University of Oregon

Student Voices: Invertebrate Zoology

octopods at lighthouse

I had the privilege to take Invertebrate Zoology simultaneously with the course, Comparative Embryology and Larval Ecology. I would highly suggest this course duo as an incredibly complimentary base of knowledge — in this case I believe the sum was much greater than its parts. Invertebrate Zoology is generally co-taught by two professors, and I was lucky to be instructed by Prof. Richard Emlet and Prof. Nora Terwilliger (Emeritus). This dual-instructor setup allows the two professors to play off of each other’s knowledge base, and provide a well-rounded source of instruction. On top of all this, the course provides the opportunity for students to go into the field during nearly every day in class (on land and by boat) in order to better investigate all that the vast Oregon intertidal and subtidal has to offer. This class greatly augmented my microscopy, my critical thinking (constant questions about how, why, where, and when did an organism arrive here), and my field collection skills.

-David Friedlander

Katalin Spring Inver 2015c

Life and academics at OIMB are unlike anything I’ve ever experienced and it’s all I’ve ever wanted out of a science major! We have hands onlearning in the lab and out in the field, close and friendly interactions with classmates and the professors, and a tight-knit community on campus. In my favorite class of spring term 2015, Invertebrate Zoology, I learned much more than I could have thought possible and I noticed an incredible growth in my overall academic as well as scientific abilities. On top of that, I had the opportunity to see a ton of unique animals and learn copious amounts of fascinating information from my two brilliant professors, Maya Watts and Richard Emlet. I would recommend this major to anyone who loves the ocean, science, and participating in the coursework — especially if they enjoy getting a little messy!

-Katalin Plummer

IMG_0684In Invertebrate Zoology, it was incredible how many different phyla we were able to find and characterize in the intertidal and just off of the Oregon Coast.  The amount of time that we spent in the field and in the lab actually working with the study subjects was phenomenal.

-Kara Robbins

This course flooded my brain with information on invertebrates, but it also taught me useful thinking skills that were valuable in future courses at OIMB.  Aside from the fast-paced, challenging course work, our almost-daily field trips provided a fun and hands-on way of learning about the life around our school.

-Kassie Quackenbush


IMG_0674Loved the teachers for this course (Prof. Cynthia Trowbridge and Prof. Maya Watts). I also really enjoyed all the field trips, we went out to collect organisms frequently, and it was great seeing them in their natural habitat before studying them in the lab. I also learned a lot about many different phyla of marine invertebrates, through observation and dissection.

-Reva Gillman