CCOG for BI 212 Spring 2024

Course Number:
BI 212
Course Title:
Principles of Biology II
Credit Hours:
Lecture Hours:
Lecture/Lab Hours:
Lab Hours:

Course Description

Includes the process of science, molecular biology, as well as the physiology and anatomy of plants and animals. Includes some dissection of plants and animals. The second of a three-course sequence for students majoring in biology or related sciences, including pre-medical, pre-dental, chiropractic, and pharmacy. Prerequisites: BI 211. Audit available.

Addendum to Course Description

To clarify the teaching of evolution and its place in the classroom, the Portland Community College Biology Departments stand by the following statements about what is science and how the theory of evolution is the major organizing theory in the discipline of the biological sciences.
Science is a fundamentally non-dogmatic and self-correcting investigatory process. In science, a theory is neither a guess, dogma, nor myth. The theories developed through scientific investigation are not decided in advance, but can be and often are modified and revised through observation and experimentation.
The theory of evolution meets the criteria of a scientific theory. In contrast, creation "science" is neither self-examining nor investigatory. Creation "science" is not considered a legitimate science, but a form of religious advocacy. This position is established by legal precedence (Webster v. New Lenox School District #122, 917 F. 2d 1004).
Biology instructors of Portland Community College will teach the theory of evolution not as absolute truth but as the most widely accepted scientific theory on the diversity of life. We, the Biology Subject Area Curriculum Committee at Portland Community College, therefore stand with such organizations as the National Association of Biology Teachers in opposing the inclusion of pseudo-sciences in our science curricula.

Intended Outcomes for the course

Upon completion of the course students should be able to:

  1. Apply biological theories and concepts to novel problems in molecular biology and/or plant and animal anatomy and physiology.

  2. Apply concepts from plant and animal anatomy and physiology and molecular biology to their lives and community (personal, work, and career).

  3. Assess the strengths and weaknesses of scientific studies in molecular biology and plant and animal anatomy and physiology and critically examine the influence of scientific and technical knowledge of plant and animal anatomy and physiology on human society and the environment.

  4. Communicate concepts in plant and animal anatomy and physiology and molecular biology using appropriate terminology in both written and verbal forms.

  5. Develop and effectively communicate an evidence-based position on issues in molecular biology and plant/animal anatomy and physiology while considering the ethical implications for a diverse community.

  6. Describe how genetic information is expressed to govern the growth and behavior of organisms.

  7. Explain the relationships between functions and structures of organs and organ systems of plants and animals.

Quantitative Reasoning

Students completing an associate degree at Portland Community College will be able to analyze questions or problems that impact the community and/or environment using quantitative information.

General education philosophy statement

Biology 212, Principles of Biology, is the second of a 3-part sequence of courses (BI 211, 212 and 213) which prepares students for upper-division Biology courses and is required for a Biology major. It also serves as a prerequisite for many health-related programs, including nursing, medicine, and physical therapy. BI 212 presents the mechanisms of heredity, this history of life on planet earth, and micro- and macro-evolution. There is also an emphasis on the processes of science, including collaborative teamwork and communication, and the discoveries that lead to our understanding of genetics and evolution. Quantitative reasoning is part of this process. The laboratory activities, in particular, promote quantitative skills as students must gather, present and interpret data.

Outcome Assessment Strategies

o open-ended essay questions and multiple-choice exams;

o scientific papers that follow standard scientific format presenting independent investigations and may include peer-review(s);

o oral presentations of biological information, informed positions on contemporary issues, and/or laboratory results;

o classroom assessments, such as, quizzes, one minute summaries, pre-test/post-tests, etc.;

o major independent projects, such as, experiential learning plus journals, botany collections with ecosystem reports, library research term papers, and field journals;

o scientific article critiques;

o laboratory practical exams;

o and small projects and homework assignments.

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

Themes and Concepts include:

  • Information Flow, Exchange, and Storage: The growth and behavior of organisms are activated through the expression of genetic information in context.

  • Structure and Function: The basic units of structure define the function of all living things.

  • Vision and Change National Competencies (Brewer & Smith, 2011)

    • Ability to apply the process of science.

    • Ability to use quantitative reasoning.

    • Ability to use modeling and simulation.

    • Ability to tap into the interdisciplinary nature of science.

    • Ability to communicate and collaborate with other disciplines.

    • Ability to understand the relationship between science and society

Biology 212 is relevant to many contemporary issues that may be discussed and explored during the course, such as, effects of pollution in aquatic systems, applications of gene therapy, dwindling biodiversity, primate evolution, global warming, acid rain, overpopulation, unknown impacts of genetically modified organisms, etc.