Georgia Highlands College


Credit Hours: 4

Course Delivery: There is no face-to-face interaction for the lecture component of this course. Students must not only access the course by logging into Georgia View Vista, but also become familiar with the tools associated with the course. Additional Information regarding this course and Georgia View Vista is contained in this syllabus and so it is very important that you read the syllabus in its entirety and become familiar with the course expectations. Additionally, make sure you make note of the exams and other important dates.

Georgia View Vista:Students are responsible for obtaining a username and password. To log into Georgia View Vista, click on the following link: Georgia View Vista. Once you have logged into Georgia View Vista you should see a list of links for the courses that you are registered for. If you do not see a link for this course, contact the instructor immediately. †Clicking on this course link will direct you to the course main page. On the main course page you should see labeled files that provide the syllabus, lecture slides and assignments for the course. In addition, on the left side of the course main page, you should see links for other tools necessary for this course such as "Discussion," "Mail," "My Grades," and "Assessments." Click on each of these and become familiar with them. †Students are responsible for checking this daily for any announcements and/or changes. Exams will be available during the times indicated above. Students should access the exams by clicking the ďAssessmentsĒ tab.


Prerequisites:Satisfactory placement scores/ENGL 0099, READ 0099, MATH0097.

Course Description:Topics to be covered include the chemical basis of cells, general cell biology and genetics, respiration and photosynthesis, patterns of inheritance, natural selection and speciation, and an introduction to the major kingdoms of life.† The laboratory component provides hands-on experience in analysis and evaluation of biological processes.† This course provides a foundation for the non-science major student in the skills of inquiry, data collection, and critical thinking while introducing the student to the basic concepts of the life sciences.† NOTE:† It serves as a prerequisite to more specific courses designed to complete a science sequence.


Georgia Highlands College Educational Effectiveness Goal for Science:† Students will demonstrate knowledge of the fundamental concepts of at least one scientific discipline, and an understanding of the interplay between theory and experimentation/observation undergirding those concepts.

Georgia Highlands College Student Learning Outcomes for Science:

1.††††† Students will demonstrate competency of one discipline in the sciences in terms of its informational content.

2.††††† Students will demonstrate competency of one discipline in the sciences in terms of its terminology.

3.††††† Students will demonstrate competency of one discipline in the sciences in terms of its commonly used units of measurement.

4.††††† Students will demonstrate the ability to operate basic instrumentation, gather data, analyze data, and generate conclusions in a laboratory or observational setting.

5.††††† Students will demonstrate the ability to apply discipline content to problem solving.


Upon completion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Define biology, identify and describe the characteristics of life, and explain the hierarchal organization of life.
  2. Identify and describe the scientific method and its processes.
  3. Identify, describe, and explain the basic principles of chemistry as they relate to the biological sciences.
  4. Define organic chemistry and identify and describe the major classes of organic compounds.
  5. Explain the cell theory, describe basic cell structure, identify major organelles, and describe their functions.
  6. Describe the process of energy transfer in cells as it relates to photosynthesis, cellular respiration and the role of enzymes.
  7. Discuss basic principles of classical genetics including cell reproduction and Mendelian inheritance.
  8. Describe structure and function of genes and DNA and explain the application of molecular genetics to biotechnology.
  9. Define evolution, identify and describe mechanisms of evolution, and will be able to identify the steps leading to the evolution of life on earth.
  10. Operate basic instrumentation, gather data, analyze data, and generate conclusions in a laboratory or observational setting.


Lecture:† Biology: Concepts and Investigations Companion Site, 2nd edition, by MariŽlle Hoefnagels. McGraw-Hill, New York.

Laboratory:††† Mader.† Inquiry into Biology Laboratory Manual. 13th ed. McGraw-Hill.

Although the instructor makes powerpoint slides available, they are meant only to be a supplement to the above required texts.† Regularly reading your textbook and lab manual are necessary to facilitate comprehension of the material.

The lab manual is NOT an optional text. Every student must have a copy for the instructor to check upon completion of each lab activity. Each student must have their own lab manual and labs WILL NOT be accepted on notebook paper.

The final grade for the course is based on both a lectureand a laboratory component. The lecture component grade will be based on performance on the online exams, a current research project, and an in-person comprehensive final exam. The lab component will be based on performance on the pre-lab quizzes, lab exercises, and online lab final. †You will have 48 hours to complete each lecture exam.


  • Internet Resources:
    • The lecture component of the course will be taught ENTIRELY over the Internet and thus will utilize a number of multimedia and internet-based resources. These resources are designed to supplement the textbook and enhance the studentís ability to learn the material, they ARE NOT substitutions to reading the textbook.
  • General Policies:
    • It is the responsibility of the student to be familiar with the use of Georgia Highlands College student email and Internet browsers.
    • Students must check to see if their computers contain the appropriate programs required by the college.
    • Students must check to see if their computers and programs are working correctly.
    • The instructor is not responsible for the operation of the network system, access to network resources, or the performance of computers. The instructor will attempt to assist with problems in these areas, however, the students should first check with the Information Technology Department. DO NOT CALL the instructor! The instructor will make provisions based upon the problem.
    • Class announcements will be made in Georgia View Vista and/or GHC student email. Students must routinely check BOTH of these for announcements and/or messages from the instructor.
    • Students must attend the orientation in order to become familiar with Georgia View Vista and the course.
    • Time allotments for exams given in this course are based on those used in previous BIO1010 courses, both traditional and online, taught by various instructors. As such, under no circumstances will a student be given extra time for an exam without proper documentation from the student access center (see below).
  • Email Policies
    • There is an email option in Georgia View Vista. Students are encouraged to use Vista email rather than GHC email to communicate with one another. Though it is possible to reach the instructor via VISTA email too, GHC email will ensure a more prompt response.
    • In general, all e-mail to the instructor will be answered in a timely manner (typically within 24 hours during the week). To ensure this, all e-mail MUST contain the words BIOL 1010 ONLINE in the subject line. Failure to do this may delay response to your email.
    • The instructor is not responsible for technical difficulties that arise with email (especially if the student is using an email account other than the provided GHC account or Georgia View Vista). Failure to use one of these approved email sources to contact the instructor may delay response time, especially if the sender is not recognized.
  • Testing and Graded Material
    • Exam dates are subject to change at the instructor's discretionand will be announced through Vista or email.
    • The first 4 lecture exams and the lab final will be administered online and are only available for the times indicated above (48 hours for lecture exams, 24 hours for laboratory final)
    • On the course (Georgia View Vista) homepage there is a link to assessments (exams). At the start of the semester, no assessments will appear under this tab. The assessments (exams) will be viewable only during the times indicated above. To take an exam, click on the link and proceed with the exam.
    • An exam can only be taken once! The instructor has the capability of monitoring students and exams (who takes them, time and date taken, number of questions answered, length of time spent, etc...). If a student clicks on the link of an exam, the exam timer will immediately start. Therefore, do not attempt to look at or take an exam and then "click out" or "back out" of the exam - this will be counted as your first and only attempt and will be graded as such.
    • Be sure to check the maintenance schedule of Georgia View Vista - it changes frequently. Maintenance may occur during the time frame of an exam. Immediately contact the instructor if this occurs.
    • The student will be given an appropriate length of time to take online exams. Do not attempt to take the exam at the last minute as unforeseen interruptions/events may occur. The exams are programmed to become unavailable at a specific day and time.
    • The score for each exam is reported to the instructor as a percentage. The percentage will be recorded as a whole number. For example, if the first exam has 50 questions and a student answered 40 questions correctly, then the studentís score is 40/50 or 80%. The instructor will record a grade of 80 for that exam.
    • If you attempt to take an exam and you have been disconnected from the internet your exam will still count down the time - therefore you must try to reconnect immediately and finish the exam.
    • Completed exams WILL NOT be available for review online! If a student wishes to review a completed exam, he/she must make an appointment to meet with the instructor at the Cartersville campus. Further, each exam will only be available until the subsequent exam (Ex: you can come to my office and look over Exam 1 anytime before Exam 2 is administered).

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