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Viewing: BIO_SC 2300HW phillipst : Introduction to Cell Biology - Honors/Writing Intensive

Last approved: Fri, 07 Jul 2017 21:19:42 GMT

Last edit: Fri, 07 Jul 2017 21:19:25 GMT

Proposal Type

Honors
Writing Intensive

Contact Information

phillipst
Thomas
Phillips
PhillipsT@missouri.edu
573/882-4712
Biological Science
Are you submitting this proposal on behalf of an instructor?

Instructor for whom you are submitting proposal:
phillipst
Thomas
Phillips
PhillipsT@missouri.edu
573/882-4712
Biological Science
Subject Area’s Department Chair/Director:
walkerj
John
Walker
WalkerJ@missouri.edu
573/882-8985
Biological Science

Term for Proposal

Spring 2018
 

Course Catalog Information

A&S
Biological Sciences (BIO_SC)
Biological Sciences
2300HW
4
 
50
Introduction to Cell Biology - Honors/Writing Intensive
Analysis of cellular organization and function at the molecular level. The mechanisms underlying cellular trafficking, cell motility, and signaling within cells and between cells and their environment will be emphasized.
 
Lecture/Standard with Discussion
A-F (allow student to choose S/U option)
BIO_SC 2200. Honors eligibility required.
 
 
 

Instructor Information

phillipst
Thomas
Phillips
PhillipsT@missouri.edu
573/882-4712
Biological Science
(numbers only)
Tenured Professor
2 Tucker Hall
 
 

The Campus Writing Program conducts a two-day faculty workshop to assist with the design and implementation of your writing intensive course. Once your course proposal has been approved by the Campus Writing Program, you will receive information on time, date and location of the workshop.
Indicate below if additional instructors are planned, but specific individuals have not yet been chosen. Check all that apply

Briefly describe the qualifications of the known graduate instructors, or planned qualifications if graduate instructors are still to be selected, bearing in mind that graduate students teaching honors courses should be advanced students with a record of excellent teaching.
 

Honors Course Information

From syllabus:
• Attendance and participation is required except in the case of illness or instructor approved absence. There are no Tegrity recordings. Don’t take this class if you don’t want to attend four days a week. Many class sessions will involve students breaking up into small teams to work on exercises or problem sets. Students will be frequently called upon in class to answer a question or explain how they approached one of the writing assignments.
• There will be slightly more math than one might encounter in other sections. Any honors student with a working knowledge of basic college algebra should have no difficulty.
• There will be a greater emphasis on understanding some of the techniques used in modern cell biology research.
• Students will be required to read and critically analyze research papers from the primary scientific literature.
1
Answer the questions below as they would apply to one section. For all other sections, provide similar information in the Additional Sections Information box below.
 

 
 
 
Short essays
Final
Mid-term
 
 
25
 
from Dr. Phillips
 

Writing Intensive Course Information

This is my fifth time teaching Honors Cell Biology WI. Cell Biology is a required course in the Biology curriculum but most sections aren't WI. The course will not be a traditional lecture format. The small class size (25 max) will allow each class to be held more like a discussion. Cell biology is a foundation for many upper division biology and science classes so it is essential that students acquire "domain specific knowledge" and this is what I emphasize in my non-honors, non-WI version of Bio2300. I don't abandon that requirement in the honors, WI version but have designed writing assignments that require students to apply the information they learn in class to real world problems. Students are required to use online databases such as PubChem (for chemical structures of pharmaceuticals), UniProtKB (for protein sequences), and Abcam (for antibodies) and then address a series of questions that a practicing cell biologist might face. I have them use Excel to graph enzyme kinetic data and ELISA assay results and write a summary of the conclusions they can make from the graphs. I ultimately move on to having the students read and analyze recent scientific publications from leading research journals.
nothing substantial - I may modify one or two of the writing assignments but the format will remain similar to this semester.
Face-to-face
Self paced?

25
25
Should this course be considered for funding?
No
Large Enrollment Courses:
 
 
 

Writing Intensive Assignments

Pages
Assignment #1 Use PubChem to characterize three pharmaceuticals.
This assignment requires the students to use the PubChem online database to investigate some of the chemical properties associated with three drugs (students are assigned different drugs but one example would be Paxil, Haloperidol and Mefloquine). The goals of this assignment include familiarizing students with this database and realizing that most pharmaceuticals are really small molecules where 3 or 4 functional groups forming hydrogen bonds or ionic bonds is sufficient to elicit the response.
Length of assignment:
3
Phillips
3
Phillips
6

Assignment #2 - Using the UniProt database to compare insulin sequences from multiple species
Expose the students to using this protein database to get information on protein sequences. They need to compare insulin sequences from multiple species and make an argument for which would be the best alternative for use in humans. They need to recognize and discuss that some differences in sequence (e.g., a switch from a positively charged amino acid to a hydrophobic one) would mean the insulin from the non-human species could not be used in humans. The first drafts (identified only by student number) are collected and distributed to their peers. The peers then write a detailed evaluation. The instructor then collects everything and assigns a grade to both the main submission and a small amount of "bonus points" for the quality of the review.
Length of assignment:
4
Phillips
4
Phillips
8

Assignment #3 - Enzyme kinetics
Students will need to use Excel to plot some data from an enzyme kinetics study. They will need to explain how they can use the resulting graph to calculate Km, Vmax and whether a given inhibitor is acting in a competitive, non-competitive, or uncompetitive manner.
Length of assignment:
4
Phillips
5
Phillips
9

Assignment #4 – ELISA
Students will need to plot model data from an ELISA experiment and interpret the results.
Length of assignment:
4
Phillips
4
Phillips
8

Assignment #5 - Western blots
Students will need to watch two supplementary videos and use that information, in combination with classroom material, to address a series of questions concerning the Western blot technique. This exercise exposes them to using online videos to supplement classroom lectures. It is also the foundation for understanding a research paper in assignment #10.
Length of assignment:
3
Phillips
3
Phillips
6

Writing Assignment #6 – Immunohistochemistry
Students will need to use a commercial database to identify primary and secondary antibodies needed to perform a specific double labeling immunocytochemistry experiment. They will need to outline the steps in the staining protocol. This assignment is the foundation for understanding a more challenging assignments #7, 8, and 9 where the students will need to interpret an immunocytochemical staining study from a recent research paper.
Length of assignment:
2
Phillips
2
Phillips
4

Assignment #7 - Insulin immunocytochem research paper part 1
To gain practice reading a research paper from the primary scientific literature and analyzing the data. I break this assignment into three submissions. The first is a set of targeted questions requiring thorough reading and comprehension of the Introduction and Methods section. Asadi et al. 2015 Journal of Histochemistry & Cytochemistry 63:646-662.
Length of assignment:
2
Phillips
2
Phillips
4

Assignment 8 Insulin immunocytochem research paper part 2
To gain practice reading a research paper from the primary scientific literature and analyzing the data. I break this assignment into three submissions. Part 2 is targeted questions requiring thorough reading and comprehension of the Methods section and the a complex figure that serves as a control for the rest of the study. Asadi et al. 2015 Journal of Histochemistry & Cytochemistry 63:646-662.
Length of assignment:
2
Phillips
2
Phillips
4

Assignment 9 Insulin immunocytochem research paper part 3
To gain practice reading a research paper from the primary scientific literature and analyzing the data. I break this assignment into three submissions. Part 3 requires explanation and interpretation of two complex figures involving multiple species and knockout strains of mice. Asadi et al. 2015 Journal of Histochemistry & Cytochemistry 63:646-662.
Length of assignment:
6
Phillips
6
Phillips
12

Assignment #10 - Analysis of Am J Endocrinol. Metabol. paper
Analysis of a paper from the primary literature - it incorporates use of fluorescent protein trafficking, ER processing, apoptosis, Western blots - all material covered earlier in the class. Rajan et al. (2010) In vitro processing and secretion of mutant insulin proteins that cause permanent neonatal diabetes. Am. J. Endocrinol. Metabl. 298:E403-E410.
Length of assignment:
6
Phillips
6
Phillips
12

Total pages for all assignments:
First drafts:
36.00
Revisions:
37.00
73.00
The final exam consists of two identical questions which are listed in the syllabus: "Write a question about a topic covered in this class at some point in the semester and answer it. Your answer should be a minimum of two pages. Your answer may include drawings if they aid in the explanation of your answer but they should not be included in the determination of whether you have met the minimum page length. Your submission will be graded on the complexity of the question and the clarity of the answer. It should include some "factual" information and evidence of integration of some fundamental concepts. The answer should represent your own work and not be some memorization of paragraphs from the textbook or web. You are encouraged to run drafts of your answer through the Online Writery or work with the CWP tutors. You won't be able to bring the draft to the exam but this talking to the CWP may identify flaws in your logic or how you are articulating key points. The instructor will not pre-evaluate your question or answer prior to grading your work."

This final format works great and the feedback from the students is strongly positive although they are all surprised by how much harder it was than they expected. I don't count it as a writing assignment but that is essentially what it is. Every student who excels on this final has put significant time honing their essay prior to the exam. It is, without a doubt, my most successful innovation of this course. I am still grading the final exam from this semester (which underscores how ridiculous the deadline for submission to the Honors College for next spring classes is!!!!) but one student wrote 13 pages. Many students wrote multiple drafts before the exam to be ready. I saw them reviewing these before the start of the exam.

Writing Intensive Teaching

Instructor provided feedback
Peer review
 
 
The assignments described above give examples of where students need to analyze the data from authentic research papers or real on-line scientific databases. They are asked to explain what the results mean, whether all controls were properly done and if the results demonstrate what the authors propose. When working with the databases, they need to make decisions about whether the homology between two proteins would allow them to substitute for each other.

In the assignments involving authentic research papers, students need to reconcile conflicting results and make judgments on whether they accept the authors' interpretations of their results. In at least one case, the authors make a conclusion that seems to make no sense based on the data.
50% of grade from writing assignments. Early on the assignments are shorter and come with shorter turnaround deadlines. The first five assignments are due in the first 4 weeks. The next 3 assignments fall due between weeks 5 and 7. Assignments 9 and 10 are more substantive and are due at the end of week 9 and week 12.
50
%
 
0
 

Course Syllabus

Upload Course Syllabus

Administrative Information

Natural and Applied Sciences
 
 

Acknowledgement

I have read and reviewed the updated proposal

Additional Comments

No TAs. Dr. Phillips will grade all assignments and hold daily office hours.
Patricia Luckenotte (luckenottep) (Fri, 07 Jul 2017 21:19:25 GMT): BIO_SC 2300HW, 01/01A has been flagged for both Writing Intensive and Honors for Spring 2018
Key: 61