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BIOL 182 Organismal Biology - - Spring 2012 -- Syllabus

Cha. 1 Life

What is Science? Lab Notes

Cha 18 Darwinian Evolution

Cha 19 Evol. in Populations

Cha 20 Speciation and Macro-evolution

Cha 21 Origin of Life

Cha 23 Diversity & Systematics

Cha 25 Protista

Cha 26 Fungi

Cha 32 Plant Structure and Growth

Cha 33 Leaf Structure and Function

Cha 34 Stem and Transport in V.P.s

Cha 35 Roots & Nutrtion

Cha 36 Reproduction in Flowering Plants

Cha 37 Plant Growth and Development

Cha 29 Animal Diversity

Cha 30 Protostomes (Pt.1)

Cha 30 Protostomes (Pt.2)

Cha 31 Deuterostomes


Cha 38 Animal Structure and Function

Cha 39 Protection, support, and Movement

Cha 40 Neural Signaling

Cha 42 Sensory Systems

Cha 45 Gas Excahnge

Cha 46 Digestion and Nutrition

Cha 50 Development

Plant evolution Fig.

Primary/Secondary Growth Fig.

Journal Article: Bridges and Bats

Journal Article: Stalk-eyed flies

Journal Article: Red-tailed tropic birds

Urban Dwelling Javelina

Spring 12 Semester grades are posted. Have a bodacious summer!



To determine your grade click on "Check Out Your Grade" then 1) select Class: Organismal Biology, 2) type your last name, 3) then use your student I.D. G number for a password (include the G).



Code numbers: 20175

  Instructor:      Dr. Tom Morrell        

  Office: 2724A (enter through Room 2724)
                        Phone number: (760) 355-5754
                        Email: t.morrell@imperial.edu
  Personal website http://www.imperial.edu/thomas.morrell

  Office hours

Monday 5:45 - 6:15 pm
Tuesday 5:00 - 7:00 pm
Wednesday 5:45 - 6:15 pm


       If for some reason you can not see me during my scheduled office hours  or hours by appointment please call, stop by, or email me so we can arrange a meeting.  I have an open door policy - and my office is always open, so feel free to stop by anytime.

Class days, Time, Room
  Lecture:  Tuesday 11:50 am - 3:00 pm, Room 2733
  Lab:  Thursday 11:50 - 3:00 pm, Room 2713

    Credit Units: 3

"Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge:  it is those who know little, and not those who know much, who so positively assert that this or that problem will never be solved by science."    C. Darwin

Welcome to Morrell's Principles of Organismal Biology Web page (BIOL 182).  This page is intended for use by the students in my class as a learning tool. This web site allows you to monitor our course schedule and print lecture notes and bring them to class.  To obtain lecture notes for class, click on the chapter to be covered that day.  Click on Lecture Schedule (top left) to see which lecture will be covered on a given day.

Course Objectives

       Students will understand the basic principles of evolution by natural selection.  Additionally, students will understand the principle categories used in the classification of living organisms, and develop a strong understanding of the fundamental structure and function of plants and animals occurring in the major taxonomic groupings.  Students will also develop an appreciation for the level of biodiversity that exists among taxa.

Required Text

Organismal Biology, Solomon, Berg, and Martin. Thomson Brooks/Cole. ISBN 13:978-0-495-31714-2
This softcover book was made especially for IVC. The book is only available at IVC bookstore.

The book we will use is a compilation of about 1/2 of the Chapters from "Biology" Solomon, Berg, and Martin 2008 8th edition ISBN 13: 978-0-495-10705-7. If you can find the entire book cheaper than the modified book in IVC bookstore feel freee to save yourself some money and purchase it.

Attendance Policy: 

       Attendance is required.  You will be responsible for all material presented during lecture and lab sessions.   If for some reason you can't attend a lecture, quiz or an exam you must provide a signed medical or legal excuse to document your absence in order for your absence to be excused.  Students must realize that labs CANNOT be made up (regardless of the extracurricular activity that resulted in the absence, or whether its an excused absence). Some labs require numerous hours to prepare and/or require cooperative student participation. As a result, it is imperative that you attend all labs as some lab projects/experiments/assignments cannot be made up. Additionally, lab practical exams may not be made up Thus, attendance is mandatory at all labs.  If you miss a lab, you must see me immediately and provide a signed medical or legal excuse to document your absence.  All research indicates that there is a strong positive correlation between class attendance and good grades (i.e., those who attend class get better grades than those who skip class). 

       Class attendance and tardy policy follows regulations set forth in the IVC catalog.  Additionally, the IVC catalog states "an Instructor may drop any student judged to be a disturbing element in the class."   I consider coming into class tardy - a disturbing element.  Any student tardy/absent 4 times will be considered a disturbing element in class and might be dropped from the course.  This includes being tardy following any announced breaks during class or lab.  You are allowed one tardy. For all subsequent tardies you will be asked to provide a 4 page essay on the topic we are covering on that day within 48 hours. Failure to provide a 4 page (double spaced, 12 font) will result in the loss of 30 points. Missing an hour or more of a lecture is considered and absence. Additionally,  leaving class or lab before it has been officially dismissed will be regarded as as an unexcused tardy and will result in an essay as described above. 

      Please note that personal issues, such as family obligations, family situations, border slowdowns, babysitters, railroad crossings, job interviews, car problems and work schedules are not acceptable excuses for an absence or a tardy. .

    It is the responsibility of the student to fill out the necessary paperwork if he/she no longer attends the class.  In order for a student to "officially" drop the course he/she must fill out the proper paperwork. If this is not done a semester grade of F will be assigned.

Honor Policy:

       Imperial Valley College students must conduct themselves in accordance with the highest standards of academic honesty and integrity.  Academic dishonesty by a student will not be tolerated.  Plagiarism or violations of copyright policies are a form of academic dishonesty and are treated as an ethics violation.


       You will lose 25 points each time your cell phone rings, vibrates, buzzes, flashes or blinks during lecture or during lab (even if it is in your backpack, pocket,or purse!).  Similarly, you will incur the same penalty if I observe you "checking" your phone by looking at it, or using it as a calculator or camera during a lecture or lab.  You will lose points if ISEE your phone during lecture or lab.   Furthermore, you will lose points if I note that you are leaving lecture or lab to answer a phone call or text message.  Rest assured, I will provide you plenty of breaks that enable you to address all of your cell phone needs.  You can provide your children's day care and/or family health care providers the number of the IVC front office, and the front office can contact you in class in the event of an emergency.

Your course grade will be based on 5 lecture exams, 5 lab practical exams, lab and lecture quizzes, homework assignments, and discretionary course participation points .  Unannounced quizzes will be given during lecture and lab.  Review sessions prior to exams will be arranged if there is an interest.  

          Approximately 5-10 lab assignments, and announced or unannounced quizzes, or lab practical quizes (10-20 points each, approximately)

         2-3 lab practical exams (50 - 80 points each approximately)

         4  lecture exams to cover lectures, textbook, CD-roms, videos, and other lecture materials (80 - 100points each approximately)

         Total = 900 - 1,000 points (approximate)

Grades will be assigned according to the following scale:

>90%  = A          
80 - 89.9%  = B 
70 - 79.9%  = C
60 - 69.9%  = D
<59.9%  = F

I do not accept late homework without a signed legal or medical excuseUnless otherwise indicated all homework is due at the beginning of class. If you cannot provide a signed legal or medical excuse, and you know you will be absent it is your responsibility to turn in the homework prior to its due date.

Special Needs and Accommodations

Any student with a documented disability who may need educational accommodations should notify the instructor or the Disabled Student Program and Services (DSP&S) office as soon as possible (DSP&S, Room 2177, Health Sciences Building (760 355-6312).

If you have emergency medical information to share with me, or if you need special arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, please see me.

Course Objectives

  1. Describe the biological characteristics of life, and demonstrate an understanding of cells, and levels of biological organization.
  2. Understand the process of science and demonstrate an ability to test hypotheses.
  3. Define biological evolution, and demonstrate an understanding of how genetic variation and     natural selection influence biological diversity
  4. Define what plants are, and provide evidence of an understandings of plant evolution, development, structure, growth, reproduction, and selected physiological processes.
  5. Describe what Fungi are, and provide evidence of an understanding of development, structure,   growth, and reproduction within this phylum.
  6. Define what Protists are, and provide evidence of an understanding of their characteristics, structure, diversity, and reproduction.
  7. Demonstrate an understanding of animal diversity, ecology and evolutionary trends.
  8. Demonstrate an understanding of animal form and function including physiological processes, development, and reproduction across phyla.
  9. Demonstrate an understanding of animal nervous systems from the cellular level to integrated systems.
  10. Demonstrate an understanding of the structure of muscles, and the sliding filament model theory.
  11.  Understand animal sensory systems
  12. Demonstrate an understanding of population growth and regulation.

Student Learning Outcomes:
1. Display critical thought related to conducting the process of science and reporting findings.
2. Create a presentation that reports the findings of a project that incorporates the scientific process
3. Create a dichotomous key that establishes mastery of the process
4. Display an understanding of evolution through natural selection

Spring 2011 Schedule (for a printer friendly copy of the schedule - click here)








Introduction - Cha. 1 What is Life


What is Science? / Nothing needed








Pre-Organismal Needs/ Cha.18  Darwinian evolution


Dichotomous Keys/Nothing needed








Cha. 19 Evolution in populations/ Cha. 20. Speciation and Macro-evol.


Natural  Selection / Nothing needed








Exam 1


Scientific Literature /Graphing -  Nothing needed








Cha. 21 Origin of life/  Cha. 23 Diversity


Systematics – Nothing needed








Cha. 25 Kingdom Protista   Cha. 26 Kingdom Fungi


Protist & Fungi slides and living specimens, micro- & dissecting scopes








Exam 2 


Rolypoly brainstorm  - nothing needed








Kingdom Plants – Plant evolution Cha. 32 & 33 Plant & Leaf Structure, Function , Growth and Differentiation


Rolypoly Research – to be arranged









Chaps.  34 & 35 Stems, transport, roots,


Plants slides:  Parenchyma cells, collenchymas cells, schlerenchyma cells, elodea leaves, coleus leaves, plant and flower models, dicot and monocot stem & root slides, Plant models, micro- & dissecting scopes








Chaps. 36 & 37 Plant Reproduction & Growth.


Floral arrangements and everything from 3 - 15








Exam 3


Plant Lab Practical – everything from 3-15








Cha. 29 Animal Diversity


Grasshopper & crayfish dissection




Cha. 30 Protostomes


Mollusca & echinoderm dissection








Cha. 31 Deuterostomes


Frog dissection








Cha. 52 Population Ecology


Rolypoly Research Reports








Final Exam & Lab Practical