Foundation Course Offerings 2023 - 2024

BIOL 12 - Cell Structure and Function

Biology 12 will provide a foundation in the fundamental mechanisms that govern the structure and function of eukaryotic cells. Topics include membrane transport, energy conversion, signal transduction, protein targeting, cell motility and the cytoskeleton, and the cell cycle. Emphasis will be placed on discussion of the experimental basis for understanding cell function. The laboratory section will provide students with hands-on experience in modern laboratory techniques including microscopy, cell fractionation, and protein purification.

23F - Prof. Grotz

24S - Prof. He

BIOL 13 - Gene Expression and Inheritance

This course provides a foundation in genetics and molecular biology. Topics covered include the flow of genetic information from DNA to RNA to protein, transmission of genetic information from one generation to the next and the molecular mechanisms that control gene expression in bacteria and eukaryotes. These concepts will be integrated into a discussion of contemporary problems and approaches in molecular genetics. Laboratories utilize basic molecular biology techniques to further investigate topics discussed in lecture.  Open to all students without prerequisite.

23X - Prof. Griffin

24W - Prof. Dolph or Prof. Jack

BIOL 14 - Physiology

This course introduces students to the complexity of organisms by studying how their different organ systems strive to maintain internal homeostasis in the face of different environmental demands. The adaptive responses of selected organisms (humans, different animals and plants) to a variety of environmental factors will be studied from the molecular, cell, tissue, organ, and systems level of organization. Some of the topics to be covered include biological control systems (hormones, neurons) and coordinated body functions (circulation, respiration, osmoregulation, digestion). All systems studied will be integrated by analyzing how different organisms adapt to living in extreme environments (deserts, high altitude) or facing environmental demands (navigation, exercise).

23x - Prof. Socha

24W - Prof. Hill

BIOL 15 - Genetic Variation and Evolution

This course examines fundamental population-level processes and mechanisms that give rise to diversity of living organisms. The class will explore the interplay of evolutionary forces acting on genetic variation for both single-gene traits and complex traits determined by multiple genes and environmental conditions. Evolution of the human population will serve as the main study system. The class periods will include problem-solving sessions and hands-on activities on experimental evolution, observational data analyses and computer-based evolutionary inferences. Open to all students without prerequisite. Note: BIOL 12, BIOL 13, BIOL 14, BIOL 15, BIOL 16 may be taken in any order. 

24W - Prof. Zhaxybayeva

BIOL 16 - Ecology

This course examines fundamental concepts in the rapidly developing areas of ecology. These topics include the factors that limit the distributions and abundances of organisms, the effects that organisms have on ecosystems, the integration of ecosystems around the globe, and the conservation of species diversity. The class will also explore how the behavior and physiology of individual organisms shape both local and global patterns of distribution and abundance. Laboratories focus on experimental and quantitative analyses of local ecosystems, with an emphasis on field studies.  Open to all students without prerequisite.

23F - Prof. Pries

24S - Prof. Ayres

Biology 19 - Honors Cell Structure and Function

Biology 19 (Honors Cell Structure and Function) is an introduction to cell biology is for first year students with a strong background in biology and chemistry who may be interested in majoring in Biology. This course will discuss fundamental topics, including protein targeting, the cytoskeleton, membrane transport, cellular energetics, the cell cycle, and signal transduction. The course will emphasize experimental strategies to understand eukaryotic cell function, and the laboratory will provide hands-on experience in modern cell biological techniques, including microscopy, cell fractionation, and protein purification. Biology 19 is the prerequisite equivalent of Biology 12.

Biology 19 is open only to first-year students and enrollment is limited to 24 students in the Fall of 2023.

Invitation to enroll will be based on

1) Performance on the Biology Placement Exam (accessed via Canvas site).

2) Via application (link to application).   Deadline to apply is 5PM, Thursday, September 7, 2023.

23F - Prof. Bezanilla