This course presents an integrated approach to the
study of behavior – the phenotype through which an organism interacts
with, and also modifies, its environment. We will study how behavioral
phenotypes are shaped by the social and physical environment. We will
analyze how behavioral phenotypes are implemented through development
by neural physiology, gene networks and individual genes. Conversely,
we will study how behaviors modify the environment and thus impact the
physiology and genetics of organisms. These topics will be integrated through an evolutionary approach. Examples will be drawn from both laboratory and field studies
using comparative molecular and behavioral approaches to identify patterns
and recurring themes, which will be discussed in the context of existing
theories about animal behavior
Instructor: Professor Suzy Renn
phone: 503 517 7967
Course Files: reed.edu/Courses/Biology/Bio342 Animal Behavior.
Course Website: http://academic.reed.edu/biology/courses/BIO342/2010_syllabus/syllabus.html
Office Hours: Monday 12:00 - 1:00
Friday 12:00 - 1:00
by appointment arranged via email
Course Meeting: section 1: MWF
9:00 - 9:50 AM
section 2: MWF 10:00 10:50 AM
Lab Meeting: section 1: Tues. 1:10 - 5:00
section 2: Wed.
1:10 - 5:00
section 3: Thrus. 1:10 - 5:00
(students are expected to attend enrolled section unless explicitly arranged ahead)
COURSE EXPECTATIONS: Students are expected to
come to class prepared to be involved in discussion on all assigned reading.
Specific days will be indicated as "Discussion days". On discussion
days students are expected to complete the assigned discussion questions,
bring these to class, append their response with notes during active dicussion
and hand in the results. (see
Each student will be allowed to omit the written assignment (but not participation)
for 2 of the assigned discussion days.
Exams: There will be one mid-term exam and one final.
Website: Student pairs will create a web site
for an animal behavior of their choice.
Students will comment on each other's
draft website 3 weeks prior to the final due date.
For templates and examples from last
years course see
Students have the option to work with the freeware "NVU" or Adobe's
Assignment details are available and detailed instructions for working
in Dreamweaver will be available in lab during week 4.
Student Presentations: Student pairs will choose one primary research paper on the animal behavior topic of their choice. This paper (and necessary background information) will be presented to the class in a 10 minute powerpoint (or white board) presentation followed by a discussion centered on a few questions provided to the class ahead of time. (see details).
LAB EXPECTATIONS: Students are expected
to read handouts before lab. Students will generally
work in pairs, though not necessarily with the same partner all semester.
Lab notebooks will be evaluated: The lab notebook is a record of work that
is done in lab as it is being done. However, students are expected to also include
a brief experimental plan prepared before coming to lab and may find it necessary
to complete data analysis outside of official lab meeting time. All work
associated with lab is expected to be recorded in the lab notebook. More
detailed explanation of lab notebook
expectations will be given on the
first day of lab.
Independent Lab Projects: In teams of two or more, students will conduct
an independent research project based on ideas generated during the planned labs or exploring any area of animal behavior using techniques that are available
at Reed College. Projects will be presented at a formal
poster presentation session attended by all students.
Projects will be evaluated by instructor and fellow students based upon experimental
design, execution, and appropriate of analysis(not based on results).
Late work will be accepted with a penalty of 10% each day unless prior arrangements are made. Penalty-free
extensions will be given in the case of illness documented by the health
Please speak with me early in the semester if there is a way I can facilitate
your success in this course. I am committed to accommodating all disabilities.
Principles of Animal Behavior; by Lee Alan Dugatkin. First Edition
Measuring Behavior: an introductory guide by Paul Martin and
Patrick Bateson (either edition on reserve or may be purchased online)
Primary Literature; links will be provided in
the online syllabus whenever possible.
Students are expected to
print out, & bring to class, all primary literature papers for discussion,
or bring a laptop with the .pdf file. It is not possible to "discuss" a
paper without having it available during the discussion.
Popular Book: Each student will read one popular book written by an animal behavior researcher about doing animal behavior research. A list of appropriate books available at Reed is provided (other may be acceptable). (see details)
- Exams 20%
- Website 10%
- Discussion and Participation 15%
- Labs Write-ups 10%
- Lab Notebook 15%
- Lab Participation
- Independent Project 15%
LECTURES, READINGS AND ASSIGNMENTS
Assigned Readings are listed here. Note that labs include
assigned reading. Individual
week web pages contain further instruction and additional suggested reading.