Biology

Contact Information
James Nichols, Chair
ACU Box 27868
Abilene, Texas 79699-7868
Foster Science Building, Room 477

Phone: 325-674-2188
Fax: 325-674-2009
Email: nicholsj@acu.edu
Web: www.acu.edu/biology

Faculty
Daniel K. Brannan, Professor
Joshua Brokaw, Assistant Professor
Patricia Hernandez, Professor
Tom Lee, Professor
Rebecca Hunter, Assistant Professor
Charles Mattis, Associate Professor
James R. Nichols, Professor
Qiang Xu, Assistant Professor

Majors: Biology (BA) 
               Biology(BS)
               Life Science (One-Field Teacher Certification Grades 8-12) (BS)

Minor:   Biology

The Department of Biology offers the Bachelor of Science degree and the Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in biology or biology for teacher certification. The department works with the Department of Teacher Education to offer a Bachelor of Science: High School Certification Life Science (Grades 8-12) degree. A minor in biology may be added to other majors.

Introduction

The Department of Biology educates students for Christian service and leadership throughout the world by preparing them to become biological scientists, pre-college teachers and health-care professionals. The Bachelor of Science: High School Certification Life Science (Grades 8-12) is the avenue for preparation of pre-college teachers. The Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts in biology are the avenues for:

  • Cellular/molecular biology emphasis. Much of modern biology exists at the interface of biology and chemistry. Through effective classes, laboratories and research opportunities the Department of Biology effectively draws students to the molecular/biochemical level of life. Many students in health-care professions also choose this emphasis.
  • Organismal biology/field emphasis. An array of field biology oriented courses, research opportunities, and field trips to such sites as Honduras, Big Bend, Texas, and New Mexico offer study experiences in marine, fresh water, and land ecosystems. These opportunities are supplemented by ACU being a participating university with the Au Sable Institute. Au Sable offers field courses in the beautiful north woods country of Michigan’s Lower Peninsula and on Whidbey Island in Puget Sound between Vancouver and Seattle. Au Sable’s mission is “the integration of knowledge of the creation with biblical principles for the purpose of bringing the Christian community and the general public to a better understanding of the Creator and the stewardship of God’s creation.” This fits well with the goal of ACU’s Biology Department.
  • Health professions/human biology emphasis. Historically ACU Biology graduates have been accepted to medical and dental schools, as well as other health-care programs, at almost twice the national average. This is a result of high quality classes and laboratories emphasizing human biology and the leveling effect of learning to use human healing gifts in God’s service. Medical missions receives clear emphasis in the Department and many students participate during their career in one or more medical missions trips, many of them coordinated through our long-term relationship with Health Talents International (HTI). The majority of these efforts are in Guatemala. HTI’s mission is “to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ through teaching and healing ministries.” ACU’s relationship with HTI provides students an opportunity to blend faith and learning in an applied manner that serves the spiritual and physical health needs of others throughout the world.
  • General biology emphasis. Some students prefer to pursue a more general biology program that allows them to touch many different areas. Past students have used this emphasis to enter law school, gain employment in industry or government, or in science writing.
  • Biology/business emphasis. Students interested in mixing a strong biology education with some key courses from the world of business would find this track helpful. It includes a full set of biology courses and adds basic courses in such areas as accounting, management, and marketing. Students might use this emphasis to lead toward a career in health care administration, pharmaceutical sales, or law.

Study Abroad Expectations

All students are encouraged to participate in ACU’s Study Abroad program. Classes offered at Study Abroad sites vary depending on the site. Academic advisors can assist students in planning ahead for their Study Abroad experience and should be consulted during the freshman year.

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Bachelor of Science Degree (BS)

The Bachelor of Science degree in biology is needed for most graduate schools with programs in the biological sciences. Most health professions schools require a bachelor’s degree in any field including all of the liberal arts, provided the prerequisite science and math courses are taken. Discuss the specific requirements with the pre-health professions advisor.

Admission Requirements
Before being admitted to the BS in biology, a student must satisfy the requirements listed in the ACT/SAT Placement Information section of this catalog.

BIOLOGY (BS)   

BS: BIOLOGY DEGREE PLAN (BIOL)

 

UNIVERSITY REQUIREMENTS

 

   Please see the University Requirements section of this catalog.

 

MAJOR REQUIREMENTS

 

Biology

    BIOL 112 General Biology I  

    BIOL 114 General Biology I Lab 

    BIOL 113/115 General Biology II Lecture/Lab  

    BIOL 221/223 Animal Biology Lecture/Lab or

        BIOL 222/224 Plant Biology Lecture/Lab  

    BIOL 312 Cell Biology  

    BIOL 362 Ecology  

    BIOL 497 Seminar in Biology (writing-intensive  course)  

TOTAL  

1Hours (in parenthesis) may also fulfill university requirements 

and are not included in total major hours

 

(3)¹

1

4

 

4

3

3

3

18

SUPPLEMENT FOR MAJOR (TRACKS)

 

CELLULAR/MOLECULAR BIOLOGY Track (BICM)

    BIOL 472 Biochemistry I  

    BIOL 475 Molecular Genetics  

    BIOL 476 Biotechnology Laboratory  

    BIOL Selections: 13 hours of which 9 hours of 300-499  

TOTAL  

GENERAL BIOLOGY Track (BIOG)

    21 hours BIOL of which 17 hours of 300-499  

TOTAL  

HEALTH PROFESSIONS Track (BIOH)

    BIOL 355/357 Microbiology  

    BIOL 491/493 Human Anatomy  

    BIOL 492/495 Physiology  

    BIOL Selections: 9 hours of which 5 hours are 300-499  

TOTAL  

ORGANISMAL BIOLOGY Track (BIOO)

    BIOL 492 Physiology  

    BIOL 370 Field Biology or

        BIOL 380 General Mammalogy or

        BIOL 403 Marine Biology or

        BIOL 425 Behavioral Biology: Theory & Methods  

    BIOL Selections: 10 hours of which 6 hours are 300-499 

TOTAL  

BIOLOGY/BUSINESS Track (BIOB)

    BIOL Selections: 21 hours of which 17 hours are 300-499  

TOTAL  

 

 3

3

2

13

21

 

21

21

 

4

4

4

9

21

 

3

 

 

 

8

10

21

 

21

21

SUPPLEMENT FOR MAJOR (BICM, BIOG, BIOH, BIOO)

 

Chemistry

    CHEM 133 General Chemistry I  

    CHEM 131 General Chemistry I Lab  

    CHEM 132/134 General Chemistry II Lecture/Lab  

    CHEM 221/223 Organic Chemistry I Lecture/Lab  

    CHEM 322/324 Organic Chemistry II Lecture/Lab  

Physics

    PHYS 110/111 General Physics I Lecture/Lab  

    PHYS 112/113 General Physics II Lecture/Lab  

Mathematics

    MATH 124 Precalculus II or

        MATH 131 Calculus for Application or

        MATH 185 Calculus I 

Literature (not including ENGL 351)  

TOTAL  

1Hours (in parenthesis) may also fulfill university requirements 

and are not included in total major hours

 

(3)¹

1

4

4

4

 

4

4

 

 

 

(3)¹

3

24

SUPPLEMENT FOR MAJOR (BIOB)

 

Chemistry

    CHEM 133 General Chemistry I  

    CHEM 131 General Chemistry I Lab  

    CHEM 132/134 General Chemistry II Lecture/Lab  

College of Business Administration

    ACCT 210 Financial Accounting  

    FIN 310 Financial Management  

    MKTG 320 Principles of Marketing or

        MKTG 343 Personal Selling  

    MGMT 330 Management and Organizational Behavior  

Mathematics

    MATH 124 Precalculus II or

        MATH 131 Calculus for Application  

Literature (Not including ENGL 351)  

TOTAL  

 

3

1

4

 

3

3

 

3

3

 

 

3

3

20

ELECTIVES

 

Minimum (BICM, BIOG, BIOH, BIOO) 

Minimum (BIOB)  

9

13

TOTAL MAJOR HOURS  72           

OTHER GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS

 

Minimum GPA in major  

Minimum GPA for graduation  

Minimum advanced hours  

Minimum total hours  

Courses numbered 0** do not count in

minimum hours required for degree.

2.00

2.00

33

128

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LIFE SCIENCE (ONE-FIELD TEACHER CERTIFICATION GRADES 8-12) (BS)  

BS: HIGH SCHOOL TEACHER CERTIFICATION –  LIFE SCIENCE (GRADES 8-12) DEGREE PLAN (BIOL)

 

UNIVERSITY REQUIREMENTS

 

   Please see the University Requirements section of this catalog.

 

MAJOR REQUIREMENTS

 

Biology

    BIOL 112 General Biology I 

    BIOL 114 General Biology I Lab  

    BIOL 113/115 General Biology II Lecture/Lab  

    BIOL 221/223 Animal Biology Lecture/Lab or

    BIOL 222/224 Plant Biology Lecture/Lab  

    BIOL 312 Cell Biology Lecture  

    BIOL 353/357 General Microbiology Lecture/Lab  

    BIOL 362/364 Ecology Lecture/Lab  

    BIOL 492/495 Physiology Lecture/Lab  

    BIOL 497 Seminar in Biology (writing-intensive course) 

    Additional Advanced Biology  

TOTAL  

 

¹Hours (in parenthesis) may also fulfill university requirements and are not included in total major hours

 

(3)¹

1

4

 

4

3

4

4

4

3

6

33

SUPPLEMENT FOR MAJOR

 

Other

    CHEM 133 General Chemistry I  

    CHEM 131 General Chemistry I Lab  

    CHEM 134/132 General Chemistry II Lecture/Lab  

    MATH 124 or 185  

Professional Education

    EDUC 211 Educational Foundations and

        Multi-cultural Perspective  

    EDUC 221 Educational Psychology  

    EDUC 412 Secondary Curriculum and Media  

    EDUC 432 Secondary Management and Methods  

    EDUC 490 Student Teaching  

    READ 322 Reading in Secondary Content Areas  

    SPED 371 Teaching Students with Special Needs

         (writing-intensive course) 

TOTAL  

¹Hours (in parenthesis) may also fulfill university requirements and are not included in total major hours

 

(3)¹

1

4

(3)¹

 

 

3

3

3

3

6

3

 

3

29

ELECTIVES

 
Minimum  10         
TOTAL MAJOR HOURS  72         

CRITERIA FOR ADMISSION TO TEACHER EDUCATION

 

In accordance with Texas state law, the ACU Teacher Education Program has established the following criteria for admission to Teacher Education. Before taking more than 6 hours EDUC a student must first be admitted to the Teacher Education Program. To be admitted to the Teacher Education Program, a student must:

  • Complete and submit an application for admission into the Teacher Education Program;
  • Have completed the first 45 semester hours of credit;
  • Successfully complete with a C or better 12 hours in the candidate’s chosen content field;
  • Have a minimum Grade Point Average (GPA) of 2.75 (2.75 or higher in the content field);
  • Complete 6 hours of University Requirements English with no grade lower than a "C" (In order to maintain admission status the candidate must earn a C or better in all university required  English courses.);
  • Pass all three sections of the Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA) test, with a score on the reading section of 260 or higher, a score on the math section of 230 or higher and a score on the writing section of 240 or higher; Students may retake the THEA once if the required level is not earned in the first administration. Acceptance of scores from a third administration of the THEA are subject to review by the Teacher Education Admissions Committee;
  • Successfully complete (C or better) EDUC 211 - Educational Foundations and Multicultural Perspectives;
  • Successfully complete the ACU Teacher Education formal writing sample administered in EDUC 211;
  • Successfully complete first submission of the Teacher Education E-portfolio as described in the ACU Teacher Education Student Handbook;
  • A declared major that includes certification;
  • Receive approval from the Teacher Education Admissions and Review Committee. An interview with the committee may be required.

English Language Proficiency Requirement for International Students: International students with primary languages other than English must demonstrate English language proficiency by the following:

Obtain an official TOEFL score of at least 600 (computer-based score of 250, iBT of 100).

Any exemptions or modification to the above requirements due to special circumstances must be requested through the chair of the Department of Teacher Education. All requests will be reviewed and must be approved by the Teacher Education Admissions and Review Committee. In addition, admission to teacher education is not the final step in the process. In order to remain in the program the prospective teacher must continue to meet the GPA requirement (2.75). Approval to take Education Block classes (411/412 and 431/432) and to enroll in student teaching must be obtained from the Teacher Education Admissions and Review Committee before enrolling in those classes.

Additional requirements for maintaining program admission status:

  1. In order to remain in the Teacher Education Program, an overall GPA of 2.75, 2.75 in the content field, and continued approval of the Teacher Education Admissions Committee must be maintained.
  2. A grade of C or better is required for all majors courses.
  3. Junior and senior transfer students must take the THEA and be admitted to the Teacher Education Program during their first semester at Abilene Christian University to continue in professional education course work. Arrangements to take the THEA should be made as quickly as possible by contacting the Office of Career and Academic Development.

Note:

A candidate who does not have an overall GPA of 2.75 or higher may be conditionally admitted to the program if all other admissions criteria are met and if all of the following are true:

  1. An overall GPA of 2.75 or higher in the last 60 hours
  2. A GPA of 2.75 in the teaching content field
  3. No university disciplinary actions filed – academic or otherwise
  4. A formal letter of request submitted to the admissions committee describing the candidate’s academic history and articulating motivations for wanting to enter the teaching profession
  5. An interview with the Teacher Education Admissions Committee
 

OTHER GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS

 

Minimum grade for majors courses  

Minimum GPA for graduation  

Minimum advanced hours  

Minimum total hours  

 

Courses numbered 0** do not count in minimum hours required for degree.

C

2.75

33

128

 

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Bachelor of Arts Degrees (BA)    

The Bachelor of Arts degree in biology serves as a professional degree for those who typically do not wish to pursue graduate work in the biomedical or laboratory sciences. It may serve as a foundation for field and ecological sciences provided a sufficient statistics course is also taken. It may serve as a solid liberal arts degree for students wishing to pursue science writing, for example.

Admission Requirements
Before being admitted to a program, a student must satisfy the requirements listed in the ACT/SAT Placement Information section of this catalog.

 

BIOLOGY (BA)     

BA: BIOLOGY DEGREE PLAN (BIOL)

 

UNIVERSITY REQUIREMENTS

 

Please see the University Requirements section of this catalog.

 

MAJOR REQUIREMENTS

 

Biology

    BIOL 112 General Biology I  

    BIOL 114 General Biology I Lab 

    BIOL 113/115 General Biology II Lecture/Lab  

    BIOL 221/223 Animal Biology Lecture/Lab or

        BIOL 222/224 Plant Biology Lecture/Lab  

    BIOL 497 Seminar in Biology (writing-intensive course) 

Advanced Biology (BIOL 300-499)  

TOTAL  

1Hours (in parenthesis) may also fulfill university requirements 

and are not included in total major hours

 

(3)¹

1

4

 

4

3

17

29

SUPPLEMENT FOR MAJOR

 

Chemistry

    CHEM 113 Introductory Chemistry 

    CHEM 111 Introductory Chemistry Lab 

  and

    CHEM 114/112 Intro to Organic & Biol Chem Lecture/Lab 

  or

    CHEM 133 General Chemistry I (requires MATH 124 or 185 or

          placement into MATH 124 or 185) 

         CHEM 131 General Chemistry I Lab  

  and

    CHEM 132/134 General Chemistry II Lecture/Lab  

Course Concentration

    Courses in another department (required CHEM and University   

         Requirements courses are excluded)  

Foreign Language

    FLFR, FLGE, FLLA, or FLSP 221, 222 

Literature (Not including ENGL 351)  

TOTAL  

1Hours (in parenthesis) may also fulfill university requirements 

and are not included in total major hours

 

(3)¹

1

 

4

 

 

(3)¹

1

 

4

 

 

12

 

6

3

26

ELECTIVES

 
Minimum  17         
TOTAL MAJOR HOURS  72         

OTHER GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS

 

Minimum GPA in major  

Minimum GPA for graduation  

Minimum advanced hours  

Minimum total hours  

Courses numbered 0** do not count in

minimum hours required for degree.

2.00

2.00

33

128

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Cooperative Bachelor of Science Degrees (BS)

ACU awards the bachelor’s degree to certain qualified students who have satisfactorily completed three years of prescribed work at ACU (a minimum of 104 hours) plus one year at a recognized professional school. Students in the cooperative degree program are advised by the advisors for health professions (see the Academic Advising section of this catalog ). See the Health Professions Cooperative Degree in the Interdisciplinary Programs section of this catalog for complete course requirements.

Admission Requirements
Before being admitted to a program, a student must satisfy the requirements listed in the ACT/SAT Placement Information section of this catalog.

 Minor in Biology    

MINOR: BIOLOGY (BIOL)

 

Biology selections from:

    BIOL 100-299  

Advanced biology selections from:

    BIOL 300-499  

TOTAL  

 

12

 

6

18

 Note: A grade of at least C is required in BIOL 112/114 and BIOL 113/115 to enroll in any subsequent 
           Biology course for which they are prerequisites.

Course Descriptions

Please see the Course Descriptions section of this catalog. Au Sable Institute courses are designated in the course descriptions. Courses offered by the Department of Biology include those with the following designation: BIOL.

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