Learning Goals and Student Learning Outcomes
The following goals and learning outcomes have been established for students pursuing a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Biological Science:
- Explain (i.e., expound, explicate, elucidate, and interpret) fundamental concepts and principles in the following areas of biological knowledge: biodiversity, cell biology, developmental biology, ecology, evolution, genetics, molecular biology, organismal biology, and physiology.
- Interpret the following unifying theme in the context of the above areas of biological knowledge: complexity of biological systems, cycles, feedback loops, energy flow, homeostasis, information flow, networks, and structure-function relationships.
- Demonstrate specialization and thus be able to explain advanced concepts in one or more of the areas of biological knowledge in the first bullet above.
- Interpret connections between: science and technology, past scientific discoveries and current scientific progress, academic requirements and careers or professional advancement, scientific method including its limitations and the discovery of new knowledge, and bioethics/scientific integrity and the advancement of science.
- Communication. Communicate effectively orally; communicate effectively in writing; write in scientific format acceptable by scientific journals.
- Teamwork. Work cooperatively in a group of diverse composition; solve problems in a group of diverse composition.
- Finding biological information. Find, evaluate, use, and integrate published information; use databases and information technology.
- Critical thinking and problem-solving. Make an argument and support it; recognize and use deductive and inductive reasoning; integrate concepts within and among disciplines; recognize patterns; identify unifying principles; solve problems; distinguish between data and inferences based on data; distinguish information from scientific versus pseudo- and non-scientific sources and methods.
- Use of the scientific method. Use deductive methods of inquiry; apply the scientific methods to problems by generating hypotheses and designing experiments to test these hypotheses.
- Analytical and quantitative skills. Create data sets from observations; objectively analyze data; interpret data; use quantitative methods for the analysis of data.
- Lab and field work. Use appropriate technology; use equipment properly; follow safety procedures; apply government regulations that govern their work.
- Embrace lifelong learning by: being capable of self-directed learning; having a continual interest in biology; having confidence in their knowledge, skills, and abilities.
- Value learning by: being open-minded; appreciating the value of knowledge; appreciating and respecting alternative possibilities and explanations; experiencing the joy of discovery.
- Demonstrate knowledge of careers by: defining potential career paths; being aware of the requirements for career or professional advancement.
- Be aware of impacts of biological issues on society by: valuing the support of science by society; appreciating the relevance of biology to society; recognizing the connectedness of science, society, and history.
- Demonstrate an awareness of bioethics by: identifying and evaluating ethical issues in biology; appreciating the value of integrity; valuing ethical behavior.
- Demonstrate appropriate stewardship and advocacy by: respecting biodiversity; contributing to the understanding of true science; helping the public make informed decisions; being responsible stewards of biological resources.
- Demonstrate biological literacy by: distinguishing science from pseudoscience; recognizing that science is a way of viewing the world and is not just a collection of facts; understanding the limitations of science; applying scientific thinking to everyday problems; recognizing the impermanence of "truths".
All students will progress through lower-division core courses and select an upper-division concentration. Details of learning goals for the core and concentrations may be found at biology.fullerton.edu.
Learning Goals and Student Learning Outcomes
The following goals and learning outcomes have been established for students pursuing the MS degree in Biological Science
The aim of the Master of Science (MS) Program in Biology is to graduate students who:
- Develop the skills, experiences and qualifications necessary to enter and be successful in careers in biology-related fields or academic and professional programs;
- Can investigate a problem in depth by combining sound scholarship with contemporary research approaches to make meaningful contributions to our knowledge of biology;
- Become ethical citizens who are scientifically and computationally literate, and who understand and can communicate the role of biology and research in a complex, changing world.
To meet this aim, the following goals and learning outcomes have been established for students pursuing a Master of Science (MS) in Biology. Graduating students will be able to:
- Demonstrate knowledge in a primary area of expertise and place the thesis research in the context of the current state of knowledge of the field.
- Critically evaluate the primary and secondary literature in a primary area of expertise.
- Gain an appreciation for the diversity and multidisciplinary nature of biological science through participation in coursework, seminars, small working groups and conferences.
Information Literacy Skills
- Use library and electronic resources to obtain the relevant literature sources published in a primary area of expertise in biology.
- Cite the information gathered appropriately in all forms of communication.
Scientific Research Skills
- Work independently to conduct and complete original research.
- Demonstrate mastery of research approaches and techniques appropriate to a primary area of expertise.
- Demonstrate mastery of key elements of research and study design and apply them to an independent research project.
- Analyze and interpret data appropriately and present results properly in written, tabular and graphical formats.
- Write a thesis proposal that contains the key elements of a competitive grant proposal.
- Prepare and give high-quality, professional presentations (oral and poster) about the results of independent research.
- Write a scholarly thesis containing key elements of a published article in a primary area of expertise.