Date: Around 1993
What basic knowledge concerning biology do you think a colleg-
bound HS student should have when she enters a university? Some things must
be more important than others. What, in your opinion, will give that student
the best base on which to build? I realize that this is a very large subject
to address, but what are your general feelings?
I think the student should have a basic understanding of the
classification of living things, representative organisms of all the phyla,
the major subcellular organelles and their functions, the basic biochemical
reactions (Krebs, photosynthesis), basic knowledge of genetics (what is DNA,
RNA, translation, transcription), and some physiology and anatomy of
vertebrates. And of course, with all the emphasis on conservation, a good
exposure to ecology and environmental science.
I teach biology at a major university, and WizKid gives a great
answer. I would add, first, a basic knowledge of evolution by natural
selection and, second, an understanding of the scientific method. What is an
experiment, a control, and a hypothesis. Most important of all is natural
curiosity and the willingness to work hard to learn. And the feeling of
excitement when you find out how much we do not know.
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Update: June 2012