Official course description: This course will not only help students to better understand basic biological principals and concepts but will also introduce the subject of ethnobiology. In all human societies, plants and animals have been, and continue to be, an important source of foods, materials, and medicines. This importance is reflected in the ways in which life forms are named, classified and incorporated into the spiritual and mythological realms of human culture. Indigenous peoples are particularly recognized for their close relationships with their local environments, and in many cases their knowledge about biological organisms and their habitats and ecological interrelationships is very detailed. This knowledge has been largel ignored by modern technological societies, but at present it has come to be recognized as important in helping to document biodiversity and cultural diversity, and to better understand and protect the environment. We will also spend about 1/3 of the class discussing current biological topics and applications.