Department ofBiology

Courses Offered by the Biology Department

Course Level:  100 ι 200 ι 300 ι 400

BIOL 111: Biology and the Modern World – NS, SM

This course is intended to introduce students to the principles and concepts that pertain to all living organisms, with special emphasis on those topics typically encountered in everyday life, including human physiology and disease, environmental issues, and the fundamentals of genetics. Lecture and laboratory. Not intended for biology majors. (4)

BIOL 116: Introductory Ecology – NS, SM 

A study of the interrelationships between organisms and their environment examining concepts in ecology that lead to understanding the nature and structure of ecosystems and how humans impact ecosystems. Includes laboratory. Not intended for biology majors. (4)

Romey Haberle in Genetics 330 demonstrating meiosis using pool noodles.

Romey Haberle in Genetics 330 demonstrating meiosis using pool noodles.

BIOL 201: Introductory Microbiology – NS, SM  Back to top

The structure, metabolism, growth, and genetics of microorganisms, especially bacteria and viruses, with emphasis on their roles in human disease. Laboratory focuses on cultivation, identification, and control of growth of bacteria.  Prerequisite: CHEM 105. Not intended for biology majors. (4) 

BIOL 205: Human Anatomy and Physiology I – NS, SM 

The first half of a two-course sequence. Topics include matter, cells, tissues, and the anatomy and physiology of four systems: skeletal, muscular, nervous, and endocrine. Laboratory includes cat dissection and experiments in muscle physiology and reflexes. Not designed for biology majors. (4)

BIOL 206: Human Anatomy and Physiology II – NS, SM 

The second half of a two-course sequence. Topics include metabolism, temperature regulation, development, inheritance, and the anatomy and physiology of five systems: circulatory, respiratory, digestive, excretory, and reproductive. Laboratory includes cat dissection, physiology experiments, and study of developing organisms. Not designed for biology majors. Prerequisite: BIOL 205. (4)

BIOL 225: Molecules, Cells and Organisms – NS, SM

An introduction to the concepts and study of the molecular, cellular, and organismal levels of biological organization. Cell structure and function, energy transformation, the central dogma of molecular biology, plant and animal anatomy and physiology, response to environmental changes, plant and animal reproduction and development. Includes laboratory. Co-registration or completion of CHEM 115 is recommended. (4)

BIOL 226: Genes, Evolution, Diversity and Ecology – NS, SM

An introduction to the concepts and study of Mendelian and population genetics, evolution, ecology, and a systematic survey of life on earth. Includes laboratory. Prerequisite: BIOL 225 with a C- or better. (4)

BIOL 330: Genetics     Back to top

Basic concepts considering the molecular basis of gene expression, recombination, genetic variability, as well as cytogenetics, and population genetics. Includes tutorials and demonstration sessions. Prerequisite: BIOL 226. (4)

BIOL 341: Developmental Biology 

The embryonic and larval development of multicellular organisms (primarily animals). Examples are chosen from popular contemporary model systems, and the emphasis is on cellular and molecular aspects of development. The laboratory includes descriptive and quantitative experiments, as well as student-planned projects. Prerequisite: BIOL 226. (4)

BIOL 342: Microbiology 

The structure, physiology, genetics, and metabolism of microorganisms with emphasis on their diversity and ecology. The laboratory emphasizes design, implementation, and evaluation of both descriptive and quantitative experiments as well as isolation of organisms from natural sources. Prerequisite:BIOL 226; CHEM 331 with 333 recommended. (4)

BIOL 352: Comparative Anatomy 

Evolutionary history of the vertebrate body, introduction to embryology, and extensive consideration of the structural and functional anatomy of vertebrates. Includes laboratory dissections following a systems approach. Mammals are featured plus some observation of and comparison with human cadavers. Prerequisite: BIOL 226. (4)

BIOL 353: Invertebrate Zoology 

The study of invertebrate animals emphasizing their classification, anatomy, physiology and natural history. Coverage will also include the economic and human health importance of select groups. Laboratory emphasis on identification, taxonomy and anatomy. Field trips to observe living representatives. Prerequisite: BIOL 226 or consent of instructor. (4)

BIOL 354: Natural History of Vertebrates 

A systematic survey of vertebrate diversity including fishes, amphibians, non-avian reptiles, and mammals. Coverage emphasizes phylogenetic relationships, evolutionary trends, natural history, and anatomy. Field trips and laboratory focus on observation and identification of local species. Prerequisite: BIOL 226. (4)

BIOL 355: Ornithology 

The study of birds inclusive of their anatomy, physiology, behavior, ecology and distribution. Special emphasis on those attributes of birds that are unique among the vertebrates. Laboratory emphasis on field identification, taxonomy, and anatomy/topology. Prerequisite: BIOL 226 or consent of instructor. (4)

BIOL 356: Economic and Cultural Botany

Botany of plants used by humans in a global context; traditional and contemporary uses of plants. General plant morphology and anatomy, overview of taxonomy of plants useful to humans, evolution of plant secondary metabolites, medical botany (medicines, poisons, psychoactive plants), genetic engineering, bio-prospecting and socio-economic issues surrounding botanical commodities. Prerequisite: BIOL 226. (4)

BIOL 357: Histology

 The tissue level of biological organization, including animal and plant tissues. Tissue contributions to organ structure and function. Laboratory includes examination of prepared microscope slides as well as tissue processing and preparation of permanent microscope slides of sectioned and stained animal and plant tissues. Prerequisite: BIOL 226. (4) 

BIOL 358: Plant Physiology

A study of how plants obtain and utilize nutrients, react to environmental factors, and adapt to stress. Focuses on mechanisms at the molecular, cellular, and organismal levels. Explores connections to agriculture and ecology. Relies significantly on primary literature. Includes laboratory. Prerequisite: BIOL 226.  (4)

BIOL 362: Animal Behavior 

Description, classification, cause, function, and development of the behavior of animals emphasizing an ethological approach and focusing on comparisons among species. Includes physiological, ecological, and evolutionary aspects of behavior. Prerequisite: BIOL 226 or consent of instructor. (4)

BIOL 366: Comparative Ecology of Latin America 

A comparative study of the structure and function of biotic communities, and the ecological and evolutionary forces that have shaped plants and animals. Topics include dispersal, natural selection, physiological ecology, natural history, and systematics. Conservation biology, development, and indigenous rights will be highlighted. Taught in Central or South America. Prerequisite: BIOL 226 or consent of instructor. (4)

BIOL 367: Conservation Biology and Management 

Based upon the principles of population ecology and ecological genetics, an integrated study of the impacts of people on nature - specifically the diversity of plants and animals. Includes practical applications, techniques, and case studies in forest, fish, wildlife and land management. Laboratories and field trips concern resource management and use. Course may not be repeated for credit. Prerequisite:BIOL 226 or consent of instructor. (4)

BIOL 368: Ecology 

Organisms in relation to their environment, including organismal adaptations, population growth and interactions, and ecosystem structure and function. Laboratory/discussion in addition to lecture. Prerequisite: BIOL 226. (4)

BIOL 369: Marine Biology 

The ocean as environment for plant and animal life; an introduction to the structure, dynamics, and history of marine ecosystems. Lab, field trips, and term project in addition to lecture. Prerequisite: BIOL 226. (4)

BIOL 387: Special Topics in Biology - NS, SM

Selected topics as announced by the department. May be repeated for credit. (1-4)

BIOL 387: Plant Development and Genetic Engineering - NS, SM

This course will explore how plant structures form with a focus on the cellular and molecular regulation of developmental processes.  It will also cover biotechnology techniques used in genetic modification of plants and various cases of GM plants created using these methods.  For case studies, we will consider both how and why the plants were modified, as well as potential environmental or social consequenses.  Prerequisites: BIOL 330; BIOL 358, 442 or 445 recommended.  Will fulfil Botanical requirement and Molecular/Cellular Distribution category. (4)

BIOL 442: Cell Biology    Back to top

Focuses on cellular organization and function, enzyme kinetics, membrane structure and function, energetics, signaling and cell cycle. Laboratory employs modern techniques including animal cell culture, cell fractionation, molecular, genetic, and biochemical assays, and microscopy (light, phase contrast, fluorescence). Prerequisite:BIOL 226, and CHEM 331 with 333 or consent of instructor. (4)

BIOL 444: Neurobiology 

Neurobiology is the study of the nervous system and its relationship to behavior and disease. This course examines the structure and function of neurons and glia, neural development, gross organization of the brain, sensory and motor systems and higher functions such as learning, memory and speech. Prerequisite: BIOL 330 or consent of instructor. (4)

BIOL 445: Molecular Biology 

An introduction to molecular biology, emphasizing the central role of DNA: structure of DNA and RNA, structure and expression of genes, genome organization and rearrangement, methodology and applications of recombinant DNA technology. Laboratory features basic recombinant DNA techniques. Prerequisite: BIOL 330. (4)

BIOL 448: Immunology 

Consideration of the biology and chemistry of immune response, including theoretical concepts, experimental strategies and immunochemical applications. Prerequisites: Any two of the following courses in Biology: 330, 341, 342, 442, 445, 453. (4)

BIOL 449: Virology

The diversity that exists among viruses is staggering, and there is no type of life on Earth that is not subject to infection by viruses. This course will explore viral origins, replication, transmission, pathogenesis, oncogenesis, and host immunity. Emerging viruses, pandemics, and vaccines will also be discussed. Students will gain hands-on experience in a wide range of techniques and will work with both bacteriophages and animal viruses. Prerequisites: BIOL 330. (4)

BIOL 453: Mammalian Physiology 

An investigation of the principles of physiological regulation. Part I: fundamental cellular, neural, and hormonal mechanisms of homeostatic control; Part II: interactions in the cardiovascular, pulmonary, renal, and neuromuscular organ systems. Laboratory allows direct observation of physiological regulation in living animals. Prerequisites: BIOL 226, CHEM 115; BIOL 352 recommended. (4)

BIOL 461: Evolution 

An introduction to evolutionary theory and its broad explanatory power in biology. Coverage includes: a brief history of evolutionary thought, populations genetics and the mechanisms of evolutionary change, phylogenetics, speciation, macroevolutionary processes, origins of life on earth, and evo-devo. Laboratory includes simulations and empirical examples of concepts covered in lecture. Prerequisite: BIOL 330. (4)

BIOL 462: Plant Diversity and Distribution 

A systematic introduction to plant diversity. Interaction between plants, theories of vegetational distribution. Emphasis on higher plant taxonomy. Includes laboratory and field trips. Prerequisite: BIOL 330. (4)

BIOL 495: Internship in Biology

An approved off-campus work activity in the field of biology with a private or public sector agency, organization, or company. Students will be expected to adhere to and document the objectives of a learning plan developed with and approved by a faculty sponsor. Credit will be determined by hours spent in the working environment and the depth of the project associated with the course of study. Prerequisites: BIOL 226 and consent of department chair. (1-4)

BIOL 499A: Capstone: Senior Seminar I - SR

Seminar focuses on developing and practicing oral and written presentation skills. Assignments and activities reinforce student ability to read and interpret scientific literature. Students work with individual mentors to select and outline an appropriate topic for a research project based on a review of the scientific literature or original student research. May graduates should take this course in the fall of their final year. December graduates should take this course in their final spring semester. Together with BIOL 499B meets the senior seminar requirement. Prerequisites: BIOL 225, 226, 330, and significant progress towards meeting the upper-division course requirements as determined by the Capstone Committee. (1)

BIOL 499B: Capstone: Senior Seminar II - SR

Students continue to work with individual mentors to complete the written and oral presentations of a research project based on a review of the scientific literature or original student research. May graduates should take this course in the spring semester or J-Term of their final year. December graduates should take this course in their final fall semester. Together with BIOL 499A meets the senior seminar requirement. Prerequisite: BIOL 499A. (1)

Back to top