Biology Courses

The courses listed below count toward the biology major or minors unless otherwise noted. Some courses in the department are offered in alternate years and are so designated below. Please consult with the instructor or with the Class Schedule, available online or at the Registrar's Office, to determine when a course will next be offered.

111 First-Year Colloquium in Biology (1/4)
Prerequisites: First-year standing and invitation of instructor.
Seminar in which selected topics and research papers are reviewed and discussed. Offered on credit/no credit basis. Does not count toward the biology major or minors. Two-hour discussion. Staff.

195 Ecology, Evolution and Biodiversity (1)
Focuses on whole organisms and their evolutionary and ecological relationships. Evolutionary processes, biological diversity, conservation biology and human impacts on ecology and biodiversity are major themes. Skills introduced are hypothesis testing, experimental design, use of primary literature in writing assignments and basic statistics. Lecture and laboratory. Staff.

206 Tropical Forest and Reef Biology (1)
Prerequisites: Biology 195 and permission of instructors.
An introduction to rain forests, mangrove islands and coral reefs of the neotropics. Students meet weekly throughout the semester and must spend spring break in Belize, Central America, where intensive field trips and individual projects are conducted. Counts as an elective toward the biology major, but does not satisfy the field work or seminar requirements. Lecture/discussion. Offered in alternate years. Team-taught.

207 Biology of Subtropical Florida (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 195 and permission of instructors.
An introduction to the ecosystems of subtropical Florida. Students meet weekly throughout the semester and must spend spring break in Florida, where intensive field trips and individual projects are conducted. Counts as an elective toward the biology major, but does not satisfy the field work or seminar requirements. Lecture/discussion. Offered in alternate years. Team-taught.

210 Cell and Molecular Biology (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 195. Prerequisite or corequisite: Chemistry 121.
Focuses on organisms at the cellular and molecular levels, including biological chemistry, bioenergetics and metabolism, Mendelian and molecular genetics, cellular communication and the molecular control of the cell cycle. Builds upon skills from Biology 195 to expand abilities in hypothesis testing and experimental design to produce an individual research paper, and to carry out more advanced statistical analyses. Lecture and laboratory. Staff.

211 Sophomore Research (1/2)
Prerequisites: Sophomore standing and invitation of instructor.
Independent research projects for invited sophomores. Staff.

215 Aquatic Botany (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 195.
A study of representative algae, aquatic fungi and bryophytes, emphasizing the relationships of structure and function. Reproductive strategies and environmental physiology are discussed. Taxonomy is based upon current hypotheses of evolutionary relationships. Lecture and laboratory. Offered in alternate years. Schmitter.

216 Vascular Plants (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 195.
Morphology, taxonomy and distribution of vascular plants. Representatives of local flora receive special attention in laboratory and field studies. Lecture and laboratory. Skean.

225 Invertebrate Zoology (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 195.
Field-oriented course emphasizing evolution, classification, ecology, behavior and natural history of invertebrate animals. Class involves field trips and use of the Whitehouse Nature Center. Lecture and laboratory. McCurdy.

227 Vertebrate Zoology (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 195.
Classification, behavior, ecology and evolution of the vertebrates. Mammals and birds are emphasized more than other groups. Lecture and laboratory. Kennedy.

236 Ecology for K-8 Pre-service Teachers (1)
Prerequisite: Admission to the elementary teacher certification program.
A field-based ecology course on topics including ecosystems, energy flow, evolution, population dynamics, community ecology and human impacts on the environment. Specific focus on the Michigan Science Curriculum Standards and Benchmarks. Taught at the Pierce Cedar Creek Institute near Hastings, Michigan. Lecture/discussion and laboratory. Skean.

237 Ecology (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 195.
A study of interactions between organisms and their environment including adaptation, competition, parasitism, population and community dynamics and the ecosystem concept. Class involves field trips and use of the Whitehouse Nature Center. Lecture and laboratory. Staff.

240 Conservation Biology (1)
Presents concepts and issues concerning the causes and consequences of the loss of biodiversity. Emphasizes the science of conservation biology including the evolutionary potential of populations and species, as well as the history of the field, international efforts to conserve species, and the current status of policies such as the U.S. Endangered Species Act. Includes a conservation-related outreach project. Lyons-Sobaski.

248 Ornithology (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 195.
The biology of birds with emphasis on evolution, behavior, ecology and conservation. Field experience in identification, population studies, bird banding, song recording and analysis, and carrying out a research project. Students will learn to critically evaluate the ornithological literature. Lecture and laboratory. Kennedy.

288, 289 Selected Topics (1/2, 1)
Prerequisite: Biology 195.
Specialized topics, each suitably subtitled. Staff.

301 Cell Biology (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 210.
An in-depth investigation of biological systems at the cellular, subcellular and molecular levels. Studies of a variety of cell types and energy relations within cells. Lecture emphasizes metabolism, metabolic regulation and cellular diversity. Laboratory emphasizes measurement and analysis of subcellular features. Offered in alternate years. Schmitter.

306 Functional Neuroanatomy (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 210.
An introduction to the anatomical organization of the human nervous system. Covers the development, histology, structure, organization and function of sensory and motor systems; interneuronal organization and relationships of these systems; and clinical applications of these relationships. Moore.

309 Vertebrate Paleontology (1)
Must be taken as Biology 309 for credit toward the major. Lecture and laboratory.
Same as Geology 309. Bartels.

310 Evolution (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 210.
A study of the course and processes of organic evolution. Topics include the history of ideas of evolution, population genetics, population ecology, speciation, adaptation, coevolution, evolutionary rates, evolutionary convergences, mass extinctions and
biogeography. Lecture and laboratory. Offered in alternate years. McCurdy.

314 Comparative Anatomy (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 210.
Comparative anatomical study of vertebrate organ systems, their development and evolution. Lecture and laboratory. Kennedy.

317 Genetics (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 210; Chemistry 211 recommended.
Mechanisms of inheritance, and of gene structure and function in living organisms. Both classical and molecular genetics are considered as they relate to function. Lecture and laboratory. Staff.

321 Medical Microanatomy (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 210.
Microanatomy of primate cells and tissues as depicted by light and electron microscopy. Relationships of structure and function are stressed, as are medical conditions resulting from cell or tissue damage. Lecture and laboratory. Schmitter.

324 Developmental Biology (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 210.
The genetic, molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying early development of multicellular organisms. Potential topics include fertilization and early development, gene regulation during development, neural pathfinding, cell signaling, cell division and growth, organogenesis, limb development, metamorphosis, regeneration, sex determination, the evolution of development, genomics, and stem cell research. Lecture and laboratory. Albertson.

332 Microbiology (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 210; Chemistry 211 recommended.
Introduction to the microbial world. Explores the morphology, physiology, genetics and diversity of microorganisms. Stresses the relationships among microbes and other organisms, including humans. Lecture and laboratory. Olapade.

337 Biochemistry (1)
Prerequisites: Chemistry 211 or permission of instructor.
Same as Chemistry 337. Must be taken as Biology 337 for credit toward the major. Lecture. Rohlman.

341 General Physiology (1)
Prerequisites: Biology 210, one year of chemistry. Chemistry 211 is strongly recommended.
The processes which contribute to the maintenance of dynamic equilibria of cells and how those processes relate to the organismal level of plants and animals. Lecture and laboratory. Carrier.

362 Molecular Biology (1)
Prerequisite: One of the following--Biology 301, 317, 332 or 337.
The theory and practice of modern molecular genetics will be explored. Techniques potentially considered include: DNA cloning, DNA hybridization, the polymerase chain reaction, DNA sequencing, and the expression of cloned genes in bacteria. Lecture/discussion and laboratory. Offered in alternate years. Saville.

363 Neurobiology (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 210.
Provides a general overview of neurobiology as well as an opportunity to explore some of the most exciting current topics in the field of neurobiology in greater detail. Topics include sensory and motor systems, learning, memory, behavior, CNS development, neural evolution, neurobiological disorders and therapies. Uses recent scientific papers as the basis for student-led discussions. Lecture and laboratory. Offered in alternate years. Staff.

365 Environmental Microbiology (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 210
Microbes in action: bioremediation, biodegradation, cycling of nutrients and energy flow, biopesticides and phytopathogens, spread of antibiotic resistance, molecular ecology of infectious diseases, microbial symbionts and extremophiles. Explores these and other topics through discussions, field trips and experimental work. Lecture and laboratory. Offered in alternate years. Olapade.

366 Endocrinology (1/2)
Prerequisites: Biology 341 or 210 and Chemistry 211.
Examination of the evolution of endocrinological systems, and the modes of action, mechanisms of control, and interactions of selected hormonal systems. Discussion. Offered in alternate years. Carrier.

367 Virology (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 210
Are viruses living organisms or not? Addresses this and many more questions in molecular architecture, replication strategies, transmission modes, pathogenicity, carcinogenicity and usefulness of viruses. Lecture and discussion. lecture and laboratory. Offered in alternate years. Olapade.

368 Behavioral Ecology (1)
Prerequisite: Biology 210.
Patterns and functions of behavior examined from an ecological-evolutionary perspective. Topics include history of animal behavior, behavioral genetics, habitat selection, foraging, antipredator behavior, cooperation and altruism, communication, sexual selection, mating systems, parental behavior and optimality models. Independent field studies of living animals. Lecture and laboratory. Offered in alternate years. McCurdy.

388, 389 Selected Topics (1/2, 1)
Prerequisites: Biology 210, permission of instructor and other as indicated.
Specialized, advanced topics or topics of interest to special groups. Each section offered will be suitably subtitled (Conservation Biology, Entomology, Cell Signalling, Neurobiology, etc.) Staff.

391, 392 Internships (1/2, 1)
Prerequisites: Junior or senior standing and permission of department. No more than one unit may be counted toward the major. Offered on a credit/no credit basis. Staff.

401, 402 Seminar (1/2, 1)
Prerequisites: Junior or senior standing, permission of instructor and other as indicated.
Topics in diverse areas of biology. Recent topics have included genes and cancer, literature and medicine, conservation biology, and biology of sharks and their relatives. Discussion. Staff.

411, 412 Directed Study (1/2, 1)
Prerequisites: Junior or senior standing and approval by both the faculty sponsor and department chair of a research proposal prior to registration. Independent research by an individual student under the direction of a staff member. A detailed summary research paper or other appropriate evidence is required at the end of the work. Staff.