BI101 Concepts in Biology

for S2T 2006

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BI 101 Biological Concepts


S2T 2006 DL


Sanders, Carol


Associate Professor of Biology


Ph.D. Biology

Office Location


Daytime Phone



Semester Dates

March 13-May 7 2006

Class Days


Class Time


Credit Hours


Required: Basic Concepts in Biology -- Starr
Thomas Brooks/Cole Publishing, 6th edition

You will also need access to a spreadsheet program like Excel that will allow you to construct graphs using the data that you obtain.  This is a requirement of the course.

Textbooks can be purchased though the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased though the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:
McAfee Memorial Library - Online information, links, electronic databases and the Online catalog. Contact the library for further assistance via email or at 800-270-4347.

Park University Online Bookstore - Select "Distance Learning - Graduate," or "Distance Learning Internet," and then click on the appropriate course code (ex. AC 201, PA 501) to see the list of required and optional texts for each course that you are enrolled in.

Advising - Park University would like to assist you in achieving your educational goals. Your Campus Center Administrator can provide advising to you, please contact them for assistance.

Online Tutoring Services - Park University has arranged for Online students to receive five hours of free access to Online tutoring and academic support through Smarthinking. If you would like Online tutoring, please contact me to receive their recommendation and information on how to access the Online tutoring.

Career Counseling - The Career Development Center (CDC) provides services for all stages of career development. The mission of the CDC is to provide the career planning tools to ensure a lifetime of career success.

Online Classroom Technical Support - For technical assistance with the Online classroom, email or call the helpdesk at 866-301-PARK (7275). To see the technical requirements for Online courses, please visit the website, and click on the "Technical Requirements" link, and click on "BROWSER Test" to see if your system is ready.

Park Helpdesk - If you have forgotten your OPEN ID or Password, or need assistance with your PirateMail account, please email or call 800-927-3024.

Course Description:
Biological Concepts offers an overview of the fundamental facts and principles of modern biology. The course is designed for the non-science student who wishes to gain an understanding of current biological concepts and their relevance to problems of human society. Emphasis will be on life, its origin, chemistry, energy transformations, reproduction, genetics, evolution, and ecology. At home laboratory activities are included. 3:3:4

  Instructor Learning Outcomes

  1. Describe the scientific method and be able to evaluate experiments using procedures and terminology of the scientific method.
  2. Explain the basic chemistry of biological systems and how chemistry is used in the maintenance of living organisms.
  3. Compare and contrast the processes of mitosis and meiosis with reference to the movement of chromosomes and their significance in the transmission of genetic information.
  4. Discuss the theory of evolution and the many different mechanisms which are involved in evolutionary processes.
  5. Describe the structure of DNA and illustrate its significance in determining the composition, characteristics, reproduction, and behavior of an organism.
  6. Describe the structure and function of a cell and its various parts; compare the structures of bacterial, plant and animal cells.
  7. Describe at least one of the types of biomes, its placement and characteristics.
Class Assessment:
Grading Criteria

General Information

Grading Rubrics/criteria for each listed item are included within the assignment.
Mastery exams are taken each week, except for the 8th. You may take the quizzes as many times as you need.  However, you must score at least 80% on each week's exams before you will receive credit.  Each quiz has at least 25 questions.
Proctored final examination/Project - A final comprehensive proctored examination will be taken in a proctored testing environment during the 8th week at one of the Park University sites around the country or at an alternative location. Because this exam is comprehensive, I urge you to schedule the final for the latter part of week 8 so that the material for that week may be covered. For proctored examinations, photo identification is required at the time of the test. Guidelines for selecting an acceptable proctor can be found on the Park University Website.
Other Information on proctored exams:
It will be the responsibility of the student to arrange for a proctor, by the 6th week of the term, who is accepted and approved by the course instructor.
Approval of proctors is the discretion of the Online instructor.
A proctor request form will be made available to you during the first week of class so that you can send your requested proctor to your instructor for approval.
Failure to take a final proctored exam (or submit your final project for some online graduate courses) will result in an automatic "F" grade.

Grades for this course will be determined using the following items:

Each student is responsible for:

Completing a minimum of 4-6 responses each week.
Completing weekly reading assignments and homework as assigned.
Completing weekly discussion topics.
Completing weekly vocabulary and concept questions.
Completing laboratory activities and reports as assigned.
Completing a comprehensive proctored final examination during Week 8.

270   Final Exam
160   Discussion Threads
140   Quizzes
240   Lab Activity Reports
190   Homework

Late Submission of Course Materials:
Submission of Late Work: Late work will not be accepted unless under extreme circumstances (at the instructors discretion).

Classroom Rules of Conduct:
This course is offered online using the eCollege course delivery system. A class week is defined as the period of time between Monday and Sunday. The class begins the first day of the term and ends midnight the last Sunday of the term. Assignments scheduled for completion during a class week should be completed by Sunday at midnight Mountain Time of the week assigned. It is important to understand that this is not a course where assignments can be posted at any time during the 8-week term and there is a deadline each week for that week's assignments. Assignments posted after the deadline will not receive credit. All assignments must be submitted via the dropbox, journal, or through the discussion threads. I do not accept assignments emailed to me unless specifically requested by me. There are two or three Discussion Threads in each week, so be sure to do them all. An initial post in each one should be made by Thursday morning with at least one response to a posting from other students by Sunday evening. This is important. The interaction that you have in this class is by exchanging these posts and is a very important learning tool. Full value will not be awarded to an initial posting, no matter how complete, if it is done after Thursday.

In many ways, online classes have an advantage over face-to-face classes in that you can choose your own time to complete the assignment. Students are expected to devote a minimum of five hours per class week logged on to the classroom in online activities. Other activities such as completing assignments, sending/receiving email, exploring the text web site and conducting research over the web will be in addition to this.

This course contains one new aspect, that of experimental activities (labs).  These labs are of three different types; they can be done at home with readily available materials, they may be considered paper labs, or they may be virtual.  Labs will have very specific directions for completion and reporting.  

All students will participate in discussions through responses.  Spelling and grammar are very important in an online course. By using a word processing tool you have ready access to some type of spell check capability, please use it.  Basic old-fashioned courtesy is expected from each of you at all times.  Students are expected to behave in a manner that is not disruptive to the learning environment (yes, even this environment). Disruptive behavior (as deemed by the instructor) will not be allowed.

Students should have current anti-virus software and update their software weekly as a protection to themselves as well as others who are participating in this course. This is everyone's responsibility.

Students are responsible for clicking on the link below and thoroughly reading each Online course policy. If you have questions about any of these policies, please contact your instructor for clarification.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:
Topic                                Chapter       Week
Introduction & Chemistry of Life     1, 2, & 3      1
Cells -- Structure & Function         4, 5          2
Cellular Respiration & Photosynthesis  6, 7         3
Cell Division -- mitosis & meiosis     8, 9         4
DNA --- Structure & Function         12, 13, 14     5
Genetics                              10, 11        6
Ecology & Biodiversity               26, 27, 28     7
Evolution Principles                 16, 17, 18     8

Because this course deals with the basic concepts of biology, there are at-home laboratory and other activities that you will be participating in. These activities are geared such that they use common household materials and/or the internet. The reports of these activities will be due on Sunday of the week in which the activity is conducted, except for the final week. Directions and requirements for both the activity and the report will be given each week.   I will provide you with the total list of materials needed in the Experiments section of the course home so that you can plan for the next week.

Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life.   Park University 2005-2006 Undergraduate Catalog Page 85-87

Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. Park University 2005-2006 Undergraduate Catalog Page 85-87

Attendance Policy:
Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "WH".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  6. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.
ONLINE NOTE: An attendance report of "P" (present) will be recorded for students who have logged in to the Online classroom at least once during each week of the term. Recording of attendance is not equivalent to participation. Participation grades will be assigned by each instructor according to the criteria in the Grading Policy section of the syllabus.

Park University 2005-2006 Undergraduate Catalog Page 89

Park University 2005-2006 Undergraduate Catalog Page 89

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all learners that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to learners concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the American with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding learners with disabilities and, to the extent of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: .


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