OP: Biology Lab should be worth more credits

5 March 2019

Tamera Twitty

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    Biology—the study of life.

    It’s one of the richest fields of study available and aims to teach us about ourselves on the most essential topics.

    Despite this, Punnett Squares give me nightmares. Microscopes might as well be Skynet. And mitochondria, well the mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell; everyone knows that.

    Biology is like the ingrown toenail of the academic world: troubling, to say the least, down right scary at the worst.

    Yet somehow at 20 years old, though I promised myself I never would, I enrolled in introduction to biology and a biology lab. Of the lengthy list of natural science potentials, biology was much less frightening than beasts like Chemistry or Physics. And besides, since a lab is mandatory, I figured one class would make the other a bit easier.

    Now, a few weeks into the semester I can confirm that this was a solid plan of action. I wish I could tell you that I have uncovered a true calling in biology and that I am going to be a doctor or something, but this is not that kind of article.

    Instead, although biology and I have come to a civil understanding of each other, my concerns are now that the credit hour earned for a biology lab is unfair.

    I can understand requiring a natural science lab, but only offering one credit hour for the class seems incredibly imbalanced. Especially considering that the class I am enrolled in is from 9:15 a.m. to 12 p.m., has weekly outside assignments and a final essay. I am not complaining about the content or rigor of the class, in fact it has all been really positive. But I do feel like I am putting a lot of work into a class with very little payout.

    I think this is even more important, because lab is a requirement. I am a communication major, and even though sciences are considered general ed, it is something that I have to go above and beyond in to get even a B in. My brain just doesn’t work that way. Everyday in these classes I feel dumb, like everyone around me is speaking a different language.

    So only offering one credit for a class that demands so much from students like me, is unreasonable in some ways. The time requirement is hefty and so is the workload.

   An even more upsetting reality is it disregards the effort required for students who are extremely challenged by these kind of courses.