Founded in 1857, St. John’s University (SJU) is one of the oldest institutions of education in the Midwest. It is a men’s college located in Collegeville, Minnesota. Founded in 1913, the College of Saint Benedict (CSB) has a mission to provide for women the best residential liberal arts education in the Catholic university tradition. It’s a women’s college located in St. Joseph, Minnesota. College of St. Benedict & St. John’s Univeristy (CSB/SJU) share a common curriculum, faculty and degree requirements. Together, they enroll about 4,000 students.


Plants and Human Affairs (BIOL106)
This course will examine the way in which plants have been utilized by humans and the economic, historical and social impact of their use on our lives. Or in other words, from the perspective of the Tiger – Lily, our explorations will make us “worth talking to.”

Ultimately, this course will focus on the “practical” side of botany. The course is divided in four major units: (1) Science – during this unit we will focus on the philosophy and nature of science, experimental design, and how to recognize pseudoscientific ideas; (2) Evolution – this is the major integrating theme in all of biology and arguably the single most important concept in the biological sciences. During this unit we will look at the history of evolutionary ideas, natural selection, and recent threats to evolutionary ideas; (3) Horticultural techniques – in this unit we will study basic botanical principles specifically how they apply to your garden; and (4) Economic Plants – plants that are used by people. In addition throughout the course we will discuss plants that have played an important role in our holidays.


Stephen G. Saupe (Biology Department)