Montana State University

MB 542-801: Microbial Ecology

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Sep 14-Dec 04, 2015
Credit: 3 graduate
Tuition & Fees: $910.65 NSTA members 10% discount
Instructor(s): Nancy Burritt and James Burritt

Register Online

Course Description

The objective of this course is to introduce educators and others to the complex world of Microbial Ecology. We will achieve this by exploring a wide range of topics within this subject area including the ecology of microorganisms in relation to nutrition, growth, metabolism, biogeochemical cycling, natural environments, and microbial interactions. This class relies on readings, literature and internet searches, active participation in discussions, online quizzes, a semester-long experiment, sharing approaches and materials, and culminates in a final presentation. Participants will have proxy online access to the Montana State University library.

You will be encouraged to dive in and investigate the various topics and make them relevant within your own classroom or work situation. We believe that you will develop an enduring interest into this fascinating realm of science.

Meeting Place and Times

This course is being taught online. Teachers login to the course at a time of day that best fits their schedule. It is necessary to connect at least 4-6 times per week spending approximately 9-12 hours each week, either online or offline while the course is in session, to stay current and successfully complete this graduate level course.


Nancy Burritt. has a BS in Biology, a BA in Education, and a MA in Science Education.

James Burritt. has a PhD. In Microbiology, and is a Professor of Biology at the University of Wisconsin-Stout.


Participants should have taken a college level general microbiology course or equivalent. NTEN's Exploring Microbiology (MB 536) is recommended but not required.

Target Audience

This course is intended for educators and others with interest in this subject matter.

Time Commitment:

9-12 hours per week. If you are unfamiliar with this field of study and/or method of delivery, you may require more time.

Tuition and Fees

 Program Fee $25.50
 Computer Fee$10.65
 Distributed Learning Fee$75.00

A $30 registration fee is also charged once per semester.

The costs above assume that you are taking only MSU Extended University courses during the semester that the course is offered. If you also registered for courses through the MSU Registrar, the regular MSU fee structure may apply.

A $40 late fee will be assessed if payment is not posted to your account by 3 pm (Mountain Time) of the course start date (or the business day before if the course starts on a weekend or a holiday).

To learn more about tuition and fees, please see the University Business Services' Student Accounts Web page.

NSTA Members are eligible to receive a 10% discount on tuition.
Course participants will also need to purchase the required text listed below on their own.

Required Books/Materials

  • Prescott's Microbiology, 9th Edition.
    Joanne Willey, HOFSTRA UNIVERSITY;
    McGraw-Hill Higher Education; Hardcopy, 1152 pages (2014)
    Prescott's Microbiology.

Computer Requirements:

  • Computer running Windows XP Service Pack 3 or newer or Mac OS X.5 (Leopard) or higher
  • CD-ROM drive
  • Internet access

This course uses a learning management system. You will learn more closer to the course start date.

For More Information

Regarding registration, please contact Kelly Boyce by phone at (800)282-6062 or (406)994-6812, or by email at

For questions regarding course content, please contact Nancy Burritt at

How to Register

Register Online

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