature, meaning they meet the criteria for technical scientific sources.

If the title is followed by a (2o), meaning it is a secondary source, it contains review articles. If an article lists its references, it may be suitable for use in a formal paper. Ask your instructor if you are unsure.

If the title is followed by a (3o) or (Pop), meaning a tertiary or popular periodical, articles in it can be used to identify issues, but are not likely to meet the criteria for scientific or technical references.

Most of these titles are linked their home page. The services available at the sites range from a description of the journal to searchable tables of contents and full text articles.

American Journal of Botany

American Scientist (2o)

Animal Behaviour (B. Burton has recent volumes)

Applied and Environmental Microbiology

Audubon (Pop)

Behavioral Ecology (B. Burton has)




Ecologist (Pop)

Environment and Behavior

Environmental Health Perspectives

EPA Journal (Pop)

Health (Pop)

Human Biology

Human Development

Human Ecology Forum (3o)

Interdisciplinary Science Reviews (2o)

International Agricultural Development (3o)

Issues in Science and Technology (3o)

Journal of the American Medical Association-JAMA

Journal of Abnormal Psychology

Journal of Applied Behavioral Science

Journal of Bacteriology

Journal of Environmental Health

Journal of Experimental Psychology

Journal of Experimental Social Psychology

Journal of Gerontology

Journal of Heredity

Journal of the National Cancer Institute

Journal of Mammalogy (B. Burton has)


National Geographic (Pop)

Natural History (Pop)


Nature Biotechnology

New England Journal of Medicine

New Scientist (Pop)

Physiological and Biochemical Zoology

Psychological Review

Psychological Reports

Psychology of Women Quarterly

Proceedings of the Society of Experimental and Biological Medicine

Public Health Reports

Quarterly Review of Biology (2o)


Science News (Pop)

Scientific American (2o/3o)

Sierra (Pop)

Smithsonian (Pop)

Wisconsin Natural Resources (Pop)

Last update: 7/13 by Rebecca Burton, Dept. of Biology, Alverno College

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