The following contains statements concerning course offerings. Most courses are offered annually, however, the department’s listings for semester in which courses are offered are in parenthesis after each course. Course offerings are subject to change.
The department offers pre-medical and pre-dental preparation, as well as preparation for medical technology and other allied health sciences. Also offered is an affiliate five-year program with the Duke University School of Forestry and Environmental Science through which students earn a B.S. degree from PC and an M.A. in forestry or environmental science from Duke.
The department also boasts affiliate programs in marine biology with the Gulf Coast Marine Laboratory in Ocean Springs, MS, and with the Duke University Marine Laboratory in Beaufort, N.C. Students also have numerous opportunities to conduct independent research and special projects.
The PC biology faculty is quick to point out that a good education is not limited to the classroom. Educational journeys may be as simple as a short afternoon trip to a nearby pond or a weekend jaunt to the mountains.
105 Biological Concepts, 3 Credits, Fall only
Effective Fall 2012, this new course replaces both BIOL 101 and BIOL 111 which are now obsolete. If you have taken BIOL 101 or BIOL 111, you DO NOT need to take this course. BIOL 105 does satisfy the General Education requirement in the Sciences. A broad introduction to the fundamental principles of living organisms, emphases include scientific methodology, biomolecules, cell structure and function, genetics, principles of evolution, and environmental issues.
105L Biological Concepts Laboratory, 1 Credits, Fall only
Effective Fall 2012, this new course replaces both BIOL 101L and BIOL 111L which are now obsolete. If you have taken BIOL 101L or BIOL 111L, you DO NOT need to take this course. BIOL 105L does satisfy the General Education requirement in the Sciences. The laboratory supplement to the course content of BIOL 105. Cannot be taken separately from BIOL 105 except by consent of the Biology Department.
106 Survey of Life, 3 Credits, Spring only
This course is designed for students not pursuing a major or minor in Biology. This course, along with Biology 105 will satisfy the General Education requirement in the sciences. This course will survey the diversity of life, as well as focus on various aspects of human physiology.
106L Survey of Life Laboratory, 1 Credits, Spring only
3 lab hours weekly (Coreq: Bio 102). Laboratory that supplements and expands on topics presented in Bio 106. Cannot be taken separately from 106 except by consent of instructor.
112 Organismal Biology, 3 Credits, Spring only
A second semester introductory biology course designed for biology majors and minors. Students must have a “C” or better in Biology 105 to enroll in this course. Emphases include organismal biology, anatomy, development, physiology, and ecology.
112L Organismal Biology Laboratory, 1 Credits, Spring only
A laboratory designed to supplement course content of BIOL 112 with contemporary research methods in the life sciences. Students must have a “C” in Bio 105 in order to enroll in this course. Emphases include systematics, functional morphology, physiology, and ecology.
198 Summer Readings in the Biological Sciences, 1 Credits, Fall only
An individual study of selected biological papers and books to be completed before a biology major’s senior year
199 Summer Readings in the Biological Sciences, 1 Credits, Fall only
An individual study of selected biological papers and books to be completed before a biology major’s senior year
201 Invertebrate Zoology, 4 Credits, Fall only
3 hrs lecture, 3 hrs lab weekly. (Prereq: Bio. 105-112) Studies of the principal phyla of the invertebrates emphasizing their increasing complexity of structure, physiology, ecology and evolutionary relationships.
202 Vertebrate Zoology, 4 Credits, Fall only
3 hrs lecture, 3 hrs lab weekly. (Prereq: Bio. 105-112) Lectures deal with the taxonomy, morphology, ecology and evolution of principal vertebrate groups. Lab treats ecology, taxonomy, population biology, identification and morphology, with emphasis on local forms. (Fall, alternate years)
203 Introductory Botany, 4 Credits, Spring only
3 hrs lecture, 3 hrs lab weekly. (Prereq: Bio. 105-112) Intensive review of phyla of plant kingdom. Morphology, physiology, reproduction, ecology and principles of classification studied in each group.
206 Plant Systematics, 4 Credits, Fall only
3 hrs lecture, 3 hrs lab weekly (Prereq: Bio. 105-112). The major objectives of this course are to introduce students to systematic botany and field collection techniques. Lectures will consider the major aspects of systematics: identification, nomenclature, classification, and phylogeny, paying particular attention to the native plants of South Carolina. Ethnobotanical information related to the plants of South Carolina will also be introduced. Laboratories will emphasize structural terminology, the use of identification keys and family descriptions, identification of fresh and pressed plant specimens, and techniques for collecting and preparing pressed plant specimens. Emphasis will be placed on identification of the local flora.
207 Biogeography, 4 Credits, Fall only
(Prereq: Bio. 105-112) Biogeography is the study of distributions of organisms, both past and present. It is the science that attempts to describe the patterns and distribution of species and larger taxonomic groups. Lecture and laboratory experiences will complement each other in an effort to comprehensively explore the ideas, philosophies, procedures and techniques involved in biogeography. (Fall Alternate Years)
208 Parasitology, 4 Credits, Spring only
(Prereq: BIOL 105 and BIOL 112). This course provides an in-depth study of parasitic organisms during both lecture and lab. Lecture topics will focus on parasite/host interactions, disease physiology, and current treatments. Lab exercises will introduce students to parasite morphology and histological examination of infected tissue. (Spring)
209 Cell Biology, 4 Credits, Fall only
(Prereq: Bio. 105-112, Chem. 101-102, 101L and 102L). A study of the structure and function of the eukaryotic cell which includes a review of the biological macromolecules and chemical processes of the cell. The structure and functions of cell membranes, cellular organelles and the cytoskeleton, and the processes of protein synthesis and sorting, enzyme catalysis, cell movement, the cell cycle and intracellular signaling are included. Lab exercises will include light and electron microscopy, cell fractionation and cell tissue culture.
212 Evolution, 4 Credits, Spring only
3 hrs lecture weekly, 3 hrs lab weekly (Prereq: Bio. 105-112 or approval of instructor). The history and development of evolutionary theory, from Darwinism in the 19th Century, to the Modern Synthesis of the 1950’s, to the most recent concepts and innovations. Includes references to the influence of evolutionary thought on 20th Century ideas in science and humanities.
215 Environmental Science, 4 Credits, Fall only
Designed to show the student’s relationship to and dependence on the environment, and to create an awareness of environmental problems. Areas of study include concepts of ecology, population, resources, pollution, problems of world hunger and ethics. Offered upon demand.
216 Introduction to Marine Biology and Oceanography, 3 Credits, Spring only
(Prereq: Bio. 105-112) A study of the biological, geological, chemical and physical aspects of the oceans. Topics studied involve history of oceanography, geology of oceans and ocean basins, chemical and physical aspects, waves and tide, ocean currents and coastal oceanography, major marine phyla, marine algae, and marine ecology.
302 Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy, 4 Credits, Fall only
(Prereq: Bio. 105-112) A comparative study of vertebrate morphology. Gross and microscopic anatomy of organ systems will be examined on representatives of the major classes of vertebrates. (Fall, alternate years)
303 Human Anatomy, 4 Credits, Fall only
With Lab. (Prereq. Bio 112) The student will gain proficiency in anatomical dissections (cat). This course concerns the functional morphology of the various organs within the human body and integrates these organ functions into systems that serve the needs of the human body for growth, maintenance and repair, and reproduction. There will be extensive use of CD-ROM programs for anatomical simulation. (Fall, alternate years)
304 Developmental Biology, 4 Credits, Spring only
(3 hrs lecture, 3 hrs lab weekly) (Prereq: Bio. 105-112 or consent of instructor). The integrated fields of cytology, genetics, biochemistry and anatomy culminate in the study of development. Students will examine how complex living systems result from an undifferentiated single cell and the forces that drive such specialization. Lectures center on development at the cellular level. The laboratory is primarily concerned with experimental embryology of selected invertebrates and lower vertebrates.
306 Microbiology, 4 Credits, Spring only
(3 hrs lecture, 3 hrs lab weekly) (Prereq: Bio. 105-112, Chem. 101- 102, 101L-102L). A study of microorganisms with emphasis on bacteria. Topics include characteristics of procaryotes, viruses, immunology, disease, genetics, metabolism, growth, and applied and environmental microbiology. The laboratory emphasizes development of sterile techniques and provides students both basic and applied exercises.
307 Biochemistry I, 3 Credits, Fall only
(Prereq: Bio. 105- 112, Chem 221, Chem 221L, Strongly Recommended: Chem 222) An introductory course in biochemistry. Starting with an overview of the cell, the structure and function of amino acids, proteins, lipids, membranes and carbohydrates are covered. The remainder of the course involves a detailed discussion of the bioenergetics and metabolism of carbohydrates, amino acids, lipids, and steroids. Included is a limited discussion on diseases caused by inborn errors of metabolism.
307L Biochemistry I Lab, 1 Credits, Fall only
One 3 hr lab weekly. (Coreq or Prereq: Bio/Chem 307, Bio. 105-112, Chem 221, Chem 221L; Chem 222 is strongly recommended (Cross-listed with Chemistry)) Experiments in amino acid and protein analysis, protein purification, membrane lipid analysis, carbohydrates and cellular metabolism. Also included are the techniques of electophoresis, chromatography, spectrometry, and cell fractionation. (Fall)
308/L Biochemistry II, 4 Credits, Spring only
3 hrs lecture, 3 hrs lab weekly. (Prereq: Bio. 105-112, Chem 221, Chem 221L (Crosslisted with Biology)) The function of enzymes, enzyme catalysis, and enzyme kinetics. Biosynthesis of nucleotides; DNA structure; the processes of replication, transcription and translation; DNA biotechnology. Control of gene expression in prokaryotes and eukaryotes; viruses; oncongenes. Laboratory exercises will include enzyme catalysis and kinetics and the techniques of recombinant DNA.
311 Physiology, 4 Credits, Fall only
3 hrs lecture, 3 hrs lab weekly (Prereq: Bio. 105-112, Chem. 101- 102, 101L-102L; Recommended: One year of organic chemistry, one year of physics). A study of the basic functional phenomena of living organisms from unicellular through multicellular animals emphasizing the comparative approach. The laboratory portion includes studies of the following: osmotic phenomena, ionic effects, small animal metabolism, hormones, circulation, respiration and muscle physiology.
312 Plant Physiology, 4 Credits, Fall only
3 hrs lecture, 3 hrs lab weekly. (Prereq: Bio 105-112, Chem 101- 102, 101L-102L; Recommended: one year of organic chemistry). This course is designed as an introduction into how plant cells function from seed germination to vegetative growth, maturation, and flowering. Topics include: water relationships, plant biochemistry, development, and environmental physiology. The laboratory portion includes studies of transpiration, plant mineral requirements, plant development, tissue culture, photosynthesis, and enzyme activity. (Fall Alternate Years)
314 Ecology, 4 Credits, Fall only
3 hrs lecture, 3 hrs lab weekly (Prereq: Bio. 105-112) A study of the interrelationships of plants and animals in their physical and biological environments. Structure and dynamics of the major ecosystems, with emphasis on individual behavior, populations and communities. Lab and field work includes studies of natural and polluted systems. (Fall, alternate years)
318 Immunology, 4 Credits
(Prereq: Bio. 105- 112) A study of the principles of immunology. Lecture topics include organs, cells and pathways of the immune response, antigens, antibodies, immune specificity, humoral and cellular immunity, development, activation and regulation of the immune response, and immune disorders. Laboratory exercises include identification of the components of the immune system, antibody/antigen interactions, immunoassays, delayed vs. immediate hypersensitivity, mitogenic responses.
320 Paleontology, 4 Credits, Fall only
(Prereq: Bio. 105- 112) This course provides an in depth introduction to the principles of paleontology. Lecture topics include models in paleontology, taphonomy, systematics and classification, morphology, paleoecology, evolution and extinction, paleobiogeography, biostratigraphy, milestone in the history of life, diversity of Phanerozoic Life, and use of index fossils in rock correlation. Laboratory exercises include fossil preservation, diversity of ancient life, ontogenetic variation, morphologic parameters and their uses, species recognition and evolution, microfossils, evolutionary patterns, biostratigraphy, as well as a survey of the major groups of fossil organisms.
334 Genetics, 4 Credits, Spring only
3 hrs lecture, 3 hrs lab weekly. (Prereq: Bio. 105-112, Chem. 101- 102, 101L-102L/112L or consent of instructor) A survey of mechanisms and theories of heredity and variation, with examples from a group of plants and animals including man. The nature of the gene and its expressions are stressed in study of principles of Mendelian inheritance, linkage, mutation, development, molecular genetics, behavior and population genetics. Lab work involving techniques and analysis of studies in cytogenetics, experimental crosses, biochemical genetics and population genetics.
335 Human Genetics, 4 Credits, Fall only
(Prereq: Bio. 334 or permission of the instructor). The course examines the “molecular revolution” in human genetics. Classical and non-classical genetic concepts will be discussed in light of new molecular methodology which has become available over the last two decades. The course will emphasize molecular genetics as it is used to understand human biology by the isolation and characterization of human genes. Information gained from studies of genetic disease will be used to illustrate the interrelationship between various sub-disciplines in the biological sciences.
398 Honors Research, 3 Credits, Spring and Fall
Available for students during the junior and senior years, with approval of the departmental faculty. Students with a 3.2 GPR in all courses and a 3.4 GPR in major courses may undertake an Honors Research program. Oral and written presentations of the results of the project will be required. Students who successfully complete the departmental Honors Research program will graduate with honors in the major discipline.
399 Scientific Writing and Presentation, 2 Credits, Spring only
(Required of all junior majors) A course designed to familiarize the student with the library resources and techniques for conducting a literature search of a scientific topic. Students will receive instruction on the style and mechanics of writing a scientific review article and presenting a short seminar.
401 Seminar in Biology, 2 Credits, Fall only
Required of all senior majors. (Prereq: Bio. 399 or consent of instructor). Each student gains an in depth knowledge of a selected current topic in biology by conducting an exhaustive search of the literature, giving an oral presentation of the results of this research, and preparing a written paper in acceptable scientific form. Instructions in each phase of study or presentation are given by the biology faculty. Majors will take the Graduate Record advanced test in biology as part of this course.
442 Directed Studies, 3 Credits, Spring and Fall
Directed Studies: see p. 32 of the current Catalog for more information on requirements and eligibility.
444 Internships, 3 Credits, Spring and Fall
All internships in Biology are graded pass/fail and up to 3 hrs. may count toward the major.
446 Readings, 0 Credits, Spring and Fall
See Course Catalog.
448 Research in Biology (1 to 6), 6 Credits, Spring and Fall
(Open to junior or senior biology major with GPR of 2.5 or better, with permission). Independent research in one of several areas utilizing different approaches a lab study on-campus or off-campus studies at a biological field station or marine science lab. Students may take three to six hours during one or two semesters. Research hours cannot be terminal hours for the major.
450 Seminar, 1 Credits, Spring and Fall
452 Special Projects (1 to 6), 1 Credits, Spring and Fall
Open to students with at least 28 hrs. credit with 2.25 GPR, with permission of department and dean. Special course projects demand to include predominantly off-campus offerings which will necessitate students being away from campus part of time. May be graded on regular basis.
458 Special Topics (1-6), 1 Credits, Spring and Fall
May include field studies during the May term to give students an opportunity to study plants and animals in a variety of different habitats including: overseas and local field studies; terrestrial and marine environmental study on islands such as Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, the Galapagos of Ecuador, etc.; fish and wildlife refuges in the eastern U. S.; or paleobiological and ecological studies of the Great Plains and the desert Southwest.