BIO 170 - Organismal Biology - Fall 2016

Online Textbook

Professor M. McDarby

Office: C-231-N  (and C- 239)

Office (or Lab) Hours:    Monday / Wednesday / Friday, 10 AM - 11 AM;
                                         Tuesday / Thursday, 11 AM - 12:30 AM.
                                          Check the lab first - I'm unlikely to be in my office.
                                          Try other times on your own luck 
                                                or by appointment.

Telephone: 762-4651, office extension 8970, lab extension 8864.
                           Lab has students in it 8-11 and 2-5, please don't call it then.
                                                 Has Voice-Mail.

E-Mail

Lectures:   Monday, Wednesday, Friday, 11:00 - 12:00, C- 221.

Laboratory:     Thursday, 2-5 PM, C-239.

Old exams & references

Link:  How to Succeed in the Course

     
 

About the Course...

Organismal Biology, BIO 170, is a first-semester introductory course for students preparing for academic majors in the sciences or other technical fields. In most universities and many colleges, a large proportion of students taking this course would consider themselves pre-med. The course will cover basic foundation aspects of the biological sciences, concentrating on those most relevant to today’s scientists and technicians. The basic subject matter will resemble that of many high school biology courses, but the depth and slant will probably be different. Basic facts and terminology will be important, but the most successful students will be able to apply scientific reasoning, critical thinking, and analysis of written material.  Assignments for credit toward a final mark include lecture exams, lab tests, and written research papers.  Here is the FMCC Catalog Description.  This course fulfills the SUNY Education Guidelines for Natural Sciences.
 

The Book:   Introduction to Organismal Biology
                    


Important Dates:

Lecture Exams...... Sep 26th, October 21st, November 18th, December 16th.
Lab Quizzes..
......... In Labs: Sep 29th, October 27th, December 8th.
Papers .............Proposals:
 Sep 12th, October 28th;  Papers:  October 14th, December 9th
.
Lab Reports...
........
Due by end of following lab period.

 

Course Objectives:

This is a somewhat intensive introduction to the science of biology, laying a foundation necessary for later courses in this and related sciences. This will focus on foundation knowledge, such as scientific method as it applies to biology, basic taxonomic groups, and basic life processes. A second semester in this sequence will take many of these concepts into the molecular and cellular realm.  This course should give you the foundation knowledge and vocabulary to go on to more specific biological coursework, including human-oriented courses, and the academic preparation to deal with the requirements of most second-level courses as well.

Outcomes include these as well as the SUNY General Education Learning Outcomes.

GRADING:

Type

How Many

Each Worth

Total Points

Percentage

Lecture Exam

4

100

400

40

Lab Reports

12*

25

300

30

Lab Quizzes

3

30

90

9

Proposals

2

5

10

1

Papers

2

100

200

20

* - 13 Lab sessions, with lowest of the completed lab grades to be dropped.

Notice that the course grades add up to 1000 total Points, so each 10 Points gained (or lost) is the equivalent of 1% of your final grade, which will be figured this way:

%

GRADE

Points

%

GRADE

Points

90 & up

A

891 & up

74 - 76

C+

731 - 760

87 - 89

A-

861 - 890

70 - 73

C

691 - 730

84 - 86

B+

831 - 860

60 - 69

D

591 - 690

80 - 83

B

791 - 830

59 & Below

F

590 & Below

77 - 79

B-

761 - 790

"D" is considered passing, but often only "C" or higher are accepted as transfer credits!
Grades may also be severely affected for students violating FMCC's Academic Integrity Policy.

 

Attendance & Make-Up Policies:

Lectures are not marked for attendance per se, but exams derive much more from the lectures than the textbooks, so it is extremely difficult to do well if you miss many classes. Laboratory classes all have associated marked reports, so missing them will lead to lost points. Make-ups are usually possible if set up immediately - several labs use perishable materials and may not be available if you wait too long. All marked assignments and exams are scheduled in advance and those dates are on these sheets - hang on to them and/or mark your personal calendar. Exam conflicts (including lab quizzes) may be easily resolved as long as they are brought up prior to the exams - call or see or at the very least get a message (with a return phone number) to Mr. McDarby as soon as you know that you may miss a date! Resolutions are much easier if dealt with before due dates, even if only by an hour. If you leave the matter until after the exam, only medical and other emergencies with documentation will allow you to make up an exam. Make-ups must be arranged before exams are passed back, which is usually within a week of the exam.

Due materials (lab reports, proposals, papers) may be handed in past the due date, but will lose 5% per FMCC day, down to 25% for a complete and appropriately done but really late assignment. NO MATERIALS WILL BE ACCEPTED AFTER NOON, DECEMBER 14th.


 
     

Fall 2016 Schedule


      LAB - Introduction

Fri Sep 2 -  Chap 1, LIFE.

Mon Sep 5 -  NO CLASS, Labor Day

Wed Feb 3 -  Chap 2, Taxonomy

      LAB - Metacognition. (1)

Fri Sep 9 - 

Mon Sep 12 -  
                 First Proposal Due.

Wed Sep 14 -    

    LAB -  Classification.  (2)

Fri Sep 16 - Chap 3, SCIENCE.

Mon Sep 19 -                          

Wed Sep 21 -   

     LAB - Using Electronic Resources  (3)

Fri Sep 23 -  Chap 4, EVOLUTION.

Mon Sep 26 -    FIRST EXAM.

====================================================

Wed Sep 28 -

    LAB - Experiment Design(4)
                   First Lab Quiz.

Fri Sep 30 - 

Mon Oct 3 -  Chap 5, GENETICS.

Wed Oct 5 - 

    LAB  -  Evolution.  (5) 

Fri Oct 7 - 

Mon Oct 10  -  NO CLASS - Columbus Day

Wed Oct 12 -  Chap 6, MICROSCOPES.

    LAB - Microscope Introduction. (6)

Fri Oct 14 -  First Paper Due.

Mon Oct 17 -    Chap 7, PROKARYOTES.

Wed Oct 19 -        MIDTERM POINT 

     LAB - Protozoa (7) 

Fri Oct 21  -  SECOND EXAM .

==================================================== 

Mon Oct 24 -  Chap 8, PLANTS.

Wed Oct 26 - 

     LAB - Cnidaria (8)
                 Second Lab Quiz.

Fri Oct 28 -  Chap 9, FUNGI.
                 Second Proposal Due.

Mon Oct 31 - 

Wed Nov 2 -  Chap 10, PROTISTS.

     LAB - Worms (9)  

Fri Nov 4 - 

Mon Nov 7 -   

Wed Nov 9 -   

     LAB - Arthropods. (10) 

Fri Nov 11 -  Chap 11, ANIMAL REPRODUCTION.

Mon Nov 14 -  

Wed Nov 16 -  Chap 12, ANIMAL STRUCTURE.

   LAB - Pig 1 (11)

Fri Nov 18 -  THIRD EXAM. 

===========================================================

Mon Nov 21 - 

Wed Nov 23 -  Chap 13, ANIMAL DISTRIBUTION SYSTEMS.

   LAB -  NO LAB, Thanksgiving

Fri Nov 25 -   NO CLASS,  Thanksgiving

Mon Nov 28 -

Wed Nov 30 - Chap 14, DIGESTION.

   LAB - Pig 2 (12)

Fri Dec 2 - 

Mon Dec 5 -

Wed Dec 7 -  Chap 15, INTERNAL CONTROLS.

     LAB - Mental Processing (13)
                 Third Lab Quiz.

Fri Dec 9 -   Second Paper Due.

Mon Dec 12 - Chap 16, BEHAVIOR.

Wed Dec 14 -
            Final Deadline for all late materials.

     NO LAB - Last Week of Classes

Fri Dec 16 - FOURTH EXAM. 
        
(Date Tentative).

============================================================

 

BIO 170 Research Papers

 
 


General Information
:

This course requires two papers, using each of the two subjects listed below. These papers will include at least four type-written, double-spaced, reasonably-margined pages of text (text does not include titles, reference lists, or empty space). Most of the paper will be made up of your own collected research on your subject, applied to your chosen topic and put into your own words.

For each paper, you will select a group of living things and an area of research.  For as many studies as fit those criteria that you find, you will describe how the research has been done.  You can include critiques of methods where appropriate.  The purpose here is to understand and be able to describe research methods, techniques, and analysis.

The papers must be based upon at least four proper references, listed at the end of the paper with the format given below. Note: things like abstract compilations, dictionaries, and encyclopedias are not considered proper references - you must list them if you used them, but they will not count toward the paper's required four.

 
Proposals for the Papers:

It is required that, by the dates given in the course syllabus, you hand in proposals for your papers. These can be handwritten. Three important items will be in your proposals: 1) What subject group's research are you going to investigate?   2)   What area or areas of research are you going to look at?  (For groups with little research, you may need a very broad area defined)  3) What two references have you already found that you expect to help you write your paper? Here, you need to give specific references, but not in the full format required for the paper itself. Proposals will be returned promptly with advisory comments and sometimes reference suggestions. They may have to be redone if unclear, or with a subject that can't fit the topic. Late proposals will be accepted only up to the due date of their papers; after that, they become useless and worthless.


Proofreading:

It is very important that your papers be proofread - the seemingly small deductions for spelling, grammar, and organizational errors can really add up in a mistake-filled paper. You can submit papers early, up to three days before the due date, for precorrection. All mistakes, including everything that would be marked on a completed paper, will be marked, and the paper will be available for you to pick up and correct. If leaving papers in the lab box or mailbox, include a note indicating that you want precorrection. Usually, there's only a day turnaround for precorrection. You can submit a paper early as many times as you wish, but after the due date, marks are final - you cannot redo a paper after the deadline has passed and it's been returned to you.


Problems and Extensions:

If you are running into difficulties, keep Mr. McDarby informed - he may be able to help. Perhaps more importantly, if he's made aware throughout the process, he may give you extra time to finish the paper, which is almost never true if the first he hears about problems is on or just before the due date of the paper!

 
     
 

Overall Format for the BIO 170 Research Paper:

 
 


First Page / Title Page
.

You can have a full separate title page, or use the top half of your first text page for the title.

The title must be specific enough to get an idea of what's in the paper clearly across to the reader.


Text.

Minimum four pages of text, double-spaced (leaves room for notes and corrections) - make a note if your word processor's idea of "double-spaced" looks unusually wide. Margins should not be too wide.  If your processor automatically skips lines between paragraphs, tell it not to.

Footnotes. General information or information available from multiple sources does not require footnotes, so don't overdo them. Specific (such as numbers / statistics) or controversial information, or direct quotes (which also require attribution- who's speaking, and why should we care? - in the text itself), things that you could only have gotten from particular sources (includes experimental procedures and results), do require footnotes.  Format: at the end of the reference-using passage, put the last name of the lead author from your reference (your reference list at the end is alphabetized by author's last name, so a reader can easily find the full reference title if they want to). No other information is needed unless you have more than one reference from that author - then, use year of publication or second author or first words of title to specify which reference you're footnoting. References without authors can be footnoted with the source organization, or the first words of the title, followed by dots (...).


Reference Page.

NOTE: These papers require a specific science-style reference listing format!!!!!!

References are listed as follows. The entire list is alphabetized by author's last name. Make notes in your list if required information was not available.

Paper Sources: In this order: Author(s), last name first, full names, full list; Year (only) of publication; Title of actual reference; reference source if part of bigger whole, like a magazine article or a separately-written book chapter would be; Volume and Issue Numbers for a magazine, Date for a newspaper, or Publisher for a book; Page Numbers if applicable. If using a "paper" source obtained from a database, name the database; or if over the Internet, give the address and date accessed.

Internet Sources: Use ONLY sources that can be shown to be reliable! List as: Author(s), last names first, full names, full list (if no author, give the website organization; if neither, you shouldn't use the source); Year of writing and/or most recent update; Title of specific web page accessed; Web site name or supporting organization if page is part of larger site (information pages usually are); Full Internet address; Date(s) that you accessed the information.

Other Sources: Check with Mr. McDarby on formats for unusual references. Don't make assumptions!


 
     
   Research Paper - Common Mistakes.  
 
Title is misleading or missing.

Paper doesn't really address chosen topic, or misses much of the topic's requirements.

Organization of the paper is poor - things are discussed in widely separate sections. NOTE: outline, and don't be afraid to use a word processor to move things around.

Technical items - terms, procedures, etc. - are mentioned but not sufficiently explained.

Points you've already discussed are repeated.


Spelling and Grammar:

Overall proofreading was not done and needed to be. (Computer checkers are better than nothing, but will still miss a lot of mistakes.)

Apostrophes are not used on possessives. (Exception: possessive "its" gets no apostrophe; "it's" is a contraction meaning "it is.")

Colons and semicolons are misused. (A colon sets something up, often a list; a semicolon breaks things apart a bit more strongly than a comma.)

Verbs don't refer to their nouns (singular, plural) properly, or change tense for no reason.

Confusion amongst "there/ their/ they're," or "your/ you're," or "two/ to/ too."  Word processors tend to miss these mistakes.

Effect and affect are confused. (Effect is almost always a thing, affect is a verb.)

Proper usage is "try to do whatever," not "try and do it," as most people say.

Paragraph breaks don't make sense. (They come when you make a major subject change - there is no magic sentence count.)

Footnotes are overused, or not used when needed, or done improperly. (See earlier section on footnotes.)

Quotations are overused (youre paraphrasing, mostly, not copying) or are not attributed.  At most, maybe 20% of your paper can be quotes.

In quotations, periods and commas are put outside the quotation marks. (Punctuation at the end of quotations go inside the quotation marks unless putting them there would change the meaning of the quotes.)

Style results in confusion or changes for no apparent reason.

Paper isn't long enough. (Text alone has to be at least 4 pages!)

Reference format is wrong, and/or information thats supposed to be there is missing, or there aren't enough acceptable references.

 

 
     
 

Research Papers Marking Deductions (in Points / %):

                        Title:                                           First Paper     Second Paper

Topic same as first paper. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  -40

Other mistakes. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  -1 . . . . . . . . . -2

Text:

Omissions from topic requirements:

Some omissions. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -1 to -10 . . . . . -2 to -20

Off the topic somewhat. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -8 . . . . . . . . . -10

Way off the topic. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -12 to -25 . . . . -15 to -40

Topic not even recognizable. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -20 to -45 . . . . -25 to -55

Length:

Within one page of minimum. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -6 . . . . . . . . . -10

Over one page short. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -12 . . . . . . . . . -20

Over 2 pages short. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -25 . . . . . . . . . -40

Spelling and grammar:

First 3 mistakes per page. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 0 . . . . . . . . . . 0

Each mistake after the first 3 per page. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -1 . . . . . . . . . -1

So many mistakes as the be virtually unreadable. . . . -4 to -40 . . . . . . -8 to -50

Quote without saying who is being quoted & why . -2 . . . . . . . . . -3

Organization is poor. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -2 to -10 . . . . . .-4 to -20

References:

Footnote format is wrong. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -5 . . . . . . . . . -7

Footnote to an unlisted reference. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -4 . . . . . . . . . -6

Footnote required but not present. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -4 . . . . . . . . . . -6

Inappropriate source . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -5 . . . . . . . . . . -8

Fewer than required number of proper references, each . .  -5 . . . . . . . . . . -8

Errors from required format, each. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -1 . . . . . . . . . -2

Listing format completely wrong. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -10 to -20 . . . . . -20 to -40

Other Problems:

Dishonesty - Plagiarism, Falsified Reference, etc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . -25 to -100

Form, readability, overquoting, other subjectives. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .      -5 to -40

Exceptional content. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .    +1 to +25

 

 
     


OLD EXAMS

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Copyright 2016, Michael McDarby.