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BZ 104 - Basic Concepts of Plant Life (GT-SC2)

  • 3 credits
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Fundamentals of Plant Biology (BZ 104) is an introductory course for non-majors that explores the basic principles of biology by focusing on the unique features of plants. We discuss plant structure, function, and reproduction; plant ecology; the importance of plants to human health and economics; botany as a science; and practical botany. The course includes textbook and outside readings, lectures, videos, and student-led discussions.

Learning outcomes:

1. Students will be able to explain scientific methodology and critically evaluate popular-level presentation of scientific topics.
2. Students will be able to describe the basic features of biological life, including cell biology, heredity, and evolution.
3. Students will be able to explain fundamental aspects of plant structure and function.
4. Students will be able to describe characteristics of the major groups of plants and the relationships between them.
5. Students will be able to apply knowledge of plant structure, function, and diversity to real-world questions with relevance to human health, nutrition, agriculture, and ecology.

Credit not allowed for students who have already taken BZ 120 or LIFE 102 or LIFE 103.

This course meets the All-University Core Curriculum (AUCC) requirements for Biological/Physical Sciences (Category 3A) and is approved under gtPathways in the content area of Natural and Physical Sciences without Lab (GT-SC2).

Important Information

Required electronic resource textbook access purchased through the course Canvas page.


Textbooks and Materials

Please check the CSU Bookstore for textbook information. Textbook listings are available at the CSU Bookstore about 3 weeks prior to the start of the term.


Heather Blackburn

9704918908 |

Dr. Heather Blackburn teaches in the Department of Biology at Colorado State University. Her academic background is in Biology and Ecology, with a particular interest in plant ecology. Her interest in ecology was shaped by her childhood on a farm and her enjoyment of outdoor sports, including rock climbing, backpacking, and telemark skiing.