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Science - ONS 014 Onward Zoology and Botany Syllabus

ONS 14 – Onward Zoology and Botany Syllabus – Fall (Sample)

Instructor: Molly MacLeanOffice: 110 East AnnexOffice Phone: 581-2315


Office Hours: Mon. 2:30 – 4:00 P.M., Tues 8:30 – 10:00, Wed. 12:30 – 2:30 P.M.

Deering Lab Office Hours: Thurs. 10 – 11:50 A.M., or by appointment.

Required Texts:

  • Essential Biology with Physiology, Campbell, Reece, Simon, 2007
  • Laboratory Investigations for Biology, 2nd Ed., Jean Dickey, 2003

Course Objectives:

Onward Zoology/Botany continues to focus on the structure and function of all living organisms. There are 3 main goals of this course: to become more scientifically literate through reading articles that supplement text topics; to successfully present text material in an orderly & interesting format to peers; to design & carry out a scientific experiment.

Course Description:

Topics will begin with a look at what a species is, what keeps species from interbreeding, and how new species evolve. Starting at the end of January we will begin a study of the evolution of biological diversity, beginning with the origin and evolution of microbial life. By late February we begin Unit V, which covers the form and function of animals. With the arrival of spring we will move on to plant structure and function. During the last week of classes we will have a Scavenger Hunt Review. This is a fun activity that gets us out of doors in spring weather to see, hear, and feel some of those organisms that we discussed during the “dead” of winter.

Class & lab Times:

Lectures will be in 203 Hitchner Hall on MWF 9:00 – 9:50. Laboratories are held in Room 101A, Deering Hall. You are scheduled for lab on Thursdays: 1:10-3:00.

All lectures, labs, & study groups begin and end on time. Please make sure you are also on time. It is disruptive to other students when people arrive late or leave early.

Reading Assignments:

The Campbell, Mitchell, Reece, & Taylor textbook is organized to help students learn. The information is challenging, but publishers make an effort to break the subject matter into manageable segments.

It is important that you have an objective in mind when you use a textbook and that you use a consistent technique to fulfill that objective. Don’t just read! Science books are not made to be read the same as novels.

Create lists of objectives to help you focus on what to study (from How to Study Science: by Fred Drewes). For the first assignment, objectives might be:

  • I am going to learn what a species is.
  • I am going to learn what keeps a species separate from other similar species.
  • I am going to learn how new species can arise.

If you’re going to do some serious studying then choose the proper environment. Reduce distractions; don’t try to study in busy areas, such as the East Annex student lounge or the cafeteria. Yes, you can study with all these distractions, but it will not be as efficient.

  • Begin each reading assignment by noting the chapter headings and subheadings.
  • It is best to outline reading assignments in whatever format works best for you. Organizing text material forces you to identify central ideas and understand their relationships. Outlines or other graphic organizers are very useful as study aids for prelim and lecture preparation. If you outline reading assignments before attending lecture you will increase your understanding of the material presented during class.
  • Use your CD to test your understanding before each class covering that same material. Use your CD after the class as well to see how your knowledge of the material has changed.

Description of Evaluation Procedures:

There will be 2 prelims and 2 projects during the semester, in addition to class quizzes and lab write ups. There will also be miscellaneous in and out of class activities/writing.

A sample grading scale is shown below:

A sample grading scale is shown below:
Two prelims, each worth 50 points 100
Projects 100
Quizzes 60
Projects 100
Scavenger Hunt 75
Miscellaneous writings/activities 30

Students with 90% of all points will be awarded As; 80% will be Bs; 70% will be Cs; 60% will be Ds; and those with less than 60% of all points will fail the course.

Course Assignments:

I will provide due dates for each assignment. I expect you to respect them. Late assignments will receive a grade of “0” unless discussed in person in advance!! If there is an emergency (for example, an illness you can document), please let me know in advance of the deadline. This applies to University Health Center sick notes as well. I do not accept these as an excuse unless you also meet with me. I will work with you to develop a plan that will accommodate both of our needs to get the missed work made up promptly. If no notice is given before an absence, the absence is unexcused.

Prelims & Projects:

There will be 2 preliminary exams & 2 projects during the semester and one final exam. If you have an unexcused absence for any of the regular semester prelims/projects you must speak with me before you will be allowed to make this up. Any unexcused absence on a prelim or project will result in a possible grade no higher than 70% for that assessment. Points will be deducted from 70 for wrong answers. There will be 2 projects to be completed during this semester. The purpose of these projects is to provide an opportunity to research & share information on current topics that correspond to the course material.

Miscellaneous Assignments:

You will be expected to complete a variety of short writing/research/reading assignments during this course. The topics and type of assignment will vary.


There will be quizzes in both the lab and the lecture. All quizzes that count towards your final grade will be announced in advance.


You are expected not only to attend all lectures and labs but also to complete all homework assignments. This is your education. Please be an active participant.

Attendance Policy:

Regular attendance is required. If you are not in class, you will get a zero for any graded class work for that day. Students who miss a class are responsible for learning the material covered, any announcements, assignments, notes, etc. Make an agreement with at least two colleagues in class that you will sit near each other. If these colleagues see that you are absent, or better yet, you have called to let them know that you will be absent, they will collect handouts and returned papers for you. You agree that you will do the same for them. These colleagues also may deliver papers and other assignments if you are unable to come to class when an assignment is due. Colleagues are free not to provide this support if you take advantage of it and are absent regularly and without notice. Record the names and phone numbers of the people you’ve identified on your syllabus.

Name ____________________

Phone number ______________

E-mail _____________________

Phone number ______________

E-mail ____________________

Most people find it difficult to make up the work if they miss two or more classes in a row. If you miss three classes during the semester and it appears to impair the quality of your work, I may report this fact to your Dean. If there are special circumstances that affect your attendance, please discuss them with me in my office.

Cell Phone Policy – Class Time Disruptions:

Cell phones must remain off during class time. Ringing phones and people leaving and reentering class to have a conversation create disruptions to the learning environment. I consider this rude behavior. This is the same view I have of chatting during class time. Hold all conversations, direct or by phone or email until after class is over. If this behavior continues to be a problem, disciplinary action will be taken.

If there is an emergency situation please speak with me privately so we can reach an agreement that will not disrupt others.

Policy on Academic Integrity:

You are expected to strictly observe university rules regarding academic honesty. You are encouraged to become familiar with the Student Conduct Code, especially the first 7 violations, which speak to issues of academic misconduct. Each student should reflect a sense of responsibility toward our scholarly community by completing and submitting work that is a product of his or her own effort.

Academic dishonesty include cheating, plagiarism (the submission of another’s work without appropriate attribution), and all forms of misrepresentation in academic work, and is unacceptable at The University of Maine. When writing papers, the crucial thing to remember is that you must give citations for ideas that are not your own, whether or not those ideas have been written down somewhere. During examinations, take the initiative to prevent other students from copying your exam and do not look in the direction of other students’ papers. Discourage dishonesty among other students. An instructor who has probable cause or reason to believe a student has cheated may act upon such evidence, and should report the case to the supervising faculty member or the Department Chair for appropriate action.

Help Outside of Class:

Contacting the Instructor:

If you need help with your work or want to ask questions about assignments, tests, etc., please stop in, call or send an e-mail, so we can schedule a time to meet.

This is your education. Use all available resources to have a successful experience. These resources include:

CD-ROM and Website:

The CD-ROM and the website address above contain approximately 200 Activities, 56 Thinking as a Scientist investigations, 30 Connections, Flash Cards, Word Roots, Key Terms linked to the glossary, several forms of assessment for each chapter (Pre-Test, Activities Quiz, Chapter Quiz), and a Glossary with pronunciations. In addition, the website provides access to all the art from the book with labels and without labels, 85 videos, Web Links, News Links, News Archives, Further Readings.

First Class:

I recommend that all students have a first class account and learn how to access this. It is free to students at the University and will make your college life easier. Many instructors will be using first class conferences. The sooner you learn how to use this, the better off you will be.


If you have a disability for which you may be requesting an accommodation, please contact Ann Smith, Director of Disability Services, 121 East Annex, 581-2319, as early as possible in the term.

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