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Essential Objectives

Course Syllabus

Revision Date: 24-Jul-24

Fall 2024 | BIO-2120-VO03 - Elements of Microbiology

Online Class

Online courses take place 100% online via Canvas, without required in-person or Zoom meetings.

Location: Online
Credits: 4
Day/Times: Meets online
Semester Dates: 09-03-2024 to 12-16-2024
Last day to drop without a grade: 09-16-2024 - Refund Policy
Last day to withdraw (W grade): 11-04-2024 - Refund Policy
Open Seats: 17 (as of 07-25-24 6:05 AM)
To check live space availability, Search for Courses.
Materials/Lab Fees: $125.00


Joseph Dionne
View Faculty Credentials
View Faculty Statement
Hiring Coordinator for this course: Ryan Joy

General Education Requirements

This section meets the following CCV General Education Requirement(s) for the current catalog year:
VSCS Natural Science
  1. Many degree programs have specific general education recommendations. In order to avoid taking unnecessary classes, please consult with additional resources like your program evaluation, your academic program catalog year page, and your academic advisor.
  2. Courses may only be used to meet one General Education Requirement.

Course Description

This course offers the student an opportunity to examine organisms that are too small to see with the naked eye and is a comprehensive study of the basic principles of microbiology. A brief survey of the history of the science is given. Emphasis is placed on understanding the variety and differences of microbes and their relationship to humans. Prior successful completion of BIO-2012, Human Anatomy and Physiology II, is recommended.

Essential Objectives

1. Compare the theoretical aspects of historical development in the field of microbiology to current concepts of microbiology.
2. Identify macroscopic and microscopic morphology of common microbial isolates.
3. Apply the theoretical and practical aspects of physical and chemical methods used to control microorganisms.
4. Explain the relationships that can exist between host and microorganism.
5. Discuss the disease process as it relates to common microbial pathologies.
6. Model and explain the theoretical and practical aspects of culturing and staining bacteria.
7. Demonstrate proficiency in understanding, interpreting, evaluating, and applying quantitative data and information.
8. Explain how knowledge created in the natural sciences has contributed to the creation, maintenance and dismantling of social inequalities and discuss the impacts of diversity and inclusion on scientific research and practice.
Lab Objectives:
1. Apply knowledge of the scientific method to:
a. formulate and evaluate real-world scientific questions;
b. ethically plan and implement accurate data collection;
c. analyze and evaluate data;
d. generate conclusions based on analysis and justify claims with evidence;
e. integrate the related work of other scientists; and
f. propose ideas for further inquiry.
2. Communicate findings in a format appropriate to the discipline and type of investigation, such as a laboratory notebook, laboratory report, observational study, field investigation report, poster, or presentation using appropriate evidence to support these findings.
3. Understand the structure and purpose of peer-reviewed publications.
4. Evaluate scientific information for validity, accuracy, reliability, and methodology.
5. Identify and follow lab safety techniques that are aligned with CCV’s Chemical Hygiene Plan, Lab Safety Agreements, and chemical Safety Data Sheets (SDS).

Required Technology

More information on general computer and internet recommendations is available on the CCV IT Support page. https://support.ccv.edu/general/computer-recommendations/

Please see CCV's Digital Equity Statement (pg. 45) to learn more about CCV's commitment to supporting all students access the technology they need to successfully finish their courses.

Required Textbooks and Resources

This course uses one or more textbooks/books/simulations, along with free Open Educational Resources (OER) and/or library materials.

Fall 2024 textbook/book details will be available on 2024-05-20. On that date a link will be available below that will take you to eCampus, CCV's bookstore. The information provided there will be specific to this class. Please see this page for more information regarding the purchase of textbooks/books.

BIO-2120-VO03 Link to Textbooks for this course in eCampus.

For Open Educational Resources (OER) and/or library materials details, see the Canvas Site for this class.

The last day to use a Financial Aid Advance to purchase textbooks/books is the 3rd Tuesday of the semester. See your financial aid counselor at your academic center if you have any questions.

Artificial Intelligence(AI) Policy Statement

CCV recognizes that artificial intelligence (AI) and generative AI tools are widely available and becoming embedded in many online writing and creative applications.

Prohibited: The use of generative AI is not allowed in this course, with the exception of spellcheck, grammar check and similar tools. This course rests in the value of students engaging in the learning process without relying on AI-generated content. Students will develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills independently, owning their learning journey from start to finish. If you use these tools, your actions would be considered academically dishonest and a violation of CCV's Academic Integrity Policy.


Virtual Lecture
Virtual Laboratory Sessions
Online Demonstrations
Online Discussion
Virtual Videos
Article Reviews/Case Studies

Course Materials:

Microbiology.Published through Rice University online. Text may also be purchased as a hard copy through Amazon or the bookstore. Kindle and iBooks downloads are also available for a nominal fee. Information can be found athttps://openstax.org/details/books/microbiologyLinks to an external site..

Virtual Lab:We will have weekly lab assignments to complete virtually through McGraw-Hill. You will purchase your access code through the bookstore.

Evaluation Criteria

Lecture Exams (6): 50% of final grade; lowest Exam dropped

Lab Work/Lab Quizzes: 15% of final grade

Quizzes (6): 10% of final grade; lowest Quiz dropped

Lab Article Review: 2% of final grade

Lab Reports (2): 8% of final grade

Participation/Online discussion/Online Assignments: 15% of final grade

(*Please note:The lecture component of this course comprises 75% of your overall score, while Lab Activities/Assignments comprise 25% of your overall score)

Grading Criteria

CCV Letter Grades as outlined in the Evaluation System Policy are assigned according to the following chart:

A Less than 9893
A-Less than 9390
B+Less than 9088
B Less than 8883
B-Less than 8380
C+Less than 8078
C Less than 7873
C-Less than 7370
D+Less than 7068
D Less than 6863
D-Less than 6360
FLess than 60 
NPLess than 600

Weekly Schedule

Week/ModuleTopic  Readings  Assignments


Introduction to the Microbial World


Ch. 1


Homework / Discussion Board / Lab: Virtual Lab Tour & Lab Safety



Chemical Principles


Reading: App. A and Ch. 7


Homework / Discussion Forum /Labs: Scientific Method & Aseptic Technique Parts A and B





Ch. 2


Homework / Discussion Forum /Labs: Microscopy Parts A, B and C / Quiz 1 (Ch. 1,7, App.A) / Online Chemistry/Math Workshop Quiz due this week



Anatomy of Prokaryotes and Eukaryotes


Ch. 3


Homework / Discussion Forum / Lab: Staining Slide Prep & Gram Stain Lab / Exam I (Ch. 1,2,7, app. A)



Microbial Metabolism


Ch. 8


Homework / Discussion Forum /Labs: How Enzymes Function Parts A and B & Cellular Respiration Parts A and B / Quiz 2 (Ch. 3)



Microbial Growth/Control of Growth


Ch. 9,13 and 14


Homework / Discussion / Labs: Microbial Growth: Oxygen Requirements, pH, and Temperature & Control of Microbial Growth Parts A and B/Exam II (Ch. 3&8) / Lab Report #1 due this week



Microbial Genetics


Ch.10 and11


Homework / Discussion /Labs: Bacterial Genetics Parts A, B, and C & Natural selection / Quiz 3 (Ch. 9,13,14)



Biotechnology and DNA Technology




Homework / Discussion / Labs: Gel Electrophoresis & Isolation of DNA / Exam III (Ch. 9,10,11,13,14)



Classification/Bacteria and Archaea


Ch. 4


Homework / Discussion / Labs: Research Lecture / Quiz 4 (Ch.12)



Fungi, Algae, Protozoa and Helminths


Ch. 5


Homework / Discussion /Lab: Unknown Bacteria / Exam IV (Ch. 4&12)



Viruses, Viroids, and Prions/Diseases and Epidemiology


Ch. 6, and 16


Homework / Discussion / Labs: Isolation Methods Parts A, B, and C / Quiz 5 (Ch.5)



Mechanisms of Pathogenicity


Ch. 15


Homework / Discussion /Labs: Photosynthesis Parts A and B & Article(s) to read / Exam V (Ch. 5,6,16) / Lab Report #2 due this week



Innate Immunity


Ch. 17


Homework / Discussion /Labs: Ubiquity of Microorganisms & Article(s) to read / Article Review due this week



Adaptive Immunity


Ch. 18


Homework / Discussion /Lab: Read Article(s) / Quiz 6 (Ch. 15 and 17)/ COVID-19 Reflection Journal



Final Week




Exam VI (Ch. 15, 17, 18)

*Each week also has discussion forum(s)

And homework assignments to complete

which are not reflected here. Please see the Canvas page for details.

Every week begins at 12am on Tuesday and ends at 11:59pm the nearest Monday.

Please also note that all exams and quizzes are online, timed and NOT open book.

All assignments, labs, exams and quizzes are due are on the Monday of that week at 11:59pm.

Please note the term ends on December 16, 2024, at 11:59 pm.


Attendance Policy

Regular attendance and participation in classes are essential for success in and are completion requirements for courses at CCV. A student's failure to meet attendance requirements as specified in course descriptions will normally result in a non-satisfactory grade.

  • In general, missing more than 20% of a course due to absences, lateness or early departures may jeopardize a student's ability to earn a satisfactory final grade.
  • Attending an on-ground or synchronous course means a student appeared in the live classroom for at least a meaningful portion of a given class meeting. Attending an online course means a student posted a discussion forum response, completed a quiz or attempted some other academically required activity. Simply viewing a course item or module does not count as attendance.
  • Meeting the minimum attendance requirement for a course does not mean a student has satisfied the academic requirements for participation, which require students to go above and beyond simply attending a portion of the class. Faculty members will individually determine what constitutes participation in each course they teach and explain in their course descriptions how participation factors into a student's final grade.

Participation Expectations

Additional Instructor Pre-Assignments/Notes/Comments:

Please read the recommended chapters prior to posting in the discussion forum each week as this will allow you to be better prepared for online class discussion and learning. Please view all available PowerPoint slides and their embedded audio of me lecturing (you will need to download to play audio and view the notes under the slides in PowerPoint).

I am always available via CCV e-mail. I check this several times per day, including the weekend. I make every effort to respond to e-mails within 24 hours. All messages will be sent to your CCV (or VSC) e-mail account for security purposes.

Lecture Exams:

Description: Exams will have a mixture of Multiple Choice, True/False, and Short Answers. Any cumulative material will be discussed in advance (which is a rare occurrence). Concepts learned during lab activities may be assessed during lecture exams. All six lecture exams will be given online using Canvas. All lecture exams will be 90 minutes in length and consist of 45 questions each. The lowest lecture exam score of the term will be dropped at the last day of this course.Exams will only be available from Tuesday at 12:00 am to Monday at 11:59 pm the week of the exam(for security purposes). You will have one attempt per exam, and they cannot be made up. Exams are closed notes and you are not allowed to use your notes or websites while taking the exam. You will need to download the Lockdown software to ensure you are not accessing additional websites or AI during the exams. Please plan accordingly.

Purpose: The exams in this course are timed for security purposes and to provide you with practice taking timed, closed-notes exams. Many of you plan on continuing your education with a 4-year STEM degree or a nursing/healthcare degree, and the standard for these programs is the timed, closed-notes exam. Thus, this course seeks to prepare you for such assessments. Lecture exams provide you the opportunity to display strong critical thinking skills throughout the term. There are 6 exams so that the amount of material on any one exam is not more than the others.


Description: Quizzes are not cumulative. Quizzes willhave a mixture of Multiple Choice, True/False, and Short Answers. Quizzes cannot be made up under any circumstance. Quizzes will always be administered online through Canvas. All quizzes will be 20 minutes in length and compose of 10 questions each. The lowest quiz grade will be dropped at the end of the term.Quizzes will only be available from Tuesday at 12:00 am to Monday at 11:59 pm the week of the quiz(for security purposes). You will have one attempt per quiz, and they cannot be made up. Quizzes are closed notes and you are not allowed to use your notes or websites while taking the quiz. You will need to download the Lockdown software to ensure you are not accessing additional websites or AI during the quizzes. Please plan accordingly.

Purpose: Past students recommended providing a quiz on non-exam weeks to assist in guiding the study of the substantial content covered in this course. Quizzes serve as a gauge of your understanding as you prepare for each unit lecture exam. Quizzes also provide practice in answering timed questions on Canvas prior to taking each unit exam.

Attendance/ Online Assignments:

Description: More information to follow on the weeks when each activity is due. These will be completed virtually via Canvas. All online assignments, quizzes and exams must be completed by the due date (11:59 pm on Monday). Online participation is NOT optional and failure to complete a week’s online activities will result in an absence and loss of respective points. The lab portion and lecture aspect of this course will run from Tuesday at 12:00 am to 11:59 pm. Be certain to track assignment due dates through the schedule and the course Canvas page.

Purpose: To assist you in investigating the module’s contents each week. Much of the content discussed in the homework assignments will be revisited in quizzes and exams.

Discussion Forums:

Description: You will participate in weekly discussion forums. All discussion forums requiring you to respond to other students’ posts must be completed by the following days and times each week: Post your response to the discussion prompts by 11:59 pm Thursday and reply to a minimum of two other students by 11:59 pm Monday each week. Please note, Canvas only allows one due date, so only the Sunday due date will populate in the To Do List each week but please do not forget about posting your initial response by Thursday at 11:59 pm. All prompts must be completed on time to earn full credit. The following is the breakdown of points to be earned for each weeklydiscussion forum:

  • Initial responseposted byThursday at 11:59 pmwith all prompts covered completely (3 points)
    • If posted after Thursday 11:59 pm subtract 1 point
    • If post is missing key prompt information, subtract 1 point
  • Two repliesto fellow students posted byMonday at 11:59 pmwith all prompts covered completely (2 points)
    • Subtract 1 point if a reply is not present or is missing key aspects of the prompt

= 5 points total each week

Purpose: The weekly discussion forums provide an opportunity to use creative thinking skills to communicate with other members of the class. These are also opportunities to enhance your research and writing abilities.

Lab Reports:

Description:Scientific writing is paramount to sharing ideas and discoveries to other scientists. We will follow the standardized lab report rubric recently produced by the Science and Allied Health Curriculum Committee at CCV. This format must be followed for full credit and all must be typed. No late assignments will be accepted. More information to be provided within the Canvas course.

Purpose: Crafting lab reports is an effective way of analyzing the data collected from our virtual simulation labs. This gives us insight into the scientific process and expands our writing skills.

Lab Article Review:

Description: You will locate a peer-reviewed journal article through the Hartness Library online search engine about a topic of interest to you that relates to the field of Microbiology. You will then complete the assignment provided in Canvas as part of your Lab grade for this course.

Purpose: To expand our skills retrieving and evaluating the scientific process and conclusions from scientists in the field of Microbiology. This will provide an opportunity to use critical thinking in regards to actual experiments and research.

Lab Work/ Lab Quizzes:

Description:Most weeks will have virtual lab simulations and activities to complete via the McGraw-Hill Virtual Labs. You will need to purchase your access codes through the bookstore. All lab activities must be completed by the due date as the labs close and lock up after the due date each week.

Purpose:This allows us to develop our lab skills via remote tools. We will expand our understanding of the scientific process and use critical thinking skills each week.

Chemistry and Math for Microbiology Workshop:

Description: This online required workshop must be completed by every student by the due date. Each student must earn a 100% on their last attempt of the quiz to move forward in the course. The quiz is timed but may be taken as many times as required to earn a 100%. This workshop is part of participation points online. Those with a strong chemistry and/or mathematics background will require less time to complete this workshop.Please note:This workshop quiz is very different than the remaining quizzes and exams in this course!

Purpose: You all have varying backgrounds in math and chemistry and this workshop ensures everyone is prepared for the few calculations and the chemical components of this course.

Online Etiquette:

Please note, that our online environment is a safe learning space for all. Disrespectful behavior of any kind will not be tolerated. A warning may be issued for the first offense and academic action with administration will occur for any subsequent infractions.

Please give references whenever necessary. Always place answers in your own words. Never copy and paste from online sources, the text, the lecture notes or other students. Submit your own work only. Failing to do so is considered an infraction against the academic honor code of CCV and will involve administrative action with the Dean. I ask that you provide the same respect and professionalism online as you would in traditional classroom settings.

Missing & Late Work Policy

Please note assignments will not be accepted late. Make-up exams will NOT be provided under any circumstances. The lowest exam grade at the end of the term will be dropped.

All written assignments must be typed and submitted via Canvas by 11:59 pm on Monday of that week. Assignments must be submitted in Microsoft Word, PDF, RTF, or online copy and paste.

Late Policy:Please note, assignments willnotbe accepted late**. I will make a one-time offer (a free pass) that may be used for only one of the following: lab report, article review, or weekly homework assignment to be turned in up to one week late without penalty. However, if you turn all of the term’s assignments in on time and do not use your “free pass”, I will add 5 points to your second lowest exam score for this course at the end of the term. This offer is all-or-none. Make-up exams and quizzes willNOTbe provided under any circumstances**. The lowest exam and quiz grade at the end of the term will be dropped. Lab Assignments cannot be dropped or made-up under any circumstances**. Exams, quizzes, lab activities and forum discussions do not qualify for the “free pass” program.

**Exceptions will be made for extenuating circumstances only, such as student illness (i.e. COVID-19, cancer treatment, etc.) or natural disaster (i.e. storm damage with loss of power for several days). Documents may be requested at the instructor’s discretion.

All written assignments must be typed and turned in by the day they are due via the online assignment box on Canvas. Assignments will only be posted using Microsoft Office Products as CCV provides these on all computers on campus and low cost to all students. If you do not have Microsoft office on your personal computer, you will need to download it or make time to use the computers on campus (when possible) to complete assignments in this course. Assignments must be turned in using Microsoft Office products, in a PDF, in a RTF, or copy and paste into the drop box. I do not have access to a Mac and am unable to accept assignments using Mac products.It is recommended that you use Chrome or Edge as your browser. Please doNOTuse Safari or other browsers made for cell phones/tablets as they have been known to block certain parts of the quizzes/exams.

Accessibility Services for Students with Disabilities:

CCV strives to mitigate barriers to course access for students with documented disabilities. To request accommodations, please
  1. Provide disability documentation to the Accessibility Coordinator at your academic center. https://ccv.edu/discover-resources/students-with-disabilities/
  2. Request an appointment to meet with accessibility coordinator to discuss your request and create an accommodation plan.
  3. Once created, students will share the accommodation plan with faculty. Please note, faculty cannot make disability accommodations outside of this process.

Academic Integrity

CCV has a commitment to honesty and excellence in academic work and expects the same from all students. Academic dishonesty, or cheating, can occur whenever you present -as your own work- something that you did not do. You can also be guilty of cheating if you help someone else cheat. Being unaware of what constitutes academic dishonesty (such as knowing what plagiarism is) does not absolve a student of the responsibility to be honest in his/her academic work. Academic dishonesty is taken very seriously and may lead to dismissal from the College.