BI101 Biological Concepts

for S2T 2010

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Mission Statement: The mission of Park University, an entrepreneurial institution of learning, is to provide access to academic excellence, which will prepare learners to think critically, communicate effectively and engage in lifelong learning while serving a global community.

Vision Statement: Park University will be a renowned international leader in providing innovative educational opportunities for learners within the global society.


BI 101 Biological Concepts


S2T 2010 DLA


Hunn, Heather M.


Adjunct Instructor


B.A. Biology, University of Toledo, Toledo, Ohio
M.S. Logistics Management, Air Force Institute of Technology

Office Location

By request

Office Hours

By request

Daytime Phone



Semester Dates

15 Mar - 9 May 2010

Class Days


Class Time


Credit Hours




Campbell Essential Biology, Fourth Edition
Eric J. Simon, Jane B. Reece, Jean L. Dickey
Benjamin-Cummings Publishing Company (2009)
ISBN 0321602064

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through 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.
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.
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
Resources for Current Students - A great place to look for all kinds of information
Advising - Park University would like to assist you in achieving your educational goals. Please contact your Campus Center for advising or enrollment adjustment information.
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.
FAQ's for Online Students - You might find the answer to your questions here.

Course Description:
BI 101 (Taught Online only) Biological Concepts: 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, generics, evolution, and ecology. At home laboratory activies are included. 3:3:4.

Educational Philosophy:

The facilitator’s educational philosophy is one of interactiveness based on lectures, readings, quizzes, dialogues, examinations, internet, videos, web sites and writings. The facilitator will engage each learner in what is referred to as disputatious learning to encourage the lively exploration of ideas, issues and contradictions.

Learning Outcomes:
  Core 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. Describe the various biomes and their placement and characteristics.
  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

Core Assessment:

Comprehensive Final Exam

Link to Class Rubric

Class Assessment:
General Information

Assessments in this class are worth the following points:

  250 pts  Final Exam
  160 pts  Discussion Threads
  160 pts  Quizzes
  236 pts  Lab Activity Reports
  194 pts  Homework
1000 pts  TOTAL

Grades will be awarded in this course based upon the following scale:

A = 90% and above
B = 80-89%  
C = 70-79% 
D = 60-69%
F = Below 60%

Late Submission of Course Materials:
Materials may be accepted late with prior approval from the instructor.  Contact the instructor as soon as a problem arises and the situation can usually be resolved.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

FORMAT: This course contains an experimental portion with descriptions and expectations supplied either online or provided by your instructor.  All answer sheets and other materials from these activities must be submitted in compliance with the instructor's wishes, whether by email, dropbox, or paper submission.  Several of these activities require an extended period of time to complete and should be scheduled accordingly.
All assignments must be submitted via dropbox, or through the discussion threads. Assignments emailed are NOT accepted unless specifically requested. There are two Discussion Threads in each week, so be sure to do both of them. An initial post in each one should be made by Wednesday midnight MST with at least one peer response (PR) by Sunday midnight MST. 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 Wednesday midnight MST.

TIME COMMITMENT: 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 FOUR hours per class week logged on to the classroom in online activities. Other activities such as completing assignments, sending/receiving email and conducting research over the web will require additional hours! 

This is not your typical introductory class and will require significant work on your part. Here is a quote from a previous student:

"Since this is a 4 credit hour course, students need to be aware that this class takes up a lot of time, and is a very difficult class if you are working full time and, are taking other courses."

The experimental activities (labs) are of three different types; they may 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.  Answer Sheets will be provided for each Experiment. Directions and requirements for both the activity and the report will be given each week.  The Experiment Supplies list should be examined as soon as possible so that you can prepare for these experiments! If for some reason you are not able to obtain the material needed, please contact me for an alternative lab.

COURSE HANDOUTS - DOC SHARING: There are a number of documents that you will be required to use throughout the term; many are part of your Experiment assignments. Please be sure to go to the Doc Sharing area of the course and download these files now (click on the tab at the top of the screen). That way they will be available to you as you need them. NOTE: You MUST use the Experiment Answer Sheets to submit your reports!

EXTRA CREDIT: There is NO extra credit available in this course! If you want to attain an A in this class, then complete all the assignments at the A level.

: All students will participate in discussions through multiple 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. Disruptive behavior (as deemed by the instructor) will not be allowed. There are two Discussion Threads in each week, so be sure to participate in them both. An initial post in each one should be made by Wednesday midnight MST with at least one peer response by Sunday midnight MST. 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 Wednesday midnight MST.

Be sure to read the Discussion grade rubric so that you understand what is expected of your posts. The interaction that you have in this class is by exchanging these posts and is a very important learning activity.
  • Initial responses must address the questions fully and contain references to any sources used (see Reference Formats in the Doc Sharing area)
  • Follow-up responses must be substantive and provide additional information or insight.
  • Full value will not be awarded to an initial posting, no matter how complete, if it is done after Wednesday.
Tips for success in the Discussions: 
  • Read ALL postings by both your instructor and your fellow students; you will learn a lot from these!
  • Answer any questions posed to you by your instructor (these do not count as follow-up responses).
  • Run your responses through the Plagiarism Checker BEFORE posting them!
  • Complete your textbook readings and lecture before posting any responses.
  • Conduct additional research if necessary and cite all of your sources (including your textbook).
  • Use the "What's New" feature at the bottom of the course homepage to determine when new postings have been made.  
MASTERY QUIZZES:  Each week you will need to complete a Mastery quiz that covers your readings. You can take this quiz as many times as necessary, but in order to receive credit (20 pts) for the quiz, you must attain an 80% or better. Your FINAL attempt is due no later than SUNDAY midnight MST of each week. The quizzes are graded automatically, BUT please note there are a number of fill-in the blank and short answer questions that your instructor will need to check; often your answer may be correct but the computer does not recognize it (e.g., misspelling, slightly different phrasing). Therefore, this is the procedure recommended for completing the Mastery quizzes:
  • After you have completed the readings and read the lectures, complete the quiz. Disregard the grade that comes back since the final grade may actually be higher.
  • Wait 12-24 hrs to allow for manual grading of your quiz and then check the GRADEBOOK. If you have not met the 80% cut-off, a zero will be entered. The 20 pts will then be entered when you have reached 80%.
  • Note that your instructor will often leave you general feedback as well as specific feedback for some of the short answer questions; this feedback is designed to assist you in meeting the required 80%, so take advantage of it!
  • Retake the quiz if necessary. You only have until Sunday midnight MST of each week to reach the required 80%.

    After everyone has completed a particular week's Mastery quiz, the correct answers will be posted so that you can go back and use these quizzes to study for the final exam. YOU MAY WANT TO STUDY THESE QUIZZES FOR THE FINAL EXAM!

GRADES AND FEEDBACK: You are responsible for checking the Gradebook weekly to be sure that grades have been entered.  

  • CHECK YOUR PIRATE MAIL:  Students should use email for private messages to the instructor and other students. All emails sent to the instructor must include "BI101: Purpose of message" in the subject line of the email. Emails without this information will not be recognized.


Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:


Week 1
Topic: Introduction and Ecology
Readings: Chps 1, 18 (pgs. 372-393) , 19 (pgs. 402-411), and 20 (pgs. 428-443)

Week 2
Topic: Principles of Evolution
Readings: Chps 13 & 14 (pgs. 282-284)

Week 3
Topic: Chemistry of Life
Readings: Chps 2 and 3

Week 4
Topic: Cell Structure and Function
Reading: Chp 4

Week 5
Topic: Cellular Energetics
Readings: Chps 5, 6, & 7

Week 6
Topic: Cell division: Mitosis and Meiosis
Readings: Chp 8

Week 7
Topic: DNA Structure and Function
Readings: Chps 10 & 11 (p.199-205)

Week 8
Topic: Genetics
Readings: Chp 9

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 2009-2010 Undergraduate Catalog Page 92

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 2009-2010 Undergraduate Catalog Page 92

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 "F".
  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 2009-2010 Undergraduate Catalog Page 95

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. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: .


CompetencyExceeds Expectation (3)Meets Expectation (2)Does Not Meet Expectation (1)No Evidence (0)
1, 2, 3, 4, 5                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        
Exceptional analysis of knowledge gained through critical thinking based on analysis of experiments. Able to critically think in the analysis of experiments. Limited use of knowledge but no evidence of critical thinking based on analysis of experiments No evidence of critical thinking or use of knowledge gained 
2, 3, 4, 5                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
Exceptional capability to explain and describe organizational levels of biology Analyzes processes involved in the genetics of organisms; evolution; cell division; and biological chemistry Limited knowledge of processes and their organizational importance No evidence of knowledge of processes and their organizational importance 
1, 2, 3, 4, 5                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        
Exceptional ability to integrate the genetic, reproductive and evolutionary information to gain a deeper understanding of biological processes; evaluate functioning of ecosystems; critically evaluates the relationship of biology and chemistry Integrate the genetic, reproductive and evolutionary information to gain a deeper understanding of biological processes; evaluate functioning of ecosystems; critically evaluates the relationship of biology and chemistry Limited knowledge of information but lack of evidence of ability to integrate different areas No evidence of knowledge of information along with inability to integrate different areas 
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
Accurately answers 80% of the objective test items Accurately answers 60-79% of the objective test items Accurately answers 40-60% of the objective test items Accurately answers less than 40% of the objective test items 
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
Exceptional ability to describe the connections between different biological concepts Able to describe the biological concepts and their interconnections Some knowledge of concepts but lack of ability to describe connections Little knowledge of biological concepts or ability to make connections 
1, 6                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
Able to create unique explorations of scientific problem and present results in a clear and concise manner Demonstrates mastery of scientific method usage and presentation of results. Can follow directions of exploration but limited ability to understand processes and the present the results No evidence of ability to follow directions or to understand processes involved. 
Whole Artifact                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             
Scores more than 90% on assessment exam Scores between 70 and 90% on assessment exam Scores 40-69% on assessment exam Scores less than 40% on assessment exam 


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Last Updated:3/9/2010 10:54:21 PM