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Graduate Course Proposal Form Submission Detail - BSC5454

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Current Status: Approved, Permanent Archive - 2009-03-04
Submission Type:
Course Change Information (for course changes only):

  1. Department and Contact Information

    Tracking Number Date & Time Submitted
    1653 2007-04-20
    Department College Budget Account Number
    Biology AS 120901000
    Contact Person Phone Email
    KT Scott 45173

  2. Course Information

    Prefix Number Full Title
    BSC 5454 Genomics

    Is the course title variable? N
    Is a permit required for registration? Y
    Are the credit hours variable? N
    Is this course repeatable?
    If repeatable, how many times? 0

    Credit Hours Section Type Grading Option
    4 C - Class Lecture (Primarily) R - Regular
    Abbreviated Title (30 characters maximum)
    Course Online? Percentage Online


    BSC 2011, CHM 2046, PCB 3063


    Course Description

    We will be using genomic data available from multiple bioinformatics databases to answer an open-ended question fundamental to organismal evolution. The emphasis is to hone scientific inquiry skills in fledgeling researchers.

  3. Justification

    A. Please briefly explain why it is necessary and/or desirable to add this course.

    It is essential for students who intend to do cutting edge biological research to have an awareness of bioinformatics databases and phylogenetic analyses and the skill set to use them critically.

    B. What is the need or demand for this course? (Indicate if this course is part of a required sequence in the major.) What other programs would this course service?

    This course has been used as a biology and microbiology elective by undergraduates, as well as enrolling several graduate students from multiple departments--BMS, Biology, Marine Science. Previous iterations of this course as a Special Topics course has had an avid and engaged enrollment of at least 15 per year.

    C. Has this course been offered as Selected Topics/Experimental Topics course? If yes, how many times?

    Yes, three times (Fall 2004, 5, and 6). The results from the 2004 iteration has been published in PLOS Biology, and we are currently collating the results from 2005 for submission to PNAS.

    D. What qualifications for training and/or experience are necessary to teach this course? (List minimum qualifications for the instructor.)

    PhD in Biology with experience in genome-level analyses.

  4. Other Course Information

    A. Objectives

    The objective of the course is to give upperclass undergraduate students and beginning graduate students the opportunity to generate a publication-quality discussion of a fundamental aspect of metabolism or organismal evolution (e.g., complete genome analyses; comparative genomic analyses of central carbon metabolism). In the process they will be introduced to a crucial toolset for contemporary biological analyses (bioinformatics database utilization; phylogenetic analyses), as well as to the thought processes necessary for conducting research in any discipline.

    B. Learning Outcomes

    Bioinformatics database utilization (BLAST; NCBI; IMG; PFAM)

    Gene alignment and phylogenetic analyses

    Critical thinking skill development

    Scientific inquiry development

    Literature search development

    These items will be assesed via multiple written assignments and a presentation to the class.

    C. Major Topics

    Molecular evolution

    Gene function prediction

    BLAST searches

    IMG utilization

    Gene alignment

    Phylogenetic analyses

    Horizontal gene transfer

    D. Textbooks

    The primary text is Jonathan Pevsner, "Bioinformatics and Functional Genomics", which will be supplemented by primary literature.

    E. Course Readings, Online Resources, and Other Purchases

    F. Student Expectations/Requirements and Grading Policy

    G. Assignments, Exams and Tests

    H. Attendance Policy

    I. Policy on Make-up Work

    J. Program This Course Supports

  5. Course Concurrence Information

- if you have questions about any of these fields, please contact or