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 Home < Academics < Undergraduate < Division III < Biology

 

 

Programs offered:
B.S. in Biology
Minor in Biology (TU)

Please consult the University Bulletin for degree requirements.

The curriculum in biology provides a foundation in both classical and contemporary biological concepts and prepares the student for continuing intellectual growth and professional development in the life sciences. These goals are achieved through completion of a set of courses that provide a comprehensive background in basic scientific concepts through lectures, discussion, exploration of the primary literature, writings, oral presentations, research, and field and laboratory exercises. The program supplies the appropriate background for employment in research institutions, non-government and government institutions and industry; the curriculum also contributes to the preparation of students for graduate school and for professional schools of medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine and the like.

All introductory-level science (biology, chemistry, physics) lecture courses have mathematics prerequisites, and some also have mathematics co-requisites. Several of these introductory-level science courses are required for the Biology major and minor. While the mathematics prerequisites can be satisfied in a variety of ways, the most efficient way for most students is to take the mathematics placement examination no later than the start of a student’s first semester at Oglethorpe. The mathematics placement exam will diagnose if a student has sufficient mathematical acuity to exempt any (or all) of the mathematics prerequisites and, if not, will also diagnose an action plan for preparing the student to satisfy prerequisites in the shortest possible time. Students who satisfy the relevant mathematics proficiency pre-requisites their first semester at Oglethorpe are urged to register for science courses right away. Students needing additional math preparation must acquire the needed expertise in time to begin science courses in their sophomore year in order to graduate within four years. This urgency is particularly amplified given the fact that many science courses are not offered every year.

Students interested in pursuing careers in scientific illustration with a biological science emphasis or careers in medical illustration should immediately familiarize themselves with mathematics prerequisites listed below, and should seek the specialized advising that is therein encouraged.

The following is a sample of courses offered in Biology:


BIO 101. General Biology I

5 hours

General Biology I, along with General Biology II, is an introduction to modern biology and considers the principles of the biological sciences from an integrated viewpoint. The general orientation of this course is toward the molecular and cellular basis of life. The specific topics covered are biochemistry, cell biology, genetics and evolution. Lecture and laboratory. Prerequisites: Completion of the mathematics requirement as described above; BIO 101 must precede BIO 102 and it is recommended that the courses be completed in consecutive semesters. Biology majors and biopsychology majors must earn a C- or better in BIO 101 before enrolling in BIO 102 or any other biology course.

 

BIO 102. General Biology II 5 hours

General Biology II, along with General Biology I, is an introduction to modern biology and considers the principles of the biological sciences from an integrated viewpoint. The general orientation of this course is toward biological scales larger than the cell. Specific topics covered include phylogeny, anatomy, physiology, and ecology of plants and animals. Lecture and laboratory. Prerequisites: Completion of the mathematics requirement as described above; BIO 101 must precede BIO 102 and it is recommended that the courses be completed in consecutive semesters. Biology majors and biopsychology majors must earn a C- or better in BIO 101 before taking BIO 102. They must also earn a C- or better in BIO 102 before enrolling in any other biology courses.

 

BIO 200. Independent Study in Biology
1-5 hours

This course is supervised research in the primary literature. Prerequisite: Submission of a proposal with a detailed outline of the research; approval of the proposal by the instructor, the division chair, the student’s advisor and the provost or designated associate provost; and C- or better in BIO 101 and 102. The approved proposal must be submitted to the registrar’s office no later than the final day of the drop/add period of the semester of study. For additional criteria, see Independent Study Policy in the Academic Regulations and Policies section of this Bulletin.

 

BIO 201. Genetics

5 hours

An introduction to the study of inheritance. Classical patterns of Mendelian inheritance are explored and related to modern molecular genetics, human genetic disorders, ethics and issues of conservation. Lecture and laboratory. Prerequisites: BIO 102 and CHM 102 (with laboratory); prerequisites or corequisites: CHM 201 (with laboratory) and MAT 111. A grade of “C-” or higher must be earned in each of the prerequisite courses.

 

BIO 202. Microbiology

5 hours

An introduction to the biology of viruses, archea, bacteria, algae and fungi. Consideration is given to phylogenetic relationships, taxonomy, physiology and economic or pathogenic significance of each group. Lecture and laboratory. Prerequisites: BIO 201, CHM 201 (with laboratory) with a grade of “C-” or higher in each course.

BIO 215. Animal Behavior 5 hours

This course considers the function, development and evolution of animal behavior, including the physical and physiological bases of behavior, behavioral genetics, social behavior and behavioral ecology. The laboratory component applies the issues addressed in lecture in a hands-on interactive and field-oriented setting. An integrated speakers series is part of the interactive intellectual environment cultivated by the course. Lecture and laboratory. Offered biennially. Prerequisites: BIO 102 and PSY 101. A grade of “C-” or higher must be earned in each of the prerequisite courses.

 

BIO 251. Biology Seminar I: Oral Presentations

1 hour

This course is offered in the fall as a component in a two-semester “capstone” sequence for biology majors. The two-part experience is designed to introduce students to the mechanics and intellectual components of the practice of being a scientist. This course will cultivate the skills of the framing, researching, preparation and presentation of a public address on a topic of biological interest. Prerequisites: BIO 102, CHM 102 (with laboratory); recommended for students with junior or senior standing.

 

BIO 252. Biology Seminar II: Biological Literature 1 hour
This course is offered in the spring as a component in a two-semester “capstone” sequence for biology majors. The two-part experience is designed to introduce students to the mechanics and intellectual components of the practice of being a scientist. This course serves as an introduction to researching, locating, interpreting and presenting information from the professional scientific literature. Prerequisites: BIO 102, CHM 102 (with laboratory); recommended for students with sophomore or junior standing.
BIO 280. Conservation Biology in Hawaii
4 hours

This course complements BIO 380 by focusing on the rare and unique biodiversity of the Hawaiian Islands. It moves quickly from the basic goals and methods of Conservation Biology to their application to specific populations of terrestrial and marine species. The course is comprised of approximately four lectures/discussions during Fall Semester, approximately 13 days in Hawaii during Winter Break, and a research paper to be completed during Spring Semester. Prerequisites: Declared Biology Major, junior or senior standing, and permission of the instructor. Note that seats in this class are limited. Students with the prerequisites and a C- or better in BIO 380 or BIO 423 may be granted permission to register before others.

 

BIO 290. Special Topics in Biology
1-5 hours

This course includes offerings of new courses and seminars and one-time courses and seminars on select biological topics. Prerequisite: See individual course listing in the current semester’s class schedule.

 

BIO 301. Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy

5 hours

An intensive study of the structural aspects of selected vertebrate types. These organisms are studied in relation to their evolution and development. The laboratory involves detailed examination of representative vertebrate specimens. Prerequisites: BIO 102, BIO 201,CHM 201/ 201L . Junior or senior class status and coregistration in BIO 201 and CHM 201/201L may be acceptable with the permission of the instructor. A grade of “C-” or higher must be earned in each of the prerequisite courses.

 

BIO 313. Developmental Biology

5 hours

A course dealing with the dynamic developmental processes in animals that start at fertilization and continue through to the formation of an adult organism. Classical observations in embryology are combined with genetic, cellular and molecular practices to provide a comprehensive understanding of fundamental themes and pathways enabled during development. Coursework will allow for students to extrapolate from various development models to the human condition. In the laboratory, living and prepared examples of developing systems in representative invertebrates and vertebrates will be studied using both classical and molecular approaches. Prerequisites: BIO 201, CHM 201 (with laboratory). A grade of “C-” or higher must be earned in each of the prerequisite courses.

 

BIO 317. Biochemistry 5 hours

As an introduction to the chemistry of living systems, this course will investigate the structures and functions of proteins, lipids and carbohydrates. Central metabolic pathways and enzyme reaction mechanisms also will be studied. Lecture and laboratory. Prerequisites: BIO 102, CHM 201 (with laboratory) with a grade of “C-” or higher in each course; recommended prerequisite: CHM 310.

 

BIO/UEP 320. Urban Ecology

5 hours

The science of Urban Ecology is more than the study of ecology in urban landscapes. It is the integration of natural and social sciences for greater understanding of the emergent phenomena that we call cities. This course describes the state of urban ecological knowledge and best practices for promoting and implementing sustainable development using lectures, readings, discussions, guest speakers, research, and labs. Labs include travel to many sites around Atlanta. Prerequisite: C- or better in COR 102 or instructor permission.

 

BIO 326. Vascular Plants

5 hours

The biology of vascular plants is considered at levels of organization ranging from the molecular through the ecological. Studies of anatomy and morphology are pursued in the laboratory and an independent project concerning plant hormones is required. Prerequisites: BIO 202, CHM 201 (with laboratory). A grade of “C-” or higher must be earned in each of the prerequisite courses.

 

BIO 380. Conservation Biology
5 hours

Conservation Biology is an interdisciplinary science that attempts to protect and restore biodiversity by describing its spatial and temporal patterns, identifying its threats, and removing its threats. This course covers these goals, philosophies underlying the science, and relevant public policy with lectures, readings, exercises, and research. Exercises and research typically involve travel around Atlanta and Georgia. Prerequisite: C- or better in BIO 201, concurrent enrollment in BIO 201, or instructor permission.

 

BIO 400. Advanced Independent Study in Biology

1-5 hours

This course is supervised research on a selected project or paper with a student entering his/her final year of study in the major. To qualify, students must propose a topic that requires consultation and analysis of the primary scientific literature germane to the topic. Students enrolling in BIO 400 for more than 3 credit hours must propose original research that includes review of relevant primary literature, data collection in the field and/or lab, data analysis, and a formal research presentation. Prerequisite: 25 credit hours in Biology, with grades of B- or higher in each course; junior or senior standing and permission of the instructor. Submission of an application which contains a proposed, detailed outline of study approved by the instructor, the division chair, the student’s advisor and the provost or designated associate provost. The completed application must be submitted to the registrar’s office no later than the final day of the drop/add period of the semester of study. For additional criteria, see Independent Study Policy in the Academic Regulations and Policies section of this Bulletin.

 

BIO 402. Human Physiology
5 hours

A detailed analysis of human functions that deals primarily with the interactions involved in the operation of complex human systems. Lecture and laboratory. Prerequisites: BIO 201, CHM 201 (with laboratory). A grade of “C-” or higher must be earned in each of the prerequisite courses.

 

BIO 414. Molecular Biology and Biotechnology

5 hours

This course is an introduction to the theory and practice of molecular bioscience. Topics covered include the principles and processes of molecular biology, DNA isolation and characterization, restriction enzyme analysis, cloning, construction and selection of recombinants made in vitro and preparation and analysis of gene libraries. Lecture and laboratory. Prerequisites: BIO 202, CHM 201, CHM 201L and BIO 413 with a grade of “C-” or higher in each course.

 

BIO 416. Evolution

4 hours

A course dealing with the various biological disciplines and their meaning in an evolutionary context. Also, a consideration of evolutionary mechanisms and the various theories concerning them. Prerequisites: C- or better in BIO 201, a declared Biology Major, and junior or senior standing.

 

BIO 418. Cell Biology
5 hours

An in-depth consideration of cellular evolution, cellular ultrastructure and the molecular mechanisms of cell physiology. Students will practice techniques involving the culturing and preparation of cells and tissues for examination by fluorescence microscopy, biochemical analysis and cell behavioral assays. Course culminates with each student designing and executing an independent research project. Prerequisites: BIO 201, CHM201 (with laboratory) and one additional biology course at 200 level or higher. A grade of “C-” or higher must be earned in each of the prerequisite courses.

 

BIO 423. Ecology
5 hours

This course investigates the features of the environment that dictate where an organism lives and what density its population can achieve. It takes a quantitative approach and uses a variety of model organisms (e.g., salamanders and students) in lecture and lab. Labs involve considerable fieldwork and travel to sites around Atlanta and the Southeast. Prerequisites: C- or better in BIO 201, C- or better in MAT 111, and junior or senior standing; or instructor permission.

 

BIO 490. Advanced Special Topics in Biology
1-5 hours

This course includes offerings of advanced, new courses and seminars and advanced, one-time courses and seminars on select biological topics. Prerequisites: junior or senior standing and any additional requirements mentioned in the current semester’s class schedule.

 

BIO 495. Internship in Biology
1-4 hours

An internship is designed to provide a formalized experiential learning opportunity to qualified students. The internship requires the student to obtain a faculty supervisor in the relevant field of study, submit a learning agreement, work 30 hours for every credit hour earned, keep a written journal of the work experience, have regularly scheduled meetings with the faculty supervisor, and write a research paper dealing with some aspect of the internship. Written work must total at least five pages of academic writing for every credit hour. An extensive list of internships is maintained by career services, including opportunities at the Blue Heron Nature Preserve, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Georgia Aquarium, local health care facilities, Upper Chattahoochee Riverkeeper, veterinary clinics, Yerkes Regional Primate Center, Zoo Atlanta, etc. Graded on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis. Prerequisites: Permission of the faculty supervisor, qualification for the internship program, permission of an internship site supervisor, and acceptance of Learning Agreement Proposal by the Experiential Education Committee.


 

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