Environmental and Biological Sciences Courses | Troy University

Environmental and Biological Sciences Courses (EBS)

EBS 5513

Limnology (3)


The physical, chemical, geological, and biological aspects of freshwater ecosystems as influenced by activities in surrounding watersheds. Prerequisite: General Biology. Co-requisite: EBS L513

EBS L513

Limnology Lab (1)


Field and laboratory exercises in lake and stream science, including instrumentation, measurement, sampling, and analysis. Co-requisite: EBS 5513

EBS 5516

Microbial Ecology (3)


The study of the diversity and ecology of microbial populations in ecosystems, with the emphasis on the roles that they play in biogeochemical cycles, their contributions to metabolic diversity, their interactions with animals and plants, their niches and bioremediation. Prerequisites: Microbiology, Organic Chemistry. Co-requisite: EBS L516

EBS L516

Microbial Ecology (1)


Microbial ecology laboratory techniques including isolation, identification, and enumeration of microorganisms from aquatic and terrestrial environments. Co-requisite: EBS 5516

EBS 5520

Field Vertebrate Zoology (4)


The basics of vertebrate identification, with emphasis on phylogeny, anatomy, morphology, life histories, habitats, distributions, and conservation. Prerequisites: General Biology, General Chemistry

EBS 5521

Population Ecology (3)


A study of animal and plant populations, food supply, competition, disease, fecundity, distribution, and other environmental factors. Management of endangered species and protected ecosystems are included. Prerequisites: General Ecology, Genetics, General Chemistry, Statistics. Co-requisite: EBS L521

EBS L521

Population Ecology Lab (1)


Field exercises in identifying ecological problems, formulating and testing hypotheses, and evaluating data using standard statistical methods. Co-requisite: EBS 5521

EBS 5525

Field Botany (4)


A survey of vascular plants from different habitats in southeast Alabama. Principles of plant taxonomy, including history and systems of classification and nomenclature, the use of dichotomous keys, and general herbarium techniques. Emphasis is placed on plant identification and habitat types. Prerequisites: General Biology, General Ecology

EBS 5550

Environmental History of the U.S. (3)


An introduction to environmental history of the United States from the 18th century to the late 20th century, emphasizing the post World War II period. The course will focus on the historical development of the science of ecology, the origins of environmental problems and solutions attempted by government and experts, as well as responses by grassroots activists over time.

EBS 5551

Toxicology (3)


A study of the principles related to the adverse effects of chemicals on living organisms. Prerequisite: organic chemistry, Anatomy and Physiology. Co-requisite: EBS L551

EBS L551

Toxicology Lab (1)


Assessment of terrestrial and aquatic toxicity of chemical agents following standard protocols. Co-requisite: EBS 5551

EBS 5576

Special Topics (1 - 4)


Specialized topics not generally included in course offerings. Prerequisite: Permission of instructor

EBS 5578

Cell Biology (3)


This course covers cell structure and function with the emphasis on biochemical and molecular mechanisms. Topics include signal transduction, cytoskeleton, intracellular compartments, cell movement, differentiation, and recognition. Prerequisites: genetics, microbiology, organic chemistry. Co-requisite: EBS L578

EBS L578

Cell Biology Lab (1)


Experimental approaches for studying cells at the biochemical and molecular levels. Co-requisite: EBS 5578

EBS 5579

Environmental Assessment (3)


An examination of theory and practices required in performing stream environmental assessment as currently practiced by state and federal agencies in their attempt to preserve biological integrity. Sustainable management of natural resources and a systems approach to environmental problem solving will be emphasized. Topics covered include water quality, habitat assessment, indicator species used in ecological inventory with a concentration on macro invertebrate and fish assemblages, and the index of biological integrity. Prerequisites: BIO 1101/L101; 2202/L202 or 2229/L229. Corequisite: EBS L579.

EBS L579

Environmental Assessment Lab (1)


Laboratory instruction and hands-on field training regarding stream environmental assessment as currently practiced by state agencies in their attempt to preserve biological integrity. Topics covered include measurement of water quality, habitat, and practice sampling techniques, with a concentration on fish and macro invertebrate assemblages. In addition, students will learn the use of the index of biological integrity using their own collections of fish assemblages. Prerequisites: BIO 1101/L101; 2202/L202 or 2229/L229. Corequisite: EBS 5579.

EBS 5582

Molecular Biology (3)


A study of the fundamental principles of chromosomal organization and gene expression, with emphasis on the structure and function of nucleic acids and proteins. Prerequisites: genetics, microbiology, organic chemistry. Co-requisite: EBS L582

EBS L582

Molecular Biology Lab (1)


Experimental approaches in molecular analyses of nucleic acids and proteins, with the emphasis placed on common techniques utilized in clinical and research settings. Corequisite: EBS 5582

EBS 6601

Environmental and Biological Ethics (3)


Examination of major ethical theories as they apply to environmental, biological, and medical issues. The linkage of ethics to decision-making in social, public, and business policy. Course develops skills in understanding value systems and framing ethical positions.

EBS 6603

Environmental Management (3)


Concepts and practices underlying procedures for environmental resource management, including planning, organizing, and conducting programs. 

EBS 6611

Global Pollution and International Environmental Policy (3)


An examination of global environmental issues, such as global climate change, ozone depletion, and acid precipitation. This course also deals with alternatives in developing global policies and treaties to address these problems.

EBS 6612

Environmental Impact Studies/Risk Management (3)


An examination of practices used in analysis of land, water, and air to determine the impact of human activities such as construction, mining, clearing, and industrial operation. Planning approaches and ecological constraints, economic evaluation, and quantitative approaches to predict impact.

EBS 6615

Environmental Law, Permitting, and Regulatory Compliance (3)


A study of the steps needed and programs required to insure that public and private sector organizations are in compliance with federal and state environmental regulations. Prerequisites: An undergraduate ecology or environmental course, or approval of adviser.

EBS 6617 6618

Seminars in Environmental and Biological Sciences (1)


Presentations on interdisciplinary principles and concepts, current issues, and new studies and research from a variety of fields, with environmental science serving as a unifying theme. Faculty members and outside speakers will present guest lecturers. Candidates for the master’s degree in the thesis option will present their research findings and conclusions.

EBS 6621

Environmental Toxicology (3)


This course is a foundation for scientific decision-making involving contaminants and their effects on biological systems. It covers the basic principles of environmental toxicology including bioaccumulation, the biological effects of toxicants from the molecular to global level or organization, and a basic understanding of the risk of environmental pollutants and the science of risk assessment. Prerequisites: Eight semester hours or equivalent of chemistry

EBS 6623

Environmental Negotiations and Conflict Resolution (3)


An examination of the approaches to resolving environmental disputes through alternative dispute resolution techniques.

EBS 6624

Public Health (3)


The impact of the environment on humans as well as the human impact on the environment serve as the dual focus of this course. Environmental agents of physical, chemical, and biological nature with adverse effect on human health will be considered. The physiological, molecular, cellular, genetic, and biochemical mechanisms of action of environmental carcinogens, toxins, pollutant, and other disease-causing environmental agents and the interaction of various environmental agents with biological systems will be addressed. Prerequisite: None

EBS 6625 6626

Specialized Study in Environmental and Biological Sciences (1-3)


The student has the opportunity to engage in intensive study of a particular subject or learn a pertinent skill, which fits his/her academic and/or professional needs, but is not available in the regular curriculum. This may include educational activities or training outside of the University. The student will follow the guidelines that the Department has established for the supervision and the pursuance of this study. Requires approval of the student’s adviser and the department chair. See semester hour limits listed under Course Restrictions in General Regulations section.

EBS 6630

Pollution Science (3)


A study of pollution of atmosphere, surface water, and soil and groundwater from animate activities and inanimate processes. Adverse effects, fate, and transport of pollutants in air, soil, and water. Prerequisite: general chemistry.

EBS L630

Pollution Science Lab (1)


Theory and analytical techniques used in both field and laboratory for the analysis of air, water, and soil contaminants. Prerequisite: general chemistry.

EBS 6635

Land Use Planning (3)


An introduction to land use planning and land use tools, including zoning and comprehensive planning. The course also examines the interaction between land use and environments and explores strategies to reduce environmental impacts and protect natural resources.

EBS 6637

Environmental Economics (3)


Introduction to the micro and macro aspects of environmental economics. The course will explore the various economic and institutional means of controlling environmental problems for effectiveness, efficiency and equity.

EBS 6650

Spatial Analysis Using Geographical Information Systems (3)


A graduate level GIS course geared for beginners that presents the understanding behind the four functional and physical components of a GIS: data input; storage and retrieval; manipulation; and data output. Multiple GIS applications are also discussed. Prerequisites: EBS 6630, EBS L630, or permission of chair. Co-requisite: EBS L650

EBS L650

Spatial Analysis Using Geographical Information Systems (1)


This lab is intended for average computer users with little or no experience in ArcView GIS or any other GIS software. At the end of the labs, students will be able to use ArcView to view, query, analyze, chart, and map geographic data. Co-requisite: EBS 6650

EBS 6660

Issues in Aquatic Ecology (3)


Case studies on the overexploitation and degradation of aquatic ecosystems and their resources, with a primary focus on freshwater systems. Prerequisite: An undergraduate ecology course is highly recommended.

EBS 6661

Conservation Biology (3)


Examination of the principles, practices, and philosophy of measuring, maintaining, and enhancing biological diversity. The course focuses on the applications of ecology, population biology, and genetics of the conservation of keystone and rare species and ecosystems. Prerequisite: An undergraduate ecology course is highly recommended.

EBS 6665

Sustainable Development (3)


This course will increase student awareness of sustainability issues concerning the future survival of humans and other organisms on the planet. The course specifically covers the following: biological diversity trends, human population growth, agriculture and food consumption issues, water use and supplies, global warming and effects on biological diversity, sustainable fisheries, forest products and services, and other issues. Prerequisites: None

EBS 6670 6671

Special Topics (1-4)


Specialized topics not generally included in course offerings. A maximum total of four semester hours is allowed for program credit.

EBS 6680

Water Quality and Resources (3)


This course is designed to present the basic aspects of water quality, quantity, and policy to the students to help them make informed decisions on how to manage the social science issues related to water supply, demand, and sustainable water management within the U.S. and globally. This course specifically covers properties of water, ecological implications of water, water resources, hydrologic cycle, physical, chemical and biological characteristics of water, stream, lake and reservoir water quality, water pollution, best management practices, water laws, regulations, and standards, and water economics. This course is an elective for all concentrations within the Environmental and Biological Sciences program.

EBS 6691

Research Methodology and Experimental Design (3)


This course will include hands-on statistical experience emphasizing hypothesis testing using a statistical software system. It will combine several elements of research methodology including developing a grant proposal that will include topic selection, literature search, question formulation, methods, statistics, and a budget. Prerequisite: Three semester hours in probability and statistics or permission of instructor. A grade of “B” or better is required.

EBS 6695

Thesis Research (1- 6)


Under the guidance of the student’s adviser and the chair of the department, the student may pursue original research (independent acquisition and interpretation of data) in a particular area of environmental or biological science. The completion of a thesis is required. The results and conclusions must be successfully defended before the student’s graduate committee. Grading system is Pass / Fail. Prerequisites: 3.0 GPA and permission of the Chair of the Biological and Environmental Sciences department.


Refer to specific departmental listings in the Troy University Graduate Catalog for full course descriptions of BIO (biology), BUS (business),  CHM (chemistry), and GEO (geography). Information pertaining to MB (marine biology) is also provided.

Note: Graduate students may not enroll in a 5000 numbered course if it duplicates the same course listed on an undergraduate transcript.