Undergraduate Courses

Undergraduate Courses

Undergraduate Course Descriptions


1000 Level Courses - Open to Undergraduates, no prerequisites

BIOS 1700 Life Science for Non-Majors (3 hrs.)
This is a laboratory-lecture-based content course for non-majors that provides a comprehensive overview of the life sciences (taxonomy, anatomy and physiology, ecology and evolution). The course is taught by inquiry using a series of open-ended problem solving environments, many of which have been developed with reference to the history of biology, to encourage critical thinking and insight into the nature of science as an intellectual activity. 

PHYS 1800 Physics: Inquiry and Insights (3 hrs.)
The ‘inquiry’ aspect of this physics course means that you will explore natural phenomena for yourself in the lab, and develop scientific concepts and principles to explain the observed behavior - just as scientists do. The ‘insights’ aspect reflects our emphasis on conceptual understanding and physical insight. The course comprises Light, Waves, and Mechanics. The focus throughout is on fundamental physical principles and the ability to apply them in new situations, to explain, predict and solve problems. The approach promotes appreciation of the nature of science and builds confidence in how to learn and think in science. 

GEOG 1900 Exploring Earth Science: The Atmosphere (3 hrs.)
This is a laboratory course designed to develop and build the concepts and principles of the Earth system with an emphasis on the atmosphere. The objectives of the course are to aid students in developing meaningful and functional understanding of key Earth Science Atmospheric concepts and their interrelations; to provide students with open-ended problem solving experiences that facilitate inquiry regarding the nature and content of science as an intellectual activity; explore alternate conceptions of scientific phenomena; help students develop more positive attitudes towards science and increase their confidence to both explain and apply Earth system theories and principles. Does not serve as an alternate to GEOG 2250 in any programs. 

2000 Level Courses - Open to Undergraduates

BIOS 2700 Introduction to the Genetic and Molecular Basis of Life (3 hrs.)
This is a laboratory course emphasizing the study of life and its continuation. Students develop an understanding of key biological concepts and relationships among the concepts; and an understanding of the nature of science and scientific inquiry, through investigations and reflective discussions. The course aims to facilitate student understanding of basic biology related to current socioscientific issues, such as those involving biotechnology; and develop student abilities to formulate and critically review positions related to such issues. 

CHEM 2800 Active Chemistry (3 hrs.)
This course aids students in developing meaningful and functional understanding of chemistry concepts, their interrelations and their implication for everyday chemical technology. Students work in open-ended problem solving environments that facilitate insight in the nature of science as an intellectual activity, explore alternative conceptions of chemical phenomena, help students develop more positive attitudes about chemical technology and increase their confidence in their ability to do chemistry. 

GEOS 2900 Exploring Earth Science: Geology (3 hrs.)
This is a laboratory-based course designed to develop and build concepts and principles of the Earth system with an emphasis on physical and historical geology. The objectives of the course are to aid students in developing meaningful and functional understanding of key Earth Science concepts and their interrelations; to provide students with open-ended problem solving experiences that facilitate inquiry regarding the nature and content of science as an intellectual activity; explore alternate conceptions of scientific phenomena; help students develop more positive attitudes towards science and increase their confidence to both explain and apply Earth system theories and principles. Local field trip required. 
Geosciences 2900 Syllabus

4000 Level Courses - Open to Advanced Undergraduates

SCI 4040 Teaching of Secondary Science (3 hrs.)
This course addresses the topics of teaching and learning of science at the secondary level. It is designed for those in secondary education who intend to be certified to teach the earth, life, or physical sciences (physics and chemistry) and focuses on the issue of how students learn science concepts and problem-solving skills in meaningful ways. The course develops models of effective instructional strategies designed to promote student learning and understanding of science concepts and processes. Practical methods for demonstrating, using models, planning laboratory experiences, managing science equipment, and safety concerns are developed and discussed. Students also work in discipline-specific groups to address issues unique to that area of science and the science classroom. Prerequisites: 15 hours of science in a certifiable science discipline and ED 3020 which may be taken concurrently with this course.

5000 Level Courses - Open to Graduate Students and Advanced Undergraduates

SCI 5600 Integrated Science (3 hrs.)
This course will involve participants in several activities especially designed to help them achieve an understanding of some of the important concepts of science. This course is designed and taught to address the needs of K-12 teachers. It is a variable topics course and may be repeated for credit if different topics are involved.

SCI 5700 Life Science for Teachers (3 hrs.)
This course will involve participants in several activities especially designed to help them achieve an understanding of some of the important concepts in biology. This course is designed and taught to address the needs of K-12 teachers. It is a variable topics course and may be repeated for credit if different topics are involved.

SCI 5800 Chemistry for School Teachers (3 hrs.)
This course will involve participants in several activities especially designed to help them achieve an understanding of some of the important concepts in chemistry. This course is designed and taught to address the needs of K-12 teachers. It is a variable topics course and may be repeated for credit if different topics are involved.

SCI 5850 Physics for School Teachers (3 hrs.)
This course will involve participants in several activities especially designed to help them achieve an understanding of some of the important concepts in physics. This course is designed and taught to address the needs of K-12 teachers. It is a variable topics course and may be repeated for credit if different topics are involved.

SCI 5900 Earth Sciences for School Science Education (3 hrs.)
This course will involve participants in several activities especially designed to help them achieve an understanding of some of the important concepts in earth science. This course is designed and taught to address the needs of K-12 teachers. It is a variable topics course and may be repeated for credit if different topics are involved.

SCI 5980 Readings in Science (1-4 hrs.)
To be used by students seeking work in topics not otherwise available. The student is limited to not more than four hours in all reading courses and work must be completed under a member of the graduate faculty.

 

 

3225 Wood Hall
Western Michigan University
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5444 USA
269-387-5398 | 269-387-4998 Fax
sci-ed@wmich.edu