I was first asked to teach Biology 105: Human Biology in Fall 2017 following the cancellation of a section of Human Anatomy and Physiology. The original course was basically Human Anatomy and Physiology lite. It had a LOT of anatomy in it. I started thinking about what was the goal of this course, what would a student need to know when they left the room. I refocused the course around what a social worker (the primary students in the course) would need to know about human health for their career and to be an informed patient. This made the course very physiology heavy.
I also made a conscious decision to change the book for the course from a $120 textbook (Mader's Human Biology) to a very visual $40 workbook, the Visual Analogy Guide to Physiology. In Spring 2018, the students were given the option to download all of the Visible Body apps for $10 as a supplement. Students were also often assigned a curated set of youtube videos as course materials.
I have continued to consult with Coco Le, the current instructor of the course as she is making it her own. It has been wonderful to see its continued evolution.
Between the first and second offering of this course, I changed a few of the units, enhancing topics that students were interested in learning about (ex. the neuroscience of learning) and removing some that I felt did not add to the course (ex. anatomical terminology). I also added a project, where the students would use their scientific knowledge to examine a topic related to food/nutrition that came from their ethnic/cultural/social background.
Schedule for the day
Sample Student Work
Journaling is an evidence based method of increasing retention