The listing of a course description here does not guarantee a course’s being offered in a particular semester. Please refer to the published schedule of classes on the MyBU Student Portal for confirmation a class is actually being taught and for specific course meeting dates and times.

  • CAS AR 556: Archaeological Field Research
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: consent of instructor or advisor.
    Supervised original research in excavation, survey, or field laboratory situation, as part of field school program.
  • CAS AR 565: Memory in 3-D: Memorials, then and now
    Memorials and the spaces around them are charged zones, time portals where past and present co-exist.The decision to erect a memorial is a statement on many levels -- of cultural stamina, political will, social need, and above all of historical consciousness. In this course we focus on the development of memorial culture in America, along with a comparative examination of the worlds of ancient Greece and Rome. The distance afforded by stepping outside our own time and place provides perspectives on aspects of form and message, as well as on how the meanings of memorial can change. Effective Fall 2021, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Digital/Multimedia Expression, Historical Consciousness, Creativity/Innovation.
    • Historical Consciousness
    • Digital/Multimedia Expression
    • Creativity/Innovation
  • CAS AR 575: The Cosmopolitan Past: Material Identity in the Ancient Mediterranean
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: two CAS AR courses at the 200 level of above, or consent of instructor. First Year Writing Seminar (e.g., WR 100 or WR 120).
    Using archaeology to understand the cosmopolitan world of the ancient Mediterranean and Middle East, from Alexander through the Romans. We travel to cities and sanctuaries, estates and farmsteads, to learn how people at all levels of society displayed their affiliations, ideals, and personas. Through the prism of personal identity we track cultural capital: what that meant, how it changed, and how people used it in order to assert who they were and how they mattered. Effective Fall 2021, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Writing-Intensive Course, Global Citizenship and Intercultural Literacy, Historical Consciousness.
    • Historical Consciousness
    • Global Citizenship and Intercultural Literacy
    • Writing-Intensive Course
  • CAS AR 577: Pots and Pans: The Material Culture of Cookery & Dining
    Exploration of food cultures and technologies through utensils for food preparation and consumption; kitchens from prehistory to present; tradition and fashion in cooking and dining vessels; cooking technology; utensils as metaphors and symbols. Ranges broadly across cultures, time, and space.
  • CAS AR 590: Life Is a Bowl: Ceramic Studies in Archaeology
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: sophomore, junior, or senior standing.
    Before plastic, there was pottery -- pots and pans, cups and dishes, crocks and jars -- in every culture and in abundance. Research seminar studies pottery across time and space to elucidate personal habits as well as social, economic, and political developments.
  • CAS AR 591: Theory in Archaeology
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: at least two archaeological studies courses at the 200 level or above, senior status, or consent of instructor.
    Seminar dealing with the intellectual history of the discipline, research methods, concepts, and problems in archaeological theory, and the formulation of research designs.
  • CAS AR 592: Archaeological Ethics and Law
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: junior standing or consent of instructor.
    In this course students examine archaeology and professional ethics; archaeology as public interest; legal organization of archaeology; international approaches to heritage management; looting, collecting and the antiquities market; maritime law and underwater archaeology; cultural resource management in the United States. Effective Fall 2023, this course fulfills a single unit in the following BU Hub area: Ethical Reasoning.
    • Ethical Reasoning
  • CAS AR 594: Scientific Applications in Archaeology
    Seminar exploring new ways of addressing archaeological questions through the application of scientific techniques, focusing on cutting-edge methodologies and the most recent literature in the field. Students pursue questions of individual interest through readings, discussions, presentations, and research papers. Effective Fall 2023, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Writing-Intensive Course, Oral and/or Signed Communication, Social Inquiry.
    • Oral and/or Signed Communication
    • Social Inquiry II
    • Writing-Intensive Course
  • CAS AR 595: Professional Futures in Archaeology
    A degree in archaeology can get you in the door at museums, the National Park Service, US Customs and other federal agencies, research laboratories, international NGO's, organizations focused on international art law, historical site management, heritage tourism -- and more. For such careers, you need skills that allow you to build on your understanding of archaeological remains and techniques, communicate to a wider public, and create pathways that link subjects and remains of the past to interests and needs in the present. Effective Spring 2024, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas Oral and/or Signed Communication, Ethical Reasoning, Teamwork/Collaboration.
  • CAS BI 500: Shark Biology & Conservation
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: some background in ecology and/or evolution recommended.
    Explores the natural history and behavior of sharks and their relationship to other animals in the ecosystem. Conservation of sharks and other elasmobranchs is crucial to ecosystem function and requires accurate scientific knowledge to implement the best conservation practices. Effective Spring 2021, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Oral and/or Signed Communication, Scientific Inquiry II, Research and Information Literacy.
    • Scientific Inquiry II
    • Oral and/or Signed Communication
    • Research and Information Literacy
  • CAS BI 504: Advanced Evolutionary Analysis
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS BI 309; or permission of instructor.
    Modern concepts, controversies, and analytical approaches in evolutionary biology. Topics include adaptation, natural and sexual selection, species and species formation, phylogenetics, origin of evolutionary novelty, adaptive radiation, basic population and quantitative genetics, development and evolution. Three hours lecture, one hour discussion.
  • CAS BI 506: Phenotypic Plasticity
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: senior standing, CAS BI 107; and one of the following: BI 303, BI 309, BI 315, or BI 410; or consent of instructor.
    Explores the flexible phenotype as a product of development and target of natural selection, addresses phenotypic plasticity in ecological interactions and evolutionary diversity, evolution and mechanisms of plasticity, plasticity in ecology, diversification of life, and conservation in a changing environment.
  • CAS BI 507: Diversity of Sex
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: senior standing, WR 120 or equivalent; and one of the following: CAS BI 225, BI 309, BI 315, BI 407, or BI 410; or consent of instructor.
    Examines the integrative and comparative biology of sex and sexes based on readings drawn from recent primary literature, review papers, and book chapters. Effective Fall 2023, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Writing-Intensive Course, Oral and/or Signed Communication.
    • Oral and/or Signed Communication
    • Writing-Intensive Course
  • CAS BI 508: Behavioral Ecology
    Examines the adaptive significance of behavior in an ecological context. Topics include the evolution of social behavior, mating systems, sexual selection, alternative reproductive behaviors, life history strategies, optimal foraging, territoriality, cooperation and conflict, host- parasite co-evolution, the ecology of communication, and comparative analyses.
  • CAS BI 510: Institutional Racism in Health and Science
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS BI 126 or CAS BI 206/216 or ENG BE 209, and senior standing, or consent of instructor.
    Graduate Prerequisites: MSc./PhD. program standing in Bioinformatics, or MSc./PhD. program standing in Biology, or MSc./M.A. standing in BU Wheelock, or consent ofinstructor.
    Traces the historical mischaracterization of race as a biological construct and the physiological manifestations of racism. Through the study of primary sources, students learn to discriminate between fact-based conclusions and unsupported pseudoscience and to construct empirical knowledge.
  • CAS BI 511: Coral Reef Fishes
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: admission to the Marine Semester and consent of instructor.
    Introduces the ecology, evolution, and behavior of coral reef fishes, with a special focus on the coral reef fishes of Belize. Students are introduced to the organisms, the environments, and key concepts in behavioral, population, and community ecology.
  • CAS BI 513: Genetics Laboratory
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS BI 203 and CAS BI 206; and senior standing, and consent of instructor.
    Genetic techniques such as mutant selection and screening, complementation, mapping, recombinant DNA, and chemical genetic screening are taught using the genetic model systems Escherichia coli, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and Arabidopsis thaliana. Short-term and long-term projects in which students formulate and test hypotheses.
  • CAS BI 515: Population Genetics
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS BI 206 or CAS BI 309; MA/CS requirements for Biology major plus BI206 or BI303; or consent of instructor.
    General introduction to population genetics, including the interactions of basic evolutionary processes (mutation, natural selection, genetic drift, inbreeding, recombination, and gene flow) in determining the genetic composition and evolutionary trajectories of natural populations. Course considers the classic models and insights of the modern evolutionary synthesis and more recently developed approaches based on coalescent theory and population genomics.
  • CAS BI 519: Theoretical Evolutionary Ecology
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS BI 107 and CAS MA 121/123 (also recommended: CAS BI 225 or CAS BI303 or CAS BI 309); or consent of the instructor.
    Familiarizes students with the theory of evolutionary ecology. Students gain enough background to read theoretical evolutionary ecology literature, do simple modeling, and move on to more complex theory. Students gain experience through homework assignments and computer labs. Effective Spring 2021, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Quantitative Reasoning II, Scientific Inquiry II, Critical Thinking.
    • Scientific Inquiry II
    • Quantitative Reasoning II
    • Critical Thinking
  • CAS BI 520: Sensory Neurobiology
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CAS BI 325 or CAS NE 203; or consent of instructor.
    Animals receive a constant stream of sensory input that they use to adjust their behavior. In this course we explore how sensory systems translate the physical features of the outside world into meaningful patterns of neural activity.