BS 2314, Section A

Spring Semester 2008


Lecture and lab:  TTH 8:00 - 10:45             SC101 (lecture) and SC111 (lab)


Course description:  The study of the taxonomy, morphology, and physiology of microorganisms, emphasizing: 1) their relation to medicine, industry, agriculture; and 2) basic lab technique.


Prerequisites: Biological Science (BS1114) will be a prerequisite for Microbiology beginning with the 2008/2009 catalogue.  We strongly recommend that you have completed biological science before taking this course.


Textbooks: Prescott, Harley, Klein’s Microbiology. J. Willey, L. Sherwood, and C. Woolverton. Seventh edition. WCB/McGraw-Hill Press, Boston, MA 2008.



            This course integrates an introduction to microbiology with an emphasis on the important skills of: 1) critical thinking; 2) scientific writing; and 3) public presentation.  Although the specific focus is on microorganisms, the course incorporates a thorough review of important subjects (e.g., cellular respiration, enzyme activity, basic genetics, use of microbes in genetic study and biotechnology).  Microbiology is highly relevant to both scientists and the general public.  For example, microbes are used in genetic studies, for industrial purposes, and for medical research.  This course seeks to provide students with an understanding of important scientific concepts, an ability to think critically, and an understanding of the importance of microbiology to society in general.  Additionally, this course seeks to provide an appreciation of the importance of the natural world.


Course objectives:

1.  to develop a sufficient background for those students who wish to study more advanced topics

2.  to provide familiarity with basic microbiological laboratory techniques

3.  to aid the development of the ability to think scientifically and to evaluate information critically

4.  to provide an understanding of the role of microbes in disease transmission and prevention

5.  to provide familiarity with important laboratory safety guidelines

6.  to improve public speaking and scientific writing skills through lab reports, presentations, and discussions


Institutional Goals:  This course will address the six institutional goals (found on page 9 of the catalogue) as follows.

1. Institutional goal 1 (“To produce students who demonstrate an understanding of the Judeo-Christian heritage and Christian worldview”) will be addressed by objectives 1, 2, and 4.  Students will learn aspects of the historical development of microbiology, consider current ethical issues, and demonstrate their perspectives through exams and reports.

2.  Institutional goal 2 (“To produce students who demonstrate the ability to communicate effectively across the curriculum”) will be addressed by primarily by objective 6, but will also be addressed by exam questions, homework assignments, and class discussions.

3.  Institutional goal 3 (“To produce students who demonstrate the ability to reflect critically upon the world, the environment, society, and self”) will be addressed within the context of class discussions, through exam questions, and through lab reports.  In particular, objective 3 addresses this goal.

4.  Institutional goal 4 (“To produce students who demonstrate the ability to apply the principles of the scientific method to become more effective problem solvers”) will be addressed through problem solving during class, homework, and exams (reflected in objective 3).  This goal will also be addressed through the independent research projects that students will complete during lab.

5.  Institutional goal 5 (“To produce students who demonstrate an appreciation for a healthy lifestyle that will promote lifelong heath and fitness”) will be addressed through discussion of the biological bases of health and disease (encompassed within objectives 1, 2, and 4).

6.  Institutional goal 6 (“To produce students who demonstrate a competence in at least one particular body of knowledge”) will be addressed through strengthening student knowledge of biology, and of important general scientific concepts, through all aspects of the course.


Course Requirements:

            Attendance and completion of all exams is mandatory.  Students are accountable for all class assignments, class announcements, handouts, and information provided in lecture.  After three lecture or lab absences, a student’s course grade will be reduced by 5% for each additional absence.  If more than six lectures or labs are missed, the student will be asked to drop the course or receive a failing grade.  Failure to clean up a work station following lab will result in a loss of 5 points for every student working at that station.  Please arrive on time to lab!  You will not be allowed to stay late to work because you have arrived late and need extra time.

            If you must miss an exam or lab, then you must contact me as quickly as possible.  It is always better to contact me before rather than after an absence if you know in advance that you must miss class (if you notify me in advance, it will be easier to receive approval for a makeup). Please provide a substantive excuse (e.g., a doctor’s note).  Do not assume that you will be able to make up a lab, lab practical, or exam.  Additionally, please do not ask to postpone an exam on the day of the exam.  If you have other exams on the same day, bring it to my attention before the exam date.  In particular, note that some labs may be difficult or impossible to make up.

            Your grade will be lowered by 5% of the total possible number of points for each day that an assignment is late.  If an assignment is due in a particular lab or class, that means that it is due at the beginning of the lab or class and you will lose points if you turn it in during or after the class on the same day.

            Students are expected and required to uphold the highest standards of academic honesty in this and all courses.  Students should be familiar with the College's policies concerning academic integrity Catalog, page 46; Student Handbook, page 24, section VII).  Students requiring any clarification of these policies should consult their academic advisor or the Office of Academic Affairs.  Student papers will be submitted to Turnitin.com and will be penalized heavily for plagiarism.  Substantial plagiarism will result in a grade of 0 and possible additional penalties.  If you are uncertain about what constitutes plagiarism and want assistance, please speak with Dr. Paterson.

            Williams Baptist College is an independent, non-profit, church related institution which does not discriminate on the basis of disability in the provision of educational services. Although Williams does not provide separate programs for students with disabilities, accommodations for class presentation, evaluation, and access will be determined on a case-by-case basis once the student has disclosed a disability and appropriate documentation supporting the request for the accommodations has been provided to the College. For further information, contact Dr. Gary Gregory, Director of Counseling at 870-759-4178. All students, regardless of disability, must meet the same admission and graduation requirements.



            Lecture Exam I             50 pts

            Lecture Exam II          100 pts

            Lecture Exam III         100 pts

            Final Exam                 200 pts

            Presentations                50 pts

            Quizzes                         50 pts

            Lab notebook                50 pts

            Lab reports                   50 pts

            Lab Practical I              25 pts

            Lab Practical II             25 pts

            Total                           700 pts


            There will be short quizzes at the beginning of each lab.  In addition, you are required to keep a lab notebook in which you take notes on each lab.  Lab reports will be short papers written in scientific format.  Your presentation will consist of a short overview of a microbial taxon, such as those outlined in your text.


Instructor: Dr. Ann V. Paterson

Phone: 870-759-4171

E-mail: apaterson@wbcoll.edu

Office hours:  I will be in my office from: 9:00 – 11:00 am on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays; from 2:00 – 2:30 pm on Mondays; from 2:00 – 2:30 pm on Tuesdays; from 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm on Wednesdays; and from 1:00 – 3:00 pm on Thursdays.  Please stop by, call, or e-mail if you would like to schedule an appointment at a different time.  My class schedule is posted on my office door in case you would like to try to find me in a class or lab.  If you need to contact me, e-mail is generally the fastest method.

Microbiology Syllabus

Note: this syllabus will change during the semester. You are responsible for changes announced in lecture (e.g., changes in exam dates).


Week  Date                Lecture Topic                                                            Text Assignment* 

     1     Jan. 8               Introduction                                                                Chapter 1

                                    Brief history and relevance of microbiology

            Jan. 10             Microscopy                                                                 Chapter 2

                                    Prokaryotic cell structure and function                     Chapter 3

    2      Jan. 15             Eukaryotic cell structure and function                      Chapter 4

                                    Last day to add a class

            Jan. 17             Mitosis and meiosis

    3      Jan. 22             Overview of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells

            Jan. 24             Identifying unknowns

                                    Nutritional requirements                                            Chapter 5

    4      Jan. 29             Growth patterns                                                          Chapter 6

            Jan. 31             Review/catch-up

    5      Feb. 5              Lecture exam I

            Feb. 7              Culturing microorganisms                                         Chapter 6

                                    Control of microorganisms                                        Chapter 7

   6       Feb. 12            Why we use detergents and soap                               Chapter 7

                                    Introduction to metabolism                                        Chapter 8

            Feb. 14            Enzymes                                                                     Chapter 8

                                    Metabolism (general)                                                 Chapter 8

                                                                                                                        Chapter 9

   7       Feb. 19            Metabolic pathways (cellular respiration)                Chapter 9

            Feb. 21            Metabolic pathways (photosynthesis)                       Chapter 9

   8       Feb. 26            Review/catch-up

            Feb. 28            Lecture exam II

   9       Mar. 4             Biosynthesis                                                               Chapter 10

            Mar. 6             Introduction/review of genetic concepts                   Chapter 11

                                    Synthesis of nucleic acids                                          Chapter 11

  10      Mar. 11           Spring break

            Mar. 13           Spring break

  11      Mar. 18           Synthesis of nucleic acids, cont.                                Chapter 11

                                                                                                                        Chapter 12

            Mar. 20           Protein synthesis                                                        Chapter 11

                                    Mutations and repair                                                  Chapter 11

  12      Mar. 25           Microbial genetics                                                     Chapters 13, 14, 15

            Mar. 27           Microbial genetics                                                     Chapters 13, 14, 15

  13      Apr. 1              Viruses, microbial taxonomy                                     Chapters 16-19

            Apr. 3              Review/catch-up

  14      Apr. 8              Lecture exam III

            Apr. 10            Symbiotic associations                                              Chapter 28

  15      Apr. 15            Student presentations

            Apr. 17            Immunology, diseases                                                Chapters 31-40

  16      Apr. 22            Diseases                                                                      Chapters 38-70

                                    Environmental microbiology, industrial                   Chapters 29-30, 41-42

                                    microbiology, microbiology of food

            Apr. 24            Review/catch-up

Apr. 25 – Apr. 30        Final exams


* note that detailed text assignments will be given in lecture.

Microbiology Lab Syllabus


Week  Date                Lab Exercise

     2     Jan. 15             Introduction, general laboratory safety

                                    Light microscope

                                    Identifying cocci, bacilli, and spirilla

                                    Slides of representative microbes

     3     Jan. 22             Microscopic measurement

                                    Introduction to sterile technique

     4     Jan. 29             Staining techniques

                                    Identifying unknowns

     5     Feb. 5              Identifying unknowns

     6     Feb. 12            Media preparation and culture techniques

     7     Feb. 19            Spread and streak plate techniques

                                    Isolation and maintenance of pure cultures

     8     Feb. 26            Lab practical I

     9     Mar. 4             Starch and casein hydrolysis

    10    Mar. 11           Spring break

    11    Mar. 18           Effects of antibiotics

    12    Mar. 25           Determination of bacterial numbers

                                    Effects of disinfectants, part 1

    13    Apr. 1              Effects of disinfectants, part 2

                                    Design an experiment – preparation

                                    First lab report due

    14    Apr. 8              Run your experiments           

    15    Apr. 15            Present results

                                    Second lab report due            

    16    Apr. 22            Lab practical II

    Apr. 25 – Apr. 30    Final exams