Prospective Graduate Students




Overview from Rob:


My lab strives to conduct research addressing major issues in biogeography, ecology, and evolution (applicable to many systems), while maintaining a primary focus on the mammals and on the Neotropics. 


I am interested in training bright, motivated, quantitatively oriented students who have strong writing skills ... and who want to work hard to become first-rate scientists.  Ideally, students will have prior field, musuem, and/or GIS experience (especially Ph.D. students).  I want students who are fascinated about the natural world and who are creative thinkers.  I intend to have a moderate number of graduate students (usually 2-4 at a time).


Superior performance in previous coursework, high GRE scores, and solid TOEFL scores (for non-native English speakers) are necessary for admission to Ph.D program (GRE not required for master's program).  For foreign students, especially non-native English speakers, I strongly suggest taking the GRE early (ideally, a year before starting a program here), to allow for a second chance to take the exam and receive higher scores if necessary before the application deadline.


Please write me before applying to either program if you are interested in working in my lab.



City College of New York offers a master's degree in biology through the Department of Biology.  CCNY-based funding sometimes occurs at this level, for example as adjunct instructors teaching laboratory sections of biology courses.  Students can be admitted to begin in either spring or fall semesters; see admissions office.



The Graduate Center of the City University of New York ("CUNY Graduate Center") runs a Ph.D. program in biology, and I am a member of the doctoral faculty for the Ecology, Evolutionary Biology, and Behavior subprogram.  My Ph.D. students apply to and enroll through the Graduate Center, but are based in my lab at City College.  Ph.D. students can take courses at several area universities, including Columbia University, New York University, and the Gilder School at the American Museum of Natural History.  Applications are due in January to begin studies for the fall semester.



Prospective Undergraduate Students 


The Department of Biology at City College has a strong commitment to research mentorship of undergraduates.  I am interested in training and mentoring bright, motivated, quantitatively oriented students who have strong communication and writing skills ... and who are fascinated with the natural world.


Strong performance in biology and supporting-science coursework, enthusiasm, and ability to work both independently and as a team are critical for undergraduate research in my lab.  Do you do as well in organic chemistry as the best pre-medical students? ... and as well in calculus and physics as the best engineering students?  Are you fascinated with the natural world?  Do you have a strong work ethic?  If so, a career in ecology and evolution might be for you.


It is best to begin undergraduate research in the junior year or beginning of the senior year.  Students can conduct independent study or (if they qualify) do an Honors project (both for course credit).  See the following link for information on the Department of Biology Honors/Independent Study program.


Please contact me to find more out about undergraduate research opportunities in my lab.


Sean Claxton explains his research to a fellow student at the 2006 CCAPP Annual Poster Presentation.

Mariya Shcheglovitova during fieldwork in Aragua, Venezuela