1 - Biol. 1001 Spring 2008 (B. Fall), Class notes, topic...

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Biol. 1001 Spring 2008 (B. Fall), Class notes, topic #1—Introduction: life, biology, science. Preparation: complete the reading assignment in your text (Freeman, Biological Science, 2 nd ed.): pp. 1– 16. Also read the National Academy of Sciences summary brochure, Science, Evolution, and Creationism (PDF file on WebVista, class 1; see also section VII. E. below). Learning objectives: 1. Become familiar with course structure, policies, and expectations. 2. Become familiar with what science is (and isn’t), and how it is practiced. 3. Distinguish scientific hypotheses from theories, and understand that hypotheses should be testable and falsifiable. 4. Appreciate the hierarchical levels at which biology is studied, and understand the concepts of emergent properties and reductionism. 5. Distinguish proximate and ultimate-level questions in biology. Notes: I. What is this course about? A. Biological evolution (genetic changes that occur in populations over generations; and, relatedness of species as a consequence of descent, with modification, from a common ancestor) is the single most unifying concept in biology, and is the underlying course theme—fact (that evolution has occurred), paths (that evolution has taken), and mechanisms (by which evolutionary change occurs). B. The principles of inheritance support and enrich evolutionary theory. C. Ecology , the study of the relationships of organisms to their biotic (other organisms) and abiotic (chemical, physical) environment, is a related and intertwined theme. II. Biology is the study of life. How is life defined? Properties include: composed of cells; metabolism; motion; response to stimuli; homeostasis; growth; reproduction; population structure; hereditary information; evolution and adaptation. III.
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This note was uploaded on 04/21/2008 for the course BIOL 1001 taught by Professor Fall during the Spring '08 term at Minnesota.

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1 - Biol. 1001 Spring 2008 (B. Fall), Class notes, topic...

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