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Publisher's Summary

One of the greatest scientific feats of our era is the astonishing progress made in understanding biology-the intricate machinery of life-a progress to which the period we are living in right now has contributed the most.
As you read these words, researchers are delving ever deeper into the workings of living systems, turning their discoveries into new medical treatments, improved methods of growing food, and innovative products that are already changing the world.
The 72 lectures in this comprehensive exploration of living systems at all levels-from biological molecules to global ecosystems-will give you all the information you need to grasp this fascinating field and its impact on both our own lives and our understanding of the life that surrounds us.
Professor Nowicki presents his subject in a conceptual format, emphasizing the importance of broad principles. Though facts and details are offered in abundance, it is always in the context of developing a context listeners can readily absorb.
Your newfound mastery of the fundamentals of biology will serve you in many ways-whether you want to read the headlines with greater insight, update a subject you studied long ago, view the natural world with new appreciation, become a better-informed voter and consumer, or gain the intellectual stimulation of understanding the basic principles that unite all living things.
©2004 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2004 The Great Courses
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Eran on 07-11-13

Great for starters to biology

What made the experience of listening to Biology: The Science of Life the most enjoyable?

very very interesting, next year I'm starting to study biology in University,
and I wanted a good background for it.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

36 half an hour lectures is not possible,
but it was very catching and intresting

Any additional comments?

LECTURE LIST
1
The Scope of "Life"
2
More on the Origin of Life
3
The Organism and the Cell
4
Proteins—How Things Get Done in the Cell
5
Which Molecule Holds the Code?
6
The Double Helix
7
The Nuts and Bolts of Replicating DNA
8
The Central Dogma
9
The Genetic Code
10
From DNA to RNA
11
From RNA to Protein
12
When Mistakes Happen
13
Dividing DNA Between Dividing Cells
14
Mendel and His Pea Plants
15
How Sex Leads to Variation
16
Genes and Chromosomes
17
Charles Darwin and "The Origin of Species"
18
Natural Selection in Action
19
Reconciling Darwin and Mendel
20
Mechanisms of Evolutionary Change
21
What Are Species and How Do New Ones Arise?
22
More on the Origin of New Species
23
Reconstructing Evolution
24
The History of Life, Revisited
25
From Cells to Organisms
26
Control of Gene Expression I
27
Control of Gene Expression II
28
Getting Proteins to the Right Place
29
Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology
30
How Cells Talk—Signals and Receptors
31
How Cells Talk—Ways That Cells Respond
32
From One Cell to Many in an Organism
33
Patterns of Early Development
34
Determination and Differentiation
35
Induction and Pattern Formation
36
Genes and Development
37
Homeostasis
38
Hormones in Animals
39
What is Special about Neurons?
40
Action Potentials and Synapses
41
Synaptic Integration and Memory
42
Sensory Function
43
How Muscles Work
44
The Innate Immune System
45
The Acquired Immune System
46
Form and Function in Plants I
47
Form and Function in Plants II
48
Behavior as an Adaptive Trait
49
Energy and Resources in Living Systems
50
How Energy is Harnessed by Cells
51
Enzymes—Making Chemistry Work in Cells
52
Cellular Currencies of Energy
53
Making ATP—Glycolysis
54
Making ATP—Cellular Respiration
55
Making ATP—The Chemiosmotic Theory
56
Capturing Energy from Sunlight
57
The Reactions of Photosynthesis
58
Resources and Life Histories
59
The Structure of Populations
60
Population Growth
61
What Limits Population Growth?
62
Costs and Benefits of Behavior
63
Altruism and Mate Selection
64
Ecological Interactions Among Species
65
Predators and Competitors
66
Competition and the Ecological Niche
67
Energy in Ecosystems
68
Nutrients in Ecosystems
69
How Predictable Are Ecological Communities?
70
Biogeography
71
Human Population Growth
72
The Human Asteroid

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166 of 167 people found this review helpful


By Patricia on 04-25-14

Great purchase even for a bio major!

Any additional comments?

I am using this audiobook to review some of the concepts I learned during my time as a Biological Sciences major. Although I am already familiar with most of the material being covered, I have been using this audiobook to review for the MCAT. I would totally recommend this to anyone looking for an easy way to review major concepts. He does an excellent job of describing mechanisms and processes in a way that is easy to comprehend. I typically listen to this while driving or on the bus. However, I should mention that this may not be an easy listen for someone who has never taken an introductory biology course at the university level. For those people, I would suggest getting a general biology book containing related figures and diagrams or better yet getting the video version of these lectures because it may be difficult to visualize certain processes just by his description.

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55 of 55 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Deelite on 08-08-13

Biology brought to life!

What made the experience of listening to Biology: The Science of Life the most enjoyable?

This series of lectures is written and read in such a lively, engaging manner, its a pleasure to listen to and promotes effortless learning. I have been hoping in earnest for a series like this to appear (vast improvement over the lacklustre modern scholar title I tried previously) and I can't wait to sample other courses in the series.
The professor - whose performance is bright and bouncy enough to carry you the distance with his enthusiasm- gives an extremely well structured overview of the life sciences, pitched at about A level. I am fairly familiar with the material but It is suitable for those with limited knowledge of the subject- however such a reader might need to supplement their learning with diagrams from books to gain a more complete understanding of some topics.

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10 of 10 people found this review helpful


By Florence Delaney on 09-29-14

Brilliant lecture series

Any additional comments?

This is a really enjoyable and engaging series of lectures. The information is clear and it gives a great in-depth overview of the subject. I was worried it would be too dumbed-down - not so.

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By Anand Manu on 08-26-16

Great Detail but do need some background.

Very detailed course. Does at times require some background knowledge. The 3 part organisation is good and the general strucutre of the course.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful


By Malcolm on 05-26-17

Brilliant

Everybody on this planet should listen to this before they die. It's a wonderful summary of our current knowledge of life and how it works. I believe science is the greatest of mankind's achievements and the beauty of it should be shared with everybody. it was a privilege to listen to.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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