Course Number:
BI 213
Transcript Title:
Principles of Biology
Jul 26, 2022
Jul 26, 2022
Total Credits:
Lecture Hours:
Lecture / Lab Hours:
Lab Hours:
Satisfies Cultural Literacy requirement:
Satisfies General Education requirement:
Grading Options
A-F, P/NP, Audit
Default Grading Options
Repeats available for credit:

BI 212 and its prerequisite requirements

Course Description

Includes plant and animal anatomy and physiology, and individual, population, community and ecosystem ecology. The third course of a three-course sequence for students majoring in biology and the sciences, including pre-medical, pre-dental, chiropractic, pharmacy, and related fields. Prerequisite: BI 212 and its prerequisite requirements. Audit available.

Course Outcomes

Upon successful completion students will be able to:

  1. Apply biological theories and concepts to novel problems in plant/animal anatomy and physiology and ecology.
  2. Assess the strengths and weaknesses of scientific studies in plant/animal anatomy and physiology and ecology and critically examine the influence of scientific and technical knowledge of plant/animal anatomy and physiology and ecology on human society and the environment.
  3. Apply concepts from plant/animal anatomy and physiology and ecology to their lives and community (personal, work, and career).
  4. Develop informed positions and opinions on contemporary issues in plant/animal anatomy and physiology and ecology, while considering ethical, scientific, community, and cultural implications.
  5. Communicate concepts in plant/animal anatomy and physiology and ecology using appropriate terminology in both written and verbal forms.
  6. Competently enter and complete further work in the sciences upper-level courses in plant/animal anatomy and physiology and ecology.

Alignment with Institutional Learning Outcomes

1. Communicate effectively using appropriate reading, writing, listening, and speaking skills. (Communication)
2. Creatively solve problems by using relevant methods of research, personal reflection, reasoning, and evaluation of information. (Critical thinking and Problem-Solving)
3. Extract, interpret, evaluate, communicate, and apply quantitative information and methods to solve problems, evaluate claims, and support decisions in their academic, professional and private lives. (Quantitative Literacy)
Not Addressed
4. Use an understanding of cultural differences to constructively address issues that arise in the workplace and community. (Cultural Awareness)
5. Recognize the consequences of human activity upon our social and natural world. (Community and Environmental Responsibility)

To establish an intentional learning environment, Institutional Learning Outcomes (ILOs) require a clear definition of instructional strategies, evidence of recurrent instruction, and employment of several assessment modes.

Major Designation

  1. The outcome is addressed recurrently in the curriculum, regularly enough to establish a thorough understanding.
  2. Students can demonstrate and are assessed on a thorough understanding of the outcome.
    • The course includes at least one assignment that can be assessed by applying the appropriate CLO rubric.

Minor Designation

  1. The outcome is addressed adequately in the curriculum, establishing fundamental understanding.
  2. Students can demonstrate and are assessed on a fundamental understanding of the outcome.
    • The course includes at least one assignment that can be assessed by applying the appropriate CLO rubric.

Suggested Outcome Assessment Strategies

  • Open-ended essay questions and multiple-choice exams.
  • Scientific papers that follow standard scientific format presenting independent investigations and may include peer-review(s).
  • Oral presentations of biological information, informed positions on contemporary issues, and/or laboratory results.
  • Classroom assessments, such as, quizzes, one minute summaries, pre-test/post-tests, etc.
  • Major independent projects, such as, experiential learning plus journals, botany collections with ecosystem reports, library research term papers, and field journals.
  • Scientific article critiques.
  • Laboratory practical exams.
  • Small projects and homework assignments.

Course Activities and Design

The determination of teaching strategies used in the delivery of outcomes is generally left to the discretion of the instructor. Here are some strategies that you might consider when designing your course: lecture, small group/forum discussion, flipped classroom, dyads, oral presentation, role play, simulation scenarios, group projects, service learning projects, hands-on lab, peer review/workshops, cooperative learning (jigsaw, fishbowl), inquiry based instruction, differentiated instruction (learning centers), graphic organizers, etc.

Course Content

Themes and Concepts include:

  1. Plant anatomy and morphology
  2. Transport in plants
  3. Plant nutrition
  4. Plant reproduction and development
  5. Plant growth, development, and responses to environmental stimuli
  6. Animal tissues and body plans
  7. Animal nutrition
  8. Animal circulation and gas exchange
  9. Animal immune systems (optional)
  10. Homeostasis in animals
  11. Chemical signals in animals
  12. Animal reproduction (optional)
  13. Animal development (optional)
  14. Animal nervous systems
  15. Animal sensory and motor systems
  16. The distribution and adaptations of organisms
  17. Population ecology
  18. Community ecology
  19. Ecosystem ecology


Biology 213 is relevant to many contemporary issues that may be discussed and explored during the course, such as, effects of pollution in aquatic systems, dwindling biodiversity, global warming, acid rain, overpopulation, habitat destruction and fragmentation, effects of invasive non-native plants, etc.

Competencies and Skills:

  • Read scientific literature
  • Apply the scientific method
  • Use laboratory techniques and equipment
  • Locate and access biological information
  • Think critically
  • Collaborate with peers -- work effectively in groups
  • Articulate scientific processes in written and oral format
  • Present data in papers using the scientific format
  • Present conclusions logically

Department Notes

Columbia Gorge Community College Science Department stands by the following statement about regarding science instruction:

Science is a fundamentally nondogmatic and self-correcting investigatory process. Theories (such as biological evolution and geologic time scale) are developed through scientific investigation are not decided in advance. As such, scientific theories can be and often are modified and revised through observation and experimentation. “Creation science", “Intelligent design” or similar beliefs are not considered legitimate science, but a form of religious advocacy. This position is established by legal precedence (Webster v. New Lenox School District #122, 917 F. 2d 1004).

The Science Department at Columbia Gorge Community College, therefore stands with organizations such as the National Association of Biology Teachers in opposing the inclusion of pseudo-sciences in our science curricula except to reference and/or clarify its invalidity.