There is no satisfactory textbook for this course. Instead, you will have a spiral-bound course packet (see below). The syllabus indicates the date for each lecture topic; each topic has a number (1 through 25) that will key you to the corresponding pages of the course packet. There will be one assigned reading per week, in association with a lecture as indicated in the syllabus. During that lecture, I will briefly "frame" the assigned reading; it will help you to put the assigned reading in perspective if you read it before I discuss it in class. However, you must read the assigned reading before it comes up in discussion section during the following week.
The course packet you will need to buy from Speedway Copying and Printing located in Dobie Mall. The packet will contain my lecture notes along with key diagrams and questions to guide you in studying the assigned readings. Speedway promised to have the packets ready on Monday, 23 August.
The assigned readings will be articles from the Scientific American, a journal with a long tradition in getting renowned scientists to write about their area of expertise for educated laypeople. Pdf files of these articles are linked to the syllabus. If you prefer to use hard copies of these articles, you may print such copies using your own computer/printer or any of the biology computer labs.
It is essential that you familiarize yourself with the lecture notes before the topic is discussed in class. This way, you will get much more out of lectures and class discussions than you would if you came in "cold". Bring your course package to class so that you can mark difficult passages for later clarification and jot down down extra comments while avoiding unnecessary note-taking. It will also be useful to read the assigned readings before they come up in the respective lecture. However, it will be critical to your success in this course that you have read the assigned reading before the teaching assistant goes over it in discussion section during the following week. Use the bulleted guide questions in the course packet to focus on the essential issues in each reading.
If you want to learn more about a particular topic feel free to talk to me or to your teaching assistant. You may also use the "References by Topics" button on the web site for my BIO 346 course, which covers many of the topics of this course in greater depth.
Following is the list of the journal articles that are assigned readings for this course.
de Waal F.B.M. (1995) Bonobo Sex and Society. Scientific American. Mar. 1995: 82-88
Tattersall, I. (2000) Once we were not alone. Scientific American January 2000: 56-62
Levy S.B. (1998) The challenge of antibiotic resistance. Scientific American Mar 1998: 46-53
Davies P. (2007) Are aliens among us? Scientific American December 2007: 62-69
Plomin R. and DeFries J.C. (1998) The genetics of cognitive abilities and disabilities. Scientific American May 1998: 62-69
Hochedlinger K. (2010) Your inner healers. Scientific American May 2010: 46-53
Sweeney H.L. (2004) Gene doping. Scientific American July 2004: 62-69
Kimura D. (1992) Sex differences in the brain. Scientific American September 1992: 118-124
Packer C. and Pusey A.E. (1997) Divided we fall: Cooperation among lions. Scientific American May 1997: 52-59
Sigmund K., Fehr E. and Nowak M.A. (2002) The economics of fair play. Scientific American January 2002: 83-87
Potts M. (2000) The unmet need for family planning. Scient. Amer. Jan. 2000: 88-93
Gleick P.H. (2001) Making Every Drop Count. Scientific American Feb 2001: 40-45
Socolow R.H. and Pacala S.W. (2006) A Plan to Keep Carbon in Check. Scientific American Sep 2006: 50-57
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Last modified: 19 August 2010