This course does not currently have a textbook.
This course will take a systematic approach to understanding
vertebrate evolution, diversity, and biology. We follow the development
of each vertebrate taxon through the fossil record from the late Cambrian
to the present. Major trends in ecological adaptations are described
along with their underlying structural and physiological modifications.
Thus the purposes of this course are:
1) To understand the origin and evolution of Vertebrate phyla
2) To learn about vertebrate diversity and ecology
To access powerpoints go here
Lecture material for test #1
Lecture material for test #2
Lecture material for test #3
Lecture materail for test #4
Lecture Material for test #5
2. Parental Care
#4 10 April 28
Final Comprehesisve Exam 25 TBA
Essay 25 Due May 6
Any student with 5 or more unexcused
absences will be automatically dropped from the class. No prior notification
will be given.
Your final paper will be worth 25% of your total grade and should
be between 15 and 20 typewritten pages (Times New Roman, double-spaced, 12 point type, 1"
margins). You must cite all sources of information including sources
used for figures and tables. There should be at least 1 reference
per typewritten page (i.e. if you write a 20 page essay you should have
about 20 different sources of information). Cite all references using
scientific journal format. Consult a journal or consult me to see
how this is done. Make the fullest possible use of the library facilities,
including inter-library loans. (A list of web pages containing useful
biology journals can be found here). Also, be sure to check the library databases here. Many student find that Google Scholar is a good source of peer reviewed articles. It can be accessed here. Use only current
references from primary sources. Do not use material
taken from popular books and magazines that do not contain peer reviewed
articles, or that are not edited by a professional in the field.
Use ample figures and tables (figures and tables do not count in determining
the length of the paper). Past experience has shown that students
who include figures and tables are most likely to get the highest grades.
Be sure to cite the sources of all tables and figures. Furthermore, your essay grade will be based largely on how thoroughly you
have covered your topic. Therefore, be very concise and avoid verbosity
and redundancy. Pay attention to your spelling and grammar.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to talk to me.
People often lose marks for failing to properly cite their sources
of information. You must cite all sources of information including
sources used for figures and tables. Copying of material, whether,
whether parts of sentences, whole sentences, paragraphs, or entire articles,
will result in a score of zero for your essay. If you have questions,
please talk to me.
Undergraduates have a different essay topic than that
of graduate students. You assignment will be to choose a vertebrate
species and write a detailed account of that speciesí biology. The
species account should be divided into titled sections, including, but
not limited to:
Demography and Population
Human Impacts and Economic
Plagiarism is a criminal activity. You must cite
all sources of information. Copying of material, whether parts of
sentences, whole sentences, paragraphs, or entire articles, will result
in a score of zero for your assignment and can result in further disciplinary
Students with Disabilities:
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation fo their disabilities. If you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact:
Office of Student Disability Resources and Services,
Texas A&M University – Commerce,
Halladay Student Services Building,
Room 303 A/D,
Phone (903) 886-5150 or (903) 886-5835
Fax (903) 468-8148
All student enrolled at the University shall follow the tenets
of common decency and acceptable behavior conducive to a positive learning
environment. See Student's Guide Handbook, Policies and Procedures,
Students who are disruptive to class
activities will be dropped from the class and may face further disciplinary