I Think Biology

By Multi faculty   |   Azim Premji University
Learners enrolled: 2250   |  Exam registration: 583
‘I Think Biology’ is a course about fundamental concepts in biology and is different from the traditional biology courses taught in India. By providing an integrated view we highlight the organizing principles of biology. The course focuses on capacity building rather than content knowledge by introducing the scientific process and tools, quantitative reasoning, reading and interpreting, and problem-solving. We also highlight the relationship between biology and our society. All case studies used in the course are from India and we also make use of free online learning resources that are curated and reliable. The course will provide students with an overview of biology and the process of science and develop analytical skills that will allow them to take their interest forward. It can be taken by students studying at the undergraduate level, especially in arts and sciences, by enthusiasts interested in learning biology and by educators looking to expand their repertoire of teaching skills.

INTENDED AUDIENCE: Undergraduates in biology/life sciences. Educators that are looking to expand their teaching skills. We also welcome enthusiasts who are interested in the field of biology.

INDUSTRY SUPPORT: Any biology-related research industry.
Course Status : Completed
Course Type : Core
Duration : 12 weeks
Category :
  • Biological Sciences & Bioengineering
  • Biosciences
Credit Points : 3
Level : Undergraduate
Start Date : 22 Jan 2024
End Date : 12 Apr 2024
Enrollment Ends : 05 Feb 2024
Exam Registration Ends : 16 Feb 2024
Exam Date : 21 Apr 2024 IST

Note: This exam date is subjected to change based on seat availability. You can check final exam date on your hall ticket.

Page Visits

Course layout

Week 1: What is life?
What is Biology?
Pillars of Biology
Biology and the City
The Process of Science
A tale of forgotten scientists

Week 2: Understanding Scientific Practices
Numbers and Scales in Biology
Experimentation vs Theory in Biology
How to find reliable information?
How to read a Scientific Article?

Week 3: Building Blocks of Biology
Central Dogma
Gene Regulation
Non-coding RNA

Week 4: Cell Biology
Introduction to cells 
Our favourite cells
Cell Cycle and control
Cancer Biology

Week 5: Genetics and its Application
Mendelian Genetics
Modern Genetics 
Gene Mutations and Genetic Disorders
Studying Human Genetic Disorders Using Transgenic Animals

Week 6: Cell and Molecular Biology Techniques
Bead Microscopy
Molecular Biology Techniques
Bacterial DNA Isolation and PCR - Laboratory experiment 
BT Cotton

Week 7: Evolution
Introduction to Evolution
Evidences of Evolution
Mechanism of Evolution
Misconceptions about evolution
Human Evolution

Week 8: Species, Speciation, and Diversity
Species, Speciation and Biodiversity
Measuring Biodiversity (Tutorial)

Week 9: Ecological Interactions
Introduction to Ecological Interactions
Mutualism - Figs (Case Study)
Seed Dispersal (Case study)

Week 10: Public Health
Public Health in India 
Rotavirus (Case study)
Malaria (Case study)

Week 11: The Earth in Crisis
Biology and Climate Change 
Biodiversity Conservation

Week 12: Biology, Society and the Environment
Biology and Society 
Art and Science
Urbanscapes - Stray Dogs (Case Study)
Nature relatedness
Course wrap-up

Instructor bio

Click here to view instrctor details.

Course certificate

The course is free to enroll and learn from. But if you want a certificate, you have to register and write the proctored exam conducted by us in person at any of the designated exam centres.
The exam is optional for a fee of Rs 1000/- (Rupees one thousand only).
Date and Time of Exams: 21 April 2024 Morning session 9am to 12 noon; Afternoon Session 2pm to 5pm.
Registration url: Announcements will be made when the registration form is open for registrations.
The online registration form has to be filled and the certification exam fee needs to be paid. More details will be made available when the exam registration form is published. If there are any changes, it will be mentioned then.
Please check the form for more details on the cities where the exams will be held, the conditions you agree to when you fill the form etc.


Average assignment score = 25% of average of best 8 assignments out of the total 12 assignments given in the course.
Exam score = 75% of the proctored certification exam score out of 100

Final score = Average assignment score + Exam score

YOU WILL BE ELIGIBLE FOR A CERTIFICATE ONLY IF AVERAGE ASSIGNMENT SCORE >=10/25 AND EXAM SCORE >= 30/75. If one of the 2 criteria is not met, you will not get the certificate even if the Final score >= 40/100.

Certificate will have your name, photograph and the score in the final exam with the breakup.It will have the logos of NPTEL and IIT Madras .It will be e-verifiable at nptel.ac.in/noc.

Only the e-certificate will be made available. Hard copies will not be dispatched.

Once again, thanks for your interest in our online courses and certification. Happy learning.

- NPTEL team

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