STOCKSCH 108 – Intro to Botany

May 22 – August 18, 2017

STOCKSCH 108 (4 Credits)

 Register Here


Instructor Dr. Susan Han,  Associate Professor, University of Massachusetts

Course description

This course is a one-semester introductory study of plants that is intended for plant science majors. It is a prerequisite for most of the intermediate and upper-level classes in plant sciences. Topics that will be discussed include classification, cell structure, levels of organization from cells to tissues to organs, reproduction, and structure and function of plant systems. In addition, students will develop a basic understanding of the processes of photosynthesis and cellular respiration. On completion of the course, students will have learned the unique features of plants, how plants function, how they are categorized, and how they fit into the ecosystem.
Prerequisites and Textbooks  None


There is no set exam date for the 15 quizzes for this course. After you have finished studying for one topic and have submitted the active learning assignment, an exam will be released. Only when you pass the exam that you will be allowed to continue onto the next topic. If you do not pass an exam, you will be asked to study again before re-taking the exam. There is no limit on the number of times each student has for completion of each topic. However, you should aim at passing each exam with no more than two attempts. Each attempt will further delay the time for you to complete the course, so it is critical that you have a good grasp of the topic. Depending on the length and difficulty of the subject, each topic is assigned a point value. The total value of all exams is 800 points.
 Experiential assignments Several low-stakes experiential assignments will be released throughout the semester. These assignments are meant for you to apply the information you learn from the course to plants in your surrounding environment. These experiential assignments will also help you in your preparation for the exams. Grades are determined by the quality and accuracy of the active learning exercises. These assignments are worth 20% of the total grade for the course.


A 1000-point system is used to calculate your final grade for the course. 80% of those grades are from exams taken after completion of each topic. The remaining 20% grades are from the experiential assignments.



1. Plant classification
2. Plant Cells
3. Cell Cycle
4. Kinds of cells and tissues
5. Roots
6. Stems
7. Leaves
8. Flowers
9. Reproductive structures and Meiosis
10. Sexual Reproduction
11. Fruits
12. Seeds and Seedlings
13. Absorption and conduction of water and minerals
14. Photosynthesis and conduction of food
15. Respiration


This class is part of the Sustainable Food and Farming Online Certificate Program and will count toward the Associate of Science program.   Online classes cost $472/credit.  If you would like to register for the Certificate program, you may apply here.

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NOTE: The UMass Sustainable Food and Farming Certificate has been declared eligible for Veterans Educational Benefits. For instructions see: Veterans Benefits.

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