General Education Biology

November 1, 2004

BSC 1005: General Education Biology

Professor Miriam del Campo Telephone: 305-237-0956
Biology, Health, &Wellness Department / Kendall Email: mdelcamp {at} mdcc(.)edu
Office: Room: 3265 #12

Biology is the study of life. All life should be respected and sustained. The end purpose of BSC 1005 is that you, the students, develop an understanding and appreciation for living systems (including humans) and for you to acquire the knowledge and skills needed to address biological issues that are important and relevant to your individual lives and the society in which you live. This course satisfies three credit hours of the natural science requirement. To insure a successful outcome, this course will require: attendance to class, writing lecture notes, reading and studying of the text book and class notes, completing supplemental readings, completing class and home assignments, surveying the literature and current events in the field of biology, application of the material to your own life and that of others, and communication with class peers and instructor. Of course, passing grades on exams and the Action Project will ensure passing the class. The completion of an acceptable Action Project is mandatory to pass the class. The time and effort that you invest in learning and applying the information in this course will be very rewarding. Enjoy and cherish this opportunity to learn, what may well be, the most vital information in your entire college years.

David Krogh, Biology: A Guide to the Natural World, 2nd Edition
Prentice Hall, 2002



Each student is provided with a copy of the course syllabus for the class. Based on this material there will be FIVE Examinations, Tests I, II, III, and IV, will be from 25-50 multiple choice questions and will count 100 points each. The final test (Test V) is a cumulative test that will count 100 points. For students who have NOT missed any tests, Test V is optional. Test V may be used to improve the class grade; since, the lowest test grade will be substituted with the grade on Test (V). (Only one grade, the lowest test grade from Tests I, II, III, and IV, will be substituted by the grade on Test V, regardless of whether the grade on Test V is higher or lower than the lowest test grade.) For students who have missed one test, Test V is mandatory and it will substitute the missed test grade. Students who miss more than one test are in danger of failing the class. Make up tests will only be given prior to the class test date, for security reasons. NO make up exams unless previously arranged.

Service Learning Action Project:

An action project that demonstrates the application of the material learned in class through a community service action is required. Students who do not submit an Action Project will NOT pass the class. The project should be handed no later than Thursday, April 10th (for the T R classes).

This project requires:

1. Research of a specific topic within the “Biology” discipline.

2. Community Service Learning – an action in the community that applies the research topic to people, animals, plants, the environment etc.

3. Reflection as to the value of the action for the community and to the student. Please refer to the Service Learning Action Project instruction handout for specific instructions and requirements.

Grade Chart:

Tests/ Project Points
Test I =100 points
Test II =100 points
Test III =100 points
Test IV =100 points
(Test V) =(100 points)
Action Project =100 points
Total Points =500 points

Accumulated Points for Class Grade Class Grade
450-500 points A
400-449 points B
350-399 points C
300-349 points D
299 and below F

About the Service Learning Action Project

The Service Learning Action Project is a mechanism by which students will become involved with the class material in depth and have an opportunity to apply it in a meaningful manner. We are all consumers of science. The best consumer is an informed consumer. Through the course work and research each of us can gain, understand, and apply, useful science related information. In this rapidly advancing technological world, we all have a responsibility to be science literate. Moreover, we have a responsibility, as members of the biosphere, to share our knowledge and skills with other members of nature: humans, animals, plants, microbes, and the environment, in order to promote individual and collective well being. We can influence personal and public opinion and policies with our strong commitment and knowledge base. While we won’t solve all problems, we can at least have a positive influence on some. We can spread good will and information through our actions to make this a better world.

The best place to start is to get involved in conducting some vital service for our community. After the research and the action have been conducted, reflection about the project will undoubtedly point to the success or failure of your endeavors and the next set of steps to follow on your own. But whatever the outcome of your Action Project may be, know that you are on the way to improving your life and that of other creatures through your involvement.

General Idea:

1. Identify a topic in the Biology text that you are interested in.

2. Identify a problem, related to that topic, which exists in our local community.

3. Conduct research to gather information about the topic and problem,

4. Come up with a possible solution or ways to alleviate the problem.

5. Take an action and/or conduct a service that will help solve the problem.

6. Reflect upon what you have learned from this process, how it has affected you personally, how it has impacted others, and what actions need to be taken in the future.


1. Professor del Campo: Room 3265 12, 305 237 0956, mdelcamp {at} mdcc(.)edu

2. Ms. Ossie Hanauer, Director of the Center for Community Involvement, Kendall Campus, 305 237 0859, 305 237 0631

3. The Krogh Biology textbook and the MediaLabs in the CD ROM

4. Internet

5. Libraries:

6. Media: Newspapers, TV stations, etc.

7. Community and Government Agencies and Interest Groups
8. Environmental Agencies and Interest Groups
9. Schools, Colleges, Universities, Professors, Researchers, Scholars,
10. Community Leaders,
11. Elected Officials
12. Professionals: Lawyers, Doctors, Veterinarians, Scientists, Environmentalists
13. City, State, and U.S. Government Offices and Agencies
14. Non Profit Organizations
15. Global Organizations: United Nations, World Bank
16. Businesses
17. Hospitals, Churches
18. Retirement/Children’s Homes
19. Hospices

Action Project Portfolio


1. Choose a topic from Biology. Use the Krogh book and CD ROM

2. Identify community needs/problems related to your topic

3. Brainstorm for creative solutions to the necds/problems

4. Verify possibility of conducting community service related to the topic

5. Conduct a scientific periodical search at the library. Choose THREE good articles related to the topic. Read them and think about them.

6. Search the Internet for reliable sources on this topic. Choose THREE good ones. Get involved in related chats or discussions. Get feedback if possible. Use the MediaLabs in the Krogh book if applicable.

7. Through the Kendall Campus Center for Community Involvement find a community SERVICE LEARNING site that is related to your topic and where you will volunteer your time and talent.

8. Conduct the community service. Keep a time log sheet and get VERIFICATION of your time and service project from a reliable source. During the project keep a journal of activities conducted.

9. Complete all paperwork from Action Project Group Workshops and Evaluation Handouts.

10. Reflect on how your knowledge of biology and you community involvement, using that knowledge, are making a difference for a better world.

Checklist of the required documents: (Documents to be turned in for grading)

1. Workshop I Handout (Identification of topic and problem, plus Research)

2. Three articles from current scientific periodicals (include Xerox copy)

3. Three website articles (include print out)

4. Workshop II Handout (Service Learning Project)

5. Proof of community involvement (letters of reference, tickets, photographs, etc.)

6. Workshop III Handout (Reflection)

7. Self/Group Evaluation Handout

Assemble all documents in a binder to be turned in for a grade. Due on December 3 (M W F) or December 4 (T R) (Use the checklist above) Call me or e mail for assistance if needed.

School: Miami-Dade Community College
Professor: Miriam del Campo
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