Approved by Faculty Senate
University Studies Course Approval:
Department or Program: Biology
Course Number: BIOL 118
Number of Credits: 4
Course Title: General Biology
Catalog Description: An introductory course that promotes critical thinking about the process of studying living organisms. Students are exposed to a sampling of major living groups while utilizing the scientific method. Lecture and laboratory. Grade only. Offered each semester.
This is an existing course that has previously been approved by A2C2: Yes
This is a new course proposal: No.
Department contact Person for this course: Kimberly M. Bates
A2C2 requires 55 copies of the proposal
The proposed course is designed to satisfy the requirements in (select one area only):
Department Recommendation: Approved Yes Disapproved _____ Date 22 Sept 2000
Dean's Recommendation: Approved Disapproved Date
USS Recommendation: Approved Disapproved Date
A2C2 Recommendation: Approved Disapproved Date
Faculty Senate Recommendation: Approved Disapproved Date
Academic Vice President's Recommendation: Approved Disapproved Date
President's Decision: Approved Disapproved Date
Material Submitted for Course Approval
Overview of BIOL 118 General Biology. BIOL 118 General Biology has several purposes. First, it satisfies the needs of students with respect to the University Studies Program goals while providing enough information for education students who will someday be certified to teach K-12 students and who will need a rudimentary understanding of science. Second, it provides biological information for pre-nursing students who need a basic understanding of science in their subsequent classes. It is also a valuable course for pre-law students who are interested in knowing the parts and functions of the human body as well as simple DNA analysis interpretations. Thirdly, the course meets the needs of any student interested in the scientific process.
This course begins with a definition of biology and the scientific process. The scientific process is incorporated throughout the entire course and is the theme by which students can judge "good science" versus pseudo-science. The first week of class is devoted to defining biology, the scientific process, macro and microevolution and natural selection.
Next, the course proceeds to identify and understand the basic cell structure. Understanding the cell and how it works helps students visualize "where" in the cell certain processes are occurring. After cell structure, students are introduced to the cellular processes of metabolism, photosynthesis, and respiration. These topics are studied to reinforce the fact that energy metabolism is required for all life. DNA is the next topic and is taught as four distinct subjects. First, we discuss chromosomes and how they can be "cloned" to form new cells or be separated into gametes in order to reproduce (mitosis and meiosis). DNA is further studied using Mendelian genetics to teach students about how they inherit certain traits. Thirdly, students learn about the processes of replication, transcription and translation and how DNA "codes" for every protein in their body. Lastly, students gain a knowledge of genetic engineering and how it relates today in our society.
The next half of the course if devoted to "organismal" biology. Students learn about macro and microevolution and Natural Selection which leads to Speciation. Then students are introduced to the great "Diversity of Life" by looking at the different Kingdoms that inhabit our world. Each Kingdom is discussed and numerous examples are given that stress the incredible diversity of organisms, even among one Kingdom. Finally, the students are able to use their knowledge of biology to understand concepts as it relates to populations (population ecology).
General Biology 118 has a required laboratory component. The major foci of the laboratory are to A) reinforce scientific information learned in lecture B) to practice the process of science and C) to allow students to have "hands on" experiences with biological materials and concepts.