BIO-130: Introduction to Life Sciences I course introduces students to the concepts of the scientific method and critical thinking in making observations and formulating hypotheses. Moreover, students learn about the structure of cells, DNA replication and gene expression, metabolic pathways, cell cycle, and cell division. The final section of the class includes an overview of animal form and function, organs and organ systems, and physiological processes, with an emphasis on human systems.
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Why do nursing students and other healthcare professionals study life sciences?
The following are some of the reasons why health care professionals study life sciences:
To increase knowledge of key biological processes, concepts, systems, and theories.
- To develop the ability to critically evaluate and debate scientific issues and processes.
- Develop scientific skills and ways of thinking that allow you as a healthcare provider to see flaws in pseudo-science in popular science.
- To provide helpful knowledge and skills that are needed in everyday living.
- Create a greater awareness of the ways in which biotechnology and knowledge of Life Sciences have benefited humankind.
- To show the ways in which humans have impacted destructively on the environment and organisms living in the environment.
- To develop a deep appreciation of the unique diversity of biomes around the world, both past and present, and the importance of conservation.
- Create an awareness of what it means to be a responsible citizen in terms of the environment and lifestyle choices that they make.
- To expose you to the range and scope of biological studies to stimulate interest in and create awareness of possible specialties and fields of study.
- To provide sufficient background for further studies and careers in one or more of the biological sub-disciplines.
What is life sciences?
This is the scientific study of living organisms. This involves the study of the interaction of organic molecules to the interactions of animals and plants with their environment. Therefore, life sciences have various branches. These branches include the following:
- Biology – a study of living organisms with respect to their morphologic and anatomic traits as well as behavior and development.
- Anatomy – a study of form and function, in plants, animals, and other organisms, or specifically in humans.
- Astrobiology – the study of the formation and presence of life in the universe.
- Bacteriology – the study of bacteria
- Biotechnology – the study of the combination of both the living organism and technology.
- Biochemistry – the study of the chemical reactions required for life to exist and function, usually a focus on the cellular level.
- Bioinformatics – developing of methods or software tools for storing, retrieving, organizing and analyzing biological data to generate useful biological knowledge.
- Biolinguistics – the study of the biology and evolution of language.
- Biological anthropology – the study of humans, non-human primates, and hominids. Also known as physical anthropology.
- Biological oceanography- the study of life in the oceans and their interaction with the environment.
- Biomechanics – the study of the mechanics of living beings.
- Biophysics – the study of biological processes by applying the theories and methods that have been traditionally used in the physical sciences.
- Botany – a study of plants.
- Cell biology (cytology) – study of the cell as a complete unit, and the molecular and chemical interactions that occur within a living cell.
- Developmental biology – the study of the processes through which an organism forms, from zygote to full structure
- Ecology – the study of the interactions of living organisms with one another and with the non-living elements of their environment.
- Ethology – the study of behavior.
- Evolutionary biology – the study of the origin and descent of species over time.
- Evolutionary developmental biology – the study of the evolution of development including its molecular control
- Genetics – the study of genes and heredity
- Histology – the study of tissues
- Immunology – the study of the immune system.
- Microbiology – the study of microscopic organisms (microorganisms) and their interactions with other living organisms
- Molecular biology – the study of biology and biological functions at the molecular level, some cross over with biochemistry, genetics, and microbiology
- Neuroscience – the study of the nervous system
- Paleontology – the study of prehistoric organisms
- Pathology – the study of the causes and effects of disease or injury
- Pharmacology – the study of drug action
- Phycology – the study of algae.
- Physiology – the study of the functioning of living organisms and the organs and parts of living organisms
- Theoretical biology – the use of abstractions and mathematical models to study biological phenomena
- Toxicology – the nature, effects, and detection of poisons
- Virology – the study of viruses like submicroscopic, parasitic particles of genetic material contained in a protein coat – and virus-like agents
- Zoology – the study of animals.