• (740) 245-7484


Fall 2016
August 22 - December 8, 2016
Lecture: MW 11:30 - 12:45     Lab: T 1:00 - 2:50
Bio 20704
School of Science


Professor: Dr. Linda Sigismondi
Phone: 740 245-7484
Email: lindas@rio.edu
Office: Kidd Hall 100B
Office Hours: MW 1:00-2:20, T 3:00 – 4:00, R 1:30-2:20 and by apt.


COURSE DESCRIPTION: Fundamental ecological principles, including factors controlling species distributions, animal behavior, population growth and demography, species interactions, community structure and diversity, and basic ecosystem processes are covered in this course.  Students are required to do inquiry-based investigations and analysis of data. Three hours lecture, two hours lab.

PREREQUISITES: C- or better in BIO 12204



Krebs, C. J. 2009. Ecology. 6th Edition. Benjamin Cummings ISBN 978-0-321-50743-3.

Three-ring binder for lab notebook

PROGRAM OUTCOMES-- The successful student is able to:

  1. Explain, using appropriate terminology, the basic concepts of cell/molecular biology, ecology, evolution, and genetics.
  2. Explain the fundamentals of scientific inquiry, interpret the results of scientific investigations, and draw reasonable conclusions from data.
  3. Complete critical reading of original and secondary source material.
  4. Communicate, in oral and written form, biological technical information.
  5. Relate models, theories and concepts to real world phenomena.
  6. Use standard biological equipment appropriately and safely, and explain the limitations of the equipment. 

COURSE OUTCOMES: Upon completion of this course students are expected to:

  1. Explain the relationship between evolution and ecology.
  2. Explain the costs and benefits of different behavior patterns.
  3. Explain the biotic and abiotic factors that determine the geographical distribution of organisms. 
  4. Explain the factors that determine the abundance of populations.
  5. Explain and model community ecology dynamics. 
  6. Compare and contrast different ecosystems in terms of primary production, secondary production, trophic complexity and energy flow.
  7. Explain the effects of climate change on ecosystem dynamics 
  8. Demonstrate the ability to appropriately design and perform ecological sampling and data collection.
  9. Demonstrate the accurate use of basic descriptive and inferential statistics in analysis of ecological data.




Classroom BehaviorStudents are expected to behave professionally and respectfully at all times.

Plagiarism: Plagiarism refers to copying and passing off another’s work as one’s own. It includes copying information from published sources such as books, journals and webpages without appropriate citations. It also includes copying the work of another student.  All students in the class are expected to do their own work.  Two (or more) students should not submit the same paper even if they worked together. Plagiarized work will receive a zero. 

Late Papers: Students are expected to turn in all labs, activities and assignments on time.  Occasionally, it may be necessary to take a lab or activity home to finish. If so, the completed lab/activity is to be turned in the next class day. Any late material will lose 10% per class day.




ADA POLICY: If a student wishes to be identified as having a physical, mental, or learning disability, that may or may not require reasonable accommodation(s), he/she must register with the Office of Accessibility. These registered students should identify themselves to their instructors and provide a written statement from the Accessibility Office that indicates the appropriate accommodations. The process of a student self-proclaiming the need for accommodation should occur as early in the semester as possible. The Office of Accessibility is located in Rhodes Hall, Room 116, University of Rio Grande, (740) 245-7339.

FERPA: The University of Rio Grande and Rio Grande Community College are committed to fully respecting and protecting the rights of students under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). These rights generally include the right to inspect, review and seek amendment to the student's education records and the right to provide written consent before personally identifiable information from education records is disclosed. Under FERPA, students have the right to file a complaint with the US Department of Education concerning alleged failures to comply with FERPA. Please see the Student Records Confidentiality/ Rights Under FERPA section of the Student Handbook for details and more information.

ACADEMIC DISHONESTY:  Standard university policies, as described in the Student Handbook, apply.

WITHDRAWAL: Refer to Student Handbook

INCOMPLETES: Standard university policy - Incompletes will only be granted for extenuating circumstances, such as illness, accident, etc. which will prevent the student from completing the course. An incomplete grade cannot be given to avoid a failing grade in the course. Appropriate documentation (i.e. medical) must accompany the Incomplete Grade Request. Students must have completed at least 75% of the course with a passing grade when requesting an incomplete. The student must request an incomplete from the instructor. It is the responsibility of the student to make up incomplete work. The instructor must complete the Incomplete Grade Request form and submit to the Registrar’s Office. Requests must include a valid reason why the work cannot be completed, a list of assignments to complete, a schedule for when the work will be completed, and the grade to be assigned if the work is not completed. Assignments should be completed as soon as possible, preferably within a few weeks.

Last Updated: August 17, 2016