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Course Descriptions

Biology, Environmental Science & Health Science


BI100/100G TOPICS IN BIOLOGY (4). A study of some of the areas of biology most relevant to today’s students, such as ecology, sustainability, genetics, or evolution. (Intended for general education.) May be repeated when topics vary. May be designated as global when topic is appropriate. Laboratory

BI130 FIRST YEAR SEMINAR IN BIOLOGY (1). Biology is a discipline with a wide breadth, from molecular biology to ecosystems ecology, with an array of career choices. Different disciplines, particularly for those careers that require professional school or post-undergraduate studies, vary in the specific undergraduate education they require. This course enables a student to explore different career paths in the biological sciences and to determine what course of study will best prepare them to meet their educational goals. The course also introduces the student to time management and study skills. Finally, the course introduces students to reading and analyzing biological research.

BI131 HUMAN NUTRITION (4). Studies the basic principles of nutrition and their application to good health. Applied topics include physical activity, pregnancy, age-related changes, weight control and other contemporary issues. Laboratory

BI203 HUMAN BIOLOGY (4). A survey of how the human body functions. The course will start with molecules and work up to organ systems and the body as a whole. Practical aspects of human biology will be discussed including nutrition, the effects of exercise on the body, reproduction and disease prevention. Laboratory

BI230 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES I (4). The relationship between cellular, organelle and molecular structure to the basic activities that all living things undertake. Includes basic biochemistry, membrane and 119 organelle structure and function, cellular reproduction, enzymes and metabolism and the central dogma. Students learn about the nature of science by undertaking open-ended research projects using modern investigative laboratory techniques, by reading and analyzing the work of other scientists, and by preparing both written and oral presentations of their project findings. Laboratory

BI231 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES II (4). This course is a comparative study of the major anatomical structures and physiological processes of living organisms. Basic taxonomy and major life cycles are covered, as well as how organisms solve problems of fluid transport, gas exchange, excretion of waste, water/salt balance, nutrition, communication and movement. The course also focuses on the study of evolutionary processes and the interaction of organisms with each other and with their environment. Topics include natural selection, speciation, behavior, dynamics of populations, species interactions, ecosystem and global dynamics, and conservation biology. Laboratory

BI330 ANIMAL DIVERSITY (4). An overview of the biological diversity of animals and protozoa. Learn general principles of evolution, ecology, classification, systematics, and animal body plans. Understand the biology of all groups of animals, including the basic characteristics of each group and the evolutionary relationships among group members. Examine the current global status of animal diversity. Prerequisite: BI231. Laboratory

BI333 PLANT BIOLOGY (4). Structure, function, taxonomy, and ecology of plants. Topics include photosynthesis, reproduction, hormones, nutrition, water relations, evolution, and identification. Laboratory. Prerequisites: BI230 and BI231.

BI336 EVOLUTION (4). The one unifying theory of biology is the theory of evolution by natural selection. Topics include natural selection speciation, biogeography, population genetics, character evolution, and macroevolution. Prerequisite: BI230 and BI231. Laboratory

BI338 VERTEBRATE ANATOMY (4). Study of the comparative anatomy of vertebrates and their invertebrate chordate relatives. Evolutionary trends in development, structure and function are studied to understand the various adaptations vertebrates have made to fit their environment. Prerequisite: BI231. Laboratory

BI340 ANIMAL PHYSIOLOGY (4). A comparative study of physiologic systems in all animals, emphasizing vertebrate species. Prerequisite: BI231. Laboratory

BI343 MICROBIOLOGY AND IMMUNOLOGY (4). A survey of the microbial world including: microbial growth, metabolism, molecular biology and genetics; medical, food and water microbiology; and microbial taxonomy. Also includes the vertebrate immune system and other defense mechanisms. Inquiry based laboratory activities enhance students’ ability to ask and answer scientific questions. Prerequisite: BI230. Laboratory

BI344 DISEASE ECOLOGY(4). A study of infectious diseases in populations with emphasis on transmission, pathology, and epidemiology. Diseases of significant medical, veterinary and wildlife importance are the focus of this course. Laboratory activities include methods of diagnosis, modeling disease outbreaks, and techniques for minimizing disease transmission. Prerequisites: BI230 and BI231. Laboratory

BI346 GENETICS (4). A study of formal and molecular genetics. Topics include Mendelian genetics, epistatic systems, viral and bacterial genetics, DNA structure, gene mapping, transcription, translation, gene structure and regulation and eukaryotic genome structure. Prerequisite: BI230. Laboratory

BI347 ANIMAL BEHAVIOR (4). This course will help you understand the remarkable behaviors of animals from an evolutionary perspective. We will explore how scientists study animal behavior and evaluate the scientific rigor of animal behavior studies. We will draw on examples from across the animal kingdom to illustrate the complex mechanisms underlying behavioral adaptations, with a focus on how 121 behavior is shaped by the evolutionary forces of natural and sexual selection. Topics include the acquisition of resources, enemy avoidance, mate choice, communication, and parental care and social behavior. We will also examine the roles of genes, the environments, and learning in regulating behavioral diversity, as well as in the domestication process. Prerequisite: BI231. Laboratory

BI349 PARASITOLOGY (4). A survey of the anatomy, life cycles, modes of infection and effects on hosts of selected animal and protistan parasites. Emphasis is placed on parasites of medical and veterinary importance. Laboratory activities include methods for diagnosis of parasitic infections and projects to reinforce elements of proper experimental design. Prerequisite: BI231. Laboratory

BI350/350G ADVANCED TOPICS IN BIOLOGY (4). The advanced study of some of the areas of biology, such as physiology, pharmacology, and health science not offered as regular courses in the biology curriculum. May be repeated when topics vary. May be designated as global when topic is appropriate. Prerequisites: BI230 and BI231. May include a laboratory. 

BI380 RESEARCH PARTICIPATION (2). Student participation in a research project that is either part of a faculty member’s ongoing research or of the student’s own design. May be taken four times for credit. Taught Pass/No Pass. Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

BI431 BIOCHEMISTRY I: PRINCIPLES OF BIOCHEMISTRY (4). The molecular properties and biological significance of proteins, nucleic acids, lipids, carbohydrates, amino acids and polysaccharides are studied. A detailed study of enzyme activity, metabolic pathways and bioenergetics is considered. Study of eukaryotic cell structure and function is undertaken along with an in-depth study of translation. Prerequisites: BI230 and CH231. Laboratory

BI434 BIOCHEMISTRY II: MOLECULAR BIOLOGY (4). Basic concepts of the central dogma will be studied. Gene expression in eukaryotes, regulation at the transcriptional and post-transcriptional 122 levels will also be emphasized. The laboratory will focus on basic molecular techniques such as nucleic acid isolation, gel electrophoresis, cloning techniques, Southern and Western techniques, and PCR techniques. Prerequisite: BI230. Laboratory

BI493 BIOLOGY RESEARCH EXPERIENCE (4). Students find, read, interpret and analyze primary scientific literature in the context of a research project. Students will design and conduct one or more small scale experiments related to the research question and present the results and conclusions in oral and written professional presentation formats. Prerequisites: BI230, BI231, Biology major or minor, and Junior or Senior standing. Laboratory

BI494 BIOLOGY RESEARCH PRACTICUM (2-4). Students conduct an independent research project under the supervision of a faculty member. The project is usually an extension of a research project initiated in BI493, Biology Research Experience. Students study appropriate background literature, design and conduct experiments, analyze data and present data and conclusions in one or more professional presentation formats. Prerequisites: BI493 and permission of instructor.

Environmental Science

ES101G ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE (4). This course examines the interaction of humans and the environment, within the context of key ecological and evolutionary principles. Topics include conservation, ecotoxicology, agriculture, climate change, natural resource use, environmental ethics, environmental policy and sustainability. Intended for general education. Laboratory

ES330/330G TOPICS IN FIELD BIOLOGY (4). An introductory series of lectures on campus will be followed by a one- to two-week field research experience at biological field stations. Topics include tropical ecology and marine biology. May be repeated when topics vary. May be designated as global when topic is appropriate. Prerequisite: BI231. Laboratory

ES332 ECOLOGY AND CONSERVATION BIOLOGY (4). This course covers physiological, population, community and ecosystem ecology with a focus on methods of field study and conservation biology. Application of ecological and evolutionary principles to real world environmental issues. Topics include nutrient cycling, biomes, population dynamics, species interaction, restoration and landscape ecology. The course will also investigate the social, economic, and political aspects of applied ecology. Prerequisite: BI231. Laboratory

ES350/ES350G ADVANCED TOPICS IN ECOLOGY (4). Advanced study in areas of ecology and/or environmental science. May be repeated when topics vary. May be repeated when topics vary. May be designated as global when topic is appropriate. Prerequisite: BI231. May include a laboratory. 

Health Science

HS231 MEDICAL TERMINOLOGY (4). This course is designed for those students who intend to pursue careers in medicine, nursing, dentistry, microbiology, pharmacy, physical therapy, athletic training and medical technology. This course will teach the prefixes, suffixes and combining forms necessary to form proper medical terminology. It will include the rules for proper medical term formation, pronunciation, spelling, and definition of basic terms and abbreviations used in medical records. It will also include learning common pharmaceutical and anatomical terms and terms related to symptoms, diagnosis, surgeries, therapies and diagnostic tests. Prerequisites: Sophomore, junior or senior standing and Biology or Athletic Training major.

HS344 HUMAN ANATOMY (4). This course primarily studies the anatomy of the human body with an introduction to function. It is intended for those planning a career in the health sciences. Topics include basic cell structure, organization of tissues, organs and systems, and detailed gross anatomy of each of the major organ systems. Laboratories center on identification of structures and their parts. Prerequisites: BI102, BI131G-NS, BI231 or AT130. Laboratory

HS345 HUMAN PHYSIOLOGY (4). This course primarily studies the physiology of the human body. It is intended for those planning a career in the health sciences. Topics include basic cell function, the mechanisms of function for each of the organ systems and their integrated function within the organism. Homoestatic mechanisms are systems stressed. Laboratories utilize computer simulations as well as hands on, minimally invasive physiologic activities. Prerequisite: HS344. Laboratory

HS350/350G ADVANCED TOPICS IN HEALTH SCIENCE (4). The advanced study of some of the areas of biology, such as physiology, pharmacology, and health science not offered as regular courses in the biology curriculum. May be repeated when topics vary. May be designated as global when topic is appropriate.  Prerequisites: BI230 and BI231. May include a laboratory.