Course Summary

Plant and animal life forms in their physical environments

The study will integrate a basic overview of botany, zoology, and physical geography to examine how climatic factors shape plant and animal communities as they adapt to different landforms and topography. The course is organized in three modules: (1) Botany: Exploring the Plant World, (2) Zoology: Exploring the Animal World, and (3) The Physical Universe: Our Environment. 3 undergraduate semester credits will be awarded the student upon successful completion of the course.


• Differentiate between algae, fungi, mosses, ferns, gymnosperms (cone-bearing plants), and angiosperms (flowering plants),

• Distinguish between arthropods (crustaceans and insects), fishes (cartilaginous fishes, bony fishes), amphibians (frogs, toads, salamanders, newts), reptiles (lizards, snakes, turtles, crocodilians), birds, and mammals (monotremes, marsupials, placental mammals).

• Analyze the characteristics of the following biomes: desert, rain-forest, deciduous forest, coniferous (boreal) forest, grasslands, savannas, tundra.

Credit. Credit is given when the student has scored 70% or more on each of three multiple choice exams, a three-part writing assignment, and written assignment that calls for an experience in synthesis. Each exam and each written assignment is  valued at 20% of the final grade.


Online resources, accessible through links.

Three e-books are available online without cost to the student.  In the event a hardcopy book is preferred, the following is recommended:

Carlisle, Rodney. Scientific American Inventions and Discoveries: All the Milestones in Ingenuity from the Discovery of Fire to the Invention of the Microwave Oven. Wiley, 2004. 512 pages. $34.26 ISBN: 978-0471244103