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Principles of Biology

Course NumberBIO 111W
Lab Hours45
Lecture Hours45
Course DescriptionPrerequisites: READING LEVEL 2 and WRITING LEVEL 2 and MATH LEVEL 2. Introduces the fundamental concepts underlying biology and the relevance of these concepts to the student as a member of our global society. Includes the basic chemistry of the cell, cell structure and metabolism, molecular biology, genetics, the origin and evolution of living things, and ecological principles. Applicable as science lecture and laboratory credit for non-majors. Not appropriate for biology majors. Credit may be earned in BIO 111W or BIO 111HW but not in both. (45-45)

Outcomes and Objectives

Demonstrate an understanding of the scientific process and logical reasoning.
  1. Describe basic assumptions in science.
  2. Explain why correlation does not imply causation.

Develop a simple experimental design as a means of investigation and as a way of thinking critically.
  1. Formulate a clear and testable hypothesis.
  2. Design an experiment to test the hypothesis (includes experimental groups and control group).
  3. Identify all variables (DV, IV and CVs).
  4. Collect and analyze data.
  5. Discuss the results and draw conclusions.
  6. Share experience gained.

Communicate about biological topics.
  1. Successfully read a passage of text to gather information.
  2. Employ writing to communicate ideas appropriate to the discipline.
  3. Demonstrate appropriate interpersonal skills in teamwork assignments.

Demonstrate an understanding of how living things differ from non-living and never living things.
  1. Identify the attributes of living things.
  2. Differentiate living from non-living and never living.

Demonstrate an understanding of the basic chemistry of life.
  1. List four major groups of organic molecules associated with living things.
  2. Describe general function of each major group of organic molecules.
  3. Explain factors affecting enzymes activity.
  4. Explain the difference between dehydration synthesis and hydrolysis.

Use technology for survey and/or scientific investigation.
  1. Use a microscope for cellular identification.
  2. Use computers or calculators for data analysis.
  3. Use other instruments appropriate to the field of biology.

Demonstrate an understanding of basic cellular structures and functions.
  1. Identify cell types.
  2. Compare cellular structures between cell types.
  3. Describe functions of cellular structures.
  4. Discuss basic chemicals pathways of cellular respiration.
  5. Discuss basic chemicals pathways of photosynthesis.

Demonstrate an understanding of how cells use genetic information:
  1. DNA<->RNA->Protein:
    1. Define terms common to DNA>RNA>Protein.
    2. Explain the structure and replication of DNA.
    3. Explain the processes of transcription and translation.
    4. Describe factors controlling gene expression.
    5. Discuss how mutations affect protein synthesis.
  2. Mitosis and Cancer:
    1. Describe the events of the cell cycle.
    2. Describe how a mitotic cell division results in genetically identical daughter cells.
    3. Explain cellular basis of cancer.
  3. Meiosis and Genetic Variations:
    1. Explain stages of meiotic division.
    2. Explain the role of sexual reproduction in genetic diversity.
    3. Explain how chromosomal abnormality can occur by meiosis.
  4. Heredity:
    1. Define terms common to basic genetics.
    2. Explain single and double factor case of inheritance.
    3. Explain common cases of inheritance beyond Mendelian genetics
    4. Describe epigenetic effects on gene expression.

Demonstrate an understanding of how population genetics and evolution relate to each other.
  1. Population Genetics:
    1. Define terms common to population genetics.
    2. List three methods used to distinguish species from one another.
    3. List factors affecting genetic diversity in the population of species.
    4. Describe how the Hardy-Weinberg concept is applicable.
  2. Evolution and Natural Selection:
    1. Describe the development of evolutionary thought from historical perspectives.
    2. Describe how the concepts of evolution and adaptation are related.
    3. Explain how natural selection works.
    4. Describe mechanisms of evolution other than natural selection.
    5. Describe how human evolution is supported by scientific evidence.

Demonstrate an understanding of the principles of ecology and how they relate to the human community.
  1. Define an ecosystem.
  2. Describe the structure of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.
  3. Explain how energy drives geochemical cycle of elements in an ecosystem.
  4. Discuss pyramids of energy, biomass and numbers of an ecosystem.
  5. Discuss the effects of human activities on ecosystems.
  6. Explain why precipitation and temperature and/or altitude can influence the type of biome existing in a given area.
  7. Identify the characteristics that vary between biomes and provide examples.
  8. Explain the competitive exclusion principle.
  9. Describe the process of succession.

Demonstrate an understanding of the tree-of-life as a scientific hypothesis accounting for the development and evolution of life on earth.
  1. Describe spontaneous generation and biogenesis.
  2. Explain experiments of historical significance in supporting spontaneous generation and biogenesis.

Demonstrate an understanding of the classification and evolution of organisms:
  1. List the domains of organisms.
  2. Classify organisms into correct kingdoms for each domain.
  3. Describe the scientific method for naming organisms.
  4. Explain the difference between taxonomy and phylogeny.
  5. Distinguish major characteristics of members of the three domains.

Demonstrate an understanding of the health implications of human anatomy, physiology, nutrition and reproduction.
  1. List parts of the digestive, circulatory and respiratory systems.
  2. Explain basic functions of digestive, circulatory and respiratory systems.
  3. Explain the principles of healthy and proper diet.
  4. Describe the role of proper diet and regular exercise on achieving physical fitness.
  5. Explain what factor determines sex in humans.
  6. Discuss mechanisms of sexual hormonal balance in males and females.
  7. List the leading methods of contraception and their effectiveness in preventing births and STDs.

Demonstrate an understanding of how biology relates to other fields of knowledge and application.
  1. Explain how biology relates to other branches of science.
  2. Explain how biology relates to social sciences and Humanities.
  3. Explain how biology relates to arts and business.

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