Registration Advice for Fall 2014

We hope that this information will help you select the best biology course for your needs. The Biology Department will also have plenty of representatives at the Advising Open House hosted by the Registrar’s Office on Thursday April 3 from 11:30-12:30 in the Ballrooms.

Warning about multiple lecture and laboratory options
We know that it can be difficult for you to fit your classes, labs, and discussions in to schedules that work.However, you must create web registration schedules that include all possible courses and times that work, even the combinations with lab times that are not your favorites. If you don’t do this, then you risk not being registered at all for some courses, and you can’t always rely on being added to the course later.

Biology classes web-register the lab first, THEN the associated lecture
During each web registration we faculty get many emails from students who say that they are getting in to the lecture for a course but not the lab; this is entirely untrue. For Biology lab courses, the web registration program tries to place the student in the lab section first; if this is successful, then the student automatically gets in to the lecture section for that lab. The tracking tool makes it look like you can get in to the lecture without getting in to a lab; this is false. If you are not getting in to a Biology course that has a lab, it is because you are not getting in to the lab section that you are trying, and you should try other lab sections.

Advice for non-science majors selecting an SED or IST course
The best course choice for Fall is BIO 123: Human Biology. Interim options include BIO 127 (IST or SED), BIO 128 (IST), and BIO 135 (IST or SED). BIO 121 is the best choice in the Spring. Note that BIO 135 isalso offered this Summer Session One.

Advice for Biology majors
NOTE: Please remember that the Biology Department recently implemented a new major curriculum. If you have already taken BIO 126, then you are following the previous major curriculum. If you have taken or are in BIO 150, then you are following the new major curriculum. All current first-year students are following the new major curriculum.

Checklist of Biology Major Requirements

100-level courses

  • BIO 150 (our foundation course for the new Biology major) is offered every Fall and Spring semester. This course is also a good choice for some students who are not Biology majors but are interested in a career in the sciences and are planning to take more 200-level and even 300-level courses in Biology. Note that BIO 150 is also offered this Summer Session One.

200-level courses

  • BIO 227 Cell Biology, BIO 233 Intermediate Genetics, and BIO 261 Ecological Principles, are each offered every semester. Please note the prerequisites for these courses in the biology section of the Academic Catalog.
  • The courses for Fall that fulfill the comparative organismal (previously multicellular organism) requirement are BIO 247 Animal Physiology, BIO 248 Invertebrate Biology and BIO 275 Biology of Reproduction. The Spring courses for this requirement are BIO 242 Vertebrate Biology, BIO 251Plant Physiology, and BIO 266 Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy.
  • There are several elective courses offered each semester as well; please remember that there are courses in other departments that fulfill Biology major elective requirements (see the biology section of the Academic Catalog for details).

300-level courses

  • The 300-level courses in Biology are only open to rising juniors and seniors during web registration, and BIO 396 (directed research courses) sections are usually registered by permission only; more info is below. Keep in mind that Independent Research (BIO 398) also counts as the 300-level biology course requirement.
  • Fall courses are: BIO 371 Field Ecology, BIO 391 Developmental Neurobiology (for more info about this course, contact Jay Demas), BIO 391 Evolutionary Genetics (BIO 233 is the prerequisite; for more info about this course, contact Jean Porterfield), and BIO 396 Research in Microbial Genetics (BIO 233 is the prerequisite, and registration is by permission only; Lisa Bowers will be sending a google form to the rising junior and senior Biology majors for those interested to apply for permission).
  • Interim courses are: BIO 385 Neuroscience Seminar, BIO 391 Lipid Biochemistry, and BIO 391 Zooplankton Ecology.
  • Spring courses are: BIO 372 Developmental Biology, BIO 382 Immunology, BIO 396 (research course with Eric Cole), and ENV STUDIES 381 Soil Science & Hydrology.

Other Considerations

  • Students who are either finishing up a research project, or preparing for an independent research project, can take advantage of the 0.25 credit BIO 375 Advanced Supplemental Research course in the Fall or the Spring. Talk to your academic advisor and/or research advisor for more information.
  • This year, the Biology courses that offer general education credit (besides SED and/or IST) are: BIO 248 (WRI) and BIO 371 (ORC, WRI) in the Fall, and BIO 372 (WRI) and BIO 382 (WRI) in the Spring.
  • BIO 143 is a course designed for students who are Exercise Science majors, intended Nursing majors, or students preparing for particular health professions (not medicine or dentistry). It is not intended for most Biology majors.