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Take a popular & engaging interdisciplinary course online this summer!

Upper Division Credit/DEC H/STAS/ESI

BIO 358 


DEC H (suitable for all disciplines) and an upper division elective. May qualify for GEN ED, discipline specific or elective requirements in other schools. Check with your school advisors.

BIO358 is one of the most popular courses at Stony Brook U. Join Students from biology, psychology, history, economics, political science, women studies, neuroscience, anthropology, sociology, and many other disciplines for an exciting, rich experience that integrates the natural and social sciences with a new theoryof what it means to be human.

Student Testimonials

aAt the beginning of this course I sat awaiting the inaugural address that would mark the beginning of yet another class that I needed for my major. I was amused by the promise that within just two months, we would look at the world quite differently. Nonetheless, I was intrigued and determined to do my best for the sake of the grade I would receive at the end. Afterwards, I could not care less what the actual grade was because I had the conscious awareness of having received something immensely more important than a letter on a transcript. I feel we've all been given something that is often denied in the course of education: a clear, pristine, and comprehensive scientific understanding of fundamentally human characteristics that map onto virtually every life experience. This really was unprecedented, and I now realize that when one hears the phrase "science at its best", it surely refers to the kind of understanding that "The Biology of Being Human" has imparted on us. The mechanics of the course were also terrific; content was delivered effectively and illustrated the major points with perfect elegance. I wonder if the structure of this course should not serve as a model for other lectures courses. Contrary to my expectations, the online version of the course did not hinder interaction, nor impede learning. The Internet turns out to be a really good medium, giving students a more efficient method of absorbing material and leaving them more time to aid in moving the frontiers of science forward. Suffice it to say, this course reminded me of why I began to love science in my childhood, despite the disenchantment through which I have staggered of late.” - Andrei Assa




"This is the perfect course for someone who has ever had that curious suspicion about human uniqueness. The course is set up so that you will succeed, no matter what your major or background is, and at the end of the semester you will walk away with a newfound appreciation for everything around you. You will be amazed by how much it teaches you not only about those around you, but even about yourself." - Ashley Mustakas






“I took the Bio 358 course online and I am very glad I did. I had access to the video lectures online which allowed me to proceed through the course at my own pace at home. Because of the interactive weekly discussion boards, I had close access to help from other students, teaching assistants, and the professors. The availability of the lectures, electronic quizzes, and digital textbook materials online are very convenient and ensure that you have all the tools available to learn and succeed in the course.” - Rey Phillip Llenes





“This course gave me the rare opportunity to see humanity from an entirely new perspective. Basic principles of chemistry and biology that I explored in other classes were used to form a simple, rational explanation of our social behavior and natural history. The fusion of all these disciplines within one course sparks a very stimulating discussion within the class. I thoroughly enjoyed the subjects investigated in this class and recommend it to anyone who wants to better understand the human species.” - John Hughes



j“I took Bio 358 during my junior year and I truly regret not having enrolled in it sooner. I am a Sociology and Biochemistry double major, which to me felt like the two farthest disciplines offered at Stony Brook. This course showed me that they are not because it manages to incorporate topics in both the hard and soft sciences. It is an incredible class. I received knowledge of not what to think but rather how to think. The topics covered are fascinating and the lectures inspire you to think outside the box. Furthermore, you are encouraged to share your opinions on the issues at hand. It is a large course but it is the only class where the size takes advantage of so many thinking minds. One of the most important things you learn is that human uniqueness lies in our ability to learn from non-kin, and that is exactly what you practice in the class; everybody is given the chance to learn from everyone else.” - Daniela Doneva


m"BIO 358 is a course purported to give students an explanation for what it is to be human - the level of insight necessary to view our physical world beyond its mechanical means.  The extensive amount of resources provided, level of teaching both in the classroom and beyond, and philosophy used in approaching such a provocative subject is unparalleled relative to most any other college courses and attests to both Instructor Souza and Prof. Bingham's dedication to the knowledge enterprise.  The content does a wonderful job of adding profound insight to the mundane aspects of our world - meaning to the facets of our biology that at first seem overwhelmingly complex.  The fact that the content integrates a variety of disciplines makes it a transferable subject to people of all backgrounds and educational platforms, and most notably makes it a course that students owe it to themselves to take." - Michael Dahan



This class is definitely unlike any other biology course or science course I have ever taken; it really does leave you with a new profound outlook on how we interact as human beings. A lot of what I learned in this class has gone into my general understanding of how the world works and why people are the way they are. Professor Bingham's theory has significantly changed the minds of many, including myself, because it not only accounts for the biological aspects of human uniqueness, but also the anthropological, sociological, and even philosophical factors. I have and still recommend this course to all of my friends since it is a life moving journey from start to finish! - Kavita Bommasamudram




For More Information on the content of this course see