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Dr. William Irwin

Dr. William Irwin
Faculty, Science
5901 College Road, Room C-209
Key West, FL 33040
Phone: 305-809-3129


Doctor of Philosophy in Biology - University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Bachelor of Science in Biology - University of Massachusetts at Amherst
Associate of Science in Electronic Technology - Springfield Technical Community College

Educational Philosophy

My goal is to train individuals to learn to understand and integrate unifying concepts rather than to memorize distinct pieces of information. To this end, I engage students with practical and applied examples in order to study theoretical ideas. For example, my students learn about the digestive system and metabolism in part by examining the nutritional content of the foods they regularly consume, study natural selection by comparing and contrasting organisms as they exist in their natural habitats, and examine alternative energy and sustainable agriculture by debating the pros and cons of various technologies.

Teaching and Scholarship

Current and Recent Courses:
BSC 1085 and BSC 1085L - Anatomy and Physiology I and Lab
BSC 1086 and BSC 1086L - Anatomy and Physiology II and Lab
BSC 1020 - Human Body
PCB 2030 - Environmental Biology
BSC 1010 and BSC 1010L - Principles of Biology and Lab
BSC 1011 and BSC 1011L - Principles of Biology II and Lab
BSC 1005 - Survey of Biology
OCB 2723C Nutrition of Mariculture Species (first offering: Spring 2013)
College Service:
Phi Theta Kappa - Rho Epsilon Chapter, Faculty Advisor
Strategic Planning Committee, Chair
Faculty Presentation Series Committee, Chair
Information Technology Planning Committee
eTextbook Committee
Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee

Professional Activities & Affiliations

Marine Mammal Conservancy - Qualified Staff
Florida Keys SPCA - Volunteer
Key West Wildlife Center - Volunteer
Florida Keys Environmental Coalition - Scientific Advisor
Danger Charters - Staff Biologist
Reef Relief - Member
International Sea Turtle Society - Member


Irwin, W.P. and Lohmann, K. J. (2005). Disruption of magnetic orientation behavior in hatchling loggerhead sea turtles by magnetic pulse. Journal of Comparative Physiology A 191: 475-480.
Irwin, W.P., Horner, A.J. and Lohmann, K. J. (2004). Magnetic field distortions produced by protective cages around sea turtle nests: unintended consequences for orientation and navigation? 
Biological Conservation 118(1): 117-120.
Irwin, W.P. and Lohmann, K. J. (2003). 
Magnet-induced disorientation in hatchling loggerhead sea turtles.  
Journal of Experimental Biology 206(3): 497-501. (Issue cover article)
Irwin, W. P. (2004). Magnetic orientation and magneto reception in hatchling loggerhead sea turtles. Ph.D. Dissertation, University of North Carolina,
Chapel Hill, NC, 150pp.


Dr. Bill Irwin has a passion for making science accessible to anyone by using analogies and real-world examples to translate complex ideas and information into material that is appropriate for various learning levels. He has devoted over 25 years to education and science though service as a college professor, as a staff member or volunteer with various educational institutions and as a manager or director of several profit and non-profit companies. As an and avid diver, boater, amateur athlete and animal rescuer and rehabber, Dr. Irwin enjoys a busy life in the Florida Keys. 

Current Projects & Interests

This year's projects at FKCC include:
- creating additional distance-learning (online) course opportunities for our students;
- working with colleagues to develop and launch a faculty presentation series in the Florida Keys;
- working with faculty member Hillary Parmentier to create collaborative, immersion-style learning opportunities for our students;
- working with faculty members Sheri Hitz and Dr. Bob Bullis to integrate critical technologies into science laboratories;
- contributing to the design and construction of a new Biology laboratory;
- and developing ways to promote alternative energy and sustainable agriculture technologies and integrating eco-friendly practices into daily campus life.