Cell Biology 1

- Courses -


Dr. Christian Copley Salem

Email: christian@copleybiology.com

Office Hours: Videocalls by Appointment

Objectives of this Course are to introduce:

The fundamental methods and goals of science, especially how they relate and apply to cell and molecular biology.

The main concepts in chemistry that are essential to understanding cell and molecular biology.

The fundamental structures and functions of cells as the basic building blocks of all living organisms.

The main molecular mechanisms, Mendelian principles of inheritance, and gene expression concepts that are essential to understanding biology.

Final Learning Expectations of this Course:

Explain main concepts associated with atomic structure, chemical bonding, water chemistry, and pH, and especially how these concepts are essential to the functioning of biological systems.

Identify and describe the fundamental structures and functions of biological macromolecules and cellular structures, including eukaryotic organelles and membranes.

Describe the main processes of cellular transport, signaling, metabolism, photosynthesis, cell division (mitosis and meiosis), heredity, gene expression, and gene regulation, and especially how they are essential to the functioning of biological systems.


Your overall course grade will be calculated on the following:

Mastering Biology Homework










Total % for Semester100%  

Letter grades will be based on the following percentages of the total course points:

A ≥ 93%; A- = 90-92%; B+ = 87-89%; B = 83-86%; B- = 80-82%; C+ = 77-79%; C = 73-76%; C- = 70-72%; D+ = 67-69%; D = 63-66%; D- = 60-62%; F < 60%

*I will round up at 0.51% and greater when I calculate your final grades

*I have a no re-grading policy so please do not ask (unless I incorrectly marked off a correct answer).


BIOL 190 Lecture (3 Credits)

An introductory cell and molecular biology course covering basics of inorganic chemistry, water, pH, biological macromolecules, cell structure, membrane physiology, cell signaling, metabolism, cell division, heredity, gene expression, and gene regulation. Both BIOL 190 and BIOL 190L are prerequisites for the following biology courses: BIOL 191 (Intro to Organismal Biology), BIOL 191L, and BIOL 251 (General Microbiology). BIOL 190L can be taken as a pre/co-requisite for BIOL 223 (Anatomy & Physiology I). BIOL 190 is a prerequisite for BIOL 223.

Prerequisites: MATH 120 as a pre-requisite, OR MATH 126 or higher as a pre/co-requisite AND ENG 101 or 113 as a pre/co-requisite; OR qualifying Accuplacer, SAT or ACT scores for these courses. MATH 126 or higher is recommended for AS degrees.

Course Materials

Textbook: Campbell Biology in Focus (3rd ed.), by Urry (2020). This textbook is available in the TMCC Bookstore and comes packaged with an online access code to MasteringBiology®.

The online access code will be needed to complete various assignments throughout the semester. You will need to purchase an online access code separately (associated with the 3rd ed.), if you have a used or older version of the textbook.

Course Work Descriptions

Lecture Videos: There will be 2-3 short lecture videos posted each week. They are required viewing and will help review important concepts from the text as well as introduce some expanded ideas. Video lectures will run between 10-15 minutes. Each video will have an accompanying worksheet that you will work though during the video lecture. Each week’s lectures can be broken up into multiple videos to make it easier to watch them without needing to devote a long stretch of time; however, they are sequential and best viewed in their numbered order.

Worksheets: Worksheets will be due by Sunday (by 11:59pm) at the end of the week they are assigned. The answers can be hand written/typed and uploaded or directly typed into Canvas through the assignment page. The worksheets will focus on expanded content and not necessarily be directly from the text.

Discussions: Each week, you will be required to post at least one question (up to as many as you wish) or interesting comment about that week’s reading or lecture content. You will also be required to reply to one other student’s post, either to answer their question or to expand upon it in some way. I will be monitoring the weekly discussion board to answer questions and participate in the discussion about the material. Posts should be appropriate to an academic setting. I encourage you to use the discussion boards for chapter appropriate content through-out the course and to get help from the other students; however, you MUST post during the assigned week to receive credit.

Chapter Reviews: There will be a homework assignment for every chapter (including but not limited to vocab, activities, and/or multiple-choice questions). These assignments are focused on the textbook material. There will be 14 review assignments given through the Mastering® website (via Canvas). Only the top 11 scores will count towards your grade and are worth 10% of your final grade. Chapter review assignments will be due Sunday of each week (by 11:59 PM). Refer to the class schedule for due dates.

Quizzes: There will be a quiz due Sunday (by 11:59pm) of each week covering that week’s chapter reading. These quizzes are 15 questions long and cover all the material presented in the textbook and the lecture videos. There will be a total of 14 quizzes and only the top 11 scores will count towards your grade and are worth 20% of your final grade.

Exams: There will be 4 exams (refer to class schedule for respective chapters). Exams are worth 50% of your final grade. Make up exams are only given under extraordinary circumstances (if you skip an exam, you will receive a score of 0 points). It is the student’s responsibility to contact me before or on the day of the exam with a valid excuse. Refer to the class schedule for exam dates. Exams will be given using LockDown Browser which can be downloaded through Canvas.

* No late assignments or make-up quizzes will be accepted (you will receive a score of 0 points).

When I was a student, what I wanted most was a simple work flow that I could keep track of week after week. My intent for this class is that every week can follow the same work flow, only broken by the addition of exams and the final review. I would advise that each week you proceed according to this work flow:

1. Read the chapter (always start here)!

2. Watch the lecture videos

3. Complete the worksheets

4. Make a post in the Chapter Discussion

5. Do the Mastering Biology content

6. Complete the quiz

If you have questions do NOT hesitate to ask. There is nothing that I enjoy more than talking about biology.

Tentative Class Schedule – Subject to Change by Instructor
WeekDateChapterTopicHW Due
Quiz Due
18/24/20201Intro: Evolution & the Foundations of Biology11
28/30/20202The Chemical Context of Life22
39/7/20203Carbon & the Molecular Diversity of Life33
49/14/20204A Tour of the Cell44
59/21/20205Membrane Transport & Cell Signaling55
Exam 1 (Chap 1-4)
69/28/20206An Intro to Metabolism66
710/5/20207Cellular Respiration and Fermentation77
910/19/20209The Cell Cycle
Exam 2 (Chap 5-8)99
1010/26/202010Meiosis & Sexual Life Cycles1010
1111/2/202011Mendel & the Gene Idea1111
1211/9/202012The Chromosomal Basis of Inheritance1212
1311/16/202013The Molecular Basis of Inheritance1313
Exam 3 (Chap 9-12)
1411/23/202014Gene Expression: From Gene to Protein1414
1511/30/20201-14Review for Final  
1612/7/20201-14Final Exam (1-14)  


*Assignments and quizzes are due Sunday by 11:59 pm at the end of the assigned week.

Campus Policies

Auditing or Withdrawing from the Course:

The TMCC withdrawal policy states that the instructor can only administratively withdraw a student during the first day of class.  After the last date to audit or withdraw, the student can no longer audit or withdraw him or herself.  Only the Dean has the authority to withdraw a student after the drop date and only under extraordinary circumstances.  Please refer to the Academic and Official Dates Calendar on the TMCC website (Also listed on page 3 under Important Dates).  Please come speak to me before you audit or withdraw.

Academic Dishonesty:

Any student determined to be cheating or assisting or participating with another student in dishonest behavior will be subject to the college policies.  The penalty for cheating may include failure of an assignment or exam, failure of the whole course, academic probation, suspension, or expulsion from all classes.  Such penalties are clearly marked on the student’s official transcript.  Take home message – cheating will not be tolerated nor taken lightly (as this is not learning).

Plagiarism is a serious form of cheating and will not be tolerated.  Do not copy from written sources, internet sources, or from other students (past or present).  Be sure to appropriately cite the ideas of others using an appropriate format.  Every student must do their own work independently, as that is part of the learning process (this does not include designated group work or studying with other students which is encouraged).

Student Conduct:

Any behavior or communication that disrupts this teaching/learning process is not acceptable in any way, shape, or form.

Use of violence, force, repeated use of obscene or abusive language, coercion, threats, intimidation, disorderly, lewd or indecent conduct, harassment, or any other conduct that threatens the quality of this learning environment, disrupts the class or violates conduct standards set forth in the college catalogue will result in the filing of an incident report with the Associated Dean of Students and may lead to serious disciplinary sanctions.

Assistance (American Disabilities Act):

Qualified, self-identified students with documented disabilities have the right to appropriate accommodations to ensure equal access to education opportunities at the college.  For assistance, contact the disability center.  Please let me know if you need help with this process.

Policies on Discussing Grades:

You must make an appointment with me to discuss grades.  The Family Education Rights to Privacy Act (FERPA) allows us to release grades only to you and your college email address.  We may not discuss your grades with anyone else (including your parents) without your written consent.

Policy on videotaping/audio recording lectures:

Covert videotaping of class or unauthorized audio recording of class is prohibited by law.  In order to accommodate students with disabilities, some students may be given permission to record class lectures or discussions.  Thus, students should understand that their comments during class may be recorded.”

You must take your own notes, as this will help you learn and reinforce concepts being taught.

Use of Dictionaries/Translators:

Neither paper nor electronic dictionaries or translators are permitted during exams.  Standalone calculators will be allowed for exams, however any cheating using stored formulas and programs will not be tolerated (refer to Academic Dishonesty section in the syllabus for additional information).  Calculators on cell phones will not be permitted.

Cancellation of Class (e.g. due to weather):

Please check the main website homepage for the unlikely event that classes are cancelled.  If class is cancelled, the assignment (e.g. post-lab quiz, lab worksheet, discussion, lab report, or presentation) due date and/or exam date will occur the next regularly scheduled class session.


This syllabus is subject to change by the instructor.  It is your responsibility to read and adhere to the policies outlined in the course syllabus.  And last but not least, remember to have fun!

For science courses, at least 3-4 hours of prep and study time is recommended for every hour of class.

This course will require much self-motivation and good study skills.  You should follow the weekly schedule and not get behind, as we cover a good amount of material each class.  To set yourself up for success, keep up with reading materials before each class and do not procrastinate on assignments.

I encourage you to ask questions either during class, via email, or schedule office hours with me.