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An integrated course embracing the principles of ecology, behaviour, genetics, evolution and conservation biology.
BIOL112 is an integrated course embracing the principles of genetics, evolution, behaviour, ecology, and conservation biology. During the course, you will gain a sound background in each of these topics and learn basic practical skills in each of these fields.The course provides essential background material that all biologists need and is one of the three ‘core’ biology courses (BIOL111, BIOL112, BIOL113) required to obtain a BSc in Biology. Whenever possible, we will highlight connections among topics taught in these and other biology courses. There are several lecturers in BIOL112 and each is likely to have a unique teaching and lecturing style. The lecture content, however, will follow a natural progression and will also integrate well with the material taught in the laboratories.Goal of the CourseTo introduce essential background material required to obtain a degree in biology including principles of genetics, evolution, behaviour, ecology and conservation biology, and to develop basic practical skills in each of these disciplines.
Intended Learning Outcomes and Associated Assessment Explain why evolution is the core theme of biology (assessment tasks: lab manual, midcourse test, final exam) Illustrate the basic principles of evolution, including the mechanisms of evolution (assessment tasks: lab manual, midcourse test) Illustrate the basic principles of genetics, including the origin, maintenance, and loss of genetic variation (assessment tasks: lab manual, midcourse test) Illustrate the basic principles of ecology, including determinants of the distribution and abundance of organisms, species interactions and food web ecology, and the determinants of community structure (assessment tasks: lab manual, final exam) Illustrate the basic principles of behaviour, including proximate and ultimate causation (assessment tasks: lab manual, final exam) Discuss why conservation biology is a multidisciplinary pursuit (assessment tasks: lab manual, final exam) Collect, analyse and interpret biological data, both in the field and in the laboratory (assessment tasks: lab manual, lab report)Transferable Skills RegisterAs a student in this course, I will develop the following skills: Synthesising information. In everyday life and in many job situations you will be required to read information from different sources, construct your own understanding and shape your own viewpoint. This skill will be developed when answering the essay questions in the midcourse test and the final exam. Collecting, analysing and interpreting data. Important for research, as well as in a number of private-sector organizations. This skill will be developed when conducting lab assessments, particularly the lab report.
This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:
Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award
Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.
Students must attend one activity from each section.
Labs are an integral part of the course. They are organised in streams. See My Timetable for details. Labs are held in Room 230 in the Rutherford (Chemistry) Building, excluding the "Selection in Guppies” lab that is held in Otakaro 205 (Dovedale Campus). You should have received information regarding which lab stream you have been assigned to in My Timetable. If you have not been assigned to a lab stream or you are unable to resolve a clash on My Timetable, please contact Kimberley Roberts.Information regarding the labs including the lab schedule are provided in the lab manual. Labs will begin the second week of semester. Lab manuals will be handed out at the beginning of this lab (pdf copy also available on LEARN beforehand).Three hours are scheduled for each laboratory but please note that they are variable in length and sometimes require transport to/from a field location. It is essential to read each week’s lab before coming to class. Although some lab work will be completed in groups, all assessment material must be completed individually. Labs will be marked at the end of each lab, excluding labs 2 and 8 (see lab manual for details).If you are unable to attend a lab or you have missed a lab, contact Kimberley Roberts. For questions regarding the lab report, contact Tammy Steeves. For questions regarding lab material contact the relevant lecturer.It is compulsory to wear a lab coat in the laboratory and can be purchased at the beginning of the year.Where to purchase your lab coats and safety glassesPLEASE NOTE YOU NOW COLLECT FROM THE NEW ERNEST RUTHERFORD BUILDING.To purchase: buy a receipt from the Copy Centre, 2nd floor, Puaka-James Hight building, (payment by eftpos and credit card only – lab coats $32, glasses $10), 9.00 am - 4.00 pm, Monday to Friday.Receipts may then be exchanged in the atrium inside the southern entry to the Ernest Rutherford Building, 8.30 – 10 am and 1.30 – 2.30 pm, Monday to Friday for the first two weeks of the semester.After the first two weeks they can be collected from Ernest Rutherford Room 130 (Chemical Store).
, Hazel Chapman
, Tammy Steeves
and Dave Kelly
The midcourse test is based on lectures 1 – 16 (Genetics and Evolution). The final exam is based on lectures 17 – 35 (Ecology, Behaviour and Ecosystems/Conservation). Both the midcourse test and the final exam will consist of multiple-choice, short answer, and essay questions (previous midcourse tests and final exams are available on LEARN) and the number of questions per topic will be in proportion to the number of lectures devoted to each topic.To achieve a passing grade in BIOL112, you must attain an average score of at least 40% for in-course assessment (lab report and lab manual) and an average score at least 40% in the course exam/test (midcourse test and final exam), AND a score at least 50% overall.
Campbell, Neil A.,1946-2004 et al;
Biology : a global approach;
Tenth edition, global edition;
Taylor, Martha R. , Reece, Jane B., Campbell, Neil A;
Study guide for Campbell biology [by] Jane B. Reece, Lisa A. Urry, Michael L. Cain, Steven A. Wasserman, Peter V. Minorsky, Robert B. Jackson;
This is the same text used for the three core biology courses (BIOL111, BIOL112, and BIOL113) and is well worth purchasing. However, should you choose not to buy it, multiple copies are on reserve in the Central Library.
Library portalLearn Site
If a laboratory is missed, arrangements should be made to make up the work at a later date. This could involve:(a) Attending another lab. stream later in the week after informing you laboratory supervisor (this is by far the best course of action).(b) Consulting with the lab. supervisor to obtain data for the missed lab.(c) Coming to another lab. stream the following week to work on the missed work while there are demonstrators around to give advice.At the end of the year we expect data, graphs and questions to be completed for all labs.If a laboratory assessment due date is missed due to illness, injury, personal bereavement or other critical personal circumstances, and the work can be made up by obtaining an extension, a written explanation from an appropriate person (e.g., medical doctor, counselor, minister, priest) should be given to the lab. supervisor to obtain an extension. If those critical circumstances mean you cannot make up the work, missed the test or final exam, or you consider you have been impaired, you should apply for aegrotat consideration for the piece of assessment.
It is essential that you are aware that plagiarism is considered a very serious offence by the Academic community, the University and the School of Biological Sciences. Plagiarism is defined as taking content from another work or author and presenting it, without attribution, as if it is your own work. Content here includes text (sentences or major parts of sentences), display items (graphs and tables), and overall structure (the detailed sequence of ideas). Plagiarism includes:• re-use of previous assignments (even if each individual sentence has been rephrased to say the same thing in different words, if the overall structure is re-used) • copying of another student’s work (with or without their consent)• the unreferenced use of published material or material from the internet e.g. cutting and pasting of paragraphs or pages into an essay.For most pieces of in-term assessment you will be given information concerning the use of direct and indirect quotes from previously published work. If you are in any doubt about appropriate use of published material, please speak with a member of academic staff. If you are still unsure what plagiarism is, then seek advice.It is a School policy that courses may request you submit work electronically for subsequent analysis of originality using Turnitin. Students agree that by taking courses in BIOL, required papers may be subject to submission for textual similarity review to Turnitin.com for the detection of plagiarism. All submitted papers will be included as source documents in the Turnitin.com reference database solely for the purpose of detecting plagiarism of such papers. Use of the Turnitin.com service is subject to the Terms and Conditions of Use posted on the Turnitin.com site.
SBS GradingA+ 90% or aboveA 85 – 90A- 80 – 84B+ 75 – 79B 70 – 74B- 65 – 69C+ 60 – 64C 55 – 59C- 50 – 54A restricted pass (R) may be awarded to those who are close to a pass (i.e. an overall score of 48-49.9%) AND who have achieved at least a 40% overall score in both in-course assessment and tests/exams. If an R grade is awarded you gain credit for the course but cannot continue into papers that require this course as a pre-requisite. NB. The R grade is only available at 100 and 200 level - it cannot be awarded for third year papers. Failing grades: D 40-49 E 0–39
Reports and assignments should be handed in on time. Extensions may be granted if you have a valid reason. If you require an extension, you should request one from the course co-ordinator (or the lecturer responsible for marking the work), with as much notice as possible. Please do this BEFORE the deadline for the assignment. If you have been given an extension you should hand the work DIRECTLY to the course coordinator (do not put it in the drop box as it may not be cleared after the due date).If an extension has not been granted:• work must be handed in by the due date to gain full credit• work handed in up to 7 days after the deadline will be marked, but the marks will be discounted 25% before they are recorded to the student's credit• any work handed in more than 7 days after the deadline date will not be marked or earn credit.
What if I have written more than the word or page limit?If there is a word limit on an assignment, it is usually there to stop you doing too much work and to encourage you to write succinctly. It also makes things easier to assess. You can be up to 10% over without too much worry, but if the length increases beyond that your mark may suffer due to failure to follow the requirements. If you find yourself way over the word limit have a chat to the lecturer concerned about how to trim your assignment to an acceptable length.
What do I do if I have to miss something or if my performance was impaired?If you feel that illness, injury, bereavement or other extenuating circumstances beyond your control have prevented you from completing an item of assessment worth 10% or more of total course assessment or if these circumstances affected your performance in such assessments, you should apply for Special Consideration. Applications for Special Consideration should be submitted via the Examinations Office website http://www.canterbury.ac.nz/exams/special-consideration.shtml and notify the course co-ordinator within five days of the assessment or its due date. If this is for medical reasons you should visit a doctor within 24 hours of the assessment (application form available on-line or from the Student Health Centre). The Special Consideration provisions are intended to assist students who have covered the work of a course but have been prevented by illness or other critical circumstances from demonstrating their mastery of the material or skills at the time of assessment – they do not excuse you from doing the assessment within a reasonable time agreed with the course co-ordinator. You should expect to be required to submit additional work if you miss a major assignment (e.g. a field trip for which a major write-up is required). In rare cases you may not be able to complete an assessment or attend a field trip, because of involvement in international or national representative sport or cultural groups. In such cases you should also apply for Special Consideration. Please review the Special Considerations policy because very few kinds of activities will be eligible for consideration (e.g. holiday trips, birthday parties etc. are not given special status in the University policy).Students prevented by extenuating circumstances from completing the course after the final date for withdrawing, may apply for Special Consideration for late discontinuation of the course. Applications must be submitted to the Examinations Office within five days of the end of the main examination period for the semester.For further details on Special Consideration applications, please refer to the Examinations Office website http://www.canterbury.ac.nz/exams/special-consideration.shtml.
In rare cases you may not be able to sit a test or exam, or attend a field trip, because of involvement in international or national representative sport or cultural groups. In such cases see the course co-ordinator, and a course of action (usually the sitting of an equivalent test or exam at a different time, or submitting an equivalent piece of written assessment) will be arranged. This should be done well in advance of the set date for a missed exam/test/assignment. Please note – holiday trips, weddings, birthday parties etc. are not given special status in the University policy, so please do not ask for special consideration in these circumstances.
In BIOL, we require a satisfactory level of achievement in both the theoretical aspects of the discipline and in practical activities. This means you must attend all class activities and submit all items of assessment unless you have a very good reason not to (e.g. medical reasons). A student must attain an average score of at least 40% for in-course assessment and average score of at least 40% in the course exam/test, AND score at least 50% overall for the course, to be awarded a passing grade.
We welcome constructive feedback at all times – help us to make this a valuable course for you. We endeavour to remain approachable at all times. If you would rather give feedback anonymously, please use the on-line course survey or talk to lab demonstrators, or your class rep (who will all report back to the staff-student liaison committee that includes a representative from each of the undergraduate classes). Class representatives will be selected from each class at the start of course.
If you feel you have not been fairly treated during this course, please raise the issue with the lecturer or course co-ordinator in the first instance. Other avenues include your class rep., who can raise issues anonymously, or the UCSA education coordinator.
All assignments should be placed in the designated collection box in the foyer of the 2nd floor of the School of Biological Sciences (near the main office), unless directed otherwise by the course co-ordinator. All assignments must be accompanied by a cover sheet signed by you stating that the submitted work is not plagiarised. Cover sheets are available on top of the collection boxes, or you can download one from the Biology website (under Undergraduate). In addition, you may also be asked to submit your work electronically (via Learn) for analysis in Turnitin. You will be given instructions on how to do this in the assignment handout. Marked assignments can be collected from the Secretaries' Office, unless directed otherwise by the course co-ordinator. Teaching staff will endeavour to return work as soon as possible, and should contact you if there are likely to be any delays that will prevent return within the maximum 4-week timeframe.
Domestic fee $886.00
International fee $3,809.00
* Fees include New Zealand GST and do not include any programme level discount or additional course related expenses.
For further information see
School of Biological Sciences.