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Course ePortfolio

Organismal Biology, Ecology and Evolution

This collection contains the California Open Educational Resources Council (CA OER) list of peer-reviewed textbooks for Organismal Biology, Ecology and Evolution (common course-id BIOL 130 S), one of the top 50 college courses identified for inclusion in the California Open Online Library for Education (COOLforEd).

CID Number: BIOL 130 S

General Course Description: BIOL 130 S

This course sequence, intended for majors, includes a survey of the biology and diversity of organisms and examines the basic principles governing evolution of organisms and interactions between organisms and the environment. The course sequence emphasizes classification, structure and function of organisms, ecological principles, and mechanisms of evolution.

Minimum Units: 8.0

Any rationale or comment: This descriptor is a sequence composed of at least two courses with a total minimum of 6.0 units of lecture and 2.0 units of lab covering the course content below. All courses used to meet this sequence are recommended to be taken at the same institution.


Prerequisite(s): Eligible for college level math (C-ID MATH 110, 120, 130, 140, 150, 151 OR any other course with Intermediate Algebra as a prerequisite)

Corequisite(s): None

Advisories/Recommendations: Completed C-ID BIOL 190 (Cell and Molecular Biology); eligible for English Composition (C-ID ENGL 100)

Pedagogical Approach


Learning Outcomes

  • Apply the processes of scientific inquiry including experimental design.
  • Carry out an experiment to test a specific hypothesis using appropriate controls.
  • Explain the essential elements of life, major hypotheses for life’s history, mechanisms for the diversification of life, and macroevolution.
  • Apply the tools of evolutionary biology to the analysis and evaluation of historical relationships among organisms.
  • Describe mechanisms of evolutionary change including micro-evolutionary forces that determine patterns of genetic diversity within species.
  • Provide evidence for evolution.
  • Evaluate the ecological relationships of organisms at the population, community, and ecosystem level.
  • Describe flow of energy within an ecosystem and the role of nutrient cycling in maintaining ecosystem integrity.
  • Explain fundamental prokaryotic replication, metabolism, and cellular structure in relationship to evolution of diversity.
  • Compare and contrast differences in animal development and life cycles.
  • Compare and contrast differences in plant development and life cycles.
  • Describe how plants and animals maintain homeostasis: water and ion balance, gas exchange, energy and nutrient acquisition, temperature regulation.
  • For major taxa of protists, fungi, plants and animals,
    • Identify major groups and arrange them within currently recognized taxa.
    • Compare and evaluate different phylogenies in terms of relationships amongst taxa.
    • Describe structural organization/morphology.
    • Identify and describe structures and relate them to their functions.
    • Classify individual representative specimens to phylum.


A variety of assessment techniques including

  • examinations,
  • projects,
  • papers,
  • laboratory reports, and
  • laboratory practicals.

Other Information


Course Resources

  • Biology - Open Textbook
    Biology - Open Textbook (Open (Access) Textbook)
    This is a free textbook offered by OpenStax. Biology is grounded in an evolutionary basis and includes exciting features... More
  • Campbell Biology
    Campbell Biology (Open (Access) Textbook)
    This is a core textbook essential for any biology student and will provide a strong grounding in biology concepts. This... More