61 biology glossaries

From general biology terms to specific human and microbiology, these glossaries will probably help with that text you are translating. If you are interested in the botany or zoology branches of biology, we have created separate categories for them.

General biology/miscellaneous

Pearson-Prentice Hall Scool – This is a glossary of biology terms and their abbreviations. Although you may not be able to find here very specific terms, it is very useful if you are looking for more general ones.

Cliff’s Notes – Cliff’s Notes is one of the Internet’s most famous study resources. In their Biology glossary you can find general terms and their brief, easy to understand definitions.

Estrella Mountain Community College – This website has put together a very large number of terms and their brief definitions; if you haven’t been able to find what you were looking for in the previous glossaries, then chances are you will find it here.

SSC (Scottish Sensory Centre) – This is also a general biology glossary, but the explanations are given in British Sign Language through short video clips.

Biology Online – Although this is not a glossary per se, it can prove useful if you are looking for a very specific term. There is no actual list of terms, just a search bar you can use to find your word, but this can prove useful if you know exactly what you are looking for.

UCMP (University of California Museum of Paleontology) – This glossary focuses on multiple areas of biology: phylogenetics, geology, biochemistry, cell biology, ecology, life history, zoology, botany and paleogeography. You can search for a term either by accessing the specific sub-category or by browsing it in the alphabetic list.

Lifescience – This online glossary contains words from a wide range of fields related to biology (anatomy, evolutionary biology, genetics, immunology, etc.) However, the words are not arranged according to their sub-category, but only in alphabetic order.

Macroevolution – This glossary will not only offer you very good explanations of the terms you are looking for, but, when necessary, it will also provide you with an image that will help you better understand the written explanation.

MHHE (McGraw Hill Higher Education) – This is not so much of a general glossary, but one focused on plants, animals, marine biology and the environmental science.

RCN – This is a very well-researched resource when it comes to biology terminology. What makes it so great is the fact that the explanations are both very professional (there are even images included where necessary) and fairly easy to understand (even someone who is not working in the field can understand them quite easily).

University of Cincinatti – In addition to offering easy-to-understand explanations, this glossary will also offer the pronunciation of certain terms, which is useful especially for those terms with a Greek/ Latin origin.

All Words – Again, this is more of a dictionary rather than a glossary. However, it will be useful if you are looking for different morphological forms of certain terms.

ACARA (Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority) – This glossary does not contain a lot of terms. Still, the terms you will find here will help you understand the other (more specific) terms much better.

Skinners’ Biology – A very well-researched dictionary, with a fairly large number of words, focusing mostly on human and animal biology, but containing terms related to other fields of biology as well.

MRI Pathology Research Lab – Again, this is a glossary that focuses mostly on human biology, but you will be able to find here terms related to the world of plants and animals as well.

Webref – This glossary contains an impressive number of terms, so whatever it is that you are looking for, it is very likely that you will find it here.

Biology Reference – This resource is very, very well-researched. For every term you will find an extensive explanation, bibliography and even famous names related to the study of that particular term.

Buzzle – This glossary contains words related to zoology, botany and microbiology. You can search for a word according to the sub-category it belongs to (and each category has its own alphabetic list of terms).

University of Manitoba – This is a glossary of basic concepts and principles of biology. If you want to acquire further information, each term has a link that will lead you to a lesson in which it is explained more thoroughly.

W. W. Norton & Company – An audio glossary where each term is accompanied by an explanation and where you can also learn how to pronounce the words. You will need a Flash plugin to access the pronunciation function.

Berkeley Lab – Although the number of words listed in this glossary is fairly small, the explanations for each of them are excellently done in the form of videos.

CBD (Convention on Biological Diversity) – This glossary focuses on invasion biology and, although it does not list a very large number of words, it is quite useful when looking for basic terminology in this particular sub-field. .

CK-12 – A very good resource when you are searching for general biology terminology. If you sign in on this website, you can even download certain parts of the glossary.

Biotechterms – This glossary focuses specifically on terms related to biotechnology.

AAMCC (The American Association of Medical Chronobiology and Chronotherapeutics) – If you are looking for terms connected to chronobiology and chronotherapeutics, then this is the right website to visit.

Fossilmall – This glossary is centred around fossils and the sciences related to them: biology, geology, palaeontology, paleobiology and evolution.

Wiktionary – Although, in general, the terminology related to invasion biology is not yet very well known, this website attempts to explain the most encountered terms in the field.

Nature – A glossary in which you will be able to find terminology connected to systems biology.

AIMBE (American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering) – This is a glossary focusing on medical and biological engineering. The explanations given are well-detailed and some of the terms contain cross-reference links that will help you gain a deeper understanding

University of San Diego – A glossary containing a large number of words connected to developmental biology. Although it was first started in 1995, terms have been added ever since, so the glossary is not outdated.

Angelfire – This is a general biology glossary with a large number of words explained in an easy-to-understand way.


About – On this page you can find three glossaries tightly connected among themselves: one focusing on genetics, one focusing on mitosis and one focused on prefixes and suffixes used in biology.

American Society of Hematology – If you are searching for a reliable source of information on molecular biology terminology, then this is the right place to search.

GenScript – This is a glossary of molecular biology related terms. You can search for a specific word using the search box or you can look it up in the alphabetic list.

NCBI (National Center for Biotechnology Information) – A glossary of molecular cell biology terminology with cross-reference links that will help you better understand the given explanations.

Wikibooks – A glossary of cell biology with a fair number of words and brief, easy-to-understand explanations.

CHI (Cambridge Healthtech Institute) – This glossary focuses on biopharmaceutical cell biology terminology. However, if you want to search for additional information on related topics, the site provides you with a list of related glossaries (such as microscopy, for instance).

UNSW (University of New South Wales) – This glossary of cell biology terminology has been built for educational purposes (particularly for undergraduate students). Therefore, you can expect the definitions given here to be quite easy to understand.

Feltham Press – This is a glossary of terms related to epigenesis and systems biology. Apart from a brief explanation, you can choose to be redirected to a Wikipedia page that will teach you more about a specific term.

JCU (James Cook University) – This glossary contains a list of the most encountered terms in cell biology.

M.Tevfik Dorak – This website has put up a list of the most popular terms encountered in the field of evolutionary biology and genetics.

Oxford Genetics – A glossary with the name Oxford on it can only suggest a good resource. This glossary focuses on molecular biology and while the definitions are quite brief, one definitely needs some previous knowledge in order to fully access them

McGraw Hill Higher Education – In addition to a long list of terms connected to the field of microbiology, you can also find here a pronunciation guide that may be very useful for you.

The Synthetic Bestiary – A glossary containing the most basic terms connected to synthetic biology and genetic engineering.

Palomar College – If you are searching for terms related to heredity/ genetics, then this website will prove to be a very good resource.

Exploratorium – Again, this is a glossary of basic terminology related to genetics. However, the number of words listed here is slightly larger than that of the previously-mentioned glossaries.

HSCI (Harvard Stem Cell Institute) – This glossary lists down basic terms connected to stem cells. Since it is made under the Harvard brand, you can expect this resource to be a very reliable one.

NCI (National Cancer Institute) – Here you will be able to find an extensive list of terms related to biological information (and the Delila System). Pictures are provided and so are sub-categories of a certain term. Furthermore, the cross-reference links are meant to make understanding a term deeper.

ISSCR (International Society for Stem Cell Research) – This is a glossary centred on stem cell biology and its basic terminology.

AACR (American Association for Cancer Research) – If you need to find out what a term related to cancer means, then this is the right place to look it up.

Cortland – A short list of terms related to herpetology. The explanations are as short as the list itself, but that might make them much easier to understand.

The Online Literature Library – This glossary is centred on Charles Darwin’s Origins of Species and its specific vocabulary. Therefore, it can prove useful both when searching for terms strictly connected to this book and when searching for terms generally connected to evolutionary biology.

Birgid Schlindwein – This is probably one of the most complete Internet resources when it comes to genetics terminology. So, if you haven’t found what you were looking for in the previous glossaries, then there is a very high chance that you will find it here.

Think Quest – This is another glossary of cellular biology terminology. Although the number of words listed down is quite short, the website also provides you with links of websites focused on related fields (such as cell reproduction, cell types, prokaryotes and eukaryotes, etc.)

Public Broadcasting Service – This list of terms is mainly centred on evolutionary biology. Although the definitions may seem rather difficult to understand at first, the cross-reference links will help a lot

Georgia Reproductive Specialists – The large number of words and the comprehensive explanations of the terms make this a great resource when you are looking for terms connected to infertility.

National Human Genome Research Institute – One of the best glossaries on genetics. It is so interesting that even after you have found the term you were looking for you’ll be tempted to stick for a while longer and explore this resource. Each term comes with a definition and pronunciation and some of them are accompanied by illustrations and 3-D animations to help you understand each entry.

The University of British Columbia – Although this website looks basic, it does its job very well: that of providing definitions for the most commonly encountered terms in phylogenetics.

Portlandpress – Biochemistry and molecular terminology have come together on this website’s glossary. You can either search for your term according to its alphabetic order or look it up using the search box.

University of Michigan – This is a molecular biology glossary. The definitions given for the terms listed here are sometimes rather difficult if you are not fully acquainted with some basic terminology of the field.

Learner – This glossary contains various sub-categories (such as genomics, neurobiology, sex and gender, and so on). However, the number of words listed under each sub-category is quite small and it resumes to very basic terms.