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Viewing: PB 200 : Plant Life

Last approved: Thu, 07 Sep 2017 08:01:25 GMT

Last edit: Wed, 06 Sep 2017 17:26:29 GMT

Change Type
PB (Plant Biology)
Dual-Level Course
Cross-listed Course
Plant Life
Plant Life
College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
Plant Biology (11PB)
Term Offering
Fall and Spring
Offered Every Year
Fall 2017
Previously taught as Special Topics?
Course Delivery
Face-to-Face (On Campus)
Distance Education (DELTA)

Grading Method
Graded with S/U option
Contact Hours
(Per Week)
Component TypeContact Hours
Course Attribute(s)
GEP (Gen Ed)

If your course includes any of the following competencies, check all that apply.
University Competencies

Course Is Repeatable for Credit
Chad Jordan (fall) / James Mickle (spring)
Alumni Distinguished Undergraduate Professor

Open when course_delivery = campus OR course_delivery = blended OR course_delivery = flip
Enrollment ComponentPer SemesterPer SectionMultiple Sections?Comments
Lecture144144NoLecture meets twice per week for 75 minutes.
Laboratory14424YesLabs meet once per week for 165 minutes.
Open when course_delivery = distance OR course_delivery = online OR course_delivery = remote
Delivery FormatPer SemesterPer SectionMultiple Sections?Comments
LLB3535NoThe lecture and lab are combined in the distance education section since it is not possible to schedule distinct lecture and lab times.

Is the course required or an elective for a Curriculum?
SIS Program CodeProgram TitleRequired or Elective?
11PSSBSPlant and Soil SciencesRequired
15FWSCIBSFisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation BiologyRequired
15FORMTBSForest ManagementRequired
15PGMBSProfessional Golf ManagementRequired
11AGBUSBSAgricultural Business ManagementElective
17BIOBABiological Sciences (BA)Elective
17BIOSCBSBiological Sciences (BS)Elective
17MARSCBSMarine SciencesElective
11TFGBSTurfgrass SciencesRequired
11SLDBSSoil and Land DevelopmentElective
An introduction to the structure, processes, and reproduction of higher plants, including the diversity of the plant kingdom and principles of inheritance, ecology, and evolution. Students cannot receive credit for both PB 200 and PB 250.

Scheduling: The department has not offered PB 200 in a summer session for several years, but continues to be taught each fall and spring. Scheduling is therefore being modified to reflect this pattern.

Course Description: A minor change is being made to the course description to update the former Botany prefix (BO) to Plant Biology (PB).

GEP Documentation: The GEP documentation is being updated as a result of course being reviewed for the Natural Sciences list. The course content is not being revised.


Is this a GEP Course?
GEP Categories
Natural Sciences
Humanities Open when gep_category = HUM
Each course in the Humanities category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:






Mathematical Sciences Open when gep_category = MATH
Each course in the Mathematial Sciences category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:




Natural Sciences Open when gep_category = NATSCI
Each course in the Natural Sciences category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:
Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:
a. Evaluate the effects of environmental variables on photosynthetic activity and plant transport processes.
b. Identify common morphological patterns in angiosperms and angiosperm vegetative modifications.
c. Describe strategies for developing herbicide tolerance and insect resistance using genetic engineering as well as methods for detecting transgenes in plants.
Outcome a. Students conduct a lab experiment in which they measure the rate of net photosynthesis (RNP) and examine the effects of variable carbon dioxide availability, light quantity, and light quality on the rate. Prior to the experiment they are asked to state hypotheses about how each variable will impact the rate. After the experiment, students calculate RNP then graph the it as a function of each variable condition to assess the effects of each variable. These calculations and graphs are graded, as are responses to post-lab questions. Example question:
What is another experimental variable that you could consider changing to examine its influence on
photosynthetic rate (aside from light and carbonate concentration)?

Students conduct another lab experiment in which they examine the effects of heat, wind, and humidity on transpiration rates using a potometer. Students record and graph transpiration data for a control specimen and each treatment condition. They answer post-lab questions that are graded. Example question:

What is the driving force behind water transport in plants? How do heat, wind, and humidity each influence water transport, based on your data? Describe two ways that some plants are adapted for high heat, wind, and dry conditions?

Outcome b. Students have two labs where they examine angiosperm morphology, both vegetative and reproductive, as well as vegetative organ modifications (such as carnivory, spinose projections, asexual reproduction, etc.). For both of these labs, students have quiz questions in which they are asked to sight identify these common morphological characteristics.

Example Question 1: (Lab quiz station with buckeye limb specimen)
a. The leaf arrangement displayed here is:______________
b. The venation pattern on the leaves is:_______________
c. This specimen has simple or compound leaves? ______________

Example Question 2: (Lab quiz station with Nepenthes leave)
a. Does this plant possess active or passive traps? ________________
b. Other than carnivory, describe one other adaptation of the leaves on this plant:

Outcome c. Students answer questions on exams about plant genetic engineering methods and genetically engineered traits.

Example Question 1: Agrobacterium tumefaciens is a soil bacterium that causes (A) ________________to form on plants that it infects by inserting pieces of its DNA (T-DNA) into plant cells and inducing cell division. The ability of Agrobacterium to insert DNA into plants was recognized, and the organism was developed into a vector to transform plants with novel genes. However, Agrobacterium was not initially successful at transforming what group of plants? (B) __________ Thus, another plant transformation method was developed, called (C) __________________________________. This technology uses compressed gas to physically force DNA into cells that has been coated onto gold or tungsten particles. (D) Name one advantage of using Agrobacterium compared to the method in “C”.

Example Question 2: (A) Plant transformation has had a significant impact on modern agriculture by enabling the introduction of novel combinations of genes into plants, thereby conferring traits on them that do not naturally exist. Two of these traits have been adopted widely in the United States for some large acreage row crop plants. What are these two traits?

(B) Identify two additional traits discussed in lecture or lab that have been developed through plant biotechnology to address a need or help solve a problem.

Students conduct a two-week lab experiment in which they isolate DNA from various food plant species or food products and use both polymerase chain reaction and protein detection methods to determine if those foods/products are genetically engineered. Students first develop a hypothesis about the presence of transgenes in the foods/products they are testing based on provided product label information. After obtaining results in the second lab, they answer a series of questions about the procedures they used and their findings.

Example Question 1: Why were the Cauliflower Mosaic (CaMV) 35S promoter and the NOS terminator sequence of Agrobacterium specifically chosen as primers in this PCR protocol?

Example Question 2: Did any of the foods labeled non-GMO test positive for the presence of transgenes? If so, what are some possible explanations for that result?

Example Question 3:
What explanation could you give for a plant or food product for which the PCR results were positive but the protein detection results were negative?
Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:
a. Distinguish between major plant taxa based on structural features and life cycle characteristics of each.
b. Identify the the major cell and tissue types found in plants and describe how their structure influences their function.
c. Use basic ecological community composition measures to analyze plant diversity in different community types.
Outcome a: Exam and lab quiz questions are used to evaluate whether students can correctly identify characteristics of or example organisms belonging to the major taxonomic groups.

Example Question 1, from Exam 3:
(Fern life cycle image is provided on the exam with structure "G" delineating a prothallus.)
The dominant generation of the plant in the previous question is (circle one): sporophyte OR gametophyte.

The structure delineated by label "G" is (circle one): haploid diploid triploid

Example Question 2, from the Final Exam:
Circle all appropriate letters that apply to a group. (Each letter in grid = .25pts).
A. Gametophyte anchored by rhizoids
B. Primarily aquatic
C. Produce seeds
D. Produce flowers
E. Have true roots, stems, leaves
F. Gametophyte dominant
G. Have vessel elements

Algae: A B C D E F G
Mosses: A B C D E F G
Ferns: A B C D E F G
Gymnosperms: A B C D E F G
Angiosperms: A B C D E F G

Example Questions 3&4, from a lab quiz:
(Specimen of whisk fern with obvious sporangia.)
What cellular process of the life cycle occurs within these yellow structures?
a. Meiosis
b. Mitosis
c. Fertilization

This plant is a member of the:
a. Bryophyta
b. Pterodiphyta
c. Magnoliophyta

Outcome b: On lecture exams, students are given diagrams and photos of plant organ cross-sections and longitudinal sections, and are asked to identify the major cell and tissue types. They are also asked to describe the function of some of these types in separate questions.

Example Question 1, from Exam 1:
The tissue photo "C" is (choose one) parenchyma collenchyma sclerenchyma. This tissue is often found just under the epidermis of stems and adjacent to the primary veins of leaves, and is therefore part of the (choose one) dermal vascular ground tissue system. What is the principal function of this tissue? Describe the composition of the cell walls of this tissue in your response.

Example Question 2, from Exam 2:
The root cell layer at which most water movement must become symplastic en route to the vascular tissue is the __________. Why is that the case?

Outcome c: On the final exam, students are presented with a set of field data collected from different plant communities and are asked to calculate, and then compare, species richness, density, and relative abundance across the communities. In lab, students are given samples from two local bodies of water and must complete a graded worksheet in which they record their richness, density, and relative abundance data, and compare the two communities.
Social Sciences Open when gep_category = SOCSCI
Each course in the Social Sciences category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:






Interdisciplinary Perspectives Open when gep_category = INTERDISC
Each course in the Interdisciplinary Perspectives category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:








Visual & Performing Arts Open when gep_category = VPA
Each course in the Visual and Performing Arts category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:






Health and Exercise Studies Open when gep_category = HES
Each course in the Health and Exercise Studies category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:








Global Knowledge Open when gep_category = GLOBAL
Each course in the Global Knowledge category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to achieve objective #1 plus at least one of objectives 2, 3, and 4:


Please complete at least 1 of the following student objectives.






US Diversity Open when gep_category = USDIV
Each course in the US Diversity category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to achieve at least 2 of the following objectives:
Please complete at least 2 of the following student objectives.








Requisites and Scheduling
a. If seats are restricted, describe the restrictions being applied.
b. Is this restriction listed in the course catalog description for the course?
List all course pre-requisites, co-requisites, and restrictive statements (ex: Jr standing; Chemistry majors only). If none, state none.
List any discipline specific background or skills that a student is expected to have prior to taking this course. If none, state none. (ex: ability to analyze historical text; prepare a lesson plan)
Additional Information
Complete the following 3 questions or attach a syllabus that includes this information. If a 400-level or dual level course, a syllabus is required.
Title and author of any required text or publications.
A syllabus is attached.
Major topics to be covered and required readings including laboratory and studio topics.

List any required field trips, out of class activities, and/or guest speakers.

The department already allocated resources to teach this course. The course is already part of the instructors' regular teaching commitments.

1. Introduce students to the taxonomic diversity of plants and algae, with emphasis on patterns and variability in anatomy and morphology and life cycle characteristics.

2. Discuss major metabolic processes of photosynthetic organisms and how these processes are regulated by a combination of environmental conditions and internal signals.

3. Demonstrate how humans use plants and plant products. 

4. Explain how plants are adapted for different environments and how the environment influences their distribution. 

5. Provide students with hands on laboratory experiences that address fundamental plant biology concepts.

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this course, students will be able, in the context of plants and algae, to:

  1. Identify major structural features of photosynthetic organisms and their modifications

  2. Explain major metabolic pathways and physiological processes

  3. Describe how plant form influences function

  4. Explain growth and developmental processes and phenomena, including external and internal signals that induce changes in growth and development

  5. Integrate genetics and biotechnology to explain how plants change and have been changed by humans over time

  6. Discuss their significance to human civilization through their use

  7. Identify major taxonomic groups

  8. Explain their system of classification and how they are preserved

  9. Demonstrate proper handling of specimens and laboratory equipment

  10. Demonstrate proper scientific communication skills

Evaluation MethodWeighting/Points for EachDetails
Multiple exams300pts3 in-term exams at 100pts each
Final Exam100ptsFinal exam is partially cumulative
Lab assignments200ptsEach lab has a pre-lab quiz worth 20pts and a lab unit quiz or report worth 80pts. An average of each component is tallied and combined to yield a lab point total (out of 100pts) that is multiplied X2 to yield the final lab point total.
TopicTime Devoted to Each TopicActivity
N/A - Syllabus attached.

aeherget (Thu, 10 Aug 2017 11:51:24 GMT): AECHH: Uploading updated syllabus at instructor's request via email 8/9/2017.
Key: 679