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Regular & Honors Biology

Bio is the Best! 

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32 Week
2 Semesters





Don't You Know It's Time for Class Now
00:00 / 00:43

One LIVE Class / Week
Wednesday 3:15 - 4:45 pm
Create a Class (click here)
Eastern Time

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Science Shepherd Biology Text


Copyright @ 2013

Hardin, Scott

ISBN #: 

978-0- 9828568-4- 0

Course Requirements

  1. Student Pre-Assessment as part of Registration / Enrollment (click here).

  2. Enrollment Agreement (Parent Survey) as part of Registration / Enrollment (click here).

  3. Textbook (hardcopy or etext).

  4. Free Zoom account with audio / video capability for classes.

  5. Tablet with stylus for writing is highly recommended (e.g. Wacom).

  6. MAC users get compatible software (Word, Powerpoint, Excel), if possible.


Regular Biology

  1. Students will spend 8-10 hours per week for this course.

  2. Four (4) Formal Lab Reports based on Hands-on experiments.

  3. Fifty (50) labs and/or hands-on activities.


Honors Biology

  1. Students will spend 9-11 hours per week for this course.

  2. Five (5) Formal Lab Reports based on Hands-on experiments.

  3. Fifty (50) labs and/or hands-on activities, taking pictures of major procedures/results.

  4. Students will do an EXTRA lab most units (taking a picture of reactants and/or products, and explaining its relevance).

  5. Students will incorporate a major project into 2nd semester (during breaks).

  6. Students will complete some extra assignments beyond the General Biology course.


32 Week Course  ...  2 Semesters

$300 / Semester
$500 / Year


$350 / Semester

$600 / Year

Science Shepherd Biology Text


Copyright @ 2013

Hardin, Scott

ISBN #: 

978-0- 9828568-4- 0

science shepherd bio text.jpg

Lab Supplies Needed

(Click for Lab Supplies)

100 ml Plastic Grad Cylinder 

250 ml Glass Beaker / Cup    

-10 C to 110 C Thermometer


probe, scalpel, nitrile gloves


Frog Dissection Kit

Test Tubes & Rack

Safety Goggles 

Household Items 

Science Shepherd Biology Answer Key and Parent Companion

Hardin, Scott. 2013 Edition. Ohana Life Press, LLC.

ISBN# 978-0- 98285685-7

science shepherd bio KEY.jpg

Course Description


Biology is an interactive discussion and laboratory course for the motivated science student. It can be taken as Regular Biology or Honors. The primary objective of the course is to provide students with a fundamental understanding of modern biology and scientific processes, building a foundation for success in the AP Biology course, the Anatomy and Physiology course, and in a college/career major in a Life Science or Health Care field. Those taking Honors Biology will examine topics with more depth and includes more advanced resource material than the regular Biology course. There is also a greater emphasis on developing critical thinking skills for the content and by examining real world problems.

Topics include microscopy, biochemistry, cytology, metabolism, bioenergetics (photosynthesis, cellular respiration), cell division, heredity and molecular genetics, DNA, RNA & proteins, creation / evolution, classification of organisms, structure and diversity of organisms, ecology, and human anatomy and physiology. All topics, and especially the matter of origins, are presented so students understand mainstream thought in public school, but then is addressed from a biblical perspective. Laboratory work provides hands-on learning experience, and provides opportunity for more detailed analysis. Scientific writing is integrated into the lab work.

Note:   All Learning CTR Online science courses include training and resources for writing technically correct lab reports, to prepare the student for upper-level science and college lab courses in various sciences. Students will be instructed in the process of writing, revising, and producing a formal lab report, in general and specifically for that field of science. For each course, this training process includes video instruction, written evaluation guidelines, sample lab reports, in-class training, and an evaluated draft, all before the first final lab report is submitted.

Note:   The Honors Biology course is geared for students pursuing science or health care degrees / careers, or who might take the AP Biology exam. Students pursuing liberal arts or social science degrees / careers might prefer to take Regular Biology.

Topics and Objectives:


  1. Have a great start to Biology!

  2. Go over practical and technical issues to navigating course related issues.

  3. Discuss the Characteristics of all Living Organisms.

  4. Explore the principles and practices of the Scientific Method.

  5. Identify, label, and explain the parts and functions of a compound light microscope


Chemistry of Life

  1. Understand matter and how matter is affected (physical versus chemical changes).

  2. Describe atoms and molecules (subatomic particles, atomic number, atomic mass, isotopes).

  3. Explore types of bonds between atoms and molecules (covalent, ionic, hydrogen).

  4. Identify and explain hydrogen bonding and its relationship to the properties of water.

  5. Define solutions especially when water is the solvent.

  6. Describe acidic and basic solutions in terms of pH, ion concentration and examples.

  7. Explain buffers and their relevance to life.


  1. Describe the structures and functions of each of the four groups of Macromolecules of Life: Carbohydrates, Lipids, Proteins, and Nucleic Acids.

  2. Investigate how the four groups of Macromolecules of Life are metabolized by cells.

The Cell, Cell Membrane, and Organelles

  1. Describe basic structures in all cells and state the cell theory.

  2. Compare and contrast prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells.

  3. Describe the anatomy and function of the cell membrane.

  4. Differentiate between diffusion, osmosis, passive transport, and active transport.

  5. Discuss the general and specific features and functions of a Cell and its Organelles.

  6. Contrast animal versus plant cells.

Metabolism & Enzymes

  1. Define types of Metabolism.

  2. Investigate the structure and function of ATP.

  3. Investigate the properties and actions of Enzymes in living systems.


  1. Explain the importance of photosynthesis to living organisms.

  2. Write the chemical equation for photosynthesis.

  3. Summarize the process of photosynthesis (stages, components, chemicals, energy), including the two photo systems and the electron transport chain.

  4. Identify and explain the components and process within the Calvin cycle.

Cell Respiration 

  1. Understand how energy is acquired by organisms.

  2. Investigate the biological processes of Cell Respiration

  3. Analyze the steps of Cellular Respiration: Glycolysis, Transition Reaction, the Kreb’s Cycle, and the Electron Transport Chain.

  4. Distinguish aerobic from anaerobic respiration.


  1. Discuss the biological process of asexual cell division, called mitosis.

  2. Review the theory of spontaneous generation and how it was disproved.

  3. Review the Theory of Biogenesis.

  4. Investigate the process of DNA replication.

  5. Learn how DNA is packaged in the cell at various stages.

  6. Discuss, identify, and describe the events of the cell cycle related to cell division.


  1. Investigate the asexual cell/organism reproductive processes of binary fission and budding.

  2. Review more information regarding chromosomes and how they align during the sexual reproductive cell division process of meiosis.

  3. Illustrate the steps of meiosis (two major stages of meiosis I and meiosis II).           

  4. Identify and define the differences between male and female meiosis in humans.

  5. Describe ways in which genetic variation occurs – the roles of crossing over and independent assortment in meiosis.

  6. Explain the importance of meiosis to living organisms.

DNA, RNA, Genes & Protein Synthesis

  1. Distinguish chromosome, gene, and DNA.

  2. Identify and label the anatomy of chromosomes and DNA.

  3. Name the scientists who discovered DNA and their contributions.

  4. Review the process of DNA replication.

  5. Contrast DNA and RNA, introducing protein synthesis.

  6. Explain gene expression.

  7. Discuss the overall process of protein synthesis, including where in the cell it occurs and the stages involved.

  8. Identify and describe DNA transcription.

  9. Define “genetic code”.

  10. Identify and describe RNA translation.

  11. Identify and describe Protein Synthesis.

  12. Distinguish Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic Protein Synthesis.

Genetics & Inheritance Patterns

  1. Define genetics and heredity, distinguishing characteristics from traits, genes, and alleles.

  2. Describe the history of genetics and Mendel’s role.

  3. Delineate the science of heredity in terms of generations (P, F1, F2), differentiating genotype from phenotype.

  4. Understand and use the law of segregation to show monohybrid test crosses.

  5. Understand and use the law of independent assortment to show dihybrid test crosses.

  6. Describe, define and give examples for Incomplete Dominance (intermediate dominance, co-dominance, blending).

  7. Explain inheritance by Multiple Alleles, including human blood typing (antigens, antibodies, Rh factor, recipients, donors).

  8. Understand how sex is determined for individuals and in offspring.

  9. Describe, define and give examples sex-linked traits.

  10. Define Polygenic Inheritance (Continuous Variation) and give examples.

  11. Explain Epistasis (modifier genes).




Human Genetics

  1. Understand and build pedigree charts.

  2. Describe technologies used for genetic diagnosis.

  3. Define and identify Karyotype mapping in terms of techniques and components.

  4. Understand, describe, and give examples of human patterns of inheritance (Autosomal Recessive, Autosomal Dominant, Sex-linked).

  5. Define and give examples of inherited human traits based on one gene, including heterozygous advantage.

  6. Define and give examples of congenital genetic diseases, including non-disjunction.

Genetic Variation

  1. Explain how traits are expressed and understand conditions that lead to mutations.

  2. Define mutation and distinguish non-genetic mutations from gene mutations.

  3. Define and identify mutations that involve chromosome number and structure.

  4. Describe mutations in somatic cells versus sex cells.

  5. Understand how genetics is used to produce desired traits in an organism (selective breeding; applied genetics).


Evolution/Creation, Diversity, and Classification

  1. Establish the best way to deal with a potentially controversial and contentious issue.

  2. Identify and dismantle misconceptions related to creation / evolution.

  3. Learn and practice the appropriate questions to ask in a discussion of creation / evolution.

  4. Understand the fossil record, its place in earth’s history, and the use of radioactive dating.

  5. Identify scientists who advocate evolution and are held in high esteem in the world.

  6. Define gradualism and punctuated equilibrium, understanding their components. Explain each theory and why it exists.

  7. Discuss a major problem with gradualism.

  8. Define and give examples of natural selection, Hardy-Weinberg Principle, Genetic Drift, and Gene Flow.

  9. Recognize the Geologic Time Scale (Eon, Epoch, Period, Era).


Classification / Viruses

  1. Explain the need for and benefits of classification. What is the scientific name for classification?

  2. Describe the process (history) of the modern system of classification (People, Basis, Language, Categories).

  3. Explain how modern taxonomy takes into account other types of evidence when attempting to classify an organism.

  4. Understand the progression of classifying kingdoms and domains.

  5. Define a virus and its components, noting why they are significant.


Bacteria / Protists / Fungi

  1. Identify the characteristics of bacteria.

  2. Name and describe the two kingdoms related to bacteria.

  3. Discuss the overall importance of bacteria.

  4. Identify the characteristics of Protists.

  5. Describe the three protist groups and their characteristics.

  6. Compare and contrast the three groups of protists.

  7. Identify the characteristics shared by all fungi.

  8. Classify fungi into groups based on their methods of reproduction.

  9. Differentiate among imperfect fungi and all other fungi.

Plant Kingdom

  1. Explain the importance of plants and their general life cycle?

  2. Describe the taxonomic diversity of plants (bryophytes and tracheophytes).

  3. Distinguish characteristics of bryophytes (gametophytes, rhizoids, etc.) and tracheophytes (seedless, seeds, cones, flowers, cotyledons).

  4. Understand the basic tissues found in all tracheophytes and how plants grow.

  5. Learn to use a dichotomous key to identify plants (trees).

  6. Identify the major organs in plants, including the function and anatomy of each one?

  7. Distinguish herbaceous & woody plants, monocots & dicots.

  8. Explain the formation and aspects of secondary growth, including vascular tissue & bark.

  9. Understand how plants acquire nutrients from air, water, and soil (root pressure, capillary action, transpiration), including light absorption and guard cells.

  10. Identify Hormones and explain the process of germination.

Animal Kingdom

  1. Identify the two branches of the animal kingdom (invertebrates and vertebrates).

  2. Explain five common characteristics of organisms in the animal kingdom.

  3. Describe the process of embryonic maturation (blastula, gastrula, true tissues).

  4. Distinguish the five Animal Body Plans and how this relates to animal phyla.

  5. Understand and explain the general features of invertebrate animals (non-chordates), including porifera, cnidarians, flatworms, roundworms, mollusks, annelids, arthropods, and echinoderms.

  6. General Features include:

  • Phylum

  • Examples of organisms

  • Location

  • Symmetry

  • Body plan (tissue layers)

  • Coelom relationship (acoelomate, pseudocoelomate, coelomate)

  • Protostome or deuterostome

  • Reproduction

  • Special features


  1. Understand and explain the four features that all Chordates possess at some time in their life.

  2. Identify and describe symmetry, germ layers, coelom relationship (acoelomate, pseudocoelomate, coelomate), protostome or deuterostome, & reproduction in chordates.

  3. Distinguish the characteristics of various subgroups of chordates (urochordate, cephalochordate, vertebrates) and the classes of organisms within chordates.

  4. Associate chordate diversity with the classes of organisms related to locomotion (limbs, wings), body temperature regulation (ectotherm, endotherm), type of fertilization (external, internal), type of egg development and maturation (oviparity, ovoviviparity, viviparity), and special features (metamorphosis, amniotic egg, hollow bones, etc.).



  1. Define ecology and levels of organization within an individual and outside the organism.

  2. Identify two major variables that affect all organisms.

  3. Understand interactions in an ecosystem.    

  4. Distinguish habitat from niche.

  5. Food chains, food webs, food pyramids

  6. Food relationships, cycles of materials in nature

  7. Explain how energy flows between trophic levels of a food chain (pyramid).

  8. Describe how energy supply limits the length of food chains

  9. Explain how energy and nutrients flow through an ecosystem (biogeochemical cycles).

  10. Describe the five major types of interactions between organisms.

  11. Identify community ecological interactions, including competition, predation, and symbiosis.

  12. Define and explain ecological succession from pioneer species to climax communities and world biomes.

  13. Understand population ecology, survivorship, and growth.

Human Anatomy & Physiology (Skin, Bones, Muscles)

1.  Recognize the hierarchy of levels of organization for humans (cells, tissues, organs, systems).

2.  Identify characteristics and define the purpose of the four types of human tissues, emphasizing:

  • Skin (Epithelial tissue)

  • Skeleton (Connective tissue)

  • Muscle tissue

  • Nervous tissue (next lesson)

 3.  Understand how Organ Systems work together to perform life’s functions.

 4.  Describe regulation of the internal environment (homeostasis)

Human Anatomy & Physiology (Nervous, Circulatory & Respiratory Systems)

1.  Recognize, identify, and define the anatomy and function of the human nervous system.

  • Central vs. Peripheral Nervous System

  • Neurons, Synapses

  • Membrane Potential

2.  Recognize, identify, and define the anatomy and function of the human circulatory system.

  • Blood Vessels

  • The Heart

  • Types of Blood

3.  Recognize, identify, and define the anatomy and function of the human respiratory system.

  • Inhalation vs. Exhalation

  • Transport and exchange of Gases

Human Anatomy & Physiology (Endocrine, Immune, Digestive, Excretory Systems)

  1. Recognize, identify, & define the anatomy and function of the human Endocrine system.

    • Types of glands (exocrine versus endocrine).

    • Positive / Negative feedback mechanism.

  2. Recognize, identify, & define the anatomy and function of the human Immune system.

    • Types of White Blood Cells; two general categories (innate vs. adaptive); Lines of defense.

    • Acquired immunity (active vs. passive); Primary vs. Secondary response; Immune diseases.

  3. Recognize, identify, & define the anatomy and function of the human Digestive system.

    • Nutrients; Four stages of food processing; Two methods of digestion.

    • Alimentary Canal (stomach to anus) with digestive accessory glands.

  4. Recognize, identify, & define the anatomy and function of the human Excretory system.

    • Homeostasis; excretory organs.

    • Urinary system; Urine formation; Control of kidney function.

Human Reproduction

  1. Male & Female anatomy and function

  2. Fertilization to Birth




Grade Weighting

10%    Homework

 5%    Participation 

30%   Labs

50%   Unit Tests

  5%   Semester Exam

Unit Assessments

Textbook Reading

Class Notes (Powerpoint)

Notes / Study Guide

Homework (Text or Worksheets)

Lab (Quiz; Worksheet or Report)

Test (Multiple Choice; Essays)

Grading & Unit Assessments

Craig T. Riesen

CTR pic 9 2011.jpg


  • Biology

  • Chemistry

  • Physics

  • General Science 7-12

  • Basic Administation K-12

  • Online Instructor

30+ years Teaching Experience

  • Public Schools (26+yr)

  • Online (7+yr)

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