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BIOL108 – Human Biology

2017 – S1 Day

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit Convenor
Michael Gillings
E8A271
12pm Mondays and 12 Thursdays
First Year Coordinator
Kate Barry
E8B205
Credit points Credit points
3
Prerequisites Prerequisites
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
This unit deals with human biology and the interactions of humans with the rest of the living world. Topics include: human genetics, anatomy, physiology, reproduction, and evolution. Attention is paid to topics of current interest, such as emerging diseases, DNA technology, genetic engineering, cloning, and the impact of human activities on biodiversity and the biosphere. The unit is designed for students with no background in biology, however students whose area of study is biology are also encouraged to attend. Lectures and unit notes are available via iLecture for students who find it difficult to attend live lectures.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at http://students.mq.edu.au/student_admin/enrolmentguide/academicdates/

Learning Outcomes

  1. Demonstrate an understanding and working knowledge of key biological terms
  2. Explain physiological processes in the human body starting at the genetic level and working through the biochemistry, cell and tissue functions to a physical outcome.
  3. Outline the complex interactions between organ systems that result in homeostasis
  4. Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  5. Find scientific articles and critically evaluate the design and conclusions of biological experiments
  6. Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics
  7. Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

General Assessment Information

Assessment in this Unit

Assessment for this unit consists of a mixture of assignments, short tests and a final examination. Submission of all assignments and completion of all tests is strongly recommended, since failure to complete assessment tasks will make it difficult to pass the unit. Students must receive at least 50% overall to pass this subject.

 

Unit completion requirements

Students must receive a mark of at least 50% to pass this subject. Submission of all assignments and participation in all tests is highly recommended, since it will be difficult to pass the unit without obtaining marks from these activities.

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Hurdle Due
Final Exam 50% TBA
Writing Task 2% Week 2
Online Quizzes 15% Weekly
Reference List 8% Week 5
Essay 1 25% Week 8

Final Exam

Due: TBA
Weighting: 50%

A 2 hour test on the unit content, containing multiple choice and short answer questions


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Demonstrate an understanding and working knowledge of key biological terms
  • Explain physiological processes in the human body starting at the genetic level and working through the biochemistry, cell and tissue functions to a physical outcome.
  • Outline the complex interactions between organ systems that result in homeostasis
  • Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  • Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics
  • Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

Writing Task

Due: Week 2
Weighting: 2%

A 200 word statement on human biology


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Demonstrate an understanding and working knowledge of key biological terms
  • Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics
  • Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

Online Quizzes

Due: Weekly
Weighting: 15%

Multiple Choice Quizzes covering lectures from the previous week


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Demonstrate an understanding and working knowledge of key biological terms
  • Explain physiological processes in the human body starting at the genetic level and working through the biochemistry, cell and tissue functions to a physical outcome.
  • Outline the complex interactions between organ systems that result in homeostasis
  • Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  • Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

Reference List

Due: Week 5
Weighting: 8%

Summary of papers and correctly formatted reference list


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Demonstrate an understanding and working knowledge of key biological terms
  • Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  • Find scientific articles and critically evaluate the design and conclusions of biological experiments
  • Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics
  • Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

Essay 1

Due: Week 8
Weighting: 25%

A 2000 word essay dealing with a contemporary issue in human biology


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Demonstrate an understanding and working knowledge of key biological terms
  • Explain physiological processes in the human body starting at the genetic level and working through the biochemistry, cell and tissue functions to a physical outcome.
  • Outline the complex interactions between organ systems that result in homeostasis
  • Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  • Find scientific articles and critically evaluate the design and conclusions of biological experiments
  • Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics
  • Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

Delivery and Resources

CLASSES

Unit Structure and Timetable

BIOL 108 is offered in both an internal mode and an external mode. Internal students attend three 1 hour lectures per week. Since some topics in this unit are not dealt with in the textbook, it is important to attend all lectures. Students who do not attend all lectures often find it difficult to pass the Unit.

The external mode is offered to anyone who has difficulty attending live lectures because of timetable clashes, work commitments, or living some distance from the campus. For those students, lectures are recorded and distributed through the iLearn website.

There are no practical sessions in this course. For those students who want some experience with experimental biology and laboratory work, the other first year Biology courses (BIOL114, Evolution and Biodiversity & BIOL115, The Thread of Life) are recommended.

BIOL108 has a large enrolment, so large that it is impossible to fit all students into a single lecture theater. Because of this, we run two lecture streams. Students should enroll in either stream 1, or stream 2, not a mixture of both.REQUIRED AND RECOMMENDED TEXTS AND/OR MATERIALS

Lecture Notes and Textbook:

Lecture notes containing copies of material used in lectures will be available for download as pdf files from iLearn. I strongly recommend that you print out notes before attending lectures.

The textbook for the course is: Mader, Sylvia M. Inquiry into Life McGraw-Hill Publishers.

Any of the recent editions of this text are suitable (2004-2012). There is no textbook that is entirely appropriate for this unit, but Inquiry into Life has a number of useful features that are relevant to the general philosophy behind BIOL108. Almost any recent introductory biology textbook can also provide useful background to this unit. Popular scientific journals such as New Scientist and Scientific American contain articles written in a style that is easy to read and understand. Such journals are a good source for summaries of recent developments in human biology.

I suggest that anyone who wants a good and very readable overview of modern science, including Biology, should read Bill Bryson’s ‘A Short History of Nearly EverythingISBN: 0552997048

UNIT WEBPAGE AND TECHNOLOGY USED AND REQUIRED

The iLearn Website

All lectures in this unit will be recorded and available through the iLearn web site: (https://ilearn.mq.edu.au/login/MQ/)

Your username is your Student ID number (8 digits on your student card). Your password is your Macquarie OneID student password (sent to you when you enrolled). There is a help page available: (http://www.mq.edu.au/iLearn/student_info/)

If you are having trouble logging on, you should contact Student IT Help on:

  • help@mq.edu.au
  • +61 2 9850-HELP (also known as x4357)

On the iLearn site you will find links to each week’s lecture notes as pdf files. You will also find a link to Echo360, where you can download recordings of every lecture. The page also contains important details about assessments and tests, an Announcement Page and a Bulletin Board. We expect you to log on to iLearn several times each week so you can:

  • Check for subject announcements
  • Download lecture notes (available as pdf files)
  • Download lecture recordings
  • Complete weekly On-Line Quizzes
  • Post messages and questions on the Bulletin Board
  • Check your grades

Unit Schedule

BIOL108 Internal Lectures

Check Timetable for Lecture times and locations.

There are two lecture streams

Lecture Schedule

Week Topic Lecture
1 ATOMS TO CELLS
  • Lecture 1: Introduction and Outline; Scientific Process; The size of things; Characteristics of Living things.
  • Lecture 2: Basic chemistry; Biological molecules.
  • Lecture 3: Cell structure; Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic cells; Cellular organelles;
2 CELLS IN ACTION
  • Lecture 4: Cellular organelles continued; Cell function; Cell membranes.
  • Lecture 5: Organisation of Cells into Tissues; Human organisation.
  • Lecture 6: Organisation of Cells into Tissues; Human organisation.
3 BODY BITS: METABOLISM & HUMAN ORGAN SYSTEMS
  • Lecture 7: Cell metabolism, Respiration and Photosynthesis.
  • Lecture 8: Cell metabolism, Respiration and Photosynthesis.
  • Lecture 9: Digestive System and Nutrition
4 GETTING IT TOGETHER: THE HUMAN INDIVIDUAL
  • Lecture 10: Urinary System and Excretion, Cardiovascular System.
  • Lecture 11: Respiratory system, Muscles and skeletons
  • Lecture 12: Nervous System and Senses.
5 HORMONES, IMMUNITY AND REPRODUCTION
  • Lecture 13: The Endocrine System; Hormones, Steroids.
  • Lecture 14: The Immune System; Immunisation; Breast feeding.
  • Lecture 15: Cell Division; Mitosis and the Cell cycle, Meiosis and Fertilisation.
6 LOVE MAKES THE WORLD GO ROUND
  • Lecture 16: Reproduction, Birth Control, Sexually Transmitted Diseases.
  • Lecture 17: Theories of Sexual Attraction, The Physiological basis of Love
7 THE BASIS OF INHERITANCE
  • Lecture 18: The molecular basis of Inheritance; DNA and the genetic code.
  • Lecture 19: DNA and the Genetic Code (continued), Protein Synthesis.
  • Lecture 20: From Genes to Phenotype; Introduction to Genetics, Review of Meiosis.
8 WHEN IT GOES WRONG
  • Lecture 21: Chromosome Abnormalities and Genetic Diseases.
  • Lecture 22: Cancers: What happens at the Cellular and DNA level; What are the predisposing factors, Familial and Environmentally induced Cancers.  What happens as we age, Why do we have to die?
  • Lecture 23: Gene cloning and Recombinant DNA technology.
9 DNA MANIPULATION, BIOTECHNOLOGY, BIODIVERSITY
  • Lecture 24: Genetically Modified Organisms; Cloning of Whole Animals.
  • Lecture 25: The Diversity of Living things; How many species are there?
  • Lecture 26: A tour of diseases, New and Emerging Diseases, Antibiotic resistance
10 HUMANS AND MICROORGANISMS
  • Lecture 27: The Normal Human Microbiota
  • Lecture 28: Microorganisms in the service of Humankind
  • Lecture 29: Symbiosis, cooperation between genes, cells, , species and ecosystems: Gaia
11 SHARING THE PLANET: BIODIVERSITY
  • Lecture 30: Human effects on the Biosphere, Past, Present and Future.
  • Lecture 31: Understanding Evolution.
  • Lecture 32: On the Origin of Life on Earth (and elsewhere)
12 WHERE DID WE COME FROM AND WHERE ARE WE GOING?
  • Lecture 33: Comparative Genetics of the Great Apes; Evolution of Man, What makes us Human?
  • Lecture 34: Recent Breakthroughs in Biological Science
  • Lecture 35: What’s in the Exam; Review of Course
13 REVIEW
  • Lecture 36: Question and Answer session.

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central. Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Academic Honesty Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/academic_honesty/policy.html

Assessment Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/assessment/policy_2016.html

Grade Appeal Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/gradeappeal/policy.html

Complaint Management Procedure for Students and Members of the Public http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/complaint_management/procedure.html​

Disruption to Studies Policy (in effect until Dec 4th, 2017): http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/disruption_studies/policy.html

Special Consideration Policy (in effect from Dec 4th, 2017): https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policies/special-consideration

In addition, a number of other policies can be found in the Learning and Teaching Category of Policy Central.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/support/student_conduct/

Results

Results shown in iLearn, or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au.

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to improve your marks and take control of your study.

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.

Graduate Capabilities

Discipline Specific Knowledge and Skills

Our graduates will take with them the intellectual development, depth and breadth of knowledge, scholarly understanding, and specific subject content in their chosen fields to make them competent and confident in their subject or profession. They will be able to demonstrate, where relevant, professional technical competence and meet professional standards. They will be able to articulate the structure of knowledge of their discipline, be able to adapt discipline-specific knowledge to novel situations, and be able to contribute from their discipline to inter-disciplinary solutions to problems.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate an understanding and working knowledge of key biological terms
  • Explain physiological processes in the human body starting at the genetic level and working through the biochemistry, cell and tissue functions to a physical outcome.
  • Outline the complex interactions between organ systems that result in homeostasis
  • Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  • Find scientific articles and critically evaluate the design and conclusions of biological experiments
  • Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics
  • Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

Assessment tasks

  • Final Exam
  • Writing Task
  • Online Quizzes
  • Reference List
  • Essay 1

Problem Solving and Research Capability

Our graduates should be capable of researching; of analysing, and interpreting and assessing data and information in various forms; of drawing connections across fields of knowledge; and they should be able to relate their knowledge to complex situations at work or in the world, in order to diagnose and solve problems. We want them to have the confidence to take the initiative in doing so, within an awareness of their own limitations.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Explain physiological processes in the human body starting at the genetic level and working through the biochemistry, cell and tissue functions to a physical outcome.
  • Outline the complex interactions between organ systems that result in homeostasis
  • Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  • Find scientific articles and critically evaluate the design and conclusions of biological experiments
  • Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics
  • Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

Assessment tasks

  • Final Exam
  • Writing Task
  • Online Quizzes
  • Reference List
  • Essay 1

Effective Communication

We want to develop in our students the ability to communicate and convey their views in forms effective with different audiences. We want our graduates to take with them the capability to read, listen, question, gather and evaluate information resources in a variety of formats, assess, write clearly, speak effectively, and to use visual communication and communication technologies as appropriate.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate an understanding and working knowledge of key biological terms
  • Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  • Find scientific articles and critically evaluate the design and conclusions of biological experiments
  • Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics
  • Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

Assessment tasks

  • Final Exam
  • Writing Task
  • Online Quizzes
  • Reference List
  • Essay 1

Capable of Professional and Personal Judgement and Initiative

We want our graduates to have emotional intelligence and sound interpersonal skills and to demonstrate discernment and common sense in their professional and personal judgement. They will exercise initiative as needed. They will be capable of risk assessment, and be able to handle ambiguity and complexity, enabling them to be adaptable in diverse and changing environments.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Explain physiological processes in the human body starting at the genetic level and working through the biochemistry, cell and tissue functions to a physical outcome.
  • Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  • Find scientific articles and critically evaluate the design and conclusions of biological experiments
  • Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics
  • Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

Assessment tasks

  • Final Exam
  • Writing Task
  • Online Quizzes
  • Reference List
  • Essay 1

Critical, Analytical and Integrative Thinking

We want our graduates to be capable of reasoning, questioning and analysing, and to integrate and synthesise learning and knowledge from a range of sources and environments; to be able to critique constraints, assumptions and limitations; to be able to think independently and systemically in relation to scholarly activity, in the workplace, and in the world. We want them to have a level of scientific and information technology literacy.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Explain physiological processes in the human body starting at the genetic level and working through the biochemistry, cell and tissue functions to a physical outcome.
  • Outline the complex interactions between organ systems that result in homeostasis
  • Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  • Find scientific articles and critically evaluate the design and conclusions of biological experiments
  • Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics
  • Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

Assessment tasks

  • Final Exam
  • Writing Task
  • Online Quizzes
  • Reference List
  • Essay 1

Creative and Innovative

Our graduates will also be capable of creative thinking and of creating knowledge. They will be imaginative and open to experience and capable of innovation at work and in the community. We want them to be engaged in applying their critical, creative thinking.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Outline the complex interactions between organ systems that result in homeostasis
  • Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  • Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics

Assessment tasks

  • Final Exam
  • Writing Task
  • Online Quizzes
  • Reference List
  • Essay 1

Engaged and Ethical Local and Global citizens

As local citizens our graduates will be aware of indigenous perspectives and of the nation's historical context. They will be engaged with the challenges of contemporary society and with knowledge and ideas. We want our graduates to have respect for diversity, to be open-minded, sensitive to others and inclusive, and to be open to other cultures and perspectives: they should have a level of cultural literacy. Our graduates should be aware of disadvantage and social justice, and be willing to participate to help create a wiser and better society.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  • Find scientific articles and critically evaluate the design and conclusions of biological experiments
  • Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics
  • Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

Assessment tasks

  • Final Exam
  • Writing Task
  • Online Quizzes
  • Reference List
  • Essay 1

Socially and Environmentally Active and Responsible

We want our graduates to be aware of and have respect for self and others; to be able to work with others as a leader and a team player; to have a sense of connectedness with others and country; and to have a sense of mutual obligation. Our graduates should be informed and active participants in moving society towards sustainability.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  • Find scientific articles and critically evaluate the design and conclusions of biological experiments
  • Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics
  • Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

Assessment tasks

  • Final Exam
  • Writing Task
  • Online Quizzes
  • Reference List
  • Essay 1

Commitment to Continuous Learning

Our graduates will have enquiring minds and a literate curiosity which will lead them to pursue knowledge for its own sake. They will continue to pursue learning in their careers and as they participate in the world. They will be capable of reflecting on their experiences and relationships with others and the environment, learning from them, and growing - personally, professionally and socially.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Explain physiological processes in the human body starting at the genetic level and working through the biochemistry, cell and tissue functions to a physical outcome.
  • Outline the complex interactions between organ systems that result in homeostasis
  • Apply biological concepts to a range of contemporary issues
  • Find scientific articles and critically evaluate the design and conclusions of biological experiments
  • Summarize key findings related to complex biological topics
  • Make judgments about the validity of statements made about biological processes by academics, journalists, politicians and other commentators

Assessment tasks

  • Final Exam
  • Writing Task
  • Online Quizzes
  • Reference List
  • Essay 1

Changes since First Published

Date Description
20/02/2017 Just updated to remove reference to the COE
14/02/2017 Change preferred contact of teaching coordinator
14/02/2017 Put in first year coordinator details