Biology 54 - Human Understanding

San Jose State University


Welcome to Winter 2020!

Even though the semester doesn't officially start until Jan 2, 2020, please begin by downloading our Winter 2020 syllabus


Can You Access Canvas?

Our course will not be visible until 4:00 am PST on the first official day of the term, but make sure you can get into Canvas now. If you can't access, please contact eCampus immediately. Canvas will be the foundation of everything we do and you will need to access it many times throughout each week. More about Canvas can be found at


Procure Your Reading Materials

Full details on how we will use each book, free options and purchase links for our required and recommended (i.e. optional) books can be found in the syllabus above.

Our 3 Books Are

-Mean Genes: From Sex to Money to Food: Taming Our Primal Instincts by Burnham and Phelan (Required): Available at Spartan Bookstore and on Amazon @

-Emotional Intelligence 2.0 by Bradberry & Greaves (Required): Available at Spartan Bookstore and on Amazon @

-Write, Present, Create: Science Communication for Undergraduates by Poffenroth (Recommended): Free copies in MLK Course Reserves for checkout. Available for optional purchase at Spartan Bookstore, Cognella (digital version) and Amazon


Sign Into Canvas on Day 1

Make sure you have your notifications turned on. On the first day of our term, you will see our course. Canvas is where all our class info, lectures, updates & announcements will be posted.

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Mary Poffenroth, MSc

Los Angeles | San Jose | London