Brief History of the Department
The Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology was known as Department of Biochemistry until 9th December, 2015 when the proposal for a change of name was approved by the University Governing Council at its 243th sitting. The re-naming became imperative, firstly, to accommodate the ever-expanding fields of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology which together forms the bedrock of all the other Life Science disciplines. Secondly, is to keep in line with global trends in the discipline as recommended by the International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (IUBMB) and the Nigerian Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (NSBMB). However, the history of the Department dated as far back as 1969 when the University decided, based on the report of a committee, to amalgamate the existing Department of Zoology and Botany into a giant Department called Biological Sciences, which would also include Biochemistry, Microbiology and Genetics. All the five programmes existed as units in the Department of Biological Sciences. Each unit graduated students in Biology with specialization in Biochemistry, Botany, e.t.c. (e.g. B.Sc. Biology with specialization in Biochemistry). At some point, Applied Biology was introduced as a specialization in Biological Sciences but was again removed after a few sessions.
Since its inception as a full-fledged Department, the Curriculum of the Department has been revised many times with the last one in 2015 in line with NUC minimum standard as well as global trends. These revisions were necessary in line with the international growth and development in the science of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.
Right from the inception of Biochemistry as a unit in Biological Sciences, the Department was entrusted with the task of teaching Biochemistry courses to various allied Departments and Faculties. These include Biochemistry for Faculties of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Technology (Food Science and Technology), Departments of Botany, Zoology, and Microbiology. Over the years, the Department of Biochemistry at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife has graduated many students and the Department is proud to say that the Alumni hold their heads high in various works of life they find themselves owing largely to the solid background they acquired from the Department and by extension the University.