About the Department


What is Federation?

Federation is a formal agreement between Rutgers University (Newark) and the New Jersey Institute of Technology to coordinate many activities of their respective Departments of Biological Sciences. The goal is to increase the quality of teaching and research by drawing from the larger, combined resource base. In particular, the curriculum and requirements of both the undergraduate Major in Biological Sciences and the various Graduate options are the same for both institutions, and students may take courses on both campus to fulfil those requirements. Federation also involves the sharing of office and laboratory facilities, the coordination of research, and long-term strategic planning.

One of the two Department Chairs holds the additional, non-official title "Chair of Federated Activities," and oversees aspects of governance that are coordinated (in practice, this is most of them).  Administrative aspects of hiring, promotion and tenure, grant administration, student support, etc., are largely handled by the separate Departments.

Federation FAQ

I'm a prospective undergraduate Biology Major. Should I apply to Rutgers or NJIT?

As far as your biology curriculum for the BS or BA goes, it doesn't matter — Rutgers and NJIT follow the same curriculum, and you will be taking the same classes. However, Rutgers and NJIT have slightly different General Requirements (classes you must take that are outside your Major). Also, NJIT and Rutgers offer different accelerated programs that combine a Biology major with professional training. See the undergraduate information  pages for details.

The admissions offices are separate, and of course, their fees, accommodation, financial aid, campus life, etc. are all different. You will have to figure out which one best suits you.

I'm a prospective graduate student. Should I apply to Rutgers or NJIT?

As far as your curriculum for the degree goes, it doesn't matter. The biggest issue is likely to be funding. Currently, all Teaching Assistantships are offered through Rutgers, so if you want to apply for one of those, you should be apply to Rutgers (though check availability before you apply). If you expect to be supported by a faculty member with a research grant, then you should apply to the institution that holds that grant — usually the primary institution of that faculty member. (Note: this would only be by pre-arrangement with that person — see the Information for Prospective Students).  Otherwise, fees, stipends, and ancillaries like insurance all vary in minor ways between institutions. Some students may switch institutions at some point (for example, to move from a teaching assistantship at Rutgers to a research assistantship at NJIT).This does not affect progress towards your degree.


How to Find Us

There are two sets of administrative offices, one at Rutgers and one at NJIT. If you are a looking for general information about the Federated Department, whether it be research or teaching, you can contact either office. If you are an existing student and need help with registration, advising, etc., you should contact the office for your particular institution. If you have a delivery to make, or need to mail something to a faculty member, it's almost always best to send it to the Rutgers office.

Rutgers office

Department of Biological Sciences
206 Boyden Hall
Rutgers University
195 University Ave.
Newark, NJ 07102

Phone: 973 353 5347
Fax: 973 353 5518

Email:  bionwk@newark.rutgers.edu

NJIT office

Department of Biological Sciences
429 Colton Hall
New Jersey Institute of Technology
323 Martin Luther King Ave.
Newark, NJ 07102

Phone: 973 596 5612/8

Faculty offices and labs are spread out across Boyden Hall and the Life Sciences Center on the Rutgers campus. NJIT-affiliated faculty also have offices for advising on the fourth floor of Colton Hall on the NJIT campus, but are there only at certain times. However, the NJIT main office, staffed by Karen Roach and Alexandra Fileus, is open every day.