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Biology...where do I begin?

by Edin_Dzeko
Tags: begin, biologywhere
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Edin_Dzeko
#1
Jan10-11, 09:00 PM
P: 223
Background:

College student. Going to start Bio 101 January 31st. Previous knowledge of Bio was at the high school level don't really remember/know much anymore. I want to learn the very basics and ground rules so that I wont struggle when I take the course. Like with Chem there's significant figures, scientific notation, density, dimentional analysis and other things.

What should I learn for Bio 101? If it'll help here's a little bit of an excerpt that was written for the course description (from my school's site):

Fundamental principles of biology at the molecular and cellular level are considered beginning with the chemical basis of life and including cell organization, membrane physiology, photosynthesis, respiration and aspects of genetics, immunology and development

Thanks in advance
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HappMatt
#2
Jan11-11, 12:30 AM
P: 94
Hey Edin,
My suggestion as someone who reticently graduated with a degree in biomedical engineering and have had a fair amount of biology is to get the book that you will be using in class and then contact the teacher to try and get a syllabus or ask what you will be reading and start looking through it and figure out what you do and dont get. For a Bio101 class it is going to be relatively basic and if for some reason there is something that is way beyond you which I doubt there will be, that's what wiki(greatest student aid since cliff notes and TI-89's) and your teacher/TA are for. You should be able to learn everything from class or the book bio101 classes often dont even have a pre-req which mean the fact that you are thinking about it and concerned probally puts you ahead of the game.
good luck.
Edin_Dzeko
#3
Jan12-11, 03:09 PM
P: 223
Quote Quote by HappMatt View Post
Hey Edin,
My suggestion as someone who reticently graduated with a degree in biomedical engineering and have had a fair amount of biology is to get the book that you will be using in class and then contact the teacher to try and get a syllabus or ask what you will be reading and start looking through it and figure out what you do and dont get. For a Bio101 class it is going to be relatively basic and if for some reason there is something that is way beyond you which I doubt there will be, that's what wiki(greatest student aid since cliff notes and TI-89's) and your teacher/TA are for. You should be able to learn everything from class or the book bio101 classes often dont even have a pre-req which mean the fact that you are thinking about it and concerned probally puts you ahead of the game.
good luck.
Oh ok I see. So I shouldn't worry I should just take it easy? The thing is what might be easy for you might be hard for me. I feel like as a student I do better when I go the extra mile. Meaning study BEFORE hand. College has been a bit rough for me so far and I want to atleast get a feel for the basics so I can understand it a bit better.

Right now I have two novels (deals with Biology but doesn't teach anything about the subject. One's about the naming of species and the other is about microcosm's)

And I have a really old textbook about Biology but not sure where to start or read in that book.

bobze
#4
Jan12-11, 06:59 PM
Sci Advisor
PF Gold
P: 645
Biology...where do I begin?

Quote Quote by Edin_Dzeko View Post
Oh ok I see. So I shouldn't worry I should just take it easy? The thing is what might be easy for you might be hard for me. I feel like as a student I do better when I go the extra mile. Meaning study BEFORE hand. College has been a bit rough for me so far and I want to atleast get a feel for the basics so I can understand it a bit better.

Right now I have two novels (deals with Biology but doesn't teach anything about the subject. One's about the naming of species and the other is about microcosm's)

And I have a really old textbook about Biology but not sure where to start or read in that book.
I agree with the above advice. If you really want to get a head start, I'd try and get your book or syllabus ahead of the time and start looking over that.

I've found that most students who have a hard time in college is because our high schools are woefully incompetent on preparing students for college and teaching the necessary study skills and habits. I had to teach myself how to study, for college, for graduate school and once again for medical school.

Unfortunately much of "early" biology courses are going to be less conceptual and lots more wrote memorization. Not much can be done about that, because you need to have the knowledge base in place to understand later concepts and that unfortunately means "memorizing lots of words and definitions"-that you can apply in the fun stuff later on.

For learning of that type, repeat exposure is what lets you commit the course material to long term memory, 4 or 5 times if necessary.

If you could start some reading now, preread before your lectures, follow along during lecture and give it a short review later that day then you're well ahead of the game.
Edin_Dzeko
#5
Jan12-11, 07:47 PM
P: 223
Quote Quote by bobze View Post
I agree with the above advice. If you really want to get a head start, I'd try and get your book or syllabus ahead of the time and start looking over that.

I've found that most students who have a hard time in college is because our high schools are woefully incompetent on preparing students for college and teaching the necessary study skills and habits. I had to teach myself how to study, for college, for graduate school and once again for medical school.

Unfortunately much of "early" biology courses are going to be less conceptual and lots more wrote memorization. Not much can be done about that, because you need to have the knowledge base in place to understand later concepts and that unfortunately means "memorizing lots of words and definitions"-that you can apply in the fun stuff later on.

For learning of that type, repeat exposure is what lets you commit the course material to long term memory, 4 or 5 times if necessary.

If you could start some reading now, preread before your lectures, follow along during lecture and give it a short review later that day then you're well ahead of the game.
Wow. You're in med school? that's where I'm hoping to get.

So what are these words / definitions one has to memorize or know for Bio? Seriously I don't know anything. I'm feel kind of "lame" 'cause I can't explain simple processes to you and how they work. If I could get my hands on a crash course h.s. Bio book that I could do for about 2 weeks just to have a small "glimpse" of Bio it'd make me feel better.

Lastly, I agree with what you're saying about h.s. but I wont point fingers or make any blames. I'll take responsibility for my actions. But it's not just h.s. though, it's our ENTIRE education system. That's a another debate on it's own so we'll leave it at that.


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