Course Terminal Objectives

Course Terminal Objectives

Bios 160 General Biology MW 5:30-9:40 in AS 1617

Instructor: E. StavneySummer 2011 Course 2025

Lecture and Lab Schedule

WeekDatesLecture Topic Assigned Reading

1M Jun 27Review of Syllabus, Biology as a ScienceChp 1†

Chemistry: Essentials and Important Biomolecules Chp 2,3

Lab: Introduction to Lab, Safety, and Microscopes

W Jun 29Chemistry, continued Chp 2,3

Cell Structure: How Things Are Put TogetherChp 4

Lab: Microscopy


W July 6Cell Structure, continued

The Working Cell: Energetics and EnzymesChp 5

Lab: Cell Diversity

3MJuly 11Exam I (Study of Biology, Chemistry, & Cell Structure) Membranes: Barriers and Moving Things Across Them Chp 5

WJuly 13Cell Respiration: Converting Food to ATP EnergyChp 6

Photosynthesis: Using Light to Make FoodChp 7

Lab: Diffusion and Osmosis

4MJuly 18Inheritance: Why Offspring Look Like Their ParentsChp 9

Other Inheritance Patterns: Variations in Mendel's LawsChp 9

Lab: Photosynthesis and Respiration

WJuly 20Exam II (Enzymes, Membranes, Respiration, & Photosynthesis)

Making More By Yourself: MitosisChp 8

Activity: Heredity and Genetics

5M July 25Making More with a Partner: MeiosisChp 8

DNA as the Genetic MaterialChp 10

Lab:Meiosis and Mitosis

WJuly 27How Genes Dictate Form and FunctionChp 10

Activity: DNA and Gene Expression

† Chapter Readings in Simon, Reece, and Dickey, Campbell's Essential Biology, 4rd Ed.
WeekDatesLecture Topic Assigned Reading

6MAug 1Cancer, Stem Cells, and Biotechnology Chp 121

Lab: DNA Investigation, Part 1

WAug 3Exam III(Genetics, Mitosis/Meiosis, Genes, & Biotechnology)

How Populations EvolveChp 13

Lab: DNA Investigation, Part 2

7MAug 8 How Biological Diversity EvolvesChp 14

Evolution of Microbes, Plants, & Fungi Chp 15,16

Evolution of AnimalsChp 17

WAug 10Evolution of Animals, continuedChp 17

Population Ecology Chp 18

Lab: Darwinian Snails: Modeling Evolution

8MAug 15Communities and Ecosystems: Food Chains Chp 19,20

BiomesChp 20

Lab: Food Webs and Community Dynamics

WAug 17 EXAM IV (Evolution, Microbes-Animals, Ecology, Biomes)


† Chapter Readings in Simon, Reece, and Dickey, Campbell's Essential Biology, 4rd Ed.
Course Description

This is an introductory biology course covering basic biological concepts with emphasis on general cell processes, plant and animal diversity, morphology, limited reproduction, phylogeny of living organisms, and an exploration of molecular genetics.

Upon completing this specific course, you should have a strong foundation on the principles of science and the ability to conduct biological experiments. You will also continue your learning in scientific communication and working as part of a team. You should develop enhanced scientific problem-solving skills in this course as well. Finally, you should be adequately prepared to move onto more challenging courses in pre-health care classes such as anatomy and physiology, and microbiology.

Course Outcomes:

  • Explain basic biological concepts and recognize the possible uses of this kind of knowledge
  • Recognize and use the language and symbols employed in Biology
  • Use Biology to solve problems, discuss global and local scientific issues, and better explain the world around you
  • Work successfully in a collaborative learning environment to solve problems and complete course activities
  • Think responsibly and proactively about the health and well-being of planet earth and all its inhabitants
  • Begin to understand yourself as a learner of science and demonstrate skills in taking responsibility for your own learning
Required Texts and Supplies for Bio 160
  • Essential Biology, 3rd or 4th ed.; Simon, Reece, and Dickey; Pearson: Benjamin Cummings, ISBN: 9780321652898
  • The ability to download and print activity and lab instructions from the internet at and to read and prepare for these sessions using the downloaded handout (be sure to bring a hard copy to class!)

Supplemental Resources

You are strongly encouraged to visit the website associated with your textbook at At this website, you can take quizzes for any of your textbook chapters and select readings (Web Links) related to each chapter. You may be assigned to read material or take quizzes on the Internet as part of this course. To sign onto this website you need to enter the Access Code that is revealed by scratching off the silver paint from the first page of your textbook (see lower right of page). Be sure to navigate to the Essential Biology website.

Our website where you can download the lab worksheets and other helpful study materials is at

Instructor Information

Mr. Eric Stavney

Office: IB 2324C Phone: (206) 527-3755


Office Hours for Summer 2011 will be by appointment, usually before class or during lab

You may leave messages for me at the telephone number or email address above.

Attendance and Policies

Students should attend every class session. It is the student's responsibility to obtain lecture notes, handouts, or other materials in case of an absence. Please see my policy in the Grades section about missing exams. In general, I will do all I can to help students who must miss class due to illness or other emergencies, but I must know as soon as possible. A student who stops attending class without an official withdrawal will be assigned a grade based on the work completed up to that point.

This is a course that will require a great deal of individual effort by each student. I have given you a detailed schedule of the quarter for a reason. With this schedule, you will be able to stay on top of the material, and should not be pressed for time. Attendance, attentiveness, and effort are essential for success in the class. I also highly recommend that you find some fellow students to study with!

You have the option of withdrawing from this course as late as Friday, the 11th week of the term. Withdrawing or dropping is the responsibility of the student, not the instructor.

Please note that no food or drink is allowed in the classrooms, except in sealed containers inside of a bag or backpack. We ask that you leave coffee, water bottles, or

any other "exposed comestible" outside of the classroom. No food or drink is allowed in

the laboratory room in any form, for additional reasons of lab safety. This rule will be rigorously enforced.

Please turn off your cell phones and all other audible devices out of courtesy to your classmates and the instructor. I will ask you to leave class if the device goes off twice in the same class session.

Many people suffer from allergies and/or chemical sensitivities. As NSCC is officially a “fragrance-free” campus, please minimize your use of perfumes, colognes, and other heavily scented products.

Laboratory and Activity Worksheets

Worksheets for each lab exercise or "activity" can be found online at The labs or activities online are ordered sequentially in the same order as you'll need them, but check your syllabus to be sure you are downloading and printing the correct activity or lab exercise. As your instructor, I reserve the right to change the dates when we are supposed to do an exercise, or to cancel it altogether. I will give you plenty of warning if I need to do this.

On all worksheets, you are expected to completely answer all questions neatly with complete sentences (standard English grammar and spelling) and draw all required diagrams or pictures. Be sure you don't leave anything blank unless otherwise noted All lab or activity worksheets are due at the very beginning of the subsequent session held in the laboratory (e.g. a lab performed Tuesday is due within 10 minutes of starting time on Friday, and activities done on Friday are due the following Tuesday). Late papers receive 20% off for each class session that they are late. A late paper is any submission that is turned in after the first ten minutes of the class session when it is due. No credit will be given to you if you were not present for the lab session, even if you turn in a completed worksheet.

Environmental Action Assignment

You will be assigned an " environmental action" as a means to get you to be an active participant in conserving the Earth, taking it one step closer to making the environment a better place. This action will be documented (by you) through a flier or advertisement of an event signed by the leader, and should include the specific time and dates and where you were an active participant in some area of environmental responsibility and action. Ideas include, but are not limited to: being a volunteer in a local community group doing environmental service (including trash pickup), starting a recycling area with follow-through in your area of residence or employment (notyour personal / family residence), doing some active work in a local stream restoration project, beach clean up, etc.

You are to type a one to three page paper describing your action (s), with an attached mandatory proof/affidavit (signed for example by a leader in charge of the restoration or cleanup) and turned on or before the due date.

This assignment is due within the first ten minutes of class on the day of class (see schedule for this date). No late environmental action papers will be accepted. This assignment is worth 50 points.


Your final grade in this course will be based on the total amount of points that you earn on quizzes, lectures exams, lab exams, and homework assignments as follows:

4 Lecture Exams (lowest score dropped) @ 100 pts each 400

9 of 10 Laboratory/Activity Assignments (lowest score dropped) @ 20 each180

Environmental Action Assignment 50

630 total possible

Grades will be assigned as follows:

A (3.5-4.0)90-100% of total points and above

B (2.9-3.4)80-89.9% of total points

B-/C+ (2.2-2.8)70-79.9% of total points

C-/C(1.5-2.1)60-69.9% of total points

D+/D-(0.9-1.4)50-59.9% of total points

F (0.0-0.8)below 50% of total points

Please note that the grade ranges and the percentage of points assigned to them are not linear and are only approximate. That is, the instructor reserves the right to decide whether a 3.1, for example, is earned by any percentage score between about 81-88%.

If you miss an exam for any reason you should email me immediately in order to be possibly considered for a makeup exam. If you miss a midterm exam without notifying me or providing a compelling excuse (as decided by your instructor), your course grade will be reduced by 16%. Only under very compelling circumstances will a makeup be possible, and that makeup exam may be in an oral, rather than a written, format. Your instructor may choose instead to prorate your missed exam, giving you the average score earned on all your other exams combined. Extra credit questions may be offered on any of the exams to help you increase your point total.

Academic Dishonesty

Academic dishonesty will not be tolerated, and will result in a ZERO for the affected exam, quiz, or assignment. A second offense will result in a failing grade and you will be barred from the class for the remainder of the quarter. Additionally, I will notify the Vice President of Students of your academic dishonesty. Plagiarism is a form of academic dishonesty where you present ideas, diagrams, or other information without crediting your source; you present the ideas or writings as if they were your own. Even if you do credit your source, you will not receive a good grade if your writing consists of direct quotations. If you’re not familiar with plagiarism, or have any concerns about what constitutes plagiarism, please talk with your instructor!

Disability Accommodation

NSCC supports students with special needs. Students with disabilities must contact Student Services to arrange any special accommodations.

How to do well in this class

In reading the assigned material, take notes. Paraphrase the material in your own words; do not just copy the text! If you can't say something in your own words, then you probably don't understand it. Don't skip over the pictures and examples given in the text. Think about them as you read because the examples help you remember concepts, principles and aid you to help solve some of the problems you'll be given in the group discussions. Use the course website at to get study sheets and practice materials helpful in studying for exams. Make concepts maps or review sheets for yourself to help associate ideas together and to organize the material in a way that makes sense for you.

Extra Credit

Extra credit questions may be offered on any of the exams to help you increase your point total. You may also earn extra credit by completing certain online biology labs or taking off-campus field trips to biologically significant locations. The Biology Online labs have to be completed by certain dates in order to earn extra credit. All other extra credit may be turned in on the first lab session of the last week of class. No late extra credit submissions will be considered. The maximum amount of extra credit you can earn is 32 points.

The most useful form of extra credit that you can do is to make a concept map of any lecture, aside from the first lecture. Concept mapping is the drawing of an elaborate diagram showing the topics, subtopics, and sub-sub topics of a particular subject. The goal of a concept map is to get you to associate ideas and organize lecture material. It requires you to be fairly familiar with how the subjects of a lecture are linked together. It is a great way to review your notes and study. A properly made concept map for this class is one that includes an entire lecture's worth of material (where a "lecture" is defined by the coverage of a lecture PowerPoint) and must only contain information actually discussed in class. Thus, making a concept map of a textbook chapter defeats the purpose here; the idea is to get you to take good notes and to organize your notes to make a map.

Concept maps should be done on an 8 ½ x 11” piece(s) of paper, but you can use both sides. Typing up concepts maps using text boxes in Word is OK, but you may be better served by drawing them neatly by hand. Legibility and neatness are part of your concept map grade. Concept maps can earn up to 5 points each.

You will have 1 week to complete a concept map for any particular lecture and to turn it in. That is, a lecture given on a Monday can be mapped for extra credit and submitted the following Monday in lecture. Obviously you shouldn't copy or print out someone else’s map as your own! If you study together with someone else, be sure your concept map is significantly unique so it won't be viewed as a copy. Copied concept maps will not earn any credit and will be considered an act of academic dishonesty (for which there are severe penalties).

Extra credit can also be earned by working with an established environmental group performing stewardship activities such as tree planting, cleanup, or brush removal. These hours are different than or beyond the 2 hours you spend on your Environmental Action Assignment. You will need a paper from the event showing how many hours you worked and signed by the leader of the team. Turn this in with a brief description of what you did and where you did it. You can earn 5 points per hour you work. The maximum amount of extra credit of any kind is 32 points.

How to Preread a Textbook Chapter

  1. Read the chapter title. The title provides the overall topic of the chapter.
  1. Read the introduction or first paragraph. The introduction or fist paragraph if there is not introduction, serves as a lead-in to the chapter. It gives you an idea of where the material is starting and where it is leading.
  1. Read each major heading. The boldface heading will give you an idea of what is contained in the following chapter section.
  1. Read the first (topic) sentence of each paragraph. The first sentence often tells you what the paragraph is about or states the central thought. However, be aware that in some material the first sentence may instead function as a transition or lead-in statement. In this case, go on to the second sentence to try to determine the central thought.
  1. Look over any typographical aids. Notice words in slanted italic type or in dark boldface type; usually a definition of an important term follows.
  1. Look over any visual aids carefully. Notice any material that is numbered 1, 2, 3, lettered a, b, c, or presented in list form. Graphs, charts, pictures, diagrams, and maps are very important means of conveying information in science. Read the captions that go with these graphic aids. Visual aids are included to point out what is important in the chapter.
  1. Read the last paragraph or summary. The last paragraph or summary give a condensed view of the chapter and helps you identify important ideas. Often the summary outlines the main points of the chapter.
  1. Read quickly any end-of-chapter material. If there are study questions, read through them quickly since they will indicate what is important in the chapter. If a vocabulary item is included, skim through the list rapidly to identify terms you will need to learn as you read.

Adapted from Kate Kinsella, San Francisco State University, 1994
How To Take Great Lecture Notes