BIO 204-H Ecology of Food Production

Name of instructor:

Dr.Edwin H. Battley e-mail phone 516-632-8576

When course is offered:

Spring semester, each year

Course description:

A survey of the ecology of agricultural systems and the natural limits of food production. Topics include the impact of environmental factors on agricultural systems, the biology of food production by major crop plants, and the role that human population growth and evolution may play in global patterns of feast or famine.


Sophomore standing; one D.E.C. category E course.


Office of instructor:

Life Sciences Lab 039A. Phone 515-632-8576, or leave a message at the office of the Department of Ecology and Evolution, 516-632-8600, asking that it be put in the instructor's mail box.

Office Hours:

10:30-11:30 A.M. on Mondays and Fridays. Otherwise, make an appointment after the regular lecture period or by phone. Most problems can be solved by a short discussion at that time.


Plants, Genes, and Agriculture, by M.J. Chrispeels and David Sadava, Jones and Bartlett, Boston, 1994, 478 pp., hard cover. Can be purchased new or used at the Campus Book Store, or at Stony Books on Route 25A near Stony Brook Station.


Monday and Friday at 12.40 - 2:00 P.M. in Lecture Room 110, Javits Lecture Center


Two midterm examinations and a final exam which will be the equivalent of two hour examinations.


Based on the class average scaled to a 75% C. Thus, after scaling:

In arriving at a scaling factor, if the class average for a given exam is less than 75.00%, the difference is taken between 75.00% and class average, and this is added to each student's score. If the class average for a given exam happens to be greater than 75.00%, the difference between the class average and 75.00% is NOT subtracted from each student's score. Thus, it is possible for every student to get an "A." It practice this has not happened. The class averages for any given exam are usually below 75.00%. The final grade is based on the same procedure, but using the average of the averages.

Exam format:

Multiple choice exams machine scored.

Students with disabilities:

If you have a physical, psychiatric/ emotional, medical, or learning disability that may impact on your ability to carry out assigned course work, you are strongly urged to contact the staff in the Disabled Student Services Office (DSS), Room 133 Humanities Bldg., 632-6748. The DSS will review your concerns and determine, with you, what accomodations are necessary and appropriate. All information and documentation is confidential.


All exams must be taken. Makeup exams will be available only to those who have a valid (in the instructor's opinion) excuse for missing a regular exam. Except under most unusual circum- stances makeup exams must be taken within one week of any exam missed, at a time and place to be indicated by the instructor. Because of the size of the class, this will be strictly adhered to, and multiple makeups will not be given. Therefore, make every effort to take an exam at the time it is regularly scheduled, and take every precaution to avoid missing one.

Lecture material:

The following topics will be discussed in lecture. For a more detailed coverage, consult the text.

Some of these topics will be dealt with more briefly than others. In addition, several video tapes will be shown, and the lectures will be accompanied by projection slides when this is instructive.