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Blinn College • Bryan • Natural Science • Biology - BIOL

General Biology I BIOL-1406

  • Summer II 2013
  • Section SECTION_323 CRN-40259
  • 4 Credits
  • 07/09/2013 to 08/06/2013
  • Modified 07/01/2013

Meeting Times


  • Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, 9:35 AM to 11:30 AM, S-216


  • Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, 11:40 AM to 1:35 PM, S-215

Contact Information

Professor: Dr. Steven R. Simcik



Office Hours

  • Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, 1:30 PM to 2:30 PM, H-257


An in-depth introductory survey of contemporary biology for students majoring in the biological sciences. Topics emphasized include, the chemical basis of life, structure and function of cells, energy transformations, and molecular biology and genetics.


Prerequisites: Exemption or passing score on reading section of THEA or alternative test or completion of READ 306 with a grade of C or higher.

Core Curriculum Statement

This is a Core Course in the 42-Hour Core Curriculum of Blinn College. As such, students will develop proficiency in the appropriate Intellectual Competencies, Exemplary Educational Objectives, and Perspectives.


1. Interpret the process by which scientific knowledge is acquired and evaluated.

2. Evaluate the characteristics of cells.

3. Recognize the molecular basis of evolutionary change.

4. Evaluate the composition of biological macromolecules and the role they play in the structure and function of cells.

5. Interpret selected metabolic processes carried out by cells and their essential role in sustaining life.

6. Compare and contrast the methods by which cells divide.

7. Set-up and evaluate basic Mendelian genetics problems.

8. Demonstrate the ability to use the compound light microscope and technological applications utilized in modern biology.


Textbook: Biology, 2nd Edition, 2011. Brooker, Widmaier, Graham and Stiling, McGraw Hill 

Lab Manual: Biology 1406 Laboratory Manual, Spring 2013, Richardson et. al. Copy Stop Print & Postal 


Course Requirements

Lecture Exams: There will be four tests each worth 100 points. The exact date of the tests will be announced in class at least two class periods prior to the examination date, but will follow the course schedule as closely as possible. Make-up tests will only be offered to those with excused absences and proper documentations, no exceptions. Excused absences in addition to those officially recognized by Blinn (see “Attendance” below) include: illness with a doctor's note, or death of a close family member with documentation provided by funeral home. Students must contact me before the following class period to schedule a make-up. If you know that you will need to miss a test prior to the test date, contact me ASAP so that I may plan accordingly.  An unexcused absence from an exam will result in a grade of zero.

Final Exam:  The Final is a common comprehensive final worth 200 points. It will consist of at least 100 multiple choice questions.  

Laboratory Exams:  There will be two lab practical exams worth 100 points each.  Lab practical exams will test student’s ability to carry out specific tasks or techniques that relate to lab activities performed and/or the overall student learning outcomes for the laboratory.  Additional short answer, problem solving, or fill-in-the-blank questions may also be administered. There will be NO MAKE-UP EXAMS for the lab.

Quizzes:  5 quizzes worth 20 points each (total of 100 points) will be given throughout the semester.  These may include multiple choice, short answer, or fill-in-the-blank questions.  Quizzes may cover recent topics from the lecture and/or laboratory.  A grade of zero will be recorded for missed quizzes unless an approved excuse is submitted. 

Laboratory Exercises:  Lab exercises and worksheets (at least 10) are worth a total of 100 points. Each lab exercise is to be completed during the lab and turned in at the end of the period or as instructed. For the most part, each laboratory exercise will be assigned a maximum grade of 10 points. Failure to turn assignments in on time automatically reduces the grade to a maximum of 5 points. Assignments that are more than a week late will not be accepted.

Calendar of Major Assignments:


Lecture   Exam


Lab Exam

July 12

Exam 1

July 22

Lab Exam 1

July 19

Exam 2

August 5

Lab Exam 2

July 25

Exam 3



July 31

Exam 4



Tuesday, August 6

Final Exam





Criteria for Grading:

Lecture exams (4 exams x 100 points each)                  400 points   (40%)

Final exam (comprehensive)                                          200 points   (20%)

Lab exams (2 exams x 100 points each)                        200 points   (20%)

Quizzes (5 quizzes x 20 points each)                             100 points   (10%)

Laboratory Exercises/Worksheets                                  100 points   (10%)

                                                               Total               1,000 points


The grading system of Blinn College recognizes the following grade values:


          A =  90-100%

          B = 80-89%

          C = 70-79%

          D = 60-69%

          F = <59%


Blinn College Policies

Blinn College policies on civility, class attendance; scholastic integrity; students with disabilities; final grade appeals; and electronic devices as stated in the Blinn College Student Handbook, Faculty Handbook, Blinn College Catalog and specific technical program handbooks. All policies, guidelines and procedures in the Student and Faculty Handbook and the Board and Administrative Policy Manuals are applicable to this course

Civility Statement

Members of the Blinn College community, which includes faculty, staff and students, are expected to act honestly and responsibly in all aspects of campus life. Blinn College holds all members accountable for their actions and words. Therefore, all members should commit themselves to behave in a manner that recognizes personal respect and demonstrates concern for the personal dignity, rights, and freedoms of every member of the College community, including respect for College property and the physical and intellectual property of others.

      Civility Notification Statement. If a student is asked to leave the classroom because of uncivil behavior, the student may not return to that class until he or she arranges a conference with the instructor; it is the student’s responsibility to arrange for this conference. 

      This statement reflects step one in a possible four step process.  The Incivility Protocol is detailed in the Blinn College Student Handbook.

Attendance Policy

The College District believes that class attendance is essential for student success; therefore, students are required to promptly and regularly attend all their classes. A record of attendance will be maintained from the first day of classes and/or the first day the student’s name appears on the roster through final examinations. If a student has one week’s worth of unexcused absences during the semester, he or she will be sent an e-mail by the College District requiring the student to contact his or her instructor and schedule a conference immediately to discuss his/her attendance issues. Should the student accumulate two weeks’ worth of unexcused absences, he or she will be administratively withdrawn from class.

There are four forms of excused absences recognized by the institution:

  1. observance of religious holy days—The student should notify his or her instructor(s) not later than the 15th day of the semester concerning the specific date(s) that the student will be absent for any religious holy day(s);
  2. representing the College District at an official institutional function;
  3. high school dual credit students representing the independent school district at an official institutional function; and
  4. military service.

Other absences may be considered excused at the discretion of the faculty member with appropriate documentation.  A student enrolled in a developmental course is subject to College District-mandated attendance policies. Failure to attend developmental classes shall result in removal from the course as defined by the College District.

It is the student’s responsibility to officially drop a class he or she is no longer attending.  To officially drop a class the student must obtain the class withdrawal form from Enrollment Services, complete the class withdrawal form, secure the required signatures, and return the completed form to Enrollment Services. The last day to drop with a Q is according to the Academic Calendar.

Scholastic Integrity

Blinn College does not tolerate cheating, plagiarism, or any other act of dishonesty with regard to the course in which you are enrolled.  The following text defines the faculty member’s responsibility with regard to the scholastic integrity expectation for this and all courses at Blinn College.

It is the responsibility of faculty members to maintain scholastic integrity at the College District by refusing to tolerate any form of scholastic dishonesty.  Adequate control of test materials, strict supervision during testing, and other preventive measures should be utilized, as necessary, to prevent cheating or plagiarism.  If there is compelling evidence that a student is involved in cheating or plagiarism, the instructor should assume responsibility and address the infraction.  Likewise, any student accused of scholastic dishonesty is entitled to due process as outlined in Blinn College Board Policy FLB (Local).  The Scholastic Integrity Policy is located in the Blinn College Student Handbook. In a case of scholastic dishonesty, it is critical that written documentation be maintained at each level throughout the process.

Students with Disabilities

Blinn College is dedicated to providing the least restrictive learning environment for all students. Support services for students with documented disabilities are provided on an individual basis, upon request. Requests for services should be made directly to the Office of Special Populations serving the campus of your choice.  For the Bryan campus, the Office of Special Populations (Administration Building) can be reached at (979)209-7251.  The Brenham, Sealy and Schulenburg campuses are served by the Office of Special Populations on the Brenham campus (Administration Building Room 104) and can be reached at (979)830-4157.  Additional information can be found at

Final Grade Appeal

If a student wishes to appeal a final grade in a course, Blinn College Board Policy FLDB (Local), Course Grade Complaints, outlines the timeline for the appeal and the four steps in the appeal.  This policy is located in the Blinn College Student Handbook.

Electronic Devices

All the functions of all personal electronic devices designed for communication and/or entertainment (cell phones, pagers, beepers, iPods, and similar devices) must be turned off and kept out of sight in all College District classrooms and associated laboratories.  Any noncompliance with this policy shall be addressed in accordance with the College District civility policy (administrative policy).  This information is contained in Blinn College Board Policy FLB (Local).

Course Policies


Course calendar and related activities
When Topic Notes

Outline of the course content and Schedule*:

Updated: 06/25/13





Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Course Introduction

Ch. 1 – Intro to Biology

Lab 1: Safety

Lab 2: Process of Science

Wednesday, July 10,   2013

Ch. 2 – Atoms, Molecules, Water

Lab 3:  Scientific   Method

Lab 4: Experimental    Design

Thursday, July 11,   2013

Ch. 3 – Organic Molecules

Lab 5: Building and Interpreting Graphs

Organic Molecule Activity

Friday, July 12, 2013


Exam 1 (Ch. 1-3)

Lab 6 Metric Measurement


Monday, July 15, 2013

Ch. 4 – Cells

Lab 7: Testing for Organic Molecules

Lab 8: Microscopy

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Ch. 5 – Membranes

Lab 9: Observing Cells in Action

Wednesday, July 17,   2013

Ch. 10 – Multicellularity

Lab 10: Prokaryotic & Eukaryotic Cells

Thursday, July 18,   2013

Ch. 6 – Energy, Enzymes, Metabolism

Lab 11 : Membrane Transport

Friday, July 19, 2013


Exam 2 (Ch. 4-6,   10)

Review for Lab Exam

Monday, July 22, 2013

Ch. 7 – Cellular Respiration

Lab Exam 1

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Ch. 8 – Photosynthesis

Cellular Respiration Concept Map

Wednesday, July 24,   2013

Ch. 11 – Nucleic Acid Structure

Lab 12: Spectrophotometer

Thursday, July 25,   2013


Exam 3 (Ch. 7, 8,   11)

Lab 13: Chromatography

Friday, July 26, 2013

Ch. 12 – Gene Expression

Lab 14: Photosynthesis

Monday, July 29*, 2013

Ch. 13 – Gene Regulation

Ch. 14 – Mutation

Gene Expression Concept Map

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Ch. 15 – Eukaryotic Cell Cycle

Lab 17 – Mitosis

Lab 15: DNA Isolation

Wednesday, July 31,   2013


Exam 4 (Ch. 12-15)

Lab 16  -   Restriction Endonucleases

Thursday, August 01,   2013

Ch. 16 – Simple Patterns of Inheritance

Lab 18 – Mendelian Genetics

Friday, August 02,   2013

Ch. 17 – Complex Patterns of Inheritance

Finish Lab 18

Review for Lab Exam

Monday, August 05,   2013

Finish Lecture Material/Review

Lab Exam 2

Tuesday, August 06,   2013

Departmental Final Exam


* In case of course schedule changes, updates will be posted on eCampus and notified in class.

 Q-drop, last day to withdraw with a “Q” is Monday, July 29, 2013.