Botany or Plant Biology

Robinson, Dr. David drobinson at BELLARMINE.EDU
Fri Oct 23 14:52:05 EST 1998

   Well, I started off calling the non-majors course I teach "Biology of
Plants", but found myself constantly referring to it as "Botany". So I have
now changed the name to good old-fashioned "Botany".

   Also, since it's a non-majors course I like to include a little bit of
ethnobotany for fun.....but since ethnobotany is more anthropological, than
biological, I feel more justified in including the material if the course is
simply called "Botany". I also noticed that during lectures and labs I am
more likely to refer to plant scientists as "botanists" rather than "plant
biologists".....the latter sounds too much like we're not "real"
biologists...but biological wannabee's.

             Dave Robinson  (Biology, Bellarmine College,  Louisville, KY)

	-----Original Message-----
	From:	mmphillips at [SMTP:mmphillips at]
	Sent:	Friday, October 23, 1998 12:50 PM
	To:	plant-ed at
	Subject:	Botany or Plant Biology

	It seems that many Botany departments have changed their name to
	Biology, and the same goes for course names.  What is the rationale
	this?  Is it that "botany" has an old-fashioned ring to it,
indicating that
	a department might not be involved in cellular/molecular work?   We
	making revisions for a new college catalog and are considering
changing our
	'botany' course to 'plant biology.'  Have others done this and why?

	Thanks for your comments,
	Martha Phillips
	Biology Dept.
	College of St. Catherine
	St Paul, MN
	mmphillips at


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