Principles of Biology (full pdf copy)

Course Description:

The purpose of this course is to introduce the biological world. It is intended that students completing this course will have knowledge of the biological world and the ability to understand material written for a non-scientific audience in any area of biology. It includes a laboratory, many of which are outside, to expose students to biology in a hands-on manner.
Topics include:

Evolution - natural selection & human evolution
Ecology - population & community ecology, animal diversity
Biological diversity
Plant biology - structure/reproduction & photosynthesis
Genetics - meiosis/mitosis
Cell and development
Human Physiology - nervous, endocrine, cardiovascular & digestion systems

Learning goals:

•  Ability to observe and describe nature accurately.

• Ability to apply the scientific method: observe a problem, collect data, use deductive reasoning to explain the outcome of the experiment and to make predictions.

•  Ability to apply problem-solving to learning.

• Ability to apply quantitative reasoning to biological questions.

Course goals:

•  To understand biology as a framework of related concepts. Student should appreciate not only the connections within biology but also the connections between biology and other scientific disciplines.

• To be conversant in general biological, ecological, evolutionary biology and human physiological concepts that will allow students to read newspapers and participate in informed discussions.

Course Materials:

The Lab manual for Principles of Biology (new each year) is required and will be handed out in class. The manual cannot be bought in any bookstore.

A textbook is NOT a requirement for this course. All tests will be based on lecture material.

Grading Scheme :

In-Lecture quizzes 90*
Midterm 1 120
Midterm 2 120
Final (non-cumulative) 120
Laboratory 449
Total 899**





* All points are subject to change by the instructor.
**There is NO extra credit in this course.

Core Curriculum course:
Areas of Inquiry: Natural Science [NS]


•  Understand and apply basic prinicples and concepts in the biological sciences..

•  Explain and be able to assess the relationship among assumptions, method, evidence, arguments, and theory in scientific analysis.

Attendance is strongly suggested because of pop (unannounced) in-class quizzes.  There are NO make-up quizzes.  All quizzes are given at the beginning of the class.  In addition, notes and PowerPoints slides will NOT be posted. The student is responsible for all lecture material.

Accomadations for students with disabilities:
Please follow the procedures outlined at Full policies and procedures are at .

Academic Integrity:
All students are expected to follow University policies on academic integrity (