The Department of Biology at the University of York
The Department of Biology at the University of York

Introductions

Welcome to our course on Biology: Bugs, Brains and Beasts! Over the next three weeks we will be exploring aspects of these areas, which relate to some of the interests covered by researchers in The Department of Biology at the University of York. We’ve put this material together as a way of developing bridges between further and higher education.

By the end of the course you will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an appreciation of the ubiquity and importance of microbes: Single-celled organisms are how life started on Earth. For more than half the time life has existed they occupied the planet alone. They have terraformed the planet, but we’re only just beginning to understand the potential application of Bugs and how important they are to human health.

  2. Explore the biological basis of learning and memory: We all have Brains. But how do they work? And how do we know they work the way we think they do? Delve into the most complex organ we have and learn more about how brains function.

  3. Describe how species interact in biological communities, considering their wider habitat and the influence of humans. A better understanding of the critical factors that influence how Beasts respond to their environment should allow us to predict the consequences of human behaviour and determine how our actions will affect other species.

Meet the team

Setareh Chong will be your guide through this course. As you progress through the weekly steps you will hear from her, and a range of other contributors, as we explore the various facets of our topic areas. This course has been compiled by a range of academic staff at the University of York including:

We look forward to learning with you over the next few weeks, and hope that you enjoy the course.

Let’s get started

This week we’ll be looking at bugs. So, let’s get started! (And when you have finished reading a section, please “Mark as complete”, and move onto the next step).

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This article is from the free online course:

The Biology of Bugs, Brains, and Beasts

University of York

Get a taste of this course

Find out what this course is like by previewing some of the course steps before you join: