Office: 428 Boyd
Lecture: BSC 401, MWF 9:00-9:50 a.m.
My overarching goal
for this course is convey a broad, conceptual understanding of
organismal biology. Please understand the scope,
depth and challenge levels of the course are designed to
prepare students for further study in the sciences and then
careers in life science or related fields. This is an
LAE course but it is designed with the assumption that
students have plans for professional careers in the life
sciences or related fields (e.g., medicine).
Please consider this carefully if you are planning to major in
areas outside the sciences. Also note that routine access to
the text will be vital for academic success. The good
news is that we use this text for all the introduction courses
for life science majors. The bad news is that the text
is very expensive (~ $160.00). Again consider that
information in your decision to take this course.
Students should enhance their appreciation and understanding in the following general areas:
(1) Pre- and
post-Darwinian world views
(2) The nature and mechanics of evolutionary theory.
(3) Mechanisms that drive change in gene pools within populations and how variation is maintained within a population.
(4) Mechanisms of speciation
(5) Methods of classification and recent reclassification of the animal kingdom based on new molecular DNA evidence.
(6) Evolutionary relatedness among the selected phyla and classes.
Clearly, evolution is an important theme in this course - and for good reason. Evolution provides one of the most important and exciting theoretical frameworks in all of science and certainly provides the conceptual foundation upon which all of modern biology rests. Most folks have "kind of an idea" of what evolution is all about, but few people have a solid command of even its most basic principles. In addition, there is a lot of misunderstanding about what evolution says and what it doesn't say. Much of that misunderstanding springs from a more general problem many people have in understanding how science works.
A Word About Our
Topic: Some people feel that
accepting the ideas associated with evolution places them at
odds with their religious or philosophical beliefs (on the
other hand, many others see no inherent conflict). My goal
here is not that you come out of this course believing
in the theory of evolution, however I will expect you to understand
the basic theoretical principles underpinning modern
evolutionary biology as well as current ideas about the
history of life that we will advance through lectures,
reading, and discussion.
Course Learning Objectives: Course Leaning Objectives extend directly from the Biology Department's Learning Goals. In particular, the learning objectives for this course emphasize Biology Department Learning Goals 1, 3 & 4. As a result of successfully completing this course, students will:
Course Design and Structure:
The course is designed to
progress through a carefully selected array of topics.
Topics for class sessions and associated readings are
presented in the classroom schedule that follows later in this
syllabus. I will lecture during many class sessions
however some sessions will feature demonstrations or
discussions of articles or discussion board
assignments. Several short quizzes are already
planned, more may be added if it appears that class learning
is not keeping an appropriate pace.
There are a number of
important resources discussed below but foremost among them is
your text. It is an excellent book and I expect that you
will invest a great deal of time in your text reading. Please note: we can't cover
everything from the reading in class. Therefore, expect
that tests will have questions drawn directly from text
reading and any other materials I've assigned - even if we haven't directly discussed the material in class!
In some cases coaches, other staff or faculty members have taken to sending out documents listing names of students who are not going to be attending classes because of a field trip, athletic event or other college sanctioned activity. Please Note: I will not review each of these documents and then compare the names with each of my class rosters - sorry but that would require a huge amount of wasted time. Therefore understand that if you are going to miss class, it is your responsibility to email me with an explanation prior to the class meeting. Please be sure to include reference to the class you are taking with me and make sure I receive this information 1 week before the event. Failure to comply with this policy will mean you will be counted as absent for the class.
Course grades will be based on the following formula:
|Test IV - Comprehensive Final
& Short Assignments
|Class & Event Participation||5%|
Overview of Syllabus.
Assignment on Blackboard due at 5 pm
Evidence of Evolution - Ch. 22.3
Intro to Mastering Biology
Homework Due 11 pm 9/02.
The Smallest Unit of Evolution & Genetic Variation
- Ch. 23.0 & 23.1
Biology Homework for Chapter 22 Due 11 pm 9/07.
Lecture: Hardy-Weinberg Theory - Ch. 23.2
Lecture: Hardy-Weinberg Theory - Ch. 23.2
Lecture: Natural Selection, Genetic Drift & Gene Flow - Ch. 23.3
Selection Is the Primary Mechanism of Adaptive Evolution
- Ch. 23.4
Mastering Biology Homework for Chapter 23 Due at 11 pm 9/16
Lecture: Finish Exam I Coverage & Review
Exam I (Chapter 22, Chapter 23)
|Exam I Review and Writing
DVD & Conferences: Great Transformations
Discussion: Willingham Papers
Overview of Allopatric & Sympatric
Speciation - Ch. 24.1 & Ch. 24.2.
Lecture: The History of Life on Earth - Ch. 25.1
The Fossil Record Documents the History of Life - Ch. 25.2
Lecture: The Fossil Record Documents the History of Life - Ch. 25.2
Lecture: Key Events in Life's History - Ch. 25.3
Rise and Fall of Groups Reflect Differences in
Speciation and Extinction Events - Ch. 25.4
Lecture: Major Changes in Body Form Result from Developmental Genes - Ch. 25.5 & 25.6. Mastering Biology Homework for Chapter 25 due at 5 pm
Exam II Review and Writing
Meetings with Students
Plant Structure - Ch. 35.0 & 35.1
Lecture: Plant Structure - Ch. 35.1
- Internship Poster Night - 7 pm
Lecture: Plant Meristems & Primary Growth- Ch. 35.2 & 35.3
Primary Growth- Ch. 35.2 & 35.3
Lecture: Plant Secondary Growth - Ch. 35.4 - Mastering Biology Homework Due for Chapter 35 at 5 pm
Lecture: Animal Attributes - Ch. 32.0, 32.1
History of Animals - Ch. 32.2
Lecture: Animal Body Plans - Ch. 32.3
Lecture: Animal Body Plans & New Views of Animal Phylogeny - Ch. 32.3 & 32.4 - Mastering Biology Homework for Chapter 32 Due at 5 pm
Lecture: Introduction to Invertebrates & Sponges - Ch. 33.0 & 33.1 -
Lecture: Cnidarians - Ch. 33.2
Lecture: Lophotrochozoans - Ch. 33.3
| Lecture: Lophotrochozoans
- Ch. 33.3
No Class: Thanksgiving
No Class: Thanksgiving
Exam Writing Day - Mastering Biology Homework for Chapter 33 Due at 5 pm