Division of Natural Science

Studies in Biology, Chemistry, General Science, Mathematics, and Physics

J. Beers, Blume, Funk, Greuel (chair), Hahn, Michael, Newton, Swearingen, Umesiri, Varner, Wakefield

The Division of Natural Science, consisting of the Departments of Biology, Chemistry, General ScienceMathematics, and Physics, is equipped to give students excellent training in the indicated fields. Majors are offered in Biology, Chemistry, Biochemistry, and Mathematics; a minor field may be selected in any of the departments. Degrees that prepare students for professional careers are available as well. These include a Teacher Education Program in Mathematics, and pre-professional programs leading to occupations in health fields, industry, scientific research, and college teaching.

Students with high achievement are encouraged to consider graduate study and to participate with faculty in various undergraduate research projects. Besides introductory and advanced courses for science-related majors, the Division offers Core Curriculum courses that provide a breadth of practical scientific knowledge to students throughout the university. In each area of the curricula, the Division desires to provide an understanding of the natural world that can help our students to become established as Christian thinkers, prepared for God-honoring careers and service.

Preparation for Medical School and Other Professional Study

"Pre-medicine" is not a major at John Brown University. At most institutions of higher learning, a curriculum termed "pre-medicine" means simply that a student is meeting requirements for admission to medical school and, therefore, in addition to working toward a baccalaureate degree in some discipline, the student is satisfying these specific requirements. JBU has a Pre-Health Professions Program (PHPP) for students preparing for training as a physician, dentist, optometrist, veterinarian, pharmacist, or a career in one of the allied health professions, such as a physician assistant, physical therapist, occupational therapist, and public health administrator, among others. While students in any major may participate in the PHPP, majors in Biology, Chemistry, or Biochemistry provide particularly good preparation for careers in the health professions. All students in the PHPP must fulfill certain course and internship requirements under the guidance of the Health Professions Advisory Committee that are largely determined by the professional schools of interest to the student.

DEPARTMENT OF BIOLOGY

(SYMBOL: BIO)

The Department of Biology offers courses designed to give students a broad foundation in the principles of biology and a familiarity with current questions in specific subdisciplines of biology. The approach taken by the department is to help students understand the scientific method and the key scientific facts, concepts, and theories of life processes, while emphasizing harmony with a Biblically-based worldview.

In cooperation with other departments in the Division of Natural Science, the Biology Department offers pre-professional training for students interested in a wide variety of health-related careers such as medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, nursing, optometry, pharmacy, physical therapy, occupational therapy, physician assistance, and public health. A major in Biology is also excellent preparation for graduate training in many specialized areas of biology. Graduates of the Biology Department may look forward to careers in a number of fields, including teaching, research, bioethics, biotechnology, field biology/naturalist area, camp and recreation, missions, and government service. A degree in Biology can also be combined with a minor in Education to prepare for alternative secondary teaching certification. Finally, the Department of Biology offers courses that fulfill the Life Sciences and Global Studies components of the university Core Curriculum.

Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Describe and apply key principles, terms, and theories. Students will be able to describe and apply key principles, terms, and theories in the major subfields of biology.
  2. Use scientific instruments and perform basic laboratory techniques. Students will be able to use scientific instruments and perform basic techniques in a laboratory or field setting.
  3. Collect and analyze observational and numerical data. Students will be able to collect and analyze observational and numerical data to answer biological questions.
  4. Use library and computer resources. Students will be able to use library and computer resources to retrieve biological information and process data.
  5. Critically read and evaluate biological literature. Students will be able to read, interpret, and critically evaluate the primary biological literature and primary or secondary literature in bioethics and/or the philosophy of science.
  6. Communicate biological information in oral and written form. Students will be able to communicate biological information in both oral and written form for the benefit of other students, scientists, and the general public.
  7. Integrate Christian faith with biology and examine its implications. Students will be able to integrate the Christian faith with the field of biology and examine the implications this has for addressing questions in science, theology, philosophy, bioethics, or public policy.

Requirements for the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree with major in Biology

1. University Core Curriculum - 46 hours

The Mathematics elective is covered by MTH 1123, the Life Science elective is covered by BIO 1124, and the Physical Science elective is covered by CHM 1124 in the program requirements.

2. Courses Specified by this Department

A. Biology Major Core - 34-36 hours

BIO 1124 Cell Biology

BIO 1144 Plant and Animal Diversity

BIO 2174 Genetics

BIO 2184 Ecology and Evolution

BIO 3302 Field Experience (required of all students in the Pre-Health Professions Program)

BIO 4501 Biology Capstone

CHM 1124 General Chemistry I

CHM 1134 General Chemistry II

MTH 1123 Survey of Calculus

MTH 2103 Applied Statistics for Scientists

One of the following:

BIO 4103 Bioethics

GSC 4133 Faith and Science

B. Biology Major Electives - 20 hours of upper-division Biology courses, which may include CHM 3164 and as many as four hours of research (BIO 4221/22/23)

3. Additional courses, selected in consultation with academic advisor, for completion of a minor or fulfillment of prerequisites for graduate school, medical school, dental school, or other professional schools. May also include additional upper-division Biology courses, including additional hours of research (BIO 4221/22/23), or courses applied toward completion of a second major.

4. Complete a standardized achievement test designated by the department

5. Electives as necessary to complete minimum total hours

Minimum total semester hours . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  . . . . . . . . . . . . 124

Students interested in teaching Biology should consider adding a minor in Education.

View 4-Year Plan

Requirements for minor in Biology

The student must successfully complete a minimum of 20 hours.

Required courses  - 4 hours

BIO 1124 Cell Biology

An additional 16 hours selected from BIO

At least eight hours must be upper-division courses

DEPARTMENT OF CHEMISTRY

(SYMBOL: CHM)

The science of chemistry deals with the composition and changes of matter. The Department of Chemistry offers courses in which students study fundamental principles that provide a strong basis for understanding the physical world and provide opportunity to develop laboratory skills.

Chemistry courses address such topics as theories of atomic and molecular structure and the nature of chemical reactions. Courses are specifically designed to provide a foundational knowledge of chemistry necessary for understanding biological processes, to help students develop a scientific attitude, to give practice in the experimental method, to provide training in laboratory techniques, to enable the student to acquire the chemical background necessary for certain specialized professions and vocational fields, and to acquaint students with the chemical aspects of our environment and our civilization. A degree in Chemistry with a minor in Education will prepare students for alternative secondary teaching certification.

Student Learning Outcomes

1.  Fundamental Concepts.  Students will demonstrate an understanding of the basic concepts, terminology, and theories in the major sub-disciplines of the field of chemistry:  organic, inorganic, analytical, physical chemistry, and biochemistry (if applicable).

2.  Problem-Solving Skills.  Students will exhibit the tools necessary for problem-solving in both the classroom and lab and will demonstrate the ability to conduct inquiry-based experiments.  Students will be able to clearly define problems, propose testable hypotheses, design and carry out experiments, analyze data using statistical methods and appropriate computer programs, draw defensible conclusions, and describe sources of error.

3.  Chemical Literature Competence.  Students will possess skills necessary to locate scientific articles using online, interactive database-searching tools.  Once retrieved, students will be able to analyze and critically evaluate technical articles.

4.  Communication Skills.  Students will be able to effectively communicate technical information both in written and oral forms.  Students should be able to critically assimilate knowledge from different locations and prepare clear and organized oral presentations and write concise reports in scientifically-appropriate styles. 

5.  Collaborative Experience.  Students will exhibit the skills necessary to work in teams, working collaboratively to solve problems.  Students will have opportunities to serve as peer leaders and interact with diverse team members in a professional manner. 

6.  Lab Safety Skills.  Students will understand safe lab practices and how to apply them.  Students should recognize potential hazards and disposal techniques as well as know how to handle lab emergencies.

7.  Ethics and Christian Perspective.  Students will know how to conduct themselves responsibly and professionally and appreciate the role of chemistry in contemporary issues.  Students will examine the importance of integrating Christian faith into their discipline.

Requirements for the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree with major in Chemistry

1. University Core Curriculum - 49 hours

The Mathematics elective is covered by MTH 1134 and the Physical Science elective is covered by either CHM 1124 or PHY 2114 in the program requirements.

2. Courses Specified by this Department - 58 hours

CHM 1124 General Chemistry I

CHM 1134 General Chemistry II

CHM 3114 Advanced Analytical Chemistry

CHM 3134 Organic Chemistry I

CHM 3144 Organic Chemistry II

CHM 3183 Advanced Inorganic Chemistry

CHM 4124 Physical Chemistry I

CHM 4134 Physical Chemistry II

CHM 4501 Chemistry/Biochemistry Capstone

GSC 4133 Faith and Science

MTH 1134 Calculus I

MTH 1144 Calculus II

MTH 2103 Applied Statistics for Scientists

PHY 2114 General Physics I

PHY 2124 General Physics II

Four hours from among the following (three hours maximum in research):

CHM 1101 Chemistry Practicum

CHM 2151 Seminar: Nanotechnology

CHM 3101 Chemistry Practicum: Teaching

CHM 3151/52/53/54 Selected Topics

CHM 3164 Biochemistry I

CHM 3174 Biochemistry II

CHM 4221/22/23 Chemistry Research

3. Complete a standardized achievement test designated by the department

4. Electives as necessary to complete minimum total hours

Minimum total semester hours  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 124

View 4-Year Plan

Requirements for the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree with major in Biochemistry

1. University Core Curriculum - 46 hours

The Mathematics elective is covered by MTH 1134, the Life Science elective is covered by BIO 1124, and the Physical Science elective is covered by either CHM 1124 or PHY 2114 in the program requirements.

2. Courses Specified by this Department - 67 hours

BIO 1124 Cell Biology

BIO 3174 Molecular Cell Biology

CHM 1124 General Chemistry I

CHM 1134 General Chemistry II

CHM 3114 Advanced Analytical Chemistry

CHM 3134 Organic Chemistry I

CHM 3144 Organic Chemistry II

CHM 3164 Biochemistry I

CHM 3174 Biochemistry II

CHM 3183 Advanced Inorganic Chemistry

CHM 4124 Physical Chemistry I

CHM 4501 Chemistry/Biochemistry Capstone

MTH 1134 Calculus I

MTH 1144 Calculus II

PHY 2114 General Physics I

PHY 2124 General Physics II

One of the following:

BIO 4103 Bioethics

GSC 4133 Faith and Science

Four hours from the following:

BIO 3334 Microbiology

BIO 3524 Human Physiology

BIO 3614 Virology

BIO 4221/22/23 Biological Research

CHM 2151 Seminar: Nanotechnology

CHM 3151/52/53/54 Selected Topics

CHM 4134 Physical Chemistry II

CHM 4221/22/23 Chemistry Research

3. Complete a standardized achievement test designated by the department

4. Electives as necessary to complete minimum total hours

Minimum total semester hours . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 124

Students interested in teaching Chemistry should consider adding a minor in Education.

View 4-Year Plan

Requirements for minor in Chemistry

The student must successfully complete a minimum of 20 hours, selected from the following:

CHM 1124 General Chemistry I

CHM 1134 General Chemistry II

CHM 3114 Advanced Analytical Chemistry

CHM 3134 Organic Chemistry I

CHM 3144 Organic Chemistry II

CHM 3164 Biochemistry I

CHM 3183 Advanced Inorganic Chemistry

DEPARTMENT OF GENERAL SCIENCE

(SYMBOL: GSC)

Requirements for minor in General Science

The student must successfully complete a minimum of 18 hours.

Required courses - must be taken in at least two of the following departments: Biology, Chemistry, Physics, and General Science

At least eight hours must be upper-division courses

DEPARTMENT OF MATHEMATICS

(SYMBOL: MTH)

The Department of Mathematics offers courses which provide a solid foundation in the mathematical sciences consistent with a Christian worldview. The curriculum is designed to provide the Mathematics major with the knowledge and skills necessary to enter a career in teaching, insurance and finance, industry, or to continue into graduate school. The department also offers a core curriculum course and support courses for students majoring in Engineering, Chemistry, Biology, Business, Elementary Education, and Pre-Professional Programs.

Student Learning Outcomes

1.  Students will apply mathematical concepts to problems in science, engineering, and statistics (and possibly other fields chosen by the instructor).

2.  Students will perform computations according to standard rules.

3.  Students will think abstractly by devising proofs in pure mathematics.

4.  Students will understand and explain the purpose and meaning of axioms, definitions, and theorems in abstract mathematics.

5.  Students will communicate mathematical concepts effectively.

6.  Students will evaluate and discuss various integrative strategies at the interface of Christian belief and scientific/mathematical knowledge.

Requirements for the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree with major in Mathematics

1. University Core Curriculum - 49 hours

The Mathematics elective is covered by MTH 1134 and the Physical Science elective is covered by PHY 2114 in the program requirements.

2. Courses Specified by this Department - 50 hours

CS 1113 Introduction to Computing

GSC 4133 Faith and Science

MTH 1134 Calculus I

MTH 1144 Calculus II

MTH 2111 Problem - Solving Seminar (to be taken twice)

MTH 2114 Linear Algebra and Differential Equations

MTH 2123 Vector Calculus

MTH 3103 Foundations of Mathematics

MTH 4123 Abstract Algebra

MTH 4143 Real Analysis

MTH 4501 Mathematics Capstone

PHY 2114 General Physics I

PHY 2124 General Physics II

One of the following:

MTH 3173 Mathematical Modeling and Simulation

MTH 3183 Probability and Statistics

An additional six hours of upper-division mathematics courses

3. Complete a standardized achievement test designated by the department

4. Electives as necessary to complete minimum total hours

Minimum total semester hours . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 124

View 4-Year Plan

Requirements for minor in Mathematics

The student must successfully complete a minimum of 21 hours.

Required courses - 3 hours

MTH 2123 Vector Calculus

An additional 18 hours selected from MTH

At least six hours must be upper-division courses

Requirements for the Bachelor of Science in Education (B.S.E.) degree with major in Mathematics

See B.S.E. degree with major in Mathematics in the College of Education and Human Services.

View 4-Year Plan

DEPARTMENT OF PHYSICS

(SYMBOL: PHY)

The courses in this department are planned to meet the requirements of students who intend to specialize in engineering, chemistry, or allied subjects; or are fulfilling pre-medical, pre-dental, or similar pre-professional requirements.

Requirements for minor in Physics

A minimum of 18 hours from PHY (excluding 1114 and 1124)

At least six hours must be upper-division courses