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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Kristina Linnea Stredwick
B BIO 393
Bothell Campus

Special Topics in Biology

Explores special topics in biology.

Class description

In this course you will apply the fundamentals of microbiology that you learned in your previous microbiology course to understanding how microorganisms interact with other species, including each other; how these interactions shape and are shaped by evolution; the implications of these interactions for both human health and the environment, the basic features of gene regulation in prokaryotes which govern these interactions, and techniques used by microbiologists to study them. Part of your learning will come from in-class lectures and activities, and journal writing. You will also learn fundamental skills of scholarship in microbiology as you become an expert on a topic in microbiology. Your research project will culminate in a written grant proposal and a videotaped lecture prepared for other students in the course.

Student learning goals

Be able to discuss the effects of different mechanisms of gene regulation in prokaryotes.

Be able to describe methods and experiments used to understand genetics and microbial interactions, and to analyze the results of these experiments.

Be able to compare different symbioses in terms of whether they are mutualistic, pathogenic, or both, describe examples of each (including viruses), and current evolutionary and physiological hypotheses about why they are mutualistic or pathogenic.

Become an expert on a topic in microbiology that is of interest to you and related to microbial genetics or microbial interactions with other species.

Be able to read and evaluate primary literature in microbiology, propose experiments designed to advance research in your topic area, and then write a professional NIH-style grant.

General method of instruction

This course is taught to reflect the way practicing scientists learn about science. Most of the content in this course will come from individual student research projects on interactions of microbes with other species. To augment this source of learning, there will be some lectures in class along with in-depth discussions of research topics and lecture material between peers. Much of the material discussed in class will include discussions of experiments and results. Students will explore course materials using discussion questions posed by the instructor, their journals, and discussions with peers in groups.

Recommended preparation

An upper division microbiology course such as BBio 370 or Microm 410.

Class assignments and grading

There will be one oral exam. Students will keep a journal describing their scholarship and progress on their independent research projects. They will make a video lecture on their research project to share information with their classmates. They will write an NIH-style grant, review other student's grants, and respond to their reviews.

Journal 25% Video-taped lecture 10% Genetics assignment 5% Midterm Exam 10% Portfolio Total 50% -- Grant proposal 25% -- Grant reviews 10% -- Rebuttal 5% -- Other included samples of scholarship 10%


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Kristina Linnea Stredwick
Date: 11/25/2013