BIO 3520 Tropical Biology of Belize
A field ecology course taught in the Central American nation of Belize. The course examines historical and current human land use patterns in Belize through visits to two Mayan ruins (i.e., Xunantunich and Caracol) that date from the Early Classic and Classic Mayan periods. Students spend several days in southern Belize living at the Las Cuevas Research Station located in the Chiquibul Forest Reserve Tropical rain forest (TRF) structure and ecology is presented using lecture, field trips, and a student research project. The remainder of the course is spent on an island situated on the Belize Barrier Reef. Reef ecology, mangrove ecology, and other elements of marine biology are covered during this portion of the course. Morning and evening lectures are used to introduce and review concepts highlighted during daily field trips. Field trips at this location involve snorkeling and SCUBA diving trips to sites near Southwater Caye.
Prerequisite(s): BIO 1400 Introduction to Biological Inquiry or permission of the instructor.
.Students will be introduced to biology by actively engaging in research on a variety of biological topics. This inquiry-based and student-centered approach will expose to students to the methods of scientific inquiry and asociated content in an engaging and meaningful way. Specific topics will vary across years and among offered sections but can include such diverse areas as: antipredator behavior, plant viral gene expression, belly button biology, and bacteriophage genomics. Using the research topic as a guide, students will also explore traditional introductory biology content areas.
(Normally offered each semester.)