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Biology Course Offerings

NOTE:  BIO-150 is required of all students completing the major or minor, and is an implied prerequisite for all 300-level courses in Biology; transfer students should complete this course in their first semester at NEIU.  

Also note: Courses preceded with an asterisk can be taken by graduate students for credit toward their degree requirements.


BIO-100  Introduction to Biology, 3 cr.  The problems of living things with emphasis on human physiology and the propagation of life.  Covers major biological concepts and principles.  Lecture and laboratory; labs include required dissections.  (Does not fulfill major or minor requirements in biology.)

BIO-104  The Changing Natural Environment, 3 cr.  Attitudes toward the natural environment. Exploitation of the natural plant and animal communities and the effects of overpopulation and increasing pollution of the environment on the biological world.  Lecture only.  (Does not fulfill major or minor requirements in biology.)

BIO-150  Essential Skills for Biologists, 2 cr.  A practical approach to providing students with the basic skills they will be expected to have in upper-division biology courses, including lab safety; methods and units of scientific measurement; scientific record-keeping, communication and library research skills; and summarizing and presenting data.  Lecture and laboratory, with a significant web-based component.  Co-requisite: BIO-201.

BIO-201  General Biology I, 4 cr.  This first course of our introductory biology series focuses on the organismal aspects of biology, including; the basic structure of animal and plant cells; intracellular organelles; metabolic pathways; the cell cycle; and basic genetics.  Laboratory exercises emphasize scientific method and writing, and include experience with basic techniques such as microscopy, biological assays, and gel electrophoresis.  Lecture and laboratory.   Co-requisite: BIO-150.

BIO-202  General Biology II, 4 cr.  In this second course of our introductory biology series we introduce the diversity of life in the context of evolutionary theory, studying biological processes at levels of organization ranging from populations to ecosystems.  Laboratory exercises emphasize scientific method and writing, and include surveys of major groups of organisms and dissections.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisites: BIO-150 & BIO-201.

BIO-301  Cell Biology, 4 cr.  Basic molecular and cellular processes.  Structures of biomolecules. Energetics: enzymes, photosynthesis, respiration.  Genetic control:  chromatin, DNA replication, RNA transcription and regulation, protein synthesis.  Cell functions, including: protein secretion; cell membrane structure; transport and surface interactions; cell cycle; cell motility; cell growth; cell origins.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201 and CHEM-211.

BIO-303  General Genetics, 4 cr.  This course is designed to provide students with a comprehensive background in genetics including classical/Mendelian genetics, bacterial and phage/viral genetics, the chromosomal and molecular basis of heredity, and population genetics.  Lecture and laboratory.   Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202.

BIO-305  WIP: General Ecology, 4 cr.  An introduction to the basic concepts of ecology.  Study of the factors/interactions that determine the distribution and abundance of species at the individual, population, community, and ecosystem levels.  Lecture, laboratory, and fieldwork.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202 and ENGL-101; CHEM-211 recommended.  This course satisfies the NEIU requirement that all students complete a writing-intensive course in their major.

BIO-310  Evolution, 3 cr.  A reading/lecture/discussion course on the facts, theories, and principles of organic evolution.  Lecture only.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202.

BIO-311  History of Science, 3 cr.  Development of the scientific method and knowledge of the natural sciences from ancient civilization to the present.  Lecture only.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202 and two semesters of chemistry or physics.

BIO-320  Animal Kingdom, 4 cr.  Anatomy, physiology, classification, and phylogeny of animals.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202.

BIO-322  Invertebrate Zoology, 4 cr.  Taxonomy and comparative morphology of the major phyla of invertebrates, organisms that comprise about 95% of animal life.  Topics include life histories of representative species.  Lecture & laboratory.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202.

BIO-323  Entomology, 4 cr.  Insects, their identification, classification, habits, and ecological relationships, with special emphasis on those common to the Chicago area.  Lecture, laboratory, and fieldwork.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202.

BIO-324  Ornithology, 4 cr.  Birds, their identification, classification, habits, and ecological relationships, with special emphasis on those common to the Chicago area.  Lecture, laboratory, and fieldwork.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202; BIO-305 recommended.

BIO-325  Local Fauna, 4 cr.  Taxonomy and field identification characteristics of local animal groups with emphasis on collecting organisms in selected ecosystems in the region.  Both major invertebrate and vertebrate taxa are surveyed; organisms collected in the field are studied in the laboratory.  Student prepare a collection of labeled organisms.  Lecture, laboratory & fieldwork.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202; BIO-305 recommended.

BIO-326  Animal Parasitology, 4 cr.  Taxonomy, anatomy, physiology, and significance of parasitic animals; host-parasite interactions; distribution of parasites throughout the world; examination of their life cycles, and prophylaxis and therapy of parasitic infections.  Lecture & laboratory.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202; BIO-305 recommended.

BIO-327  Mammalian Anatomy, 4 cr.  Gross architectural elements of the mammalian body, with emphasis upon correlation of form and function.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202.

BIO-328  Animal Behavior, 3 cr.  Comparative ethology in the animal kingdom and its adaptive significance based upon the evolution of form and function of the nervous system, sense organs and effector organs.  Topics include instinct, learning, intelligence, social organization, and their physiological integrating mechanisms.  Lecture only.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202.

BIO-330  Plant Anatomy & Morphology, 4 cr.  Plants are a diverse and important group of organisms.  In this course students compare the morphology and anatomy of vascular and nonvascular plants.  Students use scientific method to answer a question about plants using microscopy and other anatomical or morphological techniques, and they communicate results of their study to classmates.  The course includes instruction in plant identification techniques and in taxonomic methods.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202.

BIO-331  Plant Physiology, 4 cr.  Physiochemical basis of plant life, emphasizing life processes of major significance to the seed plants.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO 202 and BIO-301.

BIO-332  Local Flora, 4 cr.  The study of local plant species, with emphasis on phylogenetic relationships, systematics, ecological relationships, and economic or ethnobotanic uses.  Focus will be on species that are flowering during the semester that the course is taught, usually summer or fall.  Lecture, laboratory & field trips.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202; BIO-330 recommended.

BIO-333  Economic Botany, 3 cr.  Plants of particular economic significance to humans as sources of food, fibers, flavoring agents, drugs, industrial chemicals; horticultural plants; the role of economic plants in past and modern society.  Lecture only.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202; BIO-330 recommended.

BIO-334  General Mycology, 4 cr.  The study of fungi, a distinct kingdom of unicellular and filamentous organisms.  Fungi have tremendous ecological importance playing essential roles as decomposers as well as parasites and symbionts.  Fungi also have significant economic importance in the food and beverage industries.  This course covers all aspects of fungal biology, including laboratory culture, natural history, morphogenesis, genetics and physiology.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202.

BIO-340  Molecular Biology, 4 cr.  This course is designed for upper level undergraduates and builds on Genetics and Cell Biology.  Molecular biology is rapidly advancing the fields of biomedical sciences and agricultural sciences.  Understanding the chemistry of DNA, RNA, and proteins has allowed scientists in biomedical and agricultural sciences the ability to manipulate these macromolecules to more fully understand cellular functions, treat human diseases, and engineer more viable crops and live stock.   This course is designed to provide students with a broad understanding of molecular biology as well as teach modern molecular biology techniques routinely used in research labs, forensics labs, and hospital diagnostic labs.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202, BIO-301 & BIO-303.

BIO-341  General Microbiology, 4 cr.  Study of the; taxonomy and identification, ultrastructure and function, nutrition and growth, physiology, metabolism, molecular genetics, host-microbial interactions, immunology, epidemiology, ecology and biotechnology of microorganisms and viruses. Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202 and BIO-301.

BIO-342  Pathogenic Microbiology, 3 cr.  Systematic study of the distinctive cellular and molecular properties of pathogenic microorganisms including bacteria, fungi, viruses and protozoans.  Mechanisms of infection, pathogenesis, host defenses, immunology, epidemiology, diagnosis, treatment and control of these microorganisms.  Lecture only.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202 and BIO-341.

BIO-343  Virology, 4 cr.  The course is designed to give students a background of animal, plant and bacterial viruses, with further emphasis on animal viruses.  Topics covered will include but are not restricted to, replication strategies and life cycle, molecular mechanisms of infection, virus host interactions, viral evasion of body�s immune response and various pathological conditions.  Laboratory exercises will include growth and isolation of virus, plaques assays, cDNA cloning and expression of heterologous gene using a viral vector.  Upon completion of the course, students will have a knowledge base useful towards medical, or other health related careers.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202 and BIO-340.

BIO-344  Vertebrate Histology, 4 cr.  This course will focus on the basic characteristics and identification of the primary vertebrate tissues, as well as their organization into organ systems.  Where appropriate microanatomy will be integrated with organ functions.  Examination of microscope slides, light micrographs, and electronmicrographs of tissues and organs will be used in the study of vertebrate histology.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202; BIO-327 recommended.

BIO-350  Plant Ecology, 4 cr.  An introduction to how the concepts of ecology have been developed for and applied to plant systems.  This course is an extension of General Ecology, and emphasizes not only the ways in which general principles have been applied to plants, but also concepts and methodology unique to plants.  Lecture, laboratory and fieldwork.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202 and BIO-305; BIO-330 or BIO-331 recommended.

BIO-351  Phycology, 4 cr.  By studying the biology of algae, students will increase their understanding of the complex ecological interactions of algae with their environments, the roles that algae have played in the evolution of life, and the increasing uses of algae in biotechnology.  There will be several sampling trips to wetlands, lakes, and streams, including a Friday or Saturday field trip outside of Cook County.  Students will design and conduct original research projects involving identification and study of algal taxa.  Lecture, laboratory and fieldwork.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201 and BIO-202; BIO-330 recommended.

BIO-352  Aquatic Biology, 4 cr.  Students will study the biological processes that occur in freshwaters, the measurement of those processes, and the interaction of biological processes with water chemistry.  Students will learn to collect quantitative ecological samples through field work in area lakes and rivers and the will analyze the biological organisms and related water chemistry of their samples upon return to the lab.  Students will design and conduct original research projects.  There will be several field trips, including a Friday or Saturday field trip outside of Cook County.  Lecture, laboratory & fieldwork.  Prerequisites:  BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202 and CHEM-211.

*BIO-357 Community Ecology, 3 cr.  The course is designed for upper-level undergraduates and graduate students who are generally interested in ecology, conservation biology, and restoration ecology. Specifically, the course focuses on community ecology, an area of ecology that emphasizes how the interrelationships among several species within an area determine the structure and function of ecological communities within an ecosystem. The course explores the attributes that characterize communities as well as their organizing principles. In addition, the course covers approaches to their study and the implications they have on ecosystems. Throughout the course, examples from marine, terrestrial, and freshwater communities will be used to address the conceptual basis of the class. This class relies heavily on active discussion of primary literature (current and classic) as well as in-depth writing on selected topics.  Prerequisites:  BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202, and BIO-305.

*BIO-358  Biological Geography, 3 cr.  Geographic distribution of living organisms and the biological and geological principles underlying this distribution.  Lecture only.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202 and BIO 305.

*BIO-359  Ecological Methods, 4 cr.  Field and laboratory methodology for the ecologist.  Includes instruction on experimental design, quantitative sampling, data acquisition and interpretation as well as the preparation of project reports.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202, BIO-305 and MATH-275.

*BIO-360  Vertebrate Physiology, 4 cr.  Functions and interrelationships of organ systems.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202, and BIO-301.

*BIO-361  Human Genetics, 4 cr.  This course is designed for upper level undergraduate and graduate students, builds on General Genetics, and emphasizes human medical genetics.  Topics covered include but are not restricted to: known human genetic disorders; use of karyotyping, microsatellite analysis, and sequencing in the diagnosis of genetic disorders; use of pedigrees, epidemiological and molecular studies in the identification of genetic contributions to multifactoral conditions and diseases.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202, and BIO-303.

*BIO-362  Biochemistry, 4 cr.  Chemistry and metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins, nucleic acids, lipids, vitamins, and minerals associated with animal and plant life.  Lecture and laboratory. Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202, BIO-301 and CHEM-231; CHEM-232 recommended.

*BIO-363  Immunology, 4 cr.  The goals of the course are to study the role of cells and organs of immune system in health and disease. Topics covered will include but are not restricted to innate and adaptive immunity, molecular mechanisms of antibody diversity, major histocompatibility complex, complement system, immunodeficiency, allergies, immunology of cancer and organ transplantation.  Recent developments in techniques and immunotherapies will also be discussed.  The course will give the students theoretical and practical knowledge applicable to medical and other health related fields.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202, and BIO-301.

*BIO-364  Endocrinology, 4 cr.  The study of hormones and other signaling molecules, and their functions in growth control, maintaining homeostasis, and reproduction.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisites:  BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202, BIO-360 and CHEM-231.

*BIO-365  Neurobiology, 4 cr.  This course is designed for upper level undergraduate and graduate students.  An in depth examination of nervous systems in vertebrates and invertebrates.  Topics covered include but are not restricted to: excitable membrane physiology, synaptic mechanisms, and neuronal organization with emphasis on the integrative aspects of neural function.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisite: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202, and BIO-360.

*BIO-366  Cancer Biology, 4 cr.  This course is designed for upper level undergraduate and graduate students and emphasizes the molecular and cellular basis of cancer.  Topics covered include epidemiology of cancer, genetics of cancer, molecular mechanisms behind cancer, impact of viruses on human cancer development, and the biochemistry of cancer treatments.  Lecture only.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202, BIO-301 and BIO-303.

*BIO-367  Developmental Biology, 4 cr.  This course is designed for upper level undergraduate, and will build on concepts covered in introductory biology using skills and knowledge gained in Cell Biology and Physiology.  We will look at patterns of normal and abnormal development in the embryo emphasizing developmental interactions between cells and systems and how these systems are disrupted during development leading to birth defects.  The course is designed to give students the basic knowledge needed to go on into research or professional school.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202, BIO-303, and [BIO 301 or BIO 327].

*BIO-368  Genomics and Proteomics, 3 cr.  Genomics and Proteomics involves the use of high throughput methods and state of the art techniques, databases, and computations to generate, organize, explore, and analyze large data sets of DNA and/or protein sequence. This course will provide an introduction to the fields of genomics and proteomics. Through a combination of lecture, discussion, and hands on activities this course will focus on the methods and techniques used in gathering and interpreting genomic and proteomic data to answer questions important to various aspects of modern day biology.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202, BIO-301 and BIO-303.

BIO-372  Biochemistry of Metabolism, 3cr.  Biochemistry of Metabolism is lecture-based course that focuses on the processing of carbohydrates, lipids, proteins, and nucleotides. This course will offer a mechanistic view of metabolic pathways related to each macromolecule group, including feedback control. Each section will be linked to clinical situations and will incorporate current primary research literature in the field of metabolism. Quantitative analysis of chemical reactions, bioenergetics, thermodynamics and interpretation of research articles will be incorporated as part of the lectures.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201, BIO-202, and BIO-362.

BIO-380  Topics in Biology, 3 cr.  Selected course offerings in modern biology.  Topics studied differ from term to term.  Consult the Schedule of Classes for specific topics.  Prerequisites: BIO-150, BIO-201, and BIO-202; some may also require consent of instructor.

BIO-381  Independent Study I, 1 cr.   Library study of a biological topic, including a thorough literature search and production of a review paper on the chosen topic.  Prerequisites: 16 credits in Biology at 200- or -300 level, and consent of the instructor, Department Chair, and Dean of the College.  Biology majors only.

BIO-382  Independent Study II, 2 cr.  (See BIO-381 for description and prerequisites.)

BIO-383  Independent Study III,  3 cr.    (See BIO-381 for description and prerequisites.)

BIO-390  Biology Senior Seminar, 3 cr.  This course is intended for students who are within two semesters of graduation.  The goals of the course are to provide students with the opportunity to explore topics of particular interest to them, in greater depth than is usually possible within the context of topic specific courses, and to assess whether students are able to integrate knowledge gained from different courses and/or disciplines.  As part of the course, students will be required to take the Major Field Test in Biology.  This course fulfills the capstone requirement for the Biology MajorPrerequisites: BIO-301, BIO-303, BIO-305, and three Biology elective courses.  Biology Majors only.

BIO-391  Internship in Biology, 3 cr.  Field or laboratory experience at an off-campus site guided by a faculty advisor, and a site supervisor.  Requirements include; submission of a summary of the planned intern project; production of a scientific style paper describing the project and results, including a review of the relevant literature; presentation of the project in either podium or poster format.  Students are also required to take the Major Field Test in Biology.  This course fulfills the capstone requirement for the Biology MajorPrerequisites: 16 credits in Biology, a GPA in the sciences of 3.0 or better, and consent of instructor.  Biology Majors only.

BIO-392 & -393  Independent Research in Biology  2 cr. per term, 4 cr. total.  Field or laboratory study of a biological topic or question, to be carried out over the course of 1-2 terms.  Requirements include; design and execution of the research project; review of relevant scientific literature; production of a scientific style paper describing the project and results; presentation of the project in either podium or poster format.  Students will also be required to take the Major Field Test in Biology.  This course fulfills the capstone requirement for the Biology MajorPrerequisites:  16 credits in Biology at 200- or -300 level, GPA in the sciences of 3.0 or better, and consent of a faculty mentor, the Department Chair and Dean of the College prior to registration.  Biology Majors only. 

BIO-394  Seminar in Teaching of Biology, 3 cr.  This course will provide students with the opportunity to gain practical experience with methods of post-secondary teaching in the biological sciences.  Students will participate in preparation, presentation and grading of lecture, laboratory and assessment materials.  Students are required to identify a faculty mentor, to advise and guide the teaching experience no later than the term before he/she registers for the course.  As part of the course, students will be required to take the Major Field Test in Biology.  This course fulfills the capstone requirement for the Biology MajorPrerequisites: 16 credits in Biology at 200- or -300 level, and consent of a faculty mentor, the Department Chair and the Dean of the College prior to registration.  Biology Majors only. 

Graduate Courses

BIO-405  Biological Literature, 3 cr.  Preparation of a series of scientific papers based on a literature search.  Activities include the research and synthesizing of literature with reference to certain topics. Prerequisite: Graduate standing.

BIO-411  Spreadsheet Modeling in Ecology & Evolution, 3 cr.  Use of basic and advanced spreadsheet applications to model a wide variety of ecological and evolutionary processes and systems.  Extensive use of graphing capabilities, complex nested functions, and advanced software functions including writing macros, sampling from statistical distributions, using lookup tables, etc.  Students will complete independent projects in which they generate their own models using data from the literature and present their results both orally and in writing.  Extensive work outside the classroom will be required. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and BIO-305 or equivalent.

BIO-412  Chronobiology, 3 cr.  Most living organisms display oscillation in many biological, physiological, and behavioral processes.  These oscillations confer adaptive advantages for survival on a planet that revolves on its axis once every 24 hours.  Chronobiology is teh study of these adaptations.  Through a combination of group activities, discussion, and lecture this course focuses on the physiologic and genetic generation of the 24 hour rhythms, as well as teh behavioral and physiological processes that they control in various species. Prerequisite: Graduate standing.

BIO-413  Evolutionary Biology, 3 cr.  Comprehensive analysis of evolutionary patterns in both fossill and contemporary species.  Studies include an overview of the history of evolutionary biology, Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium assumptions about non-evolving systems, Darwinian and non-Darwinian mechanisms of evolutionary change, the Biological Species Concept and laternative species definitions, pre-zygotic and post-zygotic mechanisms of speciation, and current views on teh origin and natural history of life. Prerequisite: Graduate standing.

BIO-414  Comparative Biology of Aging, 3 cr.  Comparative analysis of aging, longevity, and mortality patterns in diverse prokaryotic and eukaryotic species.  Studies include an overview of the history of biological gerontology, life-table construction and analysis, populational and physiological measurements of senescence, theoretical models of aging and longevity, use of vital statistics mortality data, biochemistry of free-radicals and antioxidant molecules, and therapeutic interventions to prolong lifespans in various species. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and BIO-301 or equivalent.

BIO-415  Animal Behavior, 3 cr.  Advanced study and analysis of selected topics within teh field of animal behavior with emphasis on topics that are currently at the forefront of the discipline.  Depending on the term, the course may emphasize studies of animal behavior within an ecological, evolutionary, and/or neuroethological context. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and BIO-362 (or equivalents).

BIO-421  Biochemical Genetics, 3 cr.  Explores the biochemistry of the genetic material and the cell's ability to replicate, transcribe, and translate genetic information.  Recent discoveries in gene manipulation are discussed.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisites: Graduate standing, and BIO-303 & BIO-362 (or equivalents).

BIO-424  Analysis of Development, 3 cr.  Analysis of mechanisms underlying developmental processes in the embryo and adult organisms with special emphasis on the role of the genes in development.  Lecture only.  Prerequisites: Graduate standing, and BIO-303 & BIO-367 (or equivalents).

BIO-427  Current Topics in Genetics, 3 cr.  Advanced study and analysis of selected topics within the field of Genetics, with emphasis on topics that are at the forefront of advances in the discipline. Prerequisite: Graduate standing.

BIO-428  Current Topics in Human Genetics, 3 cr.  Advanced study and analysis of selected topics within the field of Human Genetics, with emphasis on topics, such as the Human genome Project and HapMap projects, epistatis, etc. that are at the forefront of advances in our understanding of human heredity, development, and disease. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and BIO-303 or equivalent.

BIO-441  Biology of Viruses, 3 cr.  The structure and replication of viruses, strategies of host defense and viral evasion, and use of viruses in biotechnology.  RNA- as well as DNA-viruses will be included.  Current research papers will be discussed to make students aware of advances being made in the field. Prerequisite: Graduate standing.

BIO-447  Current Topics in Cell Biology, 3 cr.  Advanced study and analysis of selected topics within the field of Cell Biology, with emphasis on topics, such as inter-and intracellular signaling, intracellular transport, mechanisms of mobility, post-transcriptional gene regulation, etc., that are at the forefront of advances in the discipline. Prerequisite: Graduate standing, BIO-301 and BIO-303 or equivalents.

BIO-450  Foundations of Ecology, 3 cr.  Readings and discussions of foundational papers in ecology, and classic case studies of field and laboratory experiments in ecology.  Overviews of the development of ecology as a science, major debates in ecology, and the development of both theory and methodologies in ecology will be presented.  Students will also present and discuss contemporary papers in light of these historical contexts.. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and BIO-305 or equivalent.

BIO-451  Historical and Contemporary Patterns in Species Diversity, 3cr.  Contemporary, historical and phylogenetic patterns of species diversity; current hypotheses for local, regional and global diversity trends; diversity case studies from plant and animal communities in aquatic and terrestrial systems.  Lecture and discussion.  Prerequisites: Graduate standing, and BIO-305 (or equivalent).  Courses in plant or animal biology, or biogeography recommended.

BIO-452  Quaternary Ecology, 4 cr.  Introduction to the principles and techniques of paleoecology; emphasis on the effects of global and regional climate/environmental change on ecosystems, communities, and populations during the Quaternary Period.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisites: Graduate standing, and BIO-305 or ESCI-212 (or equivalents).

BIO-453  Conservation Biology, 3 cr.  This course will explore how ecological theory (including mathematical models), principles, and methodologies are applied to the conservation of populations, communities and landscapes.  Covered topics include biodiversity, the demographic and genetics structure of populations, population viability analysis, the problems that small populations face, extinction as a historical and contemporary process, current tools applied in conservation (e.g., GIS, molecular tools), and the application of ecological principles to nature reserve design and ecosystem management.  Students will read extensively from the primary literature, lead class discussions, and solve applied and quantitative problems. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and BIO-305 or equivalent.

BIO-454  Conservation Genetics, 3 cr.  Advanced study of genetic theory and practice applied to the conservation of organisms.  Current primary literature will be incorporated into the course through written assignments and discussion.  Current conservation genetic techniques and computer-based data analysis methods will be practiced in the laboratory. Prerequisite: Graduate standing, BIO-303 and BIO-305 or equivalents.

BIO-455  Restoration Ecology, 3 cr.  Application of ecological research and concepts to restoration of disturbed ecosystems.  Current trends and challenges in restoring populations, communities, and ecosystems. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and BIO 305 or equivalent.

BIO-456  Bio-Environmental Analysis, 3 cr.  Individual and group field projects providing experience in techniques appropriate to the analysis of natural communities and their environmental components.  Studies include contrasts between selected natural areas and similar ones altered by humans.  A summary interpretive paper, using data acquired, is required from each student.  Lecture, laboratory, and fieldwork.  Prerequisites- Graduate standing, and BIO 305 & BIO-350 (or equivalents).

BIO-457  Current Topics in Ecology & Evolution, 3 cr.  This course provides graduate students with an opportunity to explore a current topic in ecology and evolutionary biology from a variety of perspectives, from molecular biology to community ecology. Each semester will be organized around a single book, edited volume, or selection of articles: students will read, present, and lead discussions on chapters from the book and related papers chosen from the recent primary literature.  Prerequisite: Graduate standing and BIO 305 or equivalent.

BIO-462  Enzymology, 3 cr.  Enzymes as protein catalysts.  The structure of a biological catalyst as discerned by x-ray diffraction, chemical modification, nuclear magnetic resonance, and kinetic studies is analyzed and related to function.  Lecture, demonstration, discussion, and laboratory.  Prerequisites: Graduate standing, and BIO-362 (or equivalent).

BIO-463  Plant Biochemistry, 3 cr.  Metabolic pathways of particular importance to plants, such as photosynthesis, the dissemination of starch, nitrogen fixation, and the formation of certain secondary products; metabolic pathways common to plants and other groups of organisms; phytohormonal control.  Lecture only.  Prerequisites: Graduate standing, and BIO-362.

BIO-464  Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Methods, 4 cr.  A graduate level lecture and lab course that provides training in essential experimental methods used in modern Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, including computer analysis tools, while reviewing basic structure and function of biological molecules.  Prerequisites: Graduate standing, and [BIO-340 or BIO-362].

BIO-471  Comparative Animal Physiology, 3 cr.  Physiological and biochemical evolution of animals with emphasis on the range and variety of physiological mechanisms and processes involved in adaptations to special habits and habitats.  Lecture and laboratory.  Prerequisites: Graduate standing, and BIO-320 & BIO-362 (or equivalents).

BIO-475  Advanced Immunology,  3 cr.  Contemporary issues in immunochemistry as related to antibody structure and function; lecture and discussion of current papers on antibody structure, the inheritance of immune response capacities, immunological tolerance and transplantation disease.  Lecture and discussion.  Prerequisites:  Graduate standing, and BIO-363 (or equivalent).

BIO-4821 (1 cr.), -4822 (2 cr.), -4823 (3 cr.)  Independent Investigations.  Field or laboratory study of a biological topic or question, to be carried out over the course of 1-2 terms. Requirements include two or more of the following- design and execution of the research project; review of relevant scientific literature; production of a scientific style paper describing the project and results; presentation of the project in either podium or poster format. No more than 3 credits of BIO 482 can be applied to the requirements for the Biology MS.  Prerequisites:  Graduate standing and BIO-405; permission of instructor and prior approval of Department Chair and appropriate College Deans.

BIO-485  Advanced Topics in Biology, 3 cr.  Topics studied differ from term to term.  Consult the Schedule of Classes for specific topics.  Prerequisites: Graduate standing; some may require consent of the instructor.

BIO-491  Seminars in Biology, 1 cr.  Students give an oral presentation on selected topics; two hours per week.  Course may be repeated up to a maximum of three credits by departmental permission. Prerequisite: Graduate standing.

BIO-4971 (1 cr.), -4972 (2 cr.), -4973 (3 cr.)  Library Thesis.  Guidance of students conducting literature/library research and writing a Thesis to fulfill requirements for the Master of Science degree in Biology, Option II. Students may register for 1-3 credits per term with a minimum of 4 credits required for Option II of the Biology M.S.  All BIO 497 credits must be earned within the equivalent of 2 academic years.   Prerequisites: Acceptance to Candidacy and consent of the instructor, Department Chair and the appropriate College Deans.

BIO-4991 (1 cr.), -4992 (2 cr.), -4993 (3 cr.), -4994 (4 cr.)  Research Thesis.  Guidance of students conducting research and writing a thesis to fulfill requirements for the Master of Science degree in Biology, Option II. Students may register for 1-4 credits per term with a 6 credits required for Option I of the Biology M.S. All BIO-499 credits must be earned within the equivalent of 2 academic years.   Prerequisites: Acceptance to Candidacy, Department approval of research project, and approval of the Department Chair and the appropriate College Deans.

 

Biology

Faculty and Staff

Faculty and Staff

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