The science of biology must begin with cell theory, including the structure, function, and chemistry of the cell. Cells form the primary level of organization of all living things. The chemistry and function of each cell shapes the lifestyle of the organism, from feeding to reproductive patterns. This first course in biology focuses on the life of the cell, dealing with issues of structure, transport, genetics, protein synthesis, energy production, and usage. The tools of science are explained and then focused on the living systems in the cell. In the case of genetics, the molecular behavior of DNA is elaborated to show how it determines the visible traits of the organism and population. Thus, you are led on a tour of living systems from the tiniest to the broadest levels of organization. During this tour, you will employ text, computer simulations, videotaped labs, and hands-on investigation to verify each concept and make them relevant to what you see each day. The aim of this course is to guide you, the student, to see your world in biological terms, and then to expand your vision to contemplate current topics in biological research and application.
The study of the human body involves more than just its anatomy, but also entails an understanding of the roles each part plays, how each contributes to system, and holistic wellness. The basic plan of the course is to examine each of the organ systems, including the skeletal, muscular, integumentary (skin), circulatory, respiratory, immune, digestive, excretory, nervous, sensory, endocrine, and reproductive systems. The regulation and coordination of these systems is what constitutes physiology, which is the major part of the laboratory investigations associated with the course. After completing the course, students will have a foundation for more specialized studies in the health sciences.