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Exploring Biology in the Laboratory, 3e

Murray P. Pendarvis, John L. Crawley
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This book is customizable for courses with annual enrollments of 100 students or more.

This full-color, comprehensive, affordable introductory biology manual is appropriate for both majors and nonmajors laboratory courses. All general biology topics are covered extensively, and the manual is designed to be used with a minimum of outside reference material. The activities emphasize the unity of all living things and the evolutionary forces that have resulted in, and continue to act on, the diversity that we see around us today.

About this Product


Comprehensive Coverage

  • Objectives clearly state what students are expected to know by the end of the chapter.
  • Introductory material provides context for the material covered in the chapter and helps students apply what they learn.
  • Exercises are designed to be safe, interesting, and meaningful.
  • New Chapter, Touching the Future: Understanding Biotechnology and Forensics.
  • “A Closer Look” sections provide additional detail and context for the topic at hand to help students gain a deeper understanding of the material.
  • “Did You Know” sidebars provide interesting tidbits to pique student interest.

Full-color Art

  • An extensive full-color art and photography program includes many specimen and dissection images, labeled diagrams, cladograms, and helpful life-cycle illustrations. In addition to providing the necessary images to help students work through the lab procedures, the manual also includes hundreds of images of representative organisms, providing ample visual support for the lab.
  • Warnings are posted where applicable to make students aware of potential risks when dissecting certain organisms or performing certain experiments.
  • Hints & Tips aid students in understanding tricky content areas where attention to fine detail is a necessity.

Clear Presentation 

  • Check Your Understanding questions after each exercise ask thought-provoking questions in order to measure student progress throughout the chapter.
  • A Chapter Review ends each chapter and provides thoughtful questions to ensure that students understand the overall concepts from the chapter.

Instructor Resources Available: Login to view Instructor Resources

  • An online Instructor's Manual contains answers to all of the exercises and electronic access to all of the images in the manual. 
  • Computerized Test Bank contains hundreds of questions to help instructors build tests and quizzes that can either be printed or exported to commonly used distance learning platforms.
  • All of the images from the lab manual are provided electronically. Images are presented at digital display resolution (150 dpi), intended for use in PowerPoint presentations.

About the Author

Murray P. Pendarvis

A resident of Walker, Louisiana, Pat is currently an assistant professor of biological sciences at Southeastern Louisiana University. He teaches general biology for majors and nonmajors, honors biology, medical terminology, anatomy and physiology, the history of biology, evolutionary biology, and biophotography. In addition, he is an adjunct professor of biology at Our Lady of the Lake College in Baton Rouge, teaching general biology, environmental science, paleontology, evolution, medical genetics, and the history of medicine. Prior to teaching at the university level, he taught science at Doyle and Walker High Schools in Livingston Parish, Louisiana.

As a result of his dedication to quality science education, he has received a number of awards, including the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Education and the National Association of Biology Teachers Outstanding Teacher Award. In addition to teaching, Pat is an author, writing biology texts for McGraw-Hill and Morton Publishing Company.

One of Pat's passions is the science and art of biophotography. He has published many photographs in several biology and ecology texts. Pat earned a B.S. degree in biology education, a M.S. degree in zoology from Southeastern Louisiana University, and a Ph.D. in science education from the University of Southern Mississippi.

John L. Crawley

John spent his early years growing up in Southern California, where he took every opportunity to explore nature and the outdoors. He currently resides in Provo, Utah where he enjoys the proximity to the mountains, desert, and local rivers and lakes.

He received his degree in zoology from Brigham Young University in 1988. While working as a researcher for the National Forest Service and Utah Division of Wildlife Resources in the early 1990s, John was invited to work on his first project for Morton Publishing, A Photographic Atlas for the Anatomy and Physiology Laboratory. After completion of that title John started work on A Photographic Atlas for the Zoology Laboratory. To date John has completed eight titles with Morton Publishing.

John has spent much of his life observing nature and taking pictures. His photography has provided the opportunity for him to travel widely, allowing him to observe and learn about other cultures and lands. His photos have appeared in national ads, magazines, and numerous publications. He has worked for groups such as Delta Airlines, National Geographic, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Forest Service, and many others. His projects with Morton Publishing have been a great fit for his passion for photography and the biological sciences.

What's New in this Edition

New to this edition of Exploring Biology in the Laboratory, 3e

  • New Chapter, Touching the Future: Understanding Biotechnology and Forensics
  • New exercises including: Osmosis in Gummy Bears, Germination of Angiosperms, Microanatomy of Lichens, Conductive and Sensorineural Hearing Tests, Senses of Touch, and Listening to the Lungs
  • Over 100 new and revised images
  • New updated and revised Check Your Understanding and Review Questions throughout

Table of Contents


Laboratory Safety

Chapter 1: The Starting Point: Understanding the Scientific Method

Chapter 2: For Good Measure: Understanding Scientific Notation and the Metric System

Chapter 3: The Invisible World: Understanding Microscopy

Chapter 4: Back to Basics: Understanding Acids, Bases, and pH

Chapter 5: The Composition of Living Things: Understanding Organic Molecules

Chapter 6: The Building Blocks of Life: Understanding Cell Structure and Function

Chapter 7: Catalysts for Change: Understanding Enzymes

Chapter 8: Just Passing Through: Understanding Diffusion and Osmosis

Chapter 9: From Light to Energy: Understanding Photosynthesis

Chapter 10: Breaking Bonds: Understanding Cellular Respiration

Chapter 11: Out of One, Many: Understanding Cell Division

Chapter 12: That's Just the Half of It: Understanding Meiosis

Chapter 13: It's All in the Genes: Understanding Basic Mendelian Genetics

Chapter 14: Unraveling the Double Helix: Understanding DNA and the Genetic Code

Chapter 15: Touching the Future: Understanding Biotechnology and Forensics

Chapter 16: Mystery of Mysteries: Understanding Evolution

Chapter 17: Making Sense of Diversity: Understanding Classification

Chapter 18: On the Edge of Life: Understanding Viruses

Chapter 19: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: Understanding Bacteria

Chapter 20: This Fine Mess: Understanding the Protists

Chapter 21: The Green Machine: Understanding the Nonvascular Plants

Chapter 22: The Green Machine: Understanding the Seedless Vascular Plants

Chapter 23: The Green Machine: Understanding the Seed Plants (Gymnosperms)

Chapter 24: The Green Machine: Understanding the Seed Plants (Angiosperms)

Chapter 25: The Green Machine: Understanding Roots, Stems, and Leaves

Chapter 26: There's a Fungus among Us: Understanding Fungi

Chapter 27: From the Skin In: Understanding Basic Animal Tissues

Chapter 28: Animal Planet: Understanding Creatures from the Sea

Chapter 29: Animal Planet: Understanding the Lophotrochozoans

Chapter 30: Animal Planet: Understanding the Ecdysozoans

Chapter 31: Animal Planet: Understanding the Deuterostomes

Chapter 32: The Cutting Edge: Understanding Vertebrate Dissections

Chapter 33: Homo sapiens: Understanding the Structure of the Human Body

Chapter 34: Homo sapiens: Understanding the Nervous System and Special Senses

Chapter 35: Homo sapiens: Understanding the Cardiovascular and Respiratory Systems

Chapter 36: Homo sapiens: Understanding Other Systems of the Body

Chapter 37: A Womb with a View: Understanding Embryology

Chapter 38: Acting It Out: Understanding Animal Behavior

Chapter 39: But One Earth: Understanding Basic Ecology

Appendix A: Digital Field Trips