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University Bulletin
Undergraduate Degree Programs

These course descriptions are not being updated as of August 1, 2016. Current course descriptions are maintained in LionPATH.

Biology (BIOL)

BIOL 011 (GN) Introductory Biology I (3) An introduction to fundamental biological topics (including cells, energy transduction, genetics, evolution, organismal structure/function, ecology) for non-majors biology-related fields.

BIOL 011 Introductory Biology I (3)

(BA) This course meets the Bachelor of Arts degree requirements.

The twelve primary topic areas within Biology 11 are: An introduction to major themes within the course, defining life, and how natural selection operates through differential reproduction. All organisms are composed of matter and must obey the laws of chemistry - a review of basic chemical principles, the study of water and carbon-based macromolecules, the building blocks of organisms. The cell is the fundamental unit of life - a detailed study of the structure and function of eukaryotic cells. Organisms require energy to maintain organization - an exploration of the processes of photosynthesis, the conversion of light energy into chemical bond energy, and cellular respiration, the production of ATP. All cells arise from previously existing cells - a discussion of mitosis and meiosis. Genes carry information between generations - an examination of the principles of Mendelian genetics and their application to human disorders. The structure of DNA, how it codes for information in proteins, and the effect of mutations are explored. This history of life on earth, a discussion of the role of natural selection in populations and speciation. Plants are the only multicellular eukaryotes that photosynthesize - an inquiry into their evolution, function, structure, reproduction and response to the environment. Animals are multicellular eukaryotes that must acquire their energy/nutrients from other organisms - an exploration of the basics of the animal body plan and two human organ systems. Organisms must interact with their environment - a discussion of energy flows and nutrient cycling in ecosystems, as well as ecosystem distributions. Interactions among communities of species can be complex and these relationships will be investigated. Humans have an increasing impact on the environment, affecting all aspects of the world in which we live - an examination of human activities and solutions to environmental damage we have caused. The target audience is students who are majoring in biology-related fields, such as some of Agriculture (not biology majors). This serves as a foundation course for students who require a solid grounding in the fundamentals of biology before taking more advanced courses in their major. The course will serve as breadth course in biology for non-science majors, fulfilling a three-credit GN requirement. Evaluation of course performance is done through five in-class tests, in-class ALE activities (10 required during the semester), and an ecological footprint.

General Education: GN
Diversity: None
Bachelor of Arts: Natural Sciences
Effective: Fall 2003

Note : Class size, frequency of offering, and evaluation methods will vary by location and instructor. For these details check the specific course syllabus.


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