BI 212 : Principles of Biology

Includes inheritance, the genetic code, modern and classical genetics, evolution, diversity, and systematics. May include some dissection of plants and animals. The second course in a three-course sequence for students majoring in biology and the sciences, including pre-medical, pre-dental, chiropractic, pharmacy, and related fields.


BI 112 or BI 211 accepted as prerequisite for course.

Course Outcomes

Students will be able to:

  • apply biological theories and concepts to novel problems in genetics, evolution, and systematics;
  • assess the strengths and weaknesses of scientific studies in genetics, evolution, and systematics and critically examine the influence of scientific and technical knowledge of genetics, evolution, and systematics on human society and the environment.
  • apply concepts from genetics, evolution, and systematics to their lives and community (personal, work, and career);
  • develop informed positions and opinions on contemporary issues in genetics, evolution, and systematics, while considering ethical, scientific, community, and cultural implications;
  • communicate concepts in genetics, evolution, and systematics using appropriate terminology in both written and verbal forms.
  • competently enter and complete further work in the sciences, including Biology 213 and upperlevel courses in genetics, evolution, and systematics.

Additional Information

This course fulfills the following GE requirements: Science, Math, Computer Science/AAS, Science, Math, Computer Science/AGS, Science, Math, Computer Science/ASOT-B, Science, Math, Computer Science/AS, Science, Math, Computer Science/AAOT.

Evolution Statement

To clarify the teaching of evolution and its place in the classroom, the Portland Community College Science Departments stand by the following statements about what is science and how the theory of evolution is the major organizing theory in the discipline of the biological sciences.

A. Science is a fundamentally nondogmatic and self-correcting investigatory process. In science, a theory is neither a guess, a dogma, nor a myth. The theories developed through scientific investigation are not decided in advance, but can be and often are modified and revised through observation and experimentation.

B. The theory of evolution meets the criteria of a scientific theory. In contrast, creation “science” is neither self-examining nor investigatory. Creation “science” is not considered a legitimate science, but a form of religious advocacy. This position is established by legal precedence (Webster v. New Lenox School District #122, 917 F. 2d 1004).

Science instructors of Portland Community College will teach the theory of evolution not as absolute truth but as the most widely accepted scientific theory on the diversity of life. We, the Biology Subject Area Curriculum Committee at Portland Community College, therefore stand with such organizations as the National Association of Biology Teachers in opposing the inclusion of pseudo-sciences in our science curricula.

Course Adoption Date

Course Revision Date





Grading Options

Letter Grades


Audit Available