WELCOME: This 1 credit hr course provides the opportunity for senior students to present a scientific topic to your peers. The primary purpose of the seminar is to give students experience making oral presentations and to teach critical thinking. The seminar is going to be focused on understanding the biology of microbes, their behavior, how they cause disease, how they develop resistance to antimicrobials. You may choose microbiological, chemical, biochemical, computational, and genomic approaches that provide insights into mechanisms of resistance, treatment strategies and drug discovery of antimicrobials.
PRESENTATION TOPICS & SOURCES: For each presentation student will select a topic representing recent critical steps in the development of biological sciences. Presentations must be based on at least 10 references from the primary literature (Cell, Biochemistry, Physiology, Ecology, Journal of Biochemistry, Scientific Monographs, Science, Nature, TX Journal of Science, etc.) including and relating to the work. Student must clear the topic and the presentation day with the instructor during office hours no later than second week of classes (due date and time will be announced). All topics will be posted on class webpage for everybody in the class to get ready for the discussions in the day of that presentation.
PRESENTATION: Presentations should be in PowerPoint format, 10-20 slides and last no more than 12 minutes. Your talk should include visual aids to support your ideas and concepts. You have to turn in your presentation (pptx) electronically 1 days prior the presentation and name it by your first and last name: First_Last.pptx. Detailed Evaluation Sheet can be found under Lecture&Schedule section/week2/Home activities. Each student must meet individually at least two times with the professor to clear the content of their presentation. Expect questions from your classmates and the instructor (me) after your presentation.
NOTE: Allow 30 additional minutes for the class period on the days of presentations.
PARTICIPATION: Students are expected to take part in discussion after each presentation and will be assigned a grade for that. In addition students are expected to compose and turn in as a hard copy at least 5 written questions for each topic presented in the class that day (for other students presentations).
EXAMS: BIOLOGY SPECIAL FIELDS TEST. The MFT will be available to BIOL 4199 students beginning on Feb5, 2024 and ending on Mar8, 2024. Daphne Curl, Testing Services https://www.sfasu.edu/auxservices/student-services/testing-services/mft
ABSTRACTS: The abstract should be a 200-word description of your presentation including the title. The abstract has to be submitted in two version: electronically named as you first and last name: First_Last.docx and as a hard copy by the announced due date and time.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: A minimum of 10 references should be used in preparation for your seminar coming from the primary literature no older than 5 years. Others can come from published books, symposium proceedings, and literature review articles. Web pages, which are not subject to any form of peer review, are not acceptable sources (although they can sometimes lead you to good references for published articles). A copy of the front page of each article or publication you used must be turned in along with a bibliography (Literature Cited list) of all the sources you used.
CONSULTATIONS: Each student must meet individually with me at least twice to clear the content of their topic and to discuss the progress of their presentation.

STUDENT LEARNING OUTCOMES: Students who successfully complete Seminar in Biology will be able to:
1. Obtain current primary research articles associated with a biological topic related to their chosen career path (PLO 1).
2. Evaluate and summarize information from the primary literature (PLO 1, 3).
3. Effectively communicate scientific information in oral and written form. (PLO 2).
PROGRAM LEARNING OUTCOMES: Each of the student learning outcomes listed above address the Biology Department Program Learning Outcomes as follows:
#1: The student will demonstrate a good knowledge base in biological concepts and be able to integrate knowledge with critical thinking skills to become problem solvers. Knowledge base will include: levels of complexity (molecular/cellular through population/communities/ecosystems), biological principles and processes.
#2: The student will be able to clearly communicate scientific information; provide clear structure and transitions; demonstrate scientific tone, language, and form.
#3: The student will be able to think scientifically; this includes critical thinking / reasoning and explaining biological principles as well as analyzing and interpreting quantitative data sets.
General Education Core Curriculum Objectives/Outcomes:
This course is not included in the general education core curriculum.
ATTENDANCE:You are expected to attend all lectures according to the schedule– attendance will be monitored. Sign in with your full first name and last name as listed on the class roster. Students who do not provide their full name will be marked as absent. Missing classes without university approved absences will result in points subtraction from your Final grade. In contrast perfect attendance will give you extra points to your Final grade. Stay focused: turn off your cellphone and pack it away, be respectful to your classmates and the professor. Using a phone during the class without permission will be equal to an absence. Missing the presentation day will be permitted only by prior arrangement. If the presentation day was missed without prior arrangement as an after the fact make-up will be allowed only by Faculty Notification Requests. (The information is located on the Dean of Student’s website: https://www.sfasu.edu/thehub/sos/notification-request )
CLASS DISRUPTION: Class disruptions will not be tolerated because they detract from other students’ learning. As adults, students should be able to sit through class without disturbing others.
The professor does NOT necessarily give you a warning or make an announcement that you are disrupting class. Instead, points will simply be deducted in the grade book. Students are free to inquire at any time whether they have had points deducted during office hours.
Tardiness to lecture will not be tolerated; it disrupts the lesson and the concentration of fellow students. Reasonable accommodations will be made in cases of emergency situations if documentation is provided. It is the student’s responsibility to provide the instructor with documentation of emergencies. Sleeping during class can be distracting to other students and the instructor. If a student is so tired that they cannot stay awake for a lecture, as boring as it may be, the student should not be in class. Cell phones must be turned off during lecture and packed away. In cases of family emergency the student must inform the instructor of the situation BEFORE class begins. There should be no texting in class. Texting may distract other students and the instructor. Leaving class is disruptive to other students who are trying to pay attention. Leaving the class for any reason will count against you. Hence, be sure to use the restroom before coming to class (a 5 minute break is given during lecture during the long summer lectures). If a student knows they will need to leave class early, notify the instructor well ahead of time. Points will not be deducted if the student has a legitimate excuse for leaving early. Talking/Disruptive Behaviors: the professor is highly encourages students to ask questions or make relevant comments during a lecture/presentation. However, talking to a neighbor or other disruptive behaviors will not be tolerated because, again, it disrupts the learning environment of other students. Laptop computers are not allowed in lecture. In the past, too many students have used them for surfing the internet or working on other projects during lecture, which distracts other students.
MATERIALS: PowerPoint presentations for each students presentation will be posted online three days prior the talk so each student from the class has to prepare questions for the discussion for the participation points, according to the provided schedule of the course. REMEMBER: I recommend to use CHROMIUM to browse this page.
Abstract & Bibliography (electronic version and a hard copy) plus ten front pages from each article (only hard copy) -20 pts
Oral presentation (electronic version and a handout) - 50 pts
At least 5 written questions for each students topic/presentation (hard copy) - 5 pts
Participation in discussions after each presentation - 15 pts
Office consultation meeting (at least 2) - 10 pts
Attendance -- 10 points will be subtracted for missing each class
MFT* (without this test you will not complete the course - WH)
Due date and time* - missing a deadline will result in loosing up to 10pts.
TOTAL - 100 pts
T 12:30-16:00, W 11:00-12:00, 15:00-15:30 or by appointment @S236
week meeting schedule topic activities lecture slides lecture video
Class syllabus,
schedule presentation date
Class meets: How to prepare your abstrac and bibliography How to present;
Topics are due
Class meets: How to prepare your presentation
MFT is avalable Feb 5 - Mar 8, 2024
Feb12 Monday, 12noon-13:00, BPSC Twilight Ballroom Darwin DAY! GET EXTRA CREDIT!
MFT is avalabele;
Visit with professor during office hours
MFT is avalabele;
Visit with professor during office hours
MFT is avalabele;
Visit with professor during office hours
MFT is avalabele;
Visit with professor during office hours
Spring break
Class meets: presentations Day1
April 15 “Non-Computable You: What You Do AI Never Will” a technical talk over his latest book on artificial intelligence 4pm in STEM 401, Dr. Robert (Bob) Marks, current director of the Walter Bradely Center for Natural & Artificial Intelligence
Class meets: presentations Day2
Class meets: presentations Day3
No final
Communication with the professor is over an e-mail avankley@sfasu.edu (please DO NOT email through D2L ).

E-mail rules:
When emailing use your OFFICIAL SFA E-MAIL ADDRESS
Check your e-mail REGULARY and, if you have your SFA account forwarded to some secondary account, to be certain this is not full and can receive messages.
Always indicate BOTH class & section # and your CID in a subject line.
When ATTACHING a file, filename should be “First_LastName.ext”, it must also include your name in the document itself.
Emails lacking any of the information listed above WILL BE IGNORED.
BE courteous: Begin your email with a greeting that addresses your instructor respectfully and professionally, such as "Dear Dr. Smith" or "Hi Dr. Jones."
E-mail should be considered a professional form of communication – you should use proper grammar and spelling.
CLOSE with your full name: After your message, end with a closing and signature, such as "Sincerely, Jane Doe" or "Thanks, John Doe.”
A RESPONSE may take time: I will try to get back quickly, but don’t expect a response within a few minutes. It can take up to 24 hours for an instructor to respond. If you need a response ON THE SAME DAY, your best option is to attend the office hours.
NO emails will be answered after 5 p.m. and/or during weekends or holidays.
NO GRADE DISCUSSION over an e-mail, only during one on one meetings. Grades cannot be discussed via e-mail at any time due to federal law. I will speak to you in person instead during my office hours. DO NOT involve a third-party who is not affiliated in an official capacity with SFASU (e.g., friend, roommate) in any matters pertaining to your enrollment in this course. Your instructor is legally prohibited from discussing most course/grade-related issues with third parties according to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99).
1901 Raguet Street N, Miller Science Building, Room 101
Nacogdoches, TX 75962