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BIO 184 Lecture Syllabus



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  • 1. Dr. Ruth Ballard Page 1 07/26/10 BIO 184 Syllabus Fall, 2006 CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, SACRAMENTO Department of Biological Sciences BIO 184: GENERAL GENETICS Fall, 2006 LECTURE (T/Th): 3:00-3:50 PM LABS: (T/R): 9-10:15 AM or 10:30-11:45 AM CAMPUS INSTRUCTOR: Dr. Ruth Ballard, Associate Professor of Biological Sciences OFFICE HOURS: M 1-3 PM, T 2-3 PM OFFICE LOCATION: 120-B Sequoia Hall RESEARCH LABORATORY: 108 Sequoia Hall RESEARCH AREA: DNA forensics and paternity testing PHONE/E-MAIL: (916) 278-6244; COURSE WEB SITE: REQUIRED TEXTS: Genetics: Analysis and Principles, 2nd Edition, Brooker, R. J. (2005); Available in Hornet Bookstore; Text web site: BIO 184 Lecture Notes, R. Ballard (2006). Available on course website. BIO 184 Laboratory Manual, R. Ballard, B. Holland, and T. Peavy (2006). Available at the Hornet Bookstore and on course website. Additional readings in bioethics and applied genetics as provided by other students (see “Laboratory” section of this syllabus for more information) PREREQUISITES: -Microbiology (BIO 139 or equivalent; CSUS Chemistry majors are exempt) -Organic Chemistry (CSUS CHEM 20 or equivalent)
  • 2. Dr. Ruth Ballard Page 2 07/26/10 BIO 184 Syllabus Fall, 2006 COURSE DESCRIPTION General Genetics (BIO 184) introduces students to the fundamental principles of the science of genetics and its central role in understanding life processes. It also exposes students to the legal and ethical dilemmas posed by modern genetics research, and encourages students to explore and develop their own informed positions on these issues. Students will leave the course with a good understanding of how information molecules direct the development and ongoing processes of living organisms, how genetic mutations alter the physical, cognitive, and/or behavioral characteristics of organisms and drive their evolution, and will be better able to make informed decisions about personal and public policy issues involving genetic principles. In addition, students will leave the course well-prepared to answer genetics questions on the GRE, MCAT, and other standardized post-graduate tests, to enter a genetics graduate program, or to obtain an entry-level position in a biotechnology company or public agency that uses genetics to solve research problems or to produce products and/or services. COURSE STRUCTURE The science of genetics is traditionally broken down into four sub-disciplines: Transmission Genetics (also called Mendelian Genetics after its founder, Gregor Mendel), Cytogenetics, Molecular Genetics, and Population/Quantitative Genetics. Transmission genetics studies the inheritance patterns of genes through the generations, cytogenetics studies the structure and behavior of chromosomes (the cellular structures that carry genes), molecular genetics studies the structure and behavior of genes as discrete sequences of DNA that control and direct the life processes that support their own perpetuation, and population/quantitative genetics studies the effects of natural forces such as geographic isolation, natural selection, and mutation on the ebb and flow of genes in whole populations. As you can see, all of these sub-disciplines are actually studying the same thing (genes) but at different levels. Studying genes at the level of populations is like taking a picture of California from space; large patterns such as mountain ranges are revealed but the details remain obscure. Studying genes at the level of their transmission through individual pedigrees is like taking a picture of the Sacramento Valley from an airplane; rivers and cities can now be seen but there are still no fine details. Studying genes at the level of chromosomes is like taking a picture of downtown Sacramento from a helicopter, where lots of details come into focus. And finally, studying genes at the molecular level is like taking a snapshot of the capitol building in downtown Sacramento. The details are clear, but the context is absent. Thus, the four sub-disciplines of genetics, when studied together, provide a full and complete “picture” of the nature and behavior of genes that cannot be achieved by any one of the sub-disciplines alone. This is the reason that all four sub-disciplines will be presented and discussed in this course. We will start with molecular genetics and move ever outward to the bigger picture. In this process, we will take a journey through a fascinating landscape that we have the opportunity to view only because those genes that promoted a flexible and highly complex brain were passed on most successfully by our human and proto-human ancestors. Thus, we occupy a unique and fascinating time in human history and evolution, a time when the genes have finally become conscious of themselves! Try to keep this miracle in mind as you navigate the hills and valleys of this course, for its implications are truly profound.
  • 3. Dr. Ruth Ballard Page 3 07/26/10 BIO 184 Syllabus Fall, 2006 COURSE POLICIES I. ATTENDANCE AND LECTURE/DISCUSSION NOTES I will not take roll in lecture but I strongly suggest that you attend. Lectures provide the theoretical framework for your understanding of genetics and for solving the genetics problems that you will encounter in the study problems, in homework, and on exams. Each week, you should read the Lecture Notes (downloadable from my website), read the sections of the textbook pertaining to the Lecture Notes, and work through the suggested study problems. (Suggested readings and study problems from the text are listed in the attached “Lecture Schedule.”) On Tuesday of each week, I will begin going over the Lecture Notes and then, on Thursday, we will finish the Lecture Notes and review the study problems (as needed). Answers to all the study problems are available on the textbook website: You will not be required to submit your weekly study problems to me for grading but you will have 3 formal graded homework assignments during the semester (see “Lecture Schedule for the dates these are due). I will take roll in lab and you are expected to attend all laboratory sessions unless you are ill or have another appropriate excuse. The rationale for this is that lab is largely a participatory activity and you will not learn if you are not present. In addition, your lab partners depend on you to share the workload. It is not fair to your partners if you miss laboratory on a frequent basis. II. EVALUATION Students may earn a total of 620 points in the course, 420 points from lecture and 200 points from lab. The points are distributed as follows: 1. LECTURE: 420 points 3 Lecture Exams (100 points each) 300 3 Homework Assignments (40 points each) 120 420 The Lecture Exams are non-cumulative and typically consist of a combination of multiple choice questions, definitions, problems, and short answers/diagrams. Questions will be derived from the Lecture Notes, study problems, and homework assignments. Exam dates are listed in the “Lecture Schedule.” The 3 Homework Assignments will be distributed to you in class two weeks before their due dates. MAKE-UP exams will be given only if the circumstances of missing the exam are deemed by me to have been beyond your control (e.g. verified illness, car trouble, sick child, etc.). If you miss an exam, you must contact me as soon as possible to schedule a make-up exam. If this contact is not made within one week of the exam date, you will be assigned a grade of “0” on the exam. 2. LABORATORY: 150 points Applied genetics oral presentation 50 Lab Practical Quizzes (5 @ 30 pts each) 150 200 Attendance and Participation are crucial in a laboratory course. Therefore, to encourage ongoing attendance, students are allowed to miss ONLY three laboratory meetings during the semester. Students
  • 4. Dr. Ruth Ballard Page 4 07/26/10 BIO 184 Syllabus Fall, 2006 do not need an excuse to miss these sessions but should let their lab partners and the instructor know beforehand, if possible. Students who miss more than 3 laboratory days will receive a grade of “WU” in the course – NO EXCEPTIONS WILL BE GIVEN. Four lab periods are reserved for Applied Genetics Oral Presentations. On these days, students will prepare talks on a subject of their own choosing that addresses an issue in applied genetics. Sample topics include genetic testing, human cloning, stem cell research, DNA forensics, bioengineered crops, etc. You will only have about 15 minutes for your talk, so keep the topic simple and try to pare it down to the major points or ideas of interest. Non-presenting students should plan to take notes during these presentations because questions about the presentations may appear on the Lab Practical Quizzes. Students will grade each other on their oral presentations (this is known as peer grading), and I have provided you a copy of the grading rubric. Look closely at this rubric when preparing your talk so that you will be sure to meet the criteria on which you will be graded. I will also be giving a demonstration talk on September 26th; this should also give you a good idea of what to include and how to organize your talk. The Lab Practical Quizzes will test each student’s ability to use and operate the lab equipment, perform basic skills, and answer a variety of theoretical questions pertaining to the lab exercises we performed and/or the bioethics/applied genetics issues we discussed. The quiz dates are listed on the lab syllabus (attached). Lab quizzes are non-cumulative. (Count your lucky stars; we used to have a single, cumulative lab practical exam the week before finals!) At the end of the semester, points from all assignments (lecture and lab combined) will be totaled and grades will be calculated as follows: 90.0 - 100% = A 80.0 - 89.9% = B 70.0 – 79.9% = C 60.0 - 69.9% = D less than 60% = F Plus and minus grades will be assigned in each category as appropriate. Usually, the total point score earned by the top student in the class is used as the “100%” mark for grading purposes. However, in some semesters, I have averaged the top 2-4 total point scores. III. STUDENT CONDUCT No communication is permitted between students during exams and quizzes. No materials other than the students’ writing implements, a calculator, and exam/quiz materials may be used during an exam or quiz. If I obtain evidence of cheating on an exam, the student will receive an “F” on the assignment and may receive an “F” in the entire course. Moreover, the incident may be reported to the Department Chair and the Dean of Students. IV. ADD/DROP POLICY The Add/Drop policy will be followed as outlined in the “Student’s Registration & Advising Handbook – summer/fall 2006, spring 2007”, p. 3. In practice, the Department of Biological Sciences usually allows students to drop a class without documentation of a serious or compelling reason through the “census date” (October 2nd in Fall 2006). Please be forewarned, however, that after October 2nd, you will be required to produce convincing and compelling documentation of your reason for dropping the course. Please see me if you need to drop the course after this date for more information about what types of
  • 5. Dr. Ruth Ballard Page 5 07/26/10 BIO 184 Syllabus Fall, 2006 difficulties are deemed acceptable (a low grade in the course does not, by itself, qualify) and how the process works. Special forms are needed and are available in the Biological Sciences Department office. DROPS DUIRNG THE LAST THREE WEEKS OF CLASS ARE NOT PERMITTED FOR ANY REASON. Students with an emergency during this time period can request to be assigned a grade of “I” in the course and must make up the missed assignments/exams within 12 months or the “I” grade will automatically become an “F”. A special form is required to request an “I” grade and can be obtained from the Biological Sciences Department office. COURSE LEARNING GOALS AND OBJECTIVES Learning Goals are broad statements that identify the general educational outcomes students should be able to display upon completing a course. Learning Objectives are concrete measures by which these goals will be realized, and Assessment Tools link the learning objectives to specific course assignments (usually graded) that enable instructors to objectively assess what students have learned. It is very helpful for instructors to develop learning goals, learning objectives, and assessment tools for their courses and to tie them together in a way that makes sense to students. Research shows that assignments are more meaningful to students when they can see how they are linked to the overall goals of the course. I have developed the following learning goals, learning objectives, and assessment tools for BIO 184. Note that some goals have more than one objective and each objective may be linked to more than one assessment tool. This table evolves over time as I achieve a progressively deeper understanding of how much learning students can be expected to achieve during a semester, what strategies work best for mastering different sub-areas within the course, and what types of activities and assignments engage students’ imaginations and harness their creative and emotional energies most effectively. I am always interested in getting student feedback about specific goals, objectives, and assignments. Please let me know what worked best for you, or what failed to help you learn, so that I can continue improving.
  • 6. Dr. Ruth Ballard Page 6 07/26/10 BIO 184 Syllabus Fall, 2006 LEARNING GOAL LEARNING OBJECTIVES ASSESSMENT TOOLS 1. To feel better able to • Students will demonstrate the • Pre- and post- surveys (not make personal and ability to effectively evaluate graded) public-policy decisions modern genetics issues that have • Student oral involving genetics potential personal and/or public presentations impact 2. To gain a heightened and more • Students will demonstrate a • Exams, homework detailed awareness of the ways that mastery of modern genetics assignments genetics contributes to our theory at the level presented in understanding of life’s origin and lectures processes 3. To have the skills to successfully • Students will demonstrate the • Exams , homework answer genetics questions on ability to answer questions similar assignments standardized post-graduate exams to those found on post-graduate such as the MCAT and GRE standardized tests 4. To obtain a sufficient grounding in • Students will show that they have • Lab practical quizzes genetics concepts and applications to sufficient quantitative skills to enter a genetics graduate program work effectively in a genetic or to obtain an entry-level position in laboratory a biotechnology company or public • Students will demonstrate a • Exams , homework agency that uses genetics to solve mastery of modern genetics assignments research problems or to produce theory at the level presented in products and/or services. lectures LECTURE SCHEDULE
  • 7. Dr. Ruth Ballard Page 7 07/26/10 BIO 184 Syllabus Fall, 2006 DATES TOPIC(S) READINGS FROM STUDY PROBLEMS TEXT 9/5-7 Life, DNA, and Genetics Chapter 1 (all) C2, C3, C4, C9, C11, C12, C13, C14, E3. 9/12-14 Molecular Structure of DNA and RNA Chapter 9 (all) C2, C4, C6, C7, C8, C12, C13, C14, C15, C17, C20, C29, C30, C31, C33, E1, E6. 9/19-21 Gene Transcription Chapter 12 C3, C4, C8, C9, C10, Homework 1 distributed, 9/21 (12.1-12.3) C12, C15, C19, C20, C29, C31, C33, E4. 9/26-28 Translation of mRNA Chapter 13 (all) C1, C2, C7, C9, C12, C13, C14, C18, C20, C23, C24, C26, C28, C29, C30, C31, C34, C35, C39, E4. 10/3 Mutagenesis and Protein Function Chapter 16 C1, C2, C9, C11, C12, 10/5 Review for Exam 1; Homework 1 due (16.1-16.2) C15, C17, C19, C20, C21, C27, E1, E2, E4. 10/10 Exam 1 10/12 DNA Replication Chapter 11 (all) C1, C2, C7, C8, C9, C21, C23, C27, C28, E1, E9, E10. 10/17 DNA Replication continued … 10/19 Reproduction and Chromosome Transmission Chapter 3 (all) C1, C2, C3, C5, C7, C8, C9, C11, C12, C16, C19, C20, C22, C25, C26, C27, C28, C29, C30, C32C33, C34, C39, E4, E5. 10/24 Reproduction and Chromosome Transmission continued… 10/26 Variation in Chromosome Structure and Chapter 8 (8.1-8.2) C1, C2, C3, C4, C6, C8, Number; Homework 2 distributed C9, C10, C13, C15, C17, C18, C19, C20, C21, C22, C24. 10/31 Variation in Chromosome Structure and Number continued… 11/2 Epigenetic Inheritance Chapter 7 (7.2) C10, C11, C12, C13, C14, C15, C16, C17 C18, C20, C22, C24, E7, E9. 11/7 Epigenetic Inheritance continued… 11/9 Review for Exam 2; Homework 2 due
  • 8. Dr. Ruth Ballard Page 8 07/26/10 BIO 184 Syllabus Fall, 2006 11/14 Exam 2 11/16 Mendelian Inheritance Chapter 2 (all) C1, C2, C3, C4, C5, C6, C8, C10, C11, C12, C14, C17, C18, C19, C21, C22, C23, C24, C25, C27, C30, C34, E1, E5, E9. 11/21 Mendelian Inheritance continued… 11/23 THANKSGIVING BREAK – NO CLASSES 11/28 Molecular Basis for Dominance and Recessivity 11/30 Extensions of Mendelian Inheritance; Chapter 4 (all) C1, C4, C5, C6, C10, C11, Homework 3 distributed C16, C17, C19, C26, E1. 12/5 Extensions of Mendelian Inheritance continued… 12/7 Linkage and Genetic Mapping in Eukaryotes Chapter 5 (5.1-5.2) C1, C7, C9, C10, C11, E4, E5, E6, E7, E8, E11, E12, E15, E21. 12/12 Linkage and Genetic Mapping in Eukaryotes continued… 12/14 Review for Exam 3; Homework 3 due 12/19 Exam 3: 3-5 PM, HMB 202