Cancer Biology Course

Semester credit hours:  3

Course Coordinator:

Thomas Wiese, PhD
COP Qatar Pavilion Rm: 412    Phone: 520-7433
Email:  twiese@xula.edu
Office Hours:  Tues and Thurs  1-3*

*Appointments outside of office hours: Mon-Sat, 7AM-7PM depending on availability of instructor.

Class meeting time and location:  MW, 4:00-5:15 PM; Xavier University *room TBA
Optional Recitation (Question and Answer Session) once per week TBA

Prerequisite course:
Biology, Chemistry or Premed Majors:  Biol 2010 Microbiology, Biol 31110 Genetics
Pharmacy Students: PHSC 3640 Molbio-Biotechnology

Any student who attempts to complete this course without first completing all prerequisite courses will be removed from this class without regard to how far or how well the student has progressed in this course.

Course description:
This course is designed to be the students first course about cancer and covers the etiology and treatment as well as the social-cultural aspects of cancer incidence and outcome disparities.  Prerequisite knowledge of cell biology, genetics and organic chemistry is required.  This course is team taught by as many as 18 faculty from Xavier and Tulane who are experts in the topics presented.  The target audience for this course is undergraduate, professional and graduate students from both Xavier and Tulane universities.

Course Outcomes

  1. Students will be able to recognize, describe and compare general mechanisms and pathways of carcinogenesis and cancer initiation, promotion, progression and metastasis.
  2. Students will be able to recognize, describe and compare methods used to treat cancer.
  3. Students will be able to describe and compare the key psychological, social and cultural aspects of cancer as a disease and the treatment of cancer.

Prerequisite Knowledge:
This course builds upon knowledge the student has gained in general biology, general and organic chemistry, as well as biochemistry.  It is required that students apply concepts mastered in prerequisite courses to understanding the cancer related topics covered in this course.

Course Content:
Introduction, causes treatments, disparities, costs of cancer
Radiation and Cancer
Infections and Cancer
Viruses and Cancer
Tumor Suppressor genes
Genetic Changes in Cancer
Epigenetics and Cancer
Hormones and Cancer
Tumor Immunology
Invasion and Metastasis
Anti-neoplastic drugs
Biological Therapy
Systemic Therapy
Radiation Therapy
Pain Management
Cancer support/Survivor
End of Life Issues
Social/Psychological issues for patients & family
Cultural & Diversity issues of cancer/class dinner

Instructional Methods
Explanation of Course Content
Weekly Recitation Sessions             
Question and Answer Session of course topics and/or exams.

Communication and Electronic Resources
Blackboard will be used for posting announcements, course and lecture material, assignments, surveys, etc.  Your Xavier email will be used for email announcements as well as to send updated course grades after each assignment.  Thus, you must check your XU email or have it forwarded to another email to get emailed information.

Learning Activities
Attending Lectures and Recitation                                        
Reading assignments                                                              
Asking and Answering Questions                                                                 
Hour Examinations (2)
Final Examination
Office Hours
Remedial Activities (as needed)                

Remedial Activities: Students who encounter difficulty with any aspect of the course should first restudy the relevant material in notes, handouts and/or textbooks.  If this is insufficient, students should ask questions at Recitation or Office Hours and/or discuss the difficulties with the instructor as soon as possible to develop specific remedial activities.

Required readingsStudents are responsible for the reading material from the textbook as assigned in the course.
CANCER MEDICINE 6, HOLLAND & FREI, EDS. 2003, NCBI BOOKSHELF: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?db=books
Inside Cancer, from Cold Spring Harbor Press: http://www.insidecancer.org/
World Cancer Report 2008 from the World Health Organization: http://www.iarc.fr/en/Publications/PDFs-online/World-Cancer-Report
Course Handouts                                                                                      
Recommended Internet Sites and Articles Posted on Blackboard                        

Evaluation: Course grades will be determined by two, 90 minute, mid-term exams (60% course grade), and one cumulative final exam (40% course grade).Mid-term examinations will include multiple choice, short answer and short essay questions.  Point values for each question on exams and total point values for each exam are at the discretion of course instructor.  Point values may be variable between questions and/or exams to allow for a variety of question styles and types in exams.  Regardless of question or exam point values, the percent distribution of each exam or assignment will be maintained as indicated above. 

Examination Schedule
Exam I: TBA; 30% of course grade
Exam II: TBA; 30% of course grade
Final Exam: TBA (April 29-May 4); cumulative from Jan 11-April 27; 40% course grade.

Mid term examinations will typically consist of multiple choice and short answer questions.  The final exam will be 100 multiple choice questions.  The number of multiple choice questions may be reduce on any examination of the instructor(s) decide to add short essay questions.

Final grades will be assigned in accordance with the College of Pharmacy standard scale:
90% and above                                                A
80% and above                                                B
70% and above                                                C
65% and above                                                D
below 65%                                                       F

The course and instructors will be evaluated by students on the standard Xavier University form. 

Policy on Cheating: Professional students in the College of Pharmacy, as future Health Professionals, are held to an ethical code of conduct.  Cheating, or the appearance of cheating by any students in the College of Pharmacy will not be tolerated.  Any student caught cheating shall receive a grade of “F” in the course as a minimum penalty.  Depending on circumstances, other academic or disciplinary actions may be taken.

Examples of cheating include, but are not limited to:
1. The student has in their possession during the examination study materials, notes, or any other material related to the course content besides the test and answer sheet.

2. The student communicates with anyone during the examination period without the permission of the instructor.

3. The student attempts to, or succeeds in reading from another student’s paper or if the student assists another student in reading from a students paper.

4. If the written answer provided on an examination or assignment gives evidence of not being completely his/her own work (plagiarism).

Course Regulations
Students are required to act in accordance with the following practices and regulations:

Class Attendance
Students should arrive at class on time to avoid disruption of presentations and classmates.
Attendance is taken each class by signing the attendance sheet and Swiping your X-Card.
Signing the attendance sheet for another student is considered cheating and will result in a grade of “F” in the course as a minimum penalty.

Attendance in class is mandatory. You will be required to provide full signatures when signing the attendance sheet. Roll will be taken during class and 2% of your total course grade deducted for each missed class. Exceptions will be made in extreme cases of emergency if valid written documentation is provided.

Class Behavior and Attire
The purpose of attending class it to listen and participate in the lecture presentation.
Conversations with classmates or any other disruptive behavior is not acceptable.
In an effort to maintain an optimal learning environment, students that are disruptive will be asked to leave.
The classroom attire of each student must conform to the college dress code.
Students that violate the college dress code will be asked to leave class.

Hour Exams
Each hourly exam will be held as indicated in the class schedule.  Exams may not be turned in late. The number of pages will be stated on the front of exams.  It is the student's responsibility to ensure that all pages are present in his/her copy of the exam. During exams all materials other than pens, pencils, erasers and handbags are to be placed at the front or back of the room.  Handbags must be placed under the seat of the student's desk.  Use of calculators during exams is allowed only if specifically indicated by the professor. Students must leave the vicinity of exam room or wait until an exam is over before discussing exam. Questioning of scoring of exams/assignments will be allowed only during one week following the class at which the assignments are returned to students. It is the responsibility of each student to make sure that attire during exams conforms to the college dress code. Students that violate the college dress code will be asked to leave examination sessions with no option for a makeup examination.

Make-Up Exams
Make-up exams will be given only in documented cases wherein extreme and or emergency circumstances prevented the student from completing the exam at the normal time.  Determination of eligibility for make-up exams resides entirely with the course coordinator.  The format of the make-up exams may be completely different and may be verbal, or based entirely on multiple-choice or short-answer questions or a combination of both.  Note that exams missed due to air travel that is not addressing an emergency or to attend a college sanctioned event may not be eligible for makeup.

Additional Rules For Final Exams
University regulations state that no notes, books, or other such materials may be brought to final exams.  Students' cooperation in following this rule will be appreciated.
Any student lacking fiscal clearance at the time of the final exam will not be allowed to take the final exam.  University regulations require that there must be NO EXCEPTIONS..

Emergency preparedness:
Please be aware of XU’s toll-free emergency telephone number (1-866-520-XULA), emergency website (http://www.xulaemergency.com) and hurricane preparedness page (http://www.xula.edu/emergency/index.php). Students who have not already done so are also strongly encouraged to sign up for the emergency text-messaging service at www.e2campus.com/my/xavier/signup.htm.


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