Learning Goals for Biology Majors at Trinity College.
(revised 5/5/2015)


A student graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Biology should have acquired conceptual understanding of the fundamental concepts of biology, have familiarity with how form and function integrate at the molecular, cellular, organismal and ecological levels, and acquire a basic understanding of at least one non-vertebrate group. They should be able to use the methods of experiment and observation, use quantitative analytical skills and understand how new discoveries in biology are achieved. They should display intellectual independence, scientific literacy and an appreciation for the connections between biological science and society.

1. It is important for Biology majors to gain a broad background in the fundamental concepts of biology. Students will:

a. gain conceptual knowledge at the different levels of biological organization:

1) cellular/molecular
2) organismal
3) ecological.

b. demonstrate a knowledge of form and function for at least one major non-vertebrate group of living organisms.
c. be able to compare and contrast features of living organisms that acknowledge a common origin while recognizing evolutionary differences.

2. It is important for Biology majors to gain knowledge and experience in the basic methods, instrumentation and quantitative analytical skills used to conduct scientific research in biology, and demonstrate an understanding of the process of science. Students will:

a. be able to frame scientific questions or problems.
b. investigate biological questions or problems through observation and experimentation, and be able to collect, analyze and interpret quantitative data.
c. receive training and engage in hands-on laboratory and/or field work using scientific equipment and methods.

3. It is important for Biology majors to develop critical thinking skills and be able to apply fundamental biology concepts successfully to new situations. It is also important to communicate biological information to professional scientists and the general public in both written and oral forms. Students will:

a. be able to communicate the results of scientific investigations orally and in writing.
b. be able to evaluate scientific arguments critically.
c. acquire and understand information from primary sources of biological literature.