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BIOL 1213: Principles of Biology II

This course is designed for biology or science majors, and offers a survey of the kingdoms of life, emphasizing their ecology and evolutionary relationships.

BIOL 1215, the laboratory component of BIOL 1213, is usually offered once per year in the summertime in Kamloops BC.

Learning outcomes

  • Discuss the mechanisms of evolution by natural selection.
  • Explain our changing view of the evolutionary history of biological diversity.
  • Discuss important processes and interactions leading to the structure of natural communities, especially natural selection, population growth, competition, nutrient cycling, and behavioural ecology.
  • Be familiar with the major ecosystems on land and in water.
  • Critically discuss the role of humans as a force of change in the biosphere.
  • Classify living organisms.
  • Understand and articulate the principles and processes of scientific inquiry.
  • Think critically about the principles of biology studied and communicate your thinking clearly and concisely in speaking and in writing.

Course topics

  • Module 1: Evolution
  • Module 2: Systematics and the Diversity of Life
  • Module 3: Early Life and First Transitions to Land
  • Module 4: Diversification of Life on Land and Sea
  • Module 5: Ecology
  • Module 6: Global Diversity and Climate

Required text and materials

This is a companion course to BIOL 1113, therefore, the textbook listed below would have been provided to students in BIOL 1113.

  1. Freeman, S., Quillin, K., Allison, L., Black, M., Podgorski, G., Taylor, E, Sharp, J. (2019). Biological science (3rd Cdn. ed.). Toronto, ON: Pearson Canada.
    Type: Textbook, ISBN: 978-0134883847

If students have not already purchased the textbook for BIOL 1113, students will need to buy these textbooks or contact Enrolment Services at or 1.800.663.9711 (toll-free in Canada), 250.852.7000 (Kamloops, BC), and 1.250.852.7000 (International).

Optional materials

  1. Pechenik, J A. (2016). A short guide to writing about biology (9th ed.), Toronto, ON: Pearson Canada.
    Type: Textbook, ISBN: 9780321984258

This resource may also be obtained at the email and phone numbers given above.


Please be aware that should your course have a final exam, you are responsible for the fee to the online proctoring service, ProctorU, or to the in-person approved Testing Centre. Please contact with any questions about this.

To successfully complete this course, students must achieve a passing grade of 50% or higher on the overall course, and 50% or higher on the mandatory final examination.

Note: The final exam for this course is only available as a paper exam and must be taken in person at an approved Testing Centre. Please email with any questions.

Assignment 1: Modules 1–2 12.5%
Assignment 2: Modules 3–4 12.5%
Assignment 3: Module 5 12.5%
Assignment 4: Module 6 12.5%
Final Examination (mandatory) 50%
Total 100%

Open Learning Faculty Member Information

An Open Learning Faculty Member is available to assist students. Students will receive the necessary contact information at the start of the course.

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