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Unit information: Biology 1A: Diversity of Life in 2019/20

Please note: It is possible that the information shown for future academic years may change due to developments in the relevant academic field. Optional unit availability varies depending on both staffing and student choice.

Unit name Biology 1A: Diversity of Life
Unit code BIOL11000
Credit points 40
Level of study C/4
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Dr. Andy Bailey
Open unit status Not open
Pre-requisites

A-level Biology (preferred) or good science A-levels

Co-requisites

None

School/department School of Biological Sciences
Faculty Faculty of Science

Description

Evolution, speciation and biodiversity; the origins of life; evolution, relationships and diversity of the major groups of organisms (archaebacteria, protists, bacteria, fungi, plants, invertebrate and vertebrate animals); the importance of plants, animal and fungal life to humans; evolution and phylogeny of mammals; human evolution.

Aims:

To equip students with the broadest range of intellectual and practical skills and to fit them to confront the diverse biological questions they will meet in their future careers. This includes a clear understanding of the evolutionary processes that mould living organisms, and knowledge of the diversity of the major groups of organisms.

Intended learning outcomes

On completion a student will have gained a detailed knowledge and understanding of the diversity and evolution of biological organisms, have learnt methods for their study, and have gained self-confidence in written, verbal and organizational skills, including communication, teamwork, and computer literacy.

Teaching details

  • Lectures: 3x 50 min lectures each week
  • Laboratory classes: 1x 3-hour class each week. These classes include practical work with plants, animals, fungi and microbes.
  • 1 Tutorial
  • Self-directed learning. Students are expected to spend approx. 30-45 minutes on additional reading per lecture.
  • Independent work in computing
  • Demonstrations
  • Videos
  • Field trips
  • Dynamic Lab Manual (DLM)

Assessment Details

The course mark comprises 60% for the end of unit exam and 40% for continuous assessment (CA).

The end of unit exam in May/June comprises 2 papers.

The 40% CA mark is made up as follows:

  • 30%: Assessed practicals (5% of unit marks from each of the 6 practicals)
  • 10%: January assessment test

Reading and References

The core textbook is:

  • Campbell Biology, Pearson, 9th revised edition ISBN13: 9781408277379

Also recommended is:

  • A good general biology dictionary, e.g. Henderson’s Dictionary of Biology, Pearson Paperback ISBN13: 9781408234303

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