Botany: Understand the Plant World (The Great Courses Series)
What is the Botany: Understanding the Plant World Course for Teachers?
You are invited into the uniquely satisfying world of plants, and the joy of celebrating and learning from the secrets of living nature. With almost 400,000 known species and thousands more identified every year, the variety of plant life is almost overwhelming--from the microscopic to the largest organism on Earth. During your journey, you will explore the astonishing adaptations that allow plants to live in an enormous variety of ecosystems, from deserts and the ocean floor to thousands of feet above sea level and on every continent. You will understand why there are no fewer than three kinds of photosynthesis, how the process separates plants from animals, and why many plants rely on symbiosis with bacteria and fungi in conjunction with photosynthetic processes.
See Plants in New Ways
Recent scientific research from botany has offered astonishing revelations about the diurnal sleeping and waking cycles of trees. And DNA analysis proves fungi are actually more closely related to humans than to plants. These and many other discoveries illuminate the ways taxonomic identification of plants has changed with the advent of DNA sequencing and other cutting-edge scientific breakthroughs, allowing for a greater understanding of the world around us. This course includes video lectures that address shared features of plants, how they resemble and yet differ from humans, and why there are few truly universal rules that govern all plants in exactly the same way. Later lectures reveal how natural selection has allowed plants to adapt to the widest possible range of environments all around the globe. These adaptations have led to plant adaptations so surprising that they almost seem to have sprung directly from science fiction.
A Passionate Adventure with Plants
This course will introduce and discuss fascinating questions botanists are still working to answer. We know plants can sense and respond to their environments, but can they remember their experiences? We know plants communicate to others in their vicinity via chemical signals, but is it also possible some plants have evolved an ability to detect sound waves? We know certain plants respond to touch, but can they be conditioned to 'learn' when it is unnecessary to respond? And perhaps the most basic of questions: what exactly is a species? Now that scientists have access to genetic techniques such as DNA fingerprinting, it is relatively easy to find different alleles for different genes. But how many different alleles does it take to identify a new species? It's an ongoing and exciting debate in the ever-changing world of Botany. Learn to see the world around you afresh as you read for yourself the stories of plant life that transform science into an adventure. Assignments address the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) for Science.
The Great Courses Video Content
FPU’s Botany: Understanding the Plant World provides a lecture series of 24 videos of 30 minutes each. You’ll learn from award-winning professors and researchers who present the information in a practical and accessible format that allows you to apply new concepts in your classroom. Students can reference videos, podcasts, worksheets, online activities, journal articles and other resources that provide a comprehensive look at the importance of the plant world as a vital component of the health of the planet. There is no required textbook, but a course guidebook is included with the cost of the course.
This course is applicable towards the Life Science Teaching Certificate.