The biology department offers a yearlong introductory course which satisfies part of the diploma requirement for a laboratory science. Most Juniors will take Biology 100 as their introductory science course. Uppers and Seniors are placed in Biology 550 or 560, 570, 580 by the department chair. In general, students who have had a year of biology and honors in chemistry, or have had AP Chemistry and AP Physics, will be in the 560, 570, 580 sequence. Most other students who wish to take the Biology AP exam should take Biology 550.
Lowers may take biology only by special permission from the department chair.
BIOL-600 Molecular Biology
(F-W) Laboratory Research
This is a course in laboratory research in molecular biology. Open to Uppers and Seniors. Permission of the instructor is required. Meets eight class periods (four double periods) a week. Students in this course will learn laboratory techniques for working with DNA and bacteria. Experiments will center on the molecular genetics of microorganisms, including the isolation, cutting and splicing of DNA by recombinant DNA biotechnologies, and the polymerase chain reaction. After learning a core of methodologies that are used in professional labs, students will apply them to short, focused research projects in biotechnology.
Uppers may use this course as a springboard for a science competition project, which would be accomplished at a professional lab during the following summer. Reading articles in scientific journals as appropriate is part of a student’s research. Students will also be asked to keep a lab journal and to write and present a scientific paper. This course, if failed, may not be made up by examination. Prerequisite: one year of biology and one year of chemistry with grades of 4 or above.