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Course Descriptions

Department of Biology

Dr. Jonathan Monroe, Interim Head

Phone: (540) 568-6649
E-mail: monroejd@jmu.edu
Web site: www.jmu.edu/biology

Dr. Dean Cocking, Undergraduate Coordinator
E-mail: cockinwd@jmu.edu

Professors
D. Brakke, J. Dendinger, N. Garrison, R. Harris, I. Knight, M. Nabors, M. Renfroe, B. Wiggins, D. Wubah, G. Wyngaard

Associate Professors
S. Babcock, C. Cleland, D. Cocking, J. Kastendiek, S. Keffer, J. Monroe, C. Murphy, C. Rose, K. Slekar

Assistant Professors
R. Chodrow, J. Clevinger, J. Daniel, M. Gabriele, S. Halsell, T. Hancock, J. Herrick, C. Hurney, C. Lantz, C. McMullen, T. Rife, K. Simon, R. Wunderlich


Mission Statement
The Department of Biology holds as its primary core value a commitment to providing superlative teaching for students. To accomplish this mission, we will create an environment for learning that will include opportunities for undergraduate research, a broadly based academic program, a supportive, diverse and collaborative faculty, an understanding of the process of science, and a recognition of the importance of community outreach and involvement.


Career Opportunities and Marketable Skills
The Biology major is intended to prepare students for a wide variety of life-science jobs in academia, government, and the private sector. The biology curriculum is designed to allow students to acquire knowledge and to develop quantitative, computer, writing, and critical thinking skills. Research experiences in laboratory courses and independent study can help students prepare for entry into graduate programs or for positions as laboratory technicians. A wide variety of courses prepares students for professional training in the field of health-care leading to careers as doctors, dentists, veterinarians, physical therapists and genetic counselors. With an emphasis on courses and mentored research in molecular biology, biochemistry, and physiology, students can work in the expanding fields of agricultural or medical biotechnology, forensics and rational drug design. Courses and mentored research in ecology and systematics prepare students for careers in environmental science, wildlife conservation and forestry. Finally, our emphasis on exceptional teaching will help to prepare students for careers in education.


Co-curricular Activities and Organizations
Biology majors participate in activities such as
  • Weekly departmental seminars
  • Tri-Beta, a national biology society
  • Pre-health career clubs
  • EARTH, an environmental action club
  • Summer research opportunities
  • Summer courses at biological field stations
  • Internships with various organizations
  • Aiding in teaching and research as student assistants
  • Presenting papers at meetings
  • Volunteering at Rockingham Memorial Hospital and with the rescue squad
Special Requirements
To be used as prerequisites for biology courses, grades of “C- ” or higher should be earned in the following: GSCI 103, BIO 114, BIO 120, BIO 124, BIO 130, BIO 214, BIO 224, CHEM 131, CHEM 131L, CHEM 132 and CHEM 132L. A maximum of 4 hours of lower division biology elective credit applicable toward the major or minor may be transferred as BIO 200. Upper division biology credits applicable toward the major or minor are transferred as specific courses or as BIO 325, Topics in Biology or BIO 426, Advanced Topics in Biology. Credits not applicable toward the major or minor, but applicable toward the 120 hour degree requirement, are transferred as BIO 000.


Degree and Major Requirements


Bachelor of Science in Biology

The department offers a four-year B.S. degree program for a major in biology and for a major in biology qualifying for the Secondary Collegiate Professional License. Requirements for the B.A. degree can be met by adding the completion of an intermediate level foreign language and three credit hours in philosophy.

Biology majors must complete 40 credit hours of biology courses including 20 credit hours at the 300 and 400 level. Specific requirements include four core courses (BIO 114, BIO 124, BIO 214 and BIO 224), at least three upper-division laboratory courses and one course from a list of courses with an emphasis on organismal diversity. In addition, biology majors must complete a set of cognate courses in Chemistry, Mathematics and Physics that are listed below. Students are encouraged to participate in independent research with a faculty mentor. Credits earned doing research will count toward the Biology major but some restrictions apply.

When requested, senior biology majors are expected to participate in program assessment test activities as a graduation requirement. Assessment information helps the department modify the curriculum to meet student needs.

Degree Requirements

Credit Hours
General Education1 41-44
Mathematics course 3
Social science or natural science course(s) 3-4
Major requirements (listed below) and electives 70-74

120


1 The General Education program contains a set of requirements each student must fulfill. The number of credit hours necessary to fulfill these requirements may vary.

Major Requirements

Core Corses Credit Hours
BIO 114. Organisms 4
BIO 124. Ecology and Evolution 4
BIO 214. Cell and Molecular Biology 4
BIO 224. Genetics and Development 4

Cognate Requirements
The following five groups of support courses are required for the biology major. Consult with your academic adviser about which courses are appropriate.


1) Complete all of the following
CHEM 131. General Chemistry I
CHEM 131L. General Chemistry Laboratory
CHEM 132. General Chemistry II
CHEM 132L. General Chemistry Laboratory

2) Complete all of the following:
CHEM 341 Organic Chemistry Lecture I
CHEM 342 Organic Chemistry Lecture II
CHEM 346L Organic Chemistry Laboratory
Note: Chemistry beyond the minimum requirement, especially biochemistry, is recommended in many areas of biology. Consult with your adviser about which courses are appropriate.

3) Choose one of the following sets of courses
MATH 231 Calculus with Functions I
MATH 232 Calculus with Functions II
OR
MATH 235 Calculus I
Note: Mathematics beyond the minimum requirement is desirable in many areas of biology. Consult with your adviser about which courses are appropriate.

4) Choose one of the following courses:
MATH 220. Elementary Statistics
OR
MATH 285. Data Analysis
Note: Statistics beyond the minimum requirement is desirable in many areas of biology. Consult with your adviser about which courses are appropriate.

5) Choose one of the following sets of courses:
PHYS 125. Principles of Physics with Biological Applications I
PHYS 126. Principles of Physics with Biological Applications II
OR
PHYS 140-140L. College Physics I with Laboratory
PHYS 150-150L. College Physics II with Laboratory

Upper-level Biology Course Requirements
Students in the Biology major must complete at least 20 credit hours at the 300 and 400 level. One course must be from a group of courses on organismal diversity. Three courses must have a laboratory component. Independent research (BIO 495, 497 and 499) will not count for this laboratory course requirement.


1) Choose at least one course from the following list of organismal diversity courses:
BIO 305. Ornithology
BIO 310. General Entomology
BIO 320. Comparative Anatomy of Vertebrates
BIO 340. Morphology and Anatomy of Vascular Plants
BIO 380. General Microbiology
BIO 386. Field Botany
BIO 470. Morphology of Nonvascular Plants
BIO 486. Systematics of Vascular Plants

2) Choose at least three courses from the following list of laboratory courses:
BIO 305. Ornithology
BIO 310. General Entomology
BIO 316. Principles of Animal Development
BIO 320. Comparative Anatomy of Vertebrates
BIO 340. Morphology and Anatomy of Vascular Plants
BIO 365. Laboratory in Human Uses of Plants
BIO 370. Animal Physiology
BIO 380. General Microbiology
BIO 386. Field Botany
BIO 420. Medical Parasitology
BIO 445. Neurobiology
BIO 451. Ecological Systems
BIO 452. Population Ecology
BIO 453. Microbial Ecology
BIO 455. Plant Physiology
BIO 458. Comparative Animal Physiology
BIO 459. Freshwater Ecology
BIO 460. Plant Cell and Tissue Culture
BIO 470. Morphology of Nonvascular Plants
BIO 480. Molecular Biology
BIO 486. Systematics of Vascular Plants
BIO 490. Biomechanics
BIO 325 and/or BIO 426 courses may fulfill one of the laboratory course or organismal course requirements. Please consult the instructor.
Elective Biology Courses

Additional Biology courses must be selected to complete the 40 credit-hour program. Students are strongly encouraged to discuss their career interests with an adviser who can help select courses best suited to their needs. Students are encouraged to participate in independent research with a faculty mentor.

Some Biology courses may be taken more than once. The limit of hours for each of the following courses that will be credited to the Biology major is indicated below.


BIO 325. Topics in Biology
BIO 494. Internship in Biology
BIO 495. Biotechniques
BIO 496. Research Literature
BIO 497. Biological Research
BIO 499. Honors in Biology
ISCI 450. Interscience Research
NOTE: A maximum of 8 credit hours of BIO 495, BIO 497 and BIO 499 can be counted toward the Biology major.


Recommended Schedule for Majors
First semester Freshman Biology majors are encouraged to start with a 14-15 hour course load. This will generally include a biology course (4 credit hours), CHEM 131 and CHEM 131L, and/or a math course plus General Education. The workload will then be increased in the second semester based on the level of first semester success.

First Year Credit Hours
BIO 114. Organisms 1 4
BIO 124. Ecology and Evolution 4
CHEM 131-132. General Chemistry Lectures 1 6
CHEM 131L-132L. General Chemistry Laboratories 2
Mathematics courses 1 4-8
GenEd: Cluster One 9-12

28-33

1Fulfill GenEd: Cluster Three (Package D: Basic Science and Mathematics)


Second Year Credit Hours
BIO 214. Cell and Molecular Biology 4
BIO 224. Genetics and Development 4
CHEM 341-342. Organic Chemistry Lecture 6
CHEM 346L. Organic Chemistry Laboratory 2
Mathematics course 3-4
GenEd: from Clusters Two, Four, and Five 12
3

31-32


Third Year Credit Hours
Upper-level Biology laboratory courses 8
Biology elective 3-4
Physics courses 8
GenEd: from Clusters Two, Four, and Five 7
Electives 6

32-33

Fourth Year Credit Hours
Upper-level Biology laboratory course 4
Biology electives 9
GenEd: from Clusters Two, Four, and Five 3
Electives 15

31

Bachelor of Science in Biology - Clinical Laboratory Science (Medical Technology)

Contact the Biology Department at (540) 568-6225

This option leads to a B.S. degree in biology and is offered cooperatively with JMU-affiliated schools of clinical laboratory science (medical technology) approved by the Council of Medical Education and Hospitals of the American Medical Association and the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences. The degree is conferred by JMU upon successful completion of the following three-year program at the university and one calendar-year clinical program at an affiliated school of clinical laboratory science (medical technology). Upon completion of the clinical year, students are eligible for national examinations given by the Board of Registry of the American Society of Clinical Pathologists and the National Certification Agency.

Students interested in a major in biology with a concentration in clinical laboratory science should consult the biology department office or the clinical laboratory science adviser. These advisers include the following individuals:

James Madison University
Contact the Biology Department at (540) 568-6225
Dr. Mark L. Gabriele, Clinical Laboratory Sciences Adviser

Augusta Medical Center
Wayne P. Jessee, M.D., medical director
Bernadette Bekken, M.T. (ASCP), program director

The Fairfax Hospital
C. Barrie Cook, M.D., medical director
Amy Shoemaker, M.T., (ASCP), program director

Roanoke Memorial Hospital
Samuel F. Vance, M.D., medical director
Janet Hiler, B.S., M.T. (ASCP), program director

Rockingham Memorial Hospital
Warren D. Bannister, M.D., medical director
Susan Lawton, M.T. (ASCP), program director

Completion of this degree and concentration in four years requires precise progression through the three pre-clinical years of the program. Since it is highly recommended that first year students do not exceed 14-15 credit hours during their first semester, it may be necessary to complete some GenEd requirements during a summer session.

Recommended Schedule for Majors
First Year Credit Hours
BIO 114. Organisms 1 4
BIO 124. Ecology and Evolution 4
CHEM 131-132. General Chemistry Lectures 1 6
CHEM 131L-132L. General Chemistry Laboratories 2
Mathematics courses 1 4-8
GenEd: Cluster One 9-12

32-33

1Fulfill GenEd: Cluster Three (Package D: Basic Science and Mathematics)


Second Year Credit Hours
BIO 214. Cell and Molecular Biology 4
BIO 224. Genetics and Development 4
CHEM 341-342. Organic Chemistry Lecture 6
CHEM 346L. Organic Chemistry Laboratory 2
Mathematics course 3-4
GenEd: from Clusters Two, Four, and Five 12

34-35


Third Year Credit Hours
BIO 290. Human Anatomy 4
BIO 370. Vertebrate Physiology 4
BIO 380. General Microbiology 4
BIO 442. Immunology 3
BIO 300/400. Upper Division BIO Elective 3-4
Physics courses 8
GenEd: from Clusters Two, Four, and Five 7

33-34

The remainder of the program includes 32 credit hours in a calendar-year residence at a hospital-based clinical site, with transfer credits accepted according to JMU and clinical program affiliation agreements. Upper division courses taken during the clinical year (Hematology, Clinical Microbiology and Immunohematology) serve to complete the 40 credit hour undergraduate requirement for a major in biology, as well as the 20 credit hour upper division requirement. It is imperative that students meet with their Clinical Laboratory Science adviser to ensure transfer of this credit taken during the fourth year. A total of 132 hours must be earned for the B.S. degree in biology with a clinical laboratory science concentration. Additional courses that are suggested, but not required, are BIO/CHEM 361, Biochemistry I, and BIO 480, Advanced Molecular Biology.

Dual Degree Programs

Forestry
Dr. Dean Cocking, James Madison University Liaison,
(540) 568-6204

This dual degree program makes it possible for the student to earn a B.S. degree in biology from James Madison University and a Master of Forestry degree from Virginia Tech in five years.

During the first three years at JMU, the student must complete 96 credit hours, all JMU general education requirements, the biology core requirements, BIO 455 and five additional hours in biology. Also, the student must take the cognate courses for biology majors in chemistry, mathematics and physics, courses in business (ACTG 241, ECON 201 and GECON 200) and a course in geology (GEOL 110). During the fourth year of study the student will take further courses (at least 30 hours) at Virginia Tech for credit toward the B.S. in biology from JMU.

A total of 38 semester hours of biology and biology-related courses (taken at JMU and Virginia Tech) will be required for the JMU B.S. in biology, which will be conferred after the fourth year of study. If the student’s academic record is satisfactory, then they will be admitted into the graduate program of the Department of Forestry at Virginia Tech, where they will spend approximately three semesters (12 months) taking additional forestry and forestry-related courses to obtain the degree of Master of Forestry. To apply for the dual degree program, the student must have the permission of the dean of the College of Science and Mathematics. Information about the program can be obtained from the Department of Biology. Students are encouraged to inquire as early as possible in their undergraduate careers.


Concentrations Biotechnology
Dr. Ivor Knight, Coordinator
E-mail: knightit@jmu.edu

Ecology
Dr. Dean Cocking, Coordinator
E-mail: cockinwd@jmu.edu

Microbiology
Dr. Bruce Wiggins, Coordinator
E-mail: wigginba@jmu.edu

Molecular-Physiology
Dr. Corey Cleland, Coordinator
E-mail: clelancl@jmu.edu

Plant Sciences
Dr. Jon Monroe, Coordinator
E-mail: monroejd@jmu.edu

Zoology
Dr. Reid Harris, Coordinator
E-mail: harrisrn@jmu.edu


Minor Requirements
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Minor

See "Interdisciplinary Programs" for the description of the interdisciplinary biochemistry and molecular biology minor.

Biology Minor
Students choosing to minor in biology must complete a program of at least 23 credit hours including:
Credit Hours
BIO 114. Organisms 4
BIO 124. Ecology and Evolution 4
BIO 214. Cell and Molecular Biology 4
BIO 224. Genetics and Development 4
Biology electives 7

23


Credit by Examination
When evidence of sufficient background or preparation is presented, the Department of Biology offers credit by examination in most of its courses at the discretion of the course instructor or coordinator. Students seeking such credit should make arrangements with the course instructor or coordinator and obtain approval of the department head.


Teaching Licensure
Biology majors need courses in physics and geology as well as inorganic and organic chemistry for many science education positions. It is necessary to be admitted to the teacher education program prior to enrolling in professional education courses. See Education Programs for teacher education admission and retention policies and procedures as well as education course requirements for each licensure program. The Master of Arts in Teaching degree is required in addition to undergraduate course work.

James Madison University logo PUBLISHER: University Catalog Office, MSC 8002, Harrisonburg, VA 22807 - PHONE: (540) 568-4064 - FAX: (540) 568-2995
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Last Modified: 6/11/2003