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Chico BIOL 402 - Syllabus

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BIOL 402 - Microbial Ecology, Fall 2010 1 Lecture / Lab TR 2:00 - 4:50, Holt 337 Dr. Gordon Wolfe Holt 343, 898-4256, [email protected] Office hours: T, R, F 12-1:30, or by appointment Overview: This class examines microbiology from their function and interactions in the natural environment. Major ecological themes include evolution, diversity, adaptation, cooperation, and environmental impact. Labs teach techniques to collect, observe, enumerate, and identify groups of microbes, and to evaluate their interactions and their impact on the environment. There will be two field trips: a weekend trip to Lassen Volcanic National Park (2 possible dates), and a class period trip to the Chico sewage plant. Learning Outcomes: At the conclusion of this course, students should be able to: 1. be able to describe and differentiate aquatic and physical environments; 2. demonstrate knowledge of microbial metabolism and its environmental impacts; 3. demonstrate knowledge of community interactions: mutualisms and competition; 4. demonstrate ability to manipulate microbes in the field and laboratory, including enumerating cells and biomass, molecular analyses, and estimation of community rates; 5. read and analyze scientific papers. 6. synthesize information and present it orally Prerequisites: Lower-division biology and chemistry, as basic algebra. BIOL 321 (Major’s Microbiology) is strongly recommended. There is a $38 course fee, due at registration, which will be used to partially cover travel expenses for required field trips, and for molecular analyses. Assignments / Grading: 600 points total Grading: A=90-100%; B=80-90%; C=70-80%; D=60-70%. No extra credit. Labs will be done in groups. Attendance of lab is mandatory. More than 4 absences without instructor’s permission constitutes failure of course. Required Texts: 1. Wolfe lecture notes (online) 2. Dyer, B. 2003. A Field Guide to Bacteria. 3. Wolfe, G. 2010. Microbial Ecology Lab Manual. $20. Sold by the ASM club the second week of class. 4. Lab notebook (BMU Bookstore) Dr. Wolfe also has a large number of texts for additional information. points Exams: 300 points Midterm 1 100 Midterm 2 100 FINAL (Midterm 3) 100 Laboratory: 300 points Organism Paper 50 Proposal Paper 50 Presentation 50 Paper analyses 50 Lab Writeup 100BIOL 402 - Microbial Ecology, Fall 2010 2 Tentative course schedule – check course WebCT syllabus frequently for updates! Week Date Topics Labs / Assignments 1 Aug. 24 Dr. Wolfe out; no class 26 Dr. Wolfe out; no class 2 31 Course objectives; Introduction Microbial view of ecology Habitats: aquatic Labs 1-3: qualitative ecology Sept. 2 Habitats: terrestrial Sep. 4/6: field trip to Lassen Volcanic National Park 3 7 Metabolic diversity I Labs 3-7: quantitative ecology 9 Metabolic diversity II Sep. 12/13: field trip to Lassen Volcanic National Park 4 14 Organismal diversity I: prokaryotes Paper #1 assigned 16 Organismal diversity II: prokaryotes 5 21 Organismal diversity III: eukaryotes 23 Midterm I: through 9-16 6 28 Molecular ecology I Labs 8-13: molecular ecology 30 Molecular ecology II 7 Oct. 5 Molecular ecology III 7 Microbial communities 8 12 Physiological ecology & growth 14 Trophic roles, chains, and webs Paper #1 DUE 9 19 Biogeochemical cycles: C, N, S 21 Measuring rates & processes 10 26 Population interactions Labs 14-15: community ecology 28 Midterm II: through 10-21 11 Nov. 2 Plant- & Animal-microbe associations 4 Biogeochemical cycles: P, metals Acid mine drainage, bioleaching Group projects 12 9 Geomicrobiology; Gaia & Astrobiology Paper #2 assigned 11 VETERAN’S DAY HOLIDAY 13 16 Sewage treatment, bioremediation Field trip to water plant 18 Disease ecology; human microbiome Nov. 23, 25: Thanksgiving break 14 30 presentations I Dec. 2 presentations II 15 7 presentations III 9 presentations IV Paper #2, Lab writeup DUE 16 16 Midterm III 12 –


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