F2402 '03 Contemporary Biology II  

Please read all of this carefully even if you took F2401 last term. 

Biology F2402 is the second term of a one year introductory course for postbac premedical students who have completed Bio F2401 or the equivalent. Bio F2402 covers cell biology, developmental biology and physiology. 

Class meets in 301 Pupin, Tuesday & Thursday,  5:40 - 6:55 pm. 

For additional information see Lecture Schedule and Textbooks. 

F2402 vs C2006: The lectures in Bio F2402 and Bio C2006 are identical, and students in either course may attend either set of lectures. (C2006 lectures are in 202 Altschul (Lehman Auditorium at Barnard) 10:35 -11:50 am, Tuesdays & Thursdays. The recitations for the two courses are separate. F2402 students may only attend an F2402 recitation. The recitations in F2402 are optional and are geared toward less traditional students with more variable science backgrounds. (The recitations in C2006 are required; that's why C2006 is more points.) Undergraduates in GS may enroll in either course; post-baccalaureate students must enroll in F2402. The "curve" for F2402 is the same as the one for C2006 -- the C2006 grades are used to set the scale, and the F2402 grades follow accordingly. Therefore there is NO advantage (gradewise) to taking C2006 vs F2402. See below for details of grading.

EXAMS: There will be 2 exams given during the term and a 3rd during finals week. The exam questions will be similar to the study questions in the problem book.  All 3 exams will stress material covered since the last exam, but the exams may refer back to topics covered earlier, since each section builds upon the material covered in previous ones.  Each of the 3 exams will be graded on the basis of 100 points. 

If there is an emergency at the time of the final, you will have to apply for an incomplete (which a dean must approve) and take a make up exam at the officially scheduled time. 

ADVICE:  If you did not take C2005/F2401 last term, be sure to read "Advice to Students". If can't hurt to re-read it anyway even if you did take F2401. 

STUDY QUESTIONS AND PRACTICE EXAMS: The questions in the problem book are intended to help you develop skills in problem solving and critical thinking about the topics discussed in class. You are urged to discuss the questions with your fellow students. The questions from the problem book will be discussed in recitation along with any other questions you may have. The best way to prepare for the exams is to work on the problem sets before the problems are reviewed in recitation. You are not expected to know all the answers before recitation starts, but you are expected to have worked on the problems and to have questions of your own. Additional questions ("recitation questions")  may be given out weekly in recitation; any recitation  questions will be posted on the Courseworks site for F2402 at the end of the week. If you can't make it to recitation, you might want to form a study group. In any case, try to do the problems as you go along -- don't leave them all for just before the exam. 

HANDOUTS: Extra copies of all handouts distributed in class will be available in the cubby boxes on the 7th floor of Mudd (aka Fairchild Extension) at the far end of the hall (outside 744 Mudd). Copies of some handouts will also be available on the web.

RECITATIONS:   Recitations are tentatively scheduled for Tuesday and/or Thursday after the evening class (at 7:00 pm) and Tuesday after the morning class (depending on times students and/or TA's are free).  Attendance at one of the recitation sections is highly recommended but not required. If you cannot make recitation, you should try to set up a study group to help you go over the problems. (We will be happy to help you set one up. See study group for advice on what to do in your study group. ) Recitations will begin the week of 1/27. The recitation sessions will be used to (1) answer your questions on the lecture material & (2) go over the solutions to the study questions.

GRADING: We will use the following scale for grading, assuming that the average exam grade is about 80:

90-100 A-, A
80-89 B-, B, B+
70-79 C-, C, C+
60-69 D
<59 F

That is, if all the students in the course get over 90, everyone will get an A, no matter what the "curve" is. This distribution is based on the assumption that the average exam grade is about 80. If exams prove to be more difficult than expected, and the exam mean in C2006 is less than 80, then we will lower the cut-off points for grades appropriately, and publicize a new grading scale. This new scale will be determined by the grades in C2006, and the grades for F2402 will then follow the same scale.