BIOL 3120 Syllabus
BIOL 3120 - General Ecology
3 Credit Hours
This course addresses the relationship between plants and animals in their environment.
Upon successful completion of this course, students will:
- Understand the fundamental concepts of ecology
- Understand conceptual and mathematical models that describe ecological systems
- Understand the evolutionary principles driving ecology
- Understand the human impact to ecosystems
- Introduction to Ecology
- Adaptation and Evolution
- Adaptations to the Physical Environment
- Terrestrial Communities
- Freshwater and Marine Communities
- Behavioral Ecology
- Population Demographics
- Life History Strategies
- Community Structure
- Ecological Succession
- Species Diversity
- Energy Flow
- Biogeochemical Cycles
- Conservation Biology
- Landscape Ecology
- Human Global Ecology
Students will be required to read each chapter within a module to successfully understand concepts and complete assignments within the module.
Textbooks, Supplementary Materials, Hardware and Software Requirements
Please visit the Virtual Bookstore to obtain textbook information for this course. Move your cursor over the "Books" link in the navigation bar and select "Textbooks & Course Materials." Select your Program, Term, Department, and Course; then select "Submit."
Minimum hardware requirements can be found here.
Minimum software requirements can be found here.
Common applications you might need:
Purdue OWL Online Writing Lab (for APA, MLA, or Chicago style)
The Writing Center Online Writer's Handbook
- Technical support information can be found on the TN eCampus Help Desk page.
- Smarthinking virtual tutoring is available FREE of charge. to access Smarthinking, visit the course homepage and select Smarthinking under Course Resources. You also view sample sessions to see what Smarthinking offers and how it works.
- Information on other student issues or concerns can be located on the TN eCampus Student Resources page.
Please see "Instructor Information" in the Getting Started Module for instructor contact information, virtual office hours, and other communication information. You can expect to receive a response from the instructor within 24-48 hours unless notified of extenuating circumstances.
Participation, Assessments, & Grading
Letter grades for this course will be assigned based on the following scale.
|Point Range||Assigned Grade|
|810 - 900 points||A|
|720 - 809 points||B|
|630 - 719 points||C|
|540 - 629 points||D|
|under 540 points||F|
|8 discussions @ 5 points each||40 points|
|8 quizzes @ 20 points each||160 points|
|8 exercises @ 50 points each||400 points|
|3 exams @ 100 points each||300 points|
|Total points||900 points|
Quizzes, discussion questions, and assignments will be given for each module throughout the semester. These exercises will help your understanding of complex ecological processes. Four exams will be given during the semester and each will cover several modules.
Students are expected to complete all assignments and provide thoughtful discussions.
All assignments and exams will need to be completed by their deadlines to receive credit.
Course Ground Rules
The following two statements (1., 2.) were derived from the TBR System-wide Student Rules document, released January 2012:
RULES OF THE TENNESSEE BOARD OF REGENTS STATE UNIVERSITY AND COMMUNITY COLLEGE SYSTEM OF TENNESSEE SYSTEMWIDE STUDENT RULES CHAPTER 0240-02-03 STUDENT CONDUCT AND DISCIPLINARY SANCTIONS
1. Standards of Conduct:
- Students are required to adhere to the same professional, legal and ethical standards of conduct online as on campus. In addition, students should conform to generally accepted standards of "netiquette" while sending e-mail, posting comments to the discussion board, and while participating in other means of communicating online. Specifically, students should refrain from inappropriate and/or offensive language, comments and actions.
- In their academic activities, students are expected to maintain high standards of honesty and integrity. Academic dishonesty is prohibited.
Such conduct includes, but is not limited to:
- an attempt by one or more students to use unauthorized information in the taking of an exam
- to submit as one's own work, themes, reports, drawings, laboratory notes, computer programs, or other products prepared by another person,
- or to knowingly assist another student in obtaining or using unauthorized materials.
Plagiarism, cheating, and other forms of academic dishonesty are prohibited.
Students guilty of academic misconduct, either directly or indirectly through participation or assistance, are subject to disciplinary action through the regular procedures of the student’s home institution. Refer to the student handbook provided by your home institution to review the student conduct policy.
In addition to other possible disciplinary sanctions that may be imposed, the instructor has the authority to assign an "F" or zero for an activity or to assign an "F" for the course.
Other Course Rules:
Students are expected to:
- Participate in all aspects of the course
- Communicate with other students
- Learn how to navigate in Brightspace
- Keep abreast of course announcements
- Use the assigned course management (Brightspace) email address rather than a personal email address
- Address technical problems immediately:
- Observe course netiquette at all times.
Guidelines for Communications
- Always include a subject line.
- Remember without facial expressions some comments may be taken the wrong way. Be careful in wording your emails. Use of emoticons might be helpful in some cases.
- Use standard fonts.
- Do not send large attachments without permission.
- Special formatting such as centering, audio messages, tables, html, etc. should be avoided unless necessary to complete an assignment or other communication.
- Respect the privacy of other class members
- Review the discussion threads thoroughly before entering the discussion. Be a lurker then a discussant.
- Try to maintain threads by using the "Reply" button rather starting a new topic.
- Do not make insulting or inflammatory statements to other members of the discussion group. Be respectful of other’s ideas.
- Be patient and read the comments of other group members thoroughly before entering your remarks.
- Be cooperative with group leaders in completing assigned tasks.
- Be positive and constructive in group discussions.
- Respond in a thoughtful and timely manner.
The Tennessee Virtual Library is available to all students enrolled in TN eCampus programs and courses. Links to library materials (such as electronic journals, databases, interlibrary loans, digital reserves, dictionaries, encyclopedias, maps, and librarian support) and Internet resources needed by learners to complete online assignments and as background reading will be included within the course modules. To access the Virtual Library, go to the course homepage and select the Virtual Library link under Course Resources.
Students with Disabilities
Qualified students with disabilities will be provided reasonable and necessary academic accommodations if determined eligible by the appropriate disability services staff at their home institution. Prior to granting disability accommodations in this course, the instructor must receive written verification of a student's eligibility for specific accommodations from the disability services staff at the home institution. It is the student's responsibility to initiate contact with their home institution's disability services staff and to follow the established procedures for having the accommodation notice sent to the instructor.
The instructor reserves the right to make changes as necessary to this syllabus. If changes are necessitated during the term of the course, the instructor will immediately notify students of such changes both by individual email communication and posting both notification and nature of change(s) on the course bulletin board.
The information contained in this syllabus is for general information purposes only. While we endeavor to keep this information up-to-date and accurate, there may be some discrepancies between this syllabus and the one found in your online course. The syllabus of record is the one found in your online course. Please make sure you read the syllabus in your course at the beginning of the semester. Questions regarding course content should be directed to your instructor.