Introductory Biology Courses

We offer several introductory courses: BIOL BC1001, BC1002, and the BC1500-series. 


BIOL BC1002 Global Health and Ecology (Fall) 

What disease is the number one killer worldwide?  What will be the next pandemic?  Fundamentals of human physiology and microbiology are explored in the context of major global health issues.  Principles of ecology are outlined, with an emphasis on the bidirectional impact of the interactions of humans with global environment.  Lab exercises introduce biological techniques for studying these topics. 

This course is a good first course for students with little background in Biology, but who intend to major in Biology and/or pursue a pre-health career, though it does not fulfill pre-medical requirements. This is also a good first course for non-science majors wishing to fulfill the Science Lab GER.  Students who take 1002 in the fall can take either 1502/03 or 1001 in the Spring, depending on their goals. Students fulfilling a Foundations requirement, may take BC1002 as a one-semester course, with no prerequisites.  It also fulfills Thinking through Global Inquiry. 

Lab is required.  Enrollment is limited to 16 students per section.


BIOL BC1001 Revolutionary Concepts in Biology (Spring)

This course introduces basic concepts of molecular and cell biology, genetics, and evolution.  It is a foundational course intended for less experienced biologists and/or non-science majors.  This course introduces basic concepts of cell biology, anatomy and physiology, genetics, evolution, and ecology.  This course fulfills the Science Lecture GER, but not the Science Lab GER as there is no lab component to this course. 


BIOL BC1500/01 Introduction to Organismal and Evolutionary Biology Lecture & Lab (Fall) | BIOL BC1502/03 Introduction to Cell and Molecular Biology Lecture & Lab (Spring)

These courses are targeted at prospective biology majors and pre-health students, although non-majors are certainly welcome.  This course is most appropriate for students with more than one biology course in high school, AP/IB Biology, or a strong interest in the field.  Although most students begin the BC1500-series in the Fall semester, it is perfectly acceptable to begin in the Spring semester.  The Fall semester lecture (BC1500) and lab (BC1501, co-requisite lab recitation BC1511) courses focus on evolutionary and organismal biology.  The Spring semester lecture (BC1502) and lab (BC1503, co-requisite lab recitation BC1512) courses focus on cell and molecular biology.

The lecture components must be taken either as co- or pre-requisites to lab. Students who have not taken the 1500 (Fall) lecture course may not enroll in 1501/1511; students who have not taken the 1502 (Spring) lecture course may not enroll in 1503/1512. 

Lab is not required to enroll in either 1500 or 1502.


BIOL BC1599: Biology Journal Club

This is a one point seminar course that serves as an enhancement to the Introductory Biology curriculum for first-year students who scored a 4 or 5 on the AP Biology exam (or equivalent preparation) and are currently enrolled in the BIOL BC1500-level courses.  The class meets once-a-week for one hour and is graded on a Pass-Fail basis.

Which course should you take?
Goal Little Experience in Biology Strong background in Biology
Science major or pre-health career Start by taking 1001 in the Fall. Then, take 1502/03 in the Spring, and 1500/01 the following Fall Take 1500/1501 in the Fall, and 1502/1503 in the Spring
Fulfill lab science GER** Take 1002 in the Fall with lab, and 1001 in the Spring

Your choice:

a) Take 1002/1012 in the Fall, and 1001 in the Spring -OR-

b) Take 1500/01 in the Fall and 1502 in the Spring

c) Take 1002/1012 in the Fall, and 1503 in the Spring


**You are no longer required to take two science lectures from the same discipline. Therefore, you may take any of the 1001, 1500, or 1502 lectures, and a lecture+lab from a different scientific discipline. Or you may take the lecture + lab combinations of 1002/1012 (Fall), 1500/1501 (Fall), or 1502/1503 (Spring) with a lecture from a different discipline.