A. Malcolm Campbell's Bio113 Syllabus

Bio 113: Integrated Concepts in Biology<bio.davidson.edu/113>
Class Meets: MWF 9:30 Studio D classroom, inside library Lab Meets: Thursdays (8:15 am or 1:40 pm)
Watson 147
Office Hours: M & W: 2:30 - 3:30; Thurs: 11-noon;
or by appointment any day
Office: Dana 221 (through my lab, door on left side of lab) macampbell@davidson.edu_Phone: 704-894-2692

General Information:

Integrating Concepts in Biology - eBook <-- Buy your textbook here.

Echo360 student portal

Learning Outcomes for 113 Outcomes are listed for each chapter of the textbook.

Take the VARK self-assessment test and record your results.

You are lucky for 3 reasons:
1) biology is very exciting and in the news every day;
2) in Bio113, you will learn biology in a new and effective way; and
3) you are the first class to use our improved e-textbook!

Biology has become too massive to memorize factoids the way you were encouraged to do in the old AP Biology, for example. Bio113 and 114 are organized around the 5 Big Ideas of biology: Informatioin, Evolution, Cells, Emergent Properties and Homeostasis. The natural world is not subdivided into big (Bio112) or small (Bio111) biology. For this class, you will read chapters that cover all 5 big ideas at 3 size levels. Upon completion of Bio113, you may take Bio114 OR Bio112. All you need is an odd number (113 or 111) AND an even number (114 or 112). Any combination will work.

Figure 1. Integrating Concepts in Biology brings together the five Big Ideas of biology at five different size scales. These big ideas fit together like a puzzle to complete students' understanding of biology.

You will use an eBook that I have coauthored with Drs. Chris Paradise and Laurie Heyer, Integrating Concepts in Biology. In addition, you will have access to all the images as PowerPoint slids. Finally, you will also have access to Echo360 electronic resources.

You will want to read the chapter and answer the Integrating Questions as they appear in the reading. Do NOT skip the questions until later. Research has shown that students learn best if they construct their own knowledge. Therefore, the Integrating Questions are designed to help you extract the key inforamation from the original figures published in scientific papers. You will not only learn the main points and retain them longer, you also will learn how to do science by interpreting figures. Furthermore, you will use math to help you better understand biology. The math will be presented in BioMath Explorations which will enable you to use the math you already know to reinforce your understanding of biology.

The 4 exams will be drawn from the Integrating Questions and the Review Questions at the end of each section. The exams will be take-home, closed-book exams. The answers to the take-home questions are to be typed, and are due at the next class time. Exams are not to be turned in late unless you have made prior arrangements with me. Acceptable reasons for delay include: death in the family, personal illness requiring physician’s care, etc. Unacceptable reasons include: intramurals, Homecoming, Patterson Court functions, other tests or exams, etc. Once you open the take-home exam file, you cannot use your book, notes, or any other source other than your personal memory. The

The format of each class will require each of you to read that day’s assignment BEFORE you come to class. All the major topics from a typical Bio111 class are covered, but in a very different sequence and a unique format. We will spend each class going through the figures and discuss them since DATA are paramount in science. We will stick closely to the schedule because there is so much to learn and so little time. Therefore, if we do not cover a topic in class, but it is covered in your reading, you are responsible for it. Often, I will “cold call” on individuals randomly to answer a question or lead a discussion. If I call on you to answer a question, it is OK to say, “I got this part but this other section lost me.” It is not OK to say, “I didn’t read it.” I understand that some days you have missed the reading.

Davidson has a special benefit for science students because you pay the same amount for courses without labs as you do for science courses with labs. This means you get more for your money by taking science courses than non-science courses. Economically, this course is a real bargain. It comes with a 3 hour laboratory absolutely free! However, it is not acceptable to miss this “free” lab since 25% of your grade is based upon lab. Lab will be discussed further weekly installments in the form of Word files.

Finally, I do not know everything. If you think I have said something that is incorrect, please point this out. If you ask me a question that I cannot answer, I will research it and get back to you. If you have tried to understand the material but just can’t get it, then come talk to me either during my office hours or make an appointment. I am happy to work with each of you as much as is necessary.

Bio113 written assignments use the name-year citation format (e.g., Campbell et al., 2007). You can learn more about this at the Council of Biology Editors.

Campus Support for Your Learning

The Math & Science Center (MSC) offers free assistance to students in all areas of math and science, with a focus on the introductory courses. Trained and highly qualified peers hold one-on-one and small-group tutoring sessions on a drop-in basis or by appointment, as well as timely recap sessions ahead of scheduled reviews. Emphasis is placed on thinking critically, understanding concepts, making connections, and communicating effectively, not just getting correct answers. In addition, students can start or join a study group and use the MSC as a group or individual study space. Located in the Center for Teaching & Learning (CTL) on the first floor of the College Library, drop-in hours are Sunday through Thursday, 8-11 PM, and Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, 4-6 PM, beginning Sunday, August 31. Appointments are available at other times. For more information, visit http://sites.davidson.edu/ctl, or contact Dr. Mark Barsoum (mabarsoum@davidson.edu or ext. 2796).

The Speaking Center @ Davidson College (for oral lab reports) offers the services of trained student tutors to support speaking across the curriculum. At any point of the process, from selecting a topic to delivering the speech, the Center can assist your students in learning to speak, and speaking to learn. No appointment is necessary; tutors see students on a first-come, first-served basis. Located very close to Studio D in the library, the Speaking Center includes private rooms, a camera and playback equipment, and resource materials to help students collaborate with tutors. Students wishing to keep copies of their presentations can bring recordable DVDs (available in the Bookstore). The Speaking Center will be open Sunday through Thursday from 8-11 pm starting Sunday, September 8th. If you want their help, try to come early; help is more

Note: I assume that everyone has had some high school biology and chemistry. If you have not, this course may be very difficult for you. You should talk to me the first day if you have not had one or both of these high school courses.


Source of Grade
Percentage of Final Grade
3 exams during the semester plus 1 exam during finals
lab grades (2 oral reports, 2 written reports)
(10% of exam questions drawn from labs)
Class and Lab Participation
+/- one grade level

Grading Scale:

Conversion of Percentage to Letter Grade
A = 100 - 94 A- = 93 - 90
B+ = 89 - 87 B = 86 - 83 B- = 82 - 80
C+ = 79 - 77 C = 76 - 73 C - = 72 - 70
D+ = 69 - 66 D = 65 - 60
F = < 59

Attendance policy:

I will take attendance to facilitate a more objective means for assigning the participation grade. In order to receive a passing grade in this course, you cannot miss more than 5 classes without a legitimate reason. You may not miss any labs without a legitimate reason. Legitimate reasons include illness requiring physician’s care, family emergency, etc. Unacceptable reasons include over sleeping, exam in another class, social function, etc.

Previous Exams for Dr. Campbell's Bio113:

You may find it useful to see some old exams (oftne called spots at Davidson) written by Dr. Campbell for Bio113. For the last four years, I have used the same book and testing format, so past 113 exams might be useful. Because some members of Patterson Court organizations have access to these in paper form, I provide them to everyone to ensure equal access.

Honor Code

All of your tests are closed book, closed notes, closed friend exams. You do not have a time limit for these tests other than the two days, and you can take them any place you want. This form of testing is only possible because of the Honor Code. If you violate my trust in you and the Honor Code, everyone will have to take the tests during the 50 minutes of class. You are required to not cheat on these tests, and to report to me or the Dean of Students any violations you observe, or hear about second hand. This means that even your lab partners or best friends must be reported if you know they are cheating. The entire system will break down when individuals make exceptions to the rule in order to spare their friends. I was a student at Davidson, so I know how important the Honor Code is.

The written lab reports are to be done by everyone in the group. It is considered an Honor Code violation if someone takes credit for work he or she does not deserve. I do not expect every person to contribute precisely equally to these reports, but I do expect every person to contribute substantially. Just showing up for the meeting and bringing the food does not constitute a contribution to the report. Therefore, when you pledge your lab reports, you are pledging that everyone has contributed substantially to the lab report. You should consult the Biology Department's plagiarism web site for additional help.

The quiz is to be conducted by you without any consultation with your notes, books, or other people. It is a violation of the Honor Code to print out or save in an electronic format the quiz and/or your answers to the quiz.

Reading Schedule

The following reading assignments are from the textbook manuscript Integrated Systems Biology. You should print out this schedule so you can see the schedule by itself.

Lab Schedule

The following lab schedule refers to the Bio113 Lab Manual. You should print out this schedule so you can see the schedule by itself.

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Send comments, questions, and suggestions to: macampbell@davidson.edu