City University of Hong Kong. Information on a Course offered by Department of Biology and Chemistry with effect from 2012 / 2013

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1 City University of Hong Kong Information on a Course offered by Department of Biology and Chemistry with effect from 2012 / 2013 Part I Course Title: Course Code: Course Duration: Diversity of life and evolution BCH weeks No. of Credit Units: 3 Level: B2 Prerequisites: (Course Code and Title) Precursors: (Course Code and Title) BCH1200 Discovery in Biology (for normative 4-year students) or A Level Biology (for advance standing I students) Equivalent Courses: (Course Code and Title) Exclusive Courses: (Course Code and Title) 1. Course Aims: In this course, students will: develop an understanding of the principles and importance of classification, develop an appreciation of Darwin s theory of evolution, examine the diversity of life in the Kingdoms Plantae and Animalia, explore the evolutionary relationships among various plant and animal groups as well as coevolution of flowers and their pollinators, apply the knowledge of biological diversity to our daily life and culture. This course will provide the basic knowledge on evolution and biodiversity of life, and prepare for elective courses e.g. Marine Biology, Animal Physiology, Plant Physiology. 1

2 2. Course Intended Learning Outcomes (CILOs) Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to: No. CILOs 1. Describe the general principles of classification and binomial nomenclature for species naming. 2. Explain Darwin s evidence on evolution and hypothesis of natural selection that produced the diversity of life on earth. 3. Compare the diversity and characteristics of major groups of plants and animals including identification of local animal/plant species. 4. Apply the concepts of systematic zoology/botany to comprehend the evolutionary relationships among various plant and animal groups, and the co-evolution of flowers and their pollinators. 5. Discover the connection between our daily life, culture and biological diversity. Weighting (if 3. Teaching and learning Activities (TLAs) (designed to facilitate students achievement of the CILOs) ILO No CILO 1 CILO 2 CILO 3 CILO 4 CILO 5 TLAs Teaching and learning will be based on a combination of lectures and tutorial exercises to explain the principles on classification and species naming. Students will learn in small group activities, by examining Darwin s evidences on evolution and his hypothesis that natural selection produced the diversity of life on earth. Through lectures, field visits and group presentations students will learn to identify, describe and report basic morphological characteristics of major groups of plants (non-vascular plants to seed plants) and animals (invertebrates and vertebrates). Concepts of adaptive radiation and convergent evolution in animals/plants as well as co-evolution of flowers and their pollinators will be examined through small group discussions, small projects and/or literature study. Through small group activities and a group project report, students will discover the connection between biological diversity on food plates to our daily life and culture. Hours/week (if The TLAs provided above are indicative of the likely activities that students will undertake in this course. Final details of the individual course component will be provided in the student course documents distributed at the commencement of the course. 2

3 4. Assessment Tasks/Activities (designed to assess how well the students achieve the CILOs) ILO No CILO 1 CILO 2 CILO 3 CILO 4 CILO 5 Type of assessment tasks/activities Short quizzes will enable students to apply knowledge on classification and species naming to practice. Small group activities, report and end-of-course examination will enable students to comprehend and explain the significant impact of Darwin s theory on science and diversity of life. Field visits, oral presentations and end-of-course examination will enable students to identify and discuss the diversity of plants/animals (including local species). Class/On-line discussions between peers, take home / video assignments and end-of-course examination will be used to assess students concepts of adaptive strategies in plants and animals and their relationship with the environments they are inhabiting. A formal group project report, in which students will relate biological diversity on food plates to our daily life and culture. Weighting (if Remarks The table below is indicative of the assessment weighting for each CILO. Quizzes Oral presentation/ Report Class & on-line discussion/ Assignment Final examination Total 5% 20% 15% 60% 100% Starting from Semester B, , undergraduate students must satisfy the following "Minimum Passing Requirement" for BCH courses: "A minimum of 30% in coursework as well as in examination, in addition to a minimum of 40% in coursework and examination taken together". 3

4 5. Grading of Student Achievement: Refer to Grading of Courses in the Academic Regulations Grading will be based on students performance in assessment tasks/activities. Allocation of marks will be as follows: Coursework (including quizzes, oral presentations, group project reports, web-based discussions and video assignments), 40%; Examination (3 hrs), 60%. The following description is indicative of the grading criteria adopted for assessment purposes: A. Student completes all assessment tasks/activities and can demonstrate excellent synthesis of the concepts and principles of classification, biological diversity and evolution. Shows strong capacity to analyze the complexity of plants/animals diversity in detail. Provides comprehensive comparisons between plants and animals on morphological adaptations to their living environments. Shows advanced connection of the concepts to our everyday life. Demonstrates strong evidence of methodical and critical synthesis and analysis of information/data. B. Student completes all assessment tasks/activities and can describe and explain the concepts and principles of classification, biological diversity and evolution. Show ability to discuss accurately the complexity of plants/animals diversity. Provides adequate and accurate comparisons between plants and animals on morphological adaptations to their living environments. Shows appropriate connection of the concepts to our everyday life. Demonstrates critical synthesis and analysis of information/data. C. Student completes all assessment tasks/activities and can describe and explain some of the key concepts and principles of classification, biological diversity and evolution. Shows understanding on the complexity of plants/animals diversity. Provides simple but accurate comparisons between plants and animals on morphological adaptations to their living environments. Shows average ability in connecting the concepts to our everyday life. Demonstrates average ability in synthesis and analysis of information/data. D. Student completes most assessment tasks/activities and can briefly describe isolated concepts and principles of classification, biological diversity and evolution. Shows a marginal understanding on the complexity of plants/animals diversity. Provides basic comparisons between plants and animals on morphological adaptations to their living environments. Shows limited ability in connecting the concepts to our everyday life. Demonstrates limited ability in synthesis and analysis of information/data. F. Student fails to complete all assessment tasks/activities and cannot accurately describe and explain the concepts and principles of classification, biological diversity and evolution. Cannot describe the complexity of plants/animals diversity. Cannot provide appropriate comparisons between plants and animals on morphological adaptations to their living environments. Fails in connecting the concepts to our everyday life. Demonstrates weakness in synthesis and analysis of information/data. 4

5 Part III Keyword Syllabus: Principles of classification and binomial nomenclature The three-domain and six-kingdom classification system, taxonomic hierarchy and binomial nomenclature. Darwin s theory of evolution Natural selection as the mechanism of evolution. Adaptive radiations of animals and plants. Plant diversity and evolution What is a plant? Green algae are the ancestors of land plants. Examine the diversity of life in the Kingdom Plantae, identify and describe basic morphological characteristics and reproductive strategies of various groups of non-vascular and vascular plants, identify common trees in Hong Kong. Examine the evidence of convergent evolution in plants. Explore the co-evolution of flowering plants and their animal pollinators. Animal diversity and evolution What is an animal? Examine the diversity of life in the Kingdom Animalia; identify and describe basic morphological characteristics of various groups of animals (invertebrates and vertebrates) and relate them to adaptations to the environment they are inhabiting (using local examples); examine adaptive radiations of animals and evolutionary relationships among various animal groups. Recommended Reading: Text(s): Raven P.H., Johnson G.B., Losos J.B. and Singer S.R. (2005) Biology. 7th edition. McGraw Hill, New York. Campbell N.A. and Reece J.B. (2005) Biology. 7 th edition. Pearson, Benjamin Cummings, San Francisco. Raven P.H, Evert R.F. and Eichhorn S.E. (2005) Biology of Plants. 7 th edition. Freeman, New York. Online Resources: To be provided, as required, in lectures and tutorials. Teaching pattern: Duration of course: one semester Suggested lecture/tutorial mix: Lectures: 26H Tutorials: 13H 5

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