Course Information
Course title
The Organisms that Changed History (I) 
Designated for
Curriculum Number
Curriculum Identity Number
H01 08800 
Wednesday 3,4 
The upper limit of the number of students: 40. 
Ceiba Web Server 
Table of Core Capabilities and Curriculum Planning
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Course Syllabus
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Course Description

The existence of many species depends on the survival of others. Humans are no exception. In the past 14,000 years, many organisms have left indelible marks and exercised on human history. The roles that individual species play in providing food, unique medical compounds, air, and water purification are critical to our health and survival. This course will provide sufficient background of 12 selected organisms and discuss their impacts on our daily life and culture.


Course Objective
The goal of this lecture is to introduce you the origin of each organism and its impact on human history. Some of the organisms were domesticated by our ancestors, and thus improving the quality of our life. The aim of this course is to allow students to appreciate the importance of all organisms on earth and to learn how organisms have evolved. 
Course Requirement
Attendance is required. If you find that you must miss class, do file the leave of absence on Ceiba. You are allowed one free absence in this course. Homework will be assigned after each lecture. You will be asked to turn in a one-page feedback to show what you have learned. It is due before the next lecture. The assignment you turn in should be neat, and legible. Make sure to show sufficient work for each time. Each students will be asked to pick one organism of interest, and do a 5-min briefing as the final report which takes up 30% whereas the written essay after each lecture will be worth for 70% of your total grade. Absolutely no late work will be accepted regardless of the reason.. 
Office Hours
Designated reading
No textbook required. However, you may find the following reading supplemental materials very useful.
Fifty Animals that Changed the Course of History by Eric Chaline (Firefly Books, 2011)
Fifty Plants that Changed the Course of History by Bill Laws (Firefly Books, 2011)
Fifty Foods That Changed the Course of History by Bill Price (Firefly Books, 2014)
Week 1
9/13  Course introduction 
Week 2
9/20  Dog 
Week 3
9/27  Mosquito 
Week 4
10/4  Holiday 
Week 5
10/11  Dung beetle 
Week 6
10/18  Snake 
Week 7
10/25  Rice 
Week 8
11/01  Cow 
Week 9
11/08  Mid-term 
Week 10
11/15  Break 
Week 11
11/22  Pig 
Week 12
11/29  Cat 
Week 13
12/06  Tea 
Week 14
12/13  Cotton 
Week 15
12/20  Human 
Week 16
12/27  Oral presentation 
Week 17
1/03  Oral mpresentation 
Week 18
1/10  Final