BIOL 204: Introduction to Evolution, Ecology and Biodiversity

BIOL 204 with RAA, 2013 Final Version of Syllabus
BIOL 204: Introduction to Evolution, Ecology and Biodiversity
WWU, Fall 2013
Instructor: Roger Anderson
Contact info: Office: Biology 311
Phone: 650-3992
Email: [email protected]
Office Hours: Tuesday & Thursday 1120-1150, Wednesday 1300-1350 (Find Dr A in BI 311 or 351)
Lecture in BI 234: 1000-1120 on Tuesday & Thursday; class size is about 96 students (24 per lab section)
Labs in BI 249:
Students are assigned labs on:
Tuesday 1400-1650 (CRN 41395) or Wednesday 1400-1650 (CRN 41801) or Thursday 1400-1650 (CRN
42291) or Friday 0800- 1050 (43064). Note that historically, the Timetable of Classes has included the statement:
plus 2 hours per week arranged. This statement meant that you were (and still are) likely to need to work and study
(often in BI 249) at other, unscheduled times to complete assignments and prepare for quizzes and the lab practical
exam. For example, it is possible that the Excel tutorial must be performed, completed, and turned in to your TA at
the beginning of the first lab. You should have access to your Teaching Assistant’s Canvas site.
Biol 204 TAs: Lead TA Melissa Habenicht
Lab content is similar among course instructors and TAs. So if you should ever be desperately seeking help for your
lab endeavors, and your TA is unavailable, please seek help from one of the other TAs).
RAA’s BIOL 204 Course Website: On Canvas:
BIOL 204 Intro Evolution, Ecology, Biodiversity (Dr A, Fall 2013)
Required Texts:
Course Textbook: Life: the science of biology, 10th Edition by Sadava et al.
A Student Handbook for Writing in Biology, 4 th Edition, by Knisely, K.
(provided at bookstore in a shrink-wrapped bundle that contains a loose-leaf version of Life 10th ed. by
Sadava and the 4th ed of Knisely’s A Student Handbook for Writing in Biology, and an online access code) .
Biology 204 Laboratory Manual (Fall 2013 edition, available in WWU bookstore).
A Photographic Atlas for the Biology Laboratory, 5 or 6th Edition, by Van De Graaf & Crawley
Course Description
Biol 204 is the first course of a 3-course introductory series in biology (Biol 204, 205, 206). It is designed
largely for biology majors (whereas Biol 101 is the principal GUR/GER course for non-majors). Biol 204 broadly
introduces the student to the ecological and evolutionary processes that cause the patterns we see in the biotic
diversity. That is, we explore the spatial and temporal patterns of the biota and we begin to examine the processes
that may cause evolution, distribution, and abundance of organisms.
Course Objectives: To assist each student develop
(1) basic knowledge of biogeographic patterns of biota and the current and past processes responsible for
those patterns
(2) basic knowledge of the history of life on earth
(3) an introductory knowledge of the major taxa of organisms, focusing on the adaptive features of each
major taxon that has permitted its abundance and diversity
(4) ability to think critically and learn to use scientific methods to aid in the application of critical thinking
a) lab skills: using basic technology and tools in biology
b) lab skills: quantitative reasoning and basic statistics
c) lab skills: communicating science via graphs and scientific writing
Learning in lecture and lab will be integrated, particularly in the final exam.
BIOL 204 with RAA, 2013 Final Version of Syllabus
The Lecture Experience
 Lecture periods with Dr Anderson may include a brisk pace of delivery at times, but you will not be
challenged to perform extraordinary feats of efficient and comprehensive note-taking.
 Power point slides and some board work will augment the auditory delivery.
 The more students are prepared prior to lecture, the more the lecture period can become question driven (as
is desired by Dr A), generated by both the students and the instructor.
 The textbook is a valuable reference; relevant text material (assigned or not) should be perused (examined
in detail) before the topic is covered in lecture; if you do not, then at least some of the lecture topics will be
difficult to grasp and will be less interesting during lecture.
 Most, but not all of the more salient concepts and questions (on which relatively more exam points will be
devoted) will be listed on Canvas. Master copies of the visuals shown in lecture (and that are not the same
as those in the textbook) generally will be available on-line on Canvas, before lecture. Note that it will not
be uncommon, however, for a visual or two to be added to the set of visuals placed on the Canvas site just
before or after lecture, so do not assume you have the final, complete version if you download them the day
 The short quiz at the start of class will ask questions about the day’s concepts (see lecture schedule and the
associated text & power points), so that we can more effectively discuss and work through questions
together in class.
Being prepared prior to the lecture section will allow us to move beyond the basic knowledge and
comprehension of biological concepts and enter into the more advanced levels of learning achievement:
application, analyses, and perhaps even synthesis.
In lecture and lab we need to take every opportunity to use critical, analytical, and scientific
thinking so that you may develop a strong foundation in biological understanding.
 It will be valuable for you to examine any relevant study and review resources on and
in the Chapter Summary and Chapter Review at the end of each chapter. The Life, 10th Ed study guide may
also help.
Comments about lecture exams and how to prepare for them:
 Midterm lecture exams are each worth about 90 pts.
 The Final Exam is worth about 180 points (actual exam point totals may vary by about 10%).
 The exams are difficult enough to show the edge of knowledge and understanding of the most
accomplished student, hence the grading scale will accommodate that difficulty.
 All exams must be taken to receive a course grade.
 Given the large class size, lecture exams largely will comprise multiple choice, true-false, and
matching questions, but may also include a few short answers (phrases) and fill-in the blank (words).
 At least one week prior to each exam you will receive a set of questions to consider as a study guide
and you will have an outline of topics placed on the course website. Student teams, comprising 6-8
students (two adjacent lab tables), may be asked to lead discussions of answers to subsets of the
questions in part of the lecture prior to each exam.
 Make-up exams are not given, although exceptions are made in the rarest of cases, and usually require
a valid, pre-approved reason for missing the exam. The make-up exam, however, differs significantly
from the original exam.
Grades are based upon total number of points received in the course. The average course grade in 200-level
courses in past years has been a low B, with about one-fifth of the class obtaining an A and few, if any D or F grades.
It is likely that this course will approximate past grade distributions.
Your grade will be based on a total of about 600 possible points, of which the lab will comprise no more
than 33% (about 200 course points) of the course point total:
Lecture (about 400 course points)
 First midterm:
 Second midterm:
 Comprehensive Final exam:
 About four unannounced quizzes
90 points
90 points
180 points
10 points per quiz
see lab section, below, but note that lab will comprise only about 1/3 of the course grade.
BIOL 204 with RAA, 2013 Final Version of Syllabus
4. Re-grades: If you think an error was made in grading your exam, please bring it to our attention.
Re-grades must be brought to Dr. Anderson no later than one week after the exam is returned.
5. Your final grade will be determined as a percentage of the total course points (% rounded to nearest integer):
80-85 %
C+ 74-76
D+ 62-64
Lecture schedule
Lecture Topics, Exams & Due Dates
Studying Life (Core Themes in Biology, Evolution, & Ecology)
Science as Applied Critical Thinking
Ch: pg, figs, tables
Scientific Methods in Ecology & Evolution
Evolution by Natural Selection
Evolution by Natural Selection, History of Life
Cells: the simplest living systems, subject to evolution
21 & 25
11 pp 205-223
Transmission genetics, Evolution of populations
Evolution of Populations, Speciation
12 & 21
21 & 23
Speciation, Phylogenies
Midterm Exam 1 (Ch 1, 11, 12, 21, 22, 23, 25)
23 & 22
Biodiversity: Archaea & Bacteria
Biodiversity: Protists & Plants
Biodiversity: Plants & Fungi
Biodiversity of Animals
Biodiversity of Animals
Abiotic factors: limiting distribution and abundance
& changes over time & dist (climate & biomes)
Abiotic and biotic factors: changes over time (succession)
Midterm Exam 2 (Ch 25-33) (before lab on Animals)
Lecture: Evolutionary autecology of animals (4 basic tasks)
Life histories, adaptations, & population dynamics
Individuals, populations, and communities
Ecosystems & Global Dynamics
Biodiversity and Extinctions
0800-1000 Comprehensive Exam (2/3 of exam focuses on Chapters 54-59)
The Laboratory Experience
BIOL 204 with RAA, 2013 Final Version of Syllabus
The laboratory section of this course is integrated with the lecture topics and is an experiential discovery of
organismal diversity, evolutionary trends, and ecological concepts.
Field and laboratory research investigation will serve as an introduction to the practice of performing
scientific research, which is integral to “science as a way of knowing.”
You also will examine an array of live and preserved organisms, and you will be expected to identify a
moderate number of taxa of organisms. Some of the major adaptations of the individual examples presented to
represent these major taxonomic groups must also be known.
It is possible that for lab each student will be required to maintain a 1-inch deep, 3-ring binder notebook,
and a sewn-binding laboratory notebook, into which notes, drawings, and data will be entered. Your TA has the
prerogative to assign a modest number of laboratory points to the lab notebook (up to 10 points) to help ensure that
you make a serious effort at developing the notebook into a credible record of your lab work and can use the
notebook as a study aid for the lab practical exam.
Comments about expected student comportment in laboratory:
Attendance in laboratory is mandatory for the entirety of each three-hour lab period. You lose 2 points
for each unapproved absence from lab (absence must be pre-approved), or if you leave lab early.
Late lab assignments: for each day the assignment is late you will lose 10% of the total points allocated
for that assignment. The assignment must be turned in no later than the deadline, to the minute, or else
it is considered a day late; each 24 hours more after the deadline is another day late; note that if the
assignment is not turned in by the end of the 6th day (one minute into the seventh day), then all points
will be lost for the assignment. The TA has the prerogative to vary the late policy slightly. Academic
dishonesty and plagiarism will not be tolerated.
The graduate teaching assistant will perform laboratory grading, under the oversight of the course
You must complete and pass the laboratory portion to receive a passing grade in the course.
There is no extra credit that a student can obtain for the lecture portion of the course, and do not expect
extra credit in laboratory.
Academic dishonesty is not tolerated. Plagiarism will result in a 0, that is, no credit for the assignment,
and perhaps an F for the entire course, and maybe even expulsion from WWU. Refer to the WWU
catalog about plagiarism, and refer to both of the following websites: and
Laboratory Schedule
The laboratory portion of Biol 204 complements the concepts and content in lecture, and is experiential
learning of ecology, evolution, and organismal diversity. You are expected to have reviewed the on-line readings
for lab as well as the lab manual, and related portions of the textbook before lab. Not only may there be
unannounced quizzes at the start of lab on the topic of that day’s lab, but preparation prior to lab is essential for an
efficient and enjoyable laboratory experience.
Bring the lab manual and lab photo atlas to every lab, and arrange for either you or your lab table partner to
bring the lecture textbook to lab; a laptop may help access the invaluable powerpoints on Canvas as well.
Readings for lab will be listed as the quarter progresses, and the readings will include related chapters in
the lecture textbook as well as materials available on Canvas.
Lab assignments & quizzes
Excel Tutorial assignment
Scientific paper reading assignment
Sehome Hill results section
Mycorrhizal experiment write-up
Lab practical
Other (e.g., participation)
Lab Assignments & Points
80 points
10 points
10 points
20 points
20 points
30 points
0-30 points
170-200 points total (transformed to 200 pt scale)
BIOL 204 with RAA, 2013 Final Version of Syllabus
Lab Exercise
Assignments/Reading “Due” (see TA syllabus)
Oct 1
Oct 8
Lab 1: Process of Science/Plant-fungal Associations
Experiment Set-up
Lab 2: Sehome Hill Ecology Study Part 1
Oct 15
Lab 3: Sehome Hill Ecology Study Part 2
Oct 22
Lab 4: Natural Selection & Genetic Drift
Oct 29
Lab 5: Biodiversity 1- Bacteria, Archaea, Protists
Nov 5
Nov 12
Lab 6: Biodiversity 2- Plants
Lab 7: Biodiversity 3- Fungi
Nov 19
Lab 8: Biodiversity 4- Animals
Dec 3
Lab Practical
Excel tutorial Due
Assignment 1.1 Hypotheses due at end of lab
Study Lab 2 for quiz today
Assignment 2.1 data entry due at end of lab
Assignment 2.2 Scientific paper reading
Assignment 3.1 Carbon Sequestration due lab’s end
Assignment 3.2 Sehome Hill Results
Bring soil sample (just a pinch)
Assignment 4.1 due at end of lab
Study Appendix A for Microscope overview
Study for Microscope Quiz today
Assignments 5.1 & 5.2 due at end of lab
Assignment 6.1 & 6.2 due at end of lab
Assignment 7.1 Pre-lab questions
Assignment 7.2 (datasheet) & 7.3 Fungal diversity
due at end of lab
Assignment 8.1 Pre-lab
Assignment 8.2 Character mapping due at end of lab
Assignment 7.4 Mycorrhizal write-up
Assignments and Grading
WWU does not tolerate plagiarism and cheating. Academic dishonesty will result in a zero on the
assignment and a notification to your professor. You can read the WWU academic dishonesty policy at for more information.
WWU Definition of Plagiarism : “Plagiarism is presenting as one's own, in whole or in part, the argument,
language, creations, conclusions, or scientific data of another without explicit acknowledgment.”
If you work in groups or with a partner during the lab, make sure that the work you turn in is your own.
Copying your partner’s lab assignment, word for word, is plagiarism and will result in a zero and a
notification to your professor.
Assignments should be written neatly on the sheets provided in your lab manual. Students are expected to
use complete sentences and proper grammar.
If you have questions or concerns regarding your grades in this lab section, please see the TA during office
hours. The TAs are willing to reevaluate assignments, but they will carefully re-evaluate the entire
assignment and it is possible that the grade could actually be lower after the re-evaluation. Points earned
on assignments, quizzes & exams will be considered final and the score is unalterable within one week
after you have received it.
Participation points are based on the following criteria:
1. Lab clean-up,
2. Participation in class discussions,
3. Effort within group (e.g. preparing slides, computer work),
4. Completion of lab,
5. Tardiness.
Lab Absences and Late Lab Assignments
BIOL 204 with RAA, 2013 Final Version of Syllabus
Assignments are due at the beginning of lab. In general, TAs will not accept late work unless you have an excused
Excused absences: If, for example, you have flu-like symptoms, email TA as soon as you are able (not an hour
before lab starts) about your condition. The policy is to consider your absence excused if you have a doctor’s note
and you can make up the missed assignment within one week. If there is a family emergency let the TA & Dr
Anderson know and we can discuss it. It is your responsibility to make up the lab, which entails gaining permission
from another TA to attend his/her section and promptly turning in all assignments to the TA. TAs will post a
document on Canvas with more information on how to make up labs.
Lab is mandatory. You must come to lab at the scheduled time. If you miss lab, you will receive a 0 for all the
work that was done in lab that day and all assignments that were turned in that day as well. The only exception to
this rule is if you have an excused absence.
Please refer to the TA syllabus and TA’s information on the lab schedule. The lab schedule listed in Dr
Anderson’s Biol 204 course syllabus is tentative.
This course syllabus is tentative, it is not a contract. Changes will be made, as necessary.
Random flashcards
Arab people

15 Cards


20 Cards


30 Cards


17 Cards

Create flashcards