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CCOG for BI 280A Summer 2022

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Course Number:
BI 280A
Course Title:
Cooperative Education: Biology
Credit Hours:
Lecture Hours:
Lecture/Lab Hours:
Lab Hours:

Course Description

Offers relevant experience in the field or laboratory in an area of biology or environmental sciences. Provides an opportunity to make a cooperative education training agreement with an instructor, an employer/supervisor, and a cooperative education specialist. Prerequisites: BI 101 or BI 211, and instructor permission. Audit available.

Addendum to Course Description

1. Fieldwork Statement

Fieldwork is a professional competence in many areas of Biology. Standard field practices include measurements of abiotic and biotic components. Fieldwork includes use of all the senses to make observations in natural and built environments. Field training may include developing skills in site characterization, measurement and data collection, application of key terms and concepts, species identification, and observation. Certain protocols may require use of equipment, chemicals, and expensive gear. Field training is experiential often leading to unique sets of observations/data in particular locations. Fieldwork may include inherent risks (uneven terrain, off-trail work with map & compass, variable weather, insects, environmental irritants, travel, stress, etc.). Fieldwork can be physically challenging and may require overland travel on foot or unusual means to field points, carrying field equipment (as well as food, water, and safety equipment), taking measurements under duress (learning new protocols, requiring remaining in an unusual posture or position for a length of time, timing pressures for certain procedures, holding organisms, variable weather, etc.), survival skills, orienteering, and so on.

2. Evolution Statement

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.

  1. 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.
  2. 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.

3. General Cooperative Education Statement

The agreement will clearly define student, employer/supervisor, and instructor information as well as the placement description (paid or unpaid) and length of the position. The placement should extend student knowledge of Biology/Environmental Science.

Intended Outcomes for the course

Upon completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Meet mutually agreed-upon goals and learning objectives with the instructor and employer or supervisor.

2.  Demonstrate the ability to apply skills or knowledge gained in the classroom in the laboratory and/or field-placement site.

3.  Work productively in the laboratory and/or field-placement site.

4.  Communicate appropriately in the laboratory and/or field-placement site.

Aspirational Goals

Deepen the understanding of the science.

Focus and broaden the understanding of the path to achieve career goals.

Course Activities and Design

This course is designed to maximize learning through a co-operative work experience. Students will be supervised by a college co-operative supervisor and an on-site supervisor who is typically a company employee.
The student, coordinator/instructor, and employer develop a work experience plan which will meet the learning needs of the student. This plan provides a definition of on-the-job or in-the-lab learning activities.

Outcome Assessment Strategies

Assessment is designed to indicate achievement of the course outcome and performance tasks. The instructor will outline the methods used to assess student progress and the criteria for assigning a grade at the beginning of the course. Assessment will be based upon a combination of participation, attendance, and supervisory evaluations and conferences.
Evaluation procedures will be discussed during preliminary meetings between the student, coordinator/instructor and employer and tailored to suit the specifics of the job or research site.

At least one site visit a term is done by the coordinator and/or instructor.

Assessment strategies could include but are not limited to:  journal entries, oral presentations, poster presentations, portfolios, scientific reports, community-based learning activities and/or other output relevant to the co-op site.

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

Students will develop competencies based on the mutually agreed-upon outcomes for the project.