BIOL L101 – Biological Principles I
Basic Lecture & Lab Syllabus

Lecture Professor:  Dr. Annette Golonka
Office: Bradley 211
Phone: 803-313-7019

Class Meeting Information: Varies from semester to semester (please see course listings for exact time).
Lecture: Meets twice a week for 75 minutes.
Labs: Meet once a week for 3 hours.

I. Required Textbooks: 
Campbell and Reece.  2008.  Biology.  8th ed.  Benjamin Cummings.  San Francisco, CA.

Morgan and Carter.  2008.  Investigating Biology Lab Manual.  6th ed.  Benjamin Cummings. San Francisco, CA. 

Blackboard Content: Some laboratory assignments (indicated on lab syllabus) and all lecture assignments WILL be available on Blackboard for printing.  These assignments will be available on Blackboard within 24 hrs of the assigned date.  Hard copies of assignments will be handed out during class.  If you miss a class, you are responsible for printing any missed assignments or obtaining them from your professor or lab instructor.

II. Course Description:  This is an introductory biology course for life-science majors.  The course will focus on the unifying concepts of biology, specifically on the cellular and molecular aspects of biology.  Topics covered in the course will include molecular and cellular organization, DNA structure, genes and heredity, metabolic pathways (respiration and photosynthesis), and evolution. 

III. Course Goals & Learning Outcomes: The overall goal of this course is to introduce studnts to the molecular and cellular aspects of biology that can be applied to a braoder perspective, such as the material in BIOL 102 or other biological areas of his/her interest. By the end of the course, the student will be able to:

  1. Describe the importance and functio of the major macromolecules of life.
  2. Compare and discuss the differences and similarities between eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells.
  3. Compare the end results and processes of two of the major metabolic processes: fermentation and respiraiton.
  4. Describe the central dogma of molecular biology.
  5. Discuss some of the ethical ramifications of genetics and the human genome project.
  6. Apply the scientific method in lab, develop testable hypotheses, and design lab experiments to test key concepts in biology.
  7. Apply knowledge learned in the course to assess data collected during lab experiments and write a journal-style paper.
  8. Discuss a bioogy topic of interest, report on that topic via a group presentation (via Powerpoint) to the class, and summarize the topic chosen in a written assignment.
  9. Use the library's databases to search out biological references for writing projects and the group presentation.

IV. Course Structure & Requirements

BIOL 101 meets twice a week for lecture and once a week for lab and experiments. Group learning projects are integrated into the course through lecture and lab.

Readings: Chapters covered during lecture are listed below in the lecture schedule.  To be successful in this course, you 1) need to purchase the textbook, lab manual, and any accompanying supplemental materials, 2) need to keep up with reading assignments, for lecture and lab, and 3) participate in discussions in lecture and lab.  You may be assigned review questions at the end of the chapters for discussion in class next period.  These questions may appear on the tests or in lab on quizzes.  Material not covered in class but assigned in readings, will be fair game for test material unless otherwise stated in class.  It is the responsibility of the student to read these assignments.  Applicable lab material is also fair game for test material. 

Attendance:  According to the USC Academic Bulletin, “absence from more than 10 percent of the scheduled class sessions, whether excused or unexcused, is excessive and the instructor may choose to exact a grade penalty for such absences.”  Please note that USC makes no distinction between “excused” and “unexcused” absences.  This course meets twice a week for lecture and once a week for lab.  Being more than 10 minutes late to class or leaving class early will count as an absence.  Thus, if a student misses more than 3 lectures or 1 lab, his or her final grade in the course will be dropped one letter grade.  Continual tardiness may also result in a drop in a student’s grade.

Students are responsible for any work or assignments missed during absences.  Laboratory experiments CANNOT be made up.  If a quiz is missed during lab or lecture, the student will receive a zero for that quiz.  If homework is turned in a day late or after lab or lecture begins, the final grade on that homework will be dropped one letter grade.

Exams:  There will be 4 exams (3 during the semester plus the final exam) – short essay, multiple choice, fill-in, true/false.  Exams will not be cumulative and are equally weighted (see point breakdown below).

Lecture Assignments:  There will be 5 lecture homework assignments, each due at the beginning of the class period.  Lecture assignments are worth 20% of your final grade.  Homework assignments may include short topical reports, drawings/figures, or short answer questions.  Some assignments may be done on Blackboard and some assignments may be done in groups and will be designated as such on the assignment.

Lab: Lab quizzes are 10% of your final grade and lab assignments are 20% of your final grade, for a total of 30%.  There will be 4 written lab assignments and 1 presentation.  Each of the written assignments is due at the beginning of class period, unless otherwise stated.

V. Other Policies

Classroom Behavior: Cell phones, pagers, and other similar devices are to be turned off or placed in silent mode during class; this includes lab and lecture time.  Disrespectful and disruptive behavior will NOT be tolerated in class.  Students should act as responsible citizens at all times, in lab, lecture, and outside the classroom.  Students who do not act responsibly will be asked to leave the classroom or lab.

Plagiarism & Cheating:  Please review USCL’s policy on plagiarism and cheating in the Student Handbook.  If a student is caught plagiarizing or cheating, at the minimum the student will receive a 0 on that assignment.  Depending on the degree of plagiarism and/or cheating, the student may receive an F in the course and possibly have to face the USC Lancaster Academic Affairs Committee and possible suspension from the university.  A handout will be given out about plagiarism, paraphrasing, and quoting.

Lab Safety:  Students are required to wear eye glasses during labs where chemicals or microorganisms are used.  Students may opt to purchase a pair through the bookstore or check out a pair with your instructor.  They must remain in lab at all times.  Aprons are available upon request and you may be asked to wear them during particular labs.

VI. Assessment & Grading:

Point Breakdown:

Exams 1-4

12.5% each, total 50%

Lecture Assignments (5 total)

4% each, total 20%

Lab Assignments (3 total)

5% each, total 15%

Lab Quizzes




Grading Scale:

90 – 100% A

70 – 76% C

87 – 89% B+

67 – 69% D+

80 – 86% B

60 – 66% D

77 – 79% C+

Below 60% F

BIOL L101: Biological Principles I
Lecture Syllabus

Lecture schedule may be modified during the semester.  If changes are made, they will be announced in class.



Campbell Chapters


Introduction & Scientific Process



Organic Molecules & Origin of Life
Assignment 1a: choose topic

1, 2, 3, 4, & 25.1-25.3


Organic Molecules & Macromolecules – carbohydrates, fats



Macromolecules – proteins, nucleic acids



Macromolecules – Lipids, Membrane Structure & Function

7 -7.4


Membrane Function II, Tour of the Cell I
Assignment 2: Eukaryotes

1.2, 6, 7.5


Tour of the Cell II
Enzymes & Metabolism I



Exam I covers lectures 1-6

Ch. 1-5, 7-7.4


Enzymes & Metabolism II, Respiration I
Assignment 1a Due

8, 9-9.3


Respiration II
Assignment 2 Due



Respiration III, Fermentation, Photosynthesis I
Assignment 3: Importance of Photosynthesis

9.4-9.6, 10


Photosynthesis II, Mitosis I

10, 12, 16.3


Mitosis II, Meiosis I
Assignment 3 Due

12, 13


Meiosis II, Mendelian Inheritance I
Assignment 4: Mendelian Inheritance
 (Ch. 14 #1-5, 7-8, 12-15, 17)



Exam II covers lectures 6-11

Ch 6, 8-10, 7.5


Mendelian Inheritance II, Morgan’s Experiment



Sex-linked Genes, Human Inheritance, DNA Structure & Synthesis

15.3-15.5, 16


DNA Structure & Synthesis II, Transcription I

16, 17


Transcription II, Translation I



Assignment 4 Due (in-class quiz)



Mutation, Cancer, DNA Technology & Genomics I

12.3, 18.5, 20


Exam III covers lectures 11-16

Ch. 12-16


DNA Technology & Genomics II
Assignment 5: Society & Technology



DNA Technology & Genomics III
Assignment 1 Due: Topic Paper

18.5, 21


Viruses & Prions, Bacteria I



Bacteria II



Bacteria III



Finish up & Review
Assignment 5 Due (may be in-class group assignment & discussion)



Final Exam covers lectures 16-25

Ch 17, 18.5, 19-21, 12.3, 27-27.2

Statement for Students with Disabilities:  Students who have a documented disability and wish to discuss academic accommodations may contact me or Disability Services.   

Tips & Comments from Previous Students:
“The homework at the end of the chapters helped a whole lot!”

“The notes (lectures) just go over the surface of the material and to really understand, you must go through the book.  TIP for STUDENTS – YOU MUST READ THE BOOK!”

“Read all notes, look at the CD that comes with the book.  Read your book.  Have 1 on 1 with the teacher.”

“Watch the CD ROM!”

BIOL L101L Biological Principles I
Lab Syllabus

Lab Instructor: May vary from semester to semester.



Exercise # in Lab Manual


Scientific Investigation
Assignment 1a: Write a Title Page and Results Section for Experiment 1.3



Writing a Scientific Paper, How to Use Library, Accessing Blackboard
Assignment 1a Due: Peer-review
Assignment 1b: Write Title Page, Materials & Methods, and edited Results for Experiment 1.3



Diffusion and Osmosis
Assignment 1b Due: title page, M&M, Results, and your original peer-reviewed paper



Microscopes and Cells


Enzymes: Amylase


Cellular Respiration and Fermentation
Assignment 2: Write Results and Discussion section for Exp. 5






Mitosis and Meiosis
Assignment 2 Due: Results & Discussion



Mendelian Inheritance: Corn Crossing Experiment
DNA Fingerprinting Lab -- PCR
Work in Lab on Homework for in-class quiz



Finish DNA Fingerprinting Lab
Transcription/Translation/Mutation Simulation
DNA Structure; Watson & Crick Paper
Assignemnt 3: Write an Introduction and Works Cited Section for Alu Lab




Assignemnt 3: Draft Due




Finish up Bacteriology lab



Presentations (assigned in lecture)
Assignment 3 Due



This page last updated August 2, 2009 .