WorldWideScience

Sample records for biology laboratory undergraduate

  1. Assessing Practical Laboratory Skills in Undergraduate Molecular Biology Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunt, Lynne; Koenders, Annette; Gynnild, Vidar

    2012-01-01

    This study explored a new strategy of assessing laboratory skills in a molecular biology course to improve: student effort in preparation for and participation in laboratory work; valid evaluation of learning outcomes; and students' employment prospects through provision of evidence of their skills. Previously, assessment was based on written…

  2. Determination of Rate Constants for Ouabain Inhibition of Adenosine Triphosphatase: An Undergraduate Biological Chemistry Laboratory Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sall, Eri; And Others

    1978-01-01

    Describes an undergraduate biological chemistry laboratory experiment which provides students with an example of pseudo-first-order kinetics with the cardiac glycoside inhibition of mammalism sodium and potassium transport. (SL)

  3. Student Perceptions of the Cell Biology Laboratory Learning Environment in Four Undergraduate Science Courses in Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Juan, Joaquin; Pérez-Cañaveras, Rosa M.; Segovia, Yolanda; Girela, Jose Luis; Martínez-Ruiz, Noemi; Romero-Rameta, Alejandro; Gómez-Torres, Maria José; Vizcaya-Moreno, M. Flores

    2016-01-01

    Cell biology is an academic discipline that organises and coordinates the learning of the structure, function and molecular composition of cells in some undergraduate biomedical programs. Besides course content and teaching methodologies, the laboratory environment is considered a key element in the teaching of and learning of cell biology. The…

  4. Practicing biology: Undergraduate laboratory research, persistence in science, and the impact of self-efficacy beliefs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berkes, Elizabeth

    As undergraduate laboratory research internships become more popular and universities devote considerable resources towards promoting them, it is important to clarify what students specifically gain through involvement in these experiences and it is important to understand their impact on the science pipeline. By examining recent findings describing the primary benefits of undergraduate research participation, along with self-efficacy theory, this study aims to provide more explanatory power to the anecdotal and descriptive accounts regarding the relationship between undergraduate research experiences and interest in continuing in science. Furthermore, this study characterizes practices that foster students' confidence in doing scientific work with detailed description and analysis of the interactions of researchers in a laboratory. Phase 1 of the study, a survey of undergraduate biology majors (n=71) at a major research university, investigates the relationships among participation in biology laboratory research internships, biology laboratory self-efficacy strength, and interest in persisting in science. Phase 2 of the study, a two-year investigation of a university biology research laboratory, investigates how scientific communities of practice develop self-efficacy beliefs. The findings suggest that participation in lab internships results in increased interest in continuing in life science/biology graduate school and careers. They also suggest that a significant proportion of that interest is related to the students' biology laboratory self-efficacy. The findings of this study point to two primary ways that undergraduate research participation might work to raise self-efficacy strength. First, university research laboratory communities can provide students with a variety of resources that scaffold them into biology laboratory mastery experiences. Second, university research laboratory communities can provide students with coping and mastery Discourse models

  5. Introducing Mammalian Cell Culture and Cell Viability Techniques in the Undergraduate Biology Laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowey-Dellinger, Kristen; Dixon, Luke; Ackerman, Kristin; Vigueira, Cynthia; Suh, Yewseok K; Lyda, Todd; Sapp, Kelli; Grider, Michael; Crater, Dinene; Russell, Travis; Elias, Michael; Coffield, V McNeil; Segarra, Verónica A

    2017-01-01

    Undergraduate students learn about mammalian cell culture applications in introductory biology courses. However, laboratory modules are rarely designed to provide hands-on experience with mammalian cells or teach cell culture techniques, such as trypsinization and cell counting. Students are more likely to learn about cell culture using bacteria or yeast, as they are typically easier to grow, culture, and manipulate given the equipment, tools, and environment of most undergraduate biology laboratories. In contrast, the utilization of mammalian cells requires a dedicated biological safety cabinet and rigorous antiseptic techniques. For this reason, we have devised a laboratory module and method herein that familiarizes students with common cell culture procedures, without the use of a sterile hood or large cell culture facility. Students design and perform a time-efficient inquiry-based cell viability experiment using HeLa cells and tools that are readily available in an undergraduate biology laboratory. Students will become familiar with common techniques such as trypsinizing cells, cell counting with a hemocytometer, performing serial dilutions, and determining cell viability using trypan blue dye. Additionally, students will work with graphing software to analyze their data and think critically about the mechanism of death on a cellular level. Two different adaptations of this inquiry-based lab are presented-one for non-biology majors and one for biology majors. Overall, these laboratories aim to expose students to mammalian cell culture and basic techniques and help them to conceptualize their application in scientific research.

  6. Glucose Transport in Cultured Animal Cells: An Exercise for the Undergraduate Cell Biology Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ledbetter, Mary Lee S.; Lippert, Malcolm J.

    2002-01-01

    Membrane transport is a fundamental concept that undergraduate students of cell biology understand better with laboratory experience. Formal teaching exercises commonly used to illustrate this concept are unbiological, qualitative, or intricate and time consuming to prepare. We have developed an exercise that uses uptake of radiolabeled nutrient…

  7. What are undergraduates doing at biological field stations and marine laboratories?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janet Hodder

    2009-01-01

    Biological field stations and marine laboratories (FSMLs) serve as places to study the natural environment in a variety of ways, from the level of the molecule to the globe. Undergraduate opportunities at FSMLs reflect the diversity of study options -- formal courses, research and service internships, and field-trip experiences -- and students are responding to those...

  8. Biotechnology by Design: An Introductory Level, Project-Based, Synthetic Biology Laboratory Program for Undergraduate Students

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dale L. Beach

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Synthetic biology offers an ideal opportunity to promote undergraduate laboratory courses with research-style projects, immersing students in an inquiry-based program that enhances the experience of the scientific process. We designed a semester-long, project-based laboratory curriculum using synthetic biology principles to develop a novel sensory device. Students develop subject matter knowledge of molecular genetics and practical skills relevant to molecular biology, recombinant DNA techniques, and information literacy. During the spring semesters of 2014 and 2015, the Synthetic Biology Laboratory Project was delivered to sophomore genetics courses. Using a cloning strategy based on standardized BioBrick genetic “parts,” students construct a “reporter plasmid” expressing a reporter gene (GFP controlled by a hybrid promoter regulated by the lac-repressor protein (lacI. In combination with a “sensor plasmid,” the production of the reporter phenotype is inhibited in the presence of a target environmental agent, arabinose. When arabinose is absent, constitutive GFP expression makes cells glow green. But the presence of arabinose activates a second promoter (pBAD to produce a lac-repressor protein that will inhibit GFP production. Student learning was assessed relative to five learning objectives, using a student survey administered at the beginning (pre-survey and end (post-survey of the course, and an additional 15 open-ended questions from five graded Progress Report assignments collected throughout the course. Students demonstrated significant learning gains (p < 0.05 for all learning outcomes. Ninety percent of students indicated that the Synthetic Biology Laboratory Project enhanced their understanding of molecular genetics. The laboratory project is highly adaptable for both introductory and advanced courses. Editor's Note:The ASM advocates that students must successfully demonstrate the ability to explain and practice safe

  9. Using Zebrafish to Implement a Course-Based Undergraduate Research Experience to Study Teratogenesis in Two Biology Laboratory Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chism, Grady W.; Vaughan, Martin A.; Muralidharan, Pooja; Marrs, Jim A.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract A course-based undergraduate research experience (CURE) spanning three semesters was introduced into freshman and sophomore biology classes, with the hypothesis that participation in a CURE affects skills in research, communication, and collaboration, which may help students persist in science. Student research projects were centered on the hypothesis that nicotine and caffeine exposure during early development affects gastrulation and heart development in zebrafish. First, freshmen generated original data showing distinct effects of embryonic nicotine and caffeine exposure on zebrafish heart development and function. Next, Cell Biology laboratory students continued the CURE studies and identified novel teratogenic effects of nicotine and caffeine during gastrulation. Finally, new freshmen continued the CURE research, examining additional toxicant effects on development. Students designed new protocols, made measurements, presented results, and generated high-quality preliminary data that were studied in successive semesters. By implementing this project, the CURE extended faculty research and provided a scalable model to address national goals to involve more undergraduates in authentic scientific research. In addition, student survey results support the hypothesis that CUREs provide significant gains in student ability to (1) design experiments, (2) analyze data, and (3) make scientific presentations, translating into high student satisfaction and enhanced learning. PMID:26829498

  10. A Western Blot-based Investigation of the Yeast Secretory Pathway Designed for an Intermediate-Level Undergraduate Cell Biology Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hood-DeGrenier, Jennifer K.

    2008-01-01

    The movement of newly synthesized proteins through the endomembrane system of eukaryotic cells, often referred to generally as the secretory pathway, is a topic covered in most intermediate-level undergraduate cell biology courses. An article previously published in this journal described a laboratory exercise in which yeast mutants defective in…

  11. Using Osteoclast Differentiation as a Model for Gene Discovery in an Undergraduate Cell Biology Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Birnbaum, Mark J.; Picco, Jenna; Clements, Meghan; Witwicka, Hanna; Yang, Meiheng; Hoey, Margaret T.; Odgren, Paul R.

    2010-01-01

    A key goal of molecular/cell biology/biotechnology is to identify essential genes in virtually every physiological process to uncover basic mechanisms of cell function and to establish potential targets of drug therapy combating human disease. This article describes a semester-long, project-oriented molecular/cellular/biotechnology laboratory…

  12. Integration of a Faculty's Ongoing Research into an Undergraduate Laboratory Teaching Class in Developmental Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nam, Sang-Chul

    2018-01-01

    Traditional developmental biology laboratory classes have utilized a number of different model organisms to allow students to be exposed to diverse biological phenomena in developing organisms. This traditional approach has mainly focused on the diverse morphological and anatomical descriptions of the developing organisms. However, modern…

  13. Deaf, Hard-of-Hearing, and Hearing Signing Undergraduates' Attitudes toward Science in Inquiry-Based Biology Laboratory Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gormally, Cara

    2017-01-01

    For science learning to be successful, students must develop attitudes toward support future engagement with challenging social issues related to science. This is especially important for increasing participation of students from underrepresented populations. This study investigated how participation in inquiry-based biology laboratory classes…

  14. Environmental regulation of plant gene expression: an RT-qPCR laboratory project for an upper-level undergraduate biochemistry or molecular biology course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eickelberg, Garrett J; Fisher, Alison J

    2013-01-01

    We present a novel laboratory project employing "real-time" RT-qPCR to measure the effect of environment on the expression of the FLOWERING LOCUS C gene, a key regulator of floral timing in Arabidopsis thaliana plants. The project requires four 3-hr laboratory sessions and is aimed at upper-level undergraduate students in biochemistry or molecular biology courses. The project provides students with hands-on experience with RT-qPCR, the current "gold standard" for gene expression analysis, including detailed data analysis using the common 2-ΔΔCT method. Moreover, it provides a convenient starting point for many inquiry-driven projects addressing diverse questions concerning ecological biochemistry, naturally occurring genetic variation, developmental biology, and the regulation of gene expression in nature. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Deaf, Hard-of-Hearing, and Hearing Signing Undergraduates' Attitudes toward Science in Inquiry-Based Biology Laboratory Classes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gormally, Cara

    2017-01-01

    For science learning to be successful, students must develop attitudes toward support future engagement with challenging social issues related to science. This is especially important for increasing participation of students from underrepresented populations. This study investigated how participation in inquiry-based biology laboratory classes affected students' attitudes toward science, focusing on deaf, hard-of-hearing, and hearing signing students in bilingual learning environments (i.e., taught in American Sign Language and English). Analysis of reflection assignments and interviews revealed that the majority of students developed positive attitudes toward science and scientific attitudes after participating in inquiry-based biology laboratory classes. Attitudinal growth appears to be driven by student value of laboratory activities, repeated direct engagement with scientific inquiry, and peer collaboration. Students perceived that hands-on experimentation involving peer collaboration and a positive, welcoming learning environment were key features of inquiry-based laboratories, affording attitudinal growth. Students who did not perceive biology as useful for their majors, careers, or lives did not develop positive attitudes. Students highlighted the importance of the climate of the learning environment for encouraging student contribution and noted both the benefits and pitfalls of teamwork. Informed by students' characterizations of their learning experiences, recommendations are made for inquiry-based learning in college biology. © 2017 C. Gormally. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2017 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  16. Undergraduate Laboratory for Surface Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okumura, Mitchio; Beauchamp, Jesse L.; Dickert, Jeffrey M.; Essy, Blair R.; Claypool, Christopher L.

    1996-02-01

    Surface science has developed into a multidisciplinary field of research with applications ranging from heterogeneous catalysis to semiconductor etching (1). Aspects of surface chemistry are now included in physical chemistry textbooks (2) and undergraduate curricula (3), but the perceived cost and complexity of equipment has deterred the introduction of surface science methods in undergraduate laboratories (4). Efforts to expose chemistry undergraduates to state-of-the-art surface instrumentation have just begun (5). To provide our undergraduates with hands-on experience in using standard techniques for characterizing surface morphology, adsorbates, kinetics, and reaction mechanisms, we have developed a set of surface science experiments for our physical chemistry laboratory sequence. The centerpiece of the laboratory is an ultrahigh vacuum (UHV) chamber for studies of single crystal surfaces. This instrument, shown in the figure, has surface analysis capabilities including low energy electron diffraction (LEED), Auger spectroscopy, and temperature-programmed desorption (TPD). The laboratory exercises involve experiments on the well-studied Pt(111) surface. Students prepare a previously mounted single crystal sample by sputtering it with an argon ion gun and heating it under O2. Electron diffraction patterns from the cleaned surface are then obtained with a reverse view LEED apparatus (Princeton Instruments). Images are captured by a charge-coupled device (CCD) camera interfaced to a personal computer for easy downloading and subsequent analysis. Although the LEED images from a Pt(111) surface can be readily interpreted using simple diffraction arguments, this lab provides an excellent context for introducing Miller indices and reciprocal lattices (6). The surface chemical composition can be investigated by Auger spectroscopy, using the LEED apparatus as a simple energy analyzer. The temperature programmed desorption experiment, which is nearly complete, will be

  17. Laboratory of Biological Modeling

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Laboratory of Biological Modeling is defined by both its methodologies and its areas of application. We use mathematical modeling in many forms and apply it to a...

  18. From gene to structure: Lactobacillus bulgaricus D-lactate dehydrogenase from yogurt as an integrated curriculum model for undergraduate molecular biology and biochemistry laboratory courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawton, Jeffrey A; Prescott, Noelle A; Lawton, Ping X

    2018-03-07

    We have developed an integrated, project-oriented curriculum for undergraduate molecular biology and biochemistry laboratory courses spanning two semesters that is organized around the ldhA gene from the yogurt-fermenting bacterium Lactobacillus bulgaricus, which encodes the enzyme d-lactate dehydrogenase. The molecular biology module, which consists of nine experiments carried out over eleven sessions, begins with the isolation of genomic DNA from L. bulgaricus in yogurt and guides students through the process of cloning the ldhA gene into a prokaryotic expression vector, followed by mRNA isolation and characterization of recombinant gene expression levels using RT-PCR. The biochemistry module, which consists of nine experiments carried out over eight sessions, begins with overexpression of the cloned ldhA gene and guides students through the process of affinity purification, biochemical characterization of the purified LdhA protein, and analysis of enzyme kinetics using various substrates and an inhibitor, concluding with a guided inquiry investigation of structure-function relationships in the three-dimensional structure of LdhA using molecular visualization software. Students conclude by writing a paper describing their work on the project, formatted as a manuscript to be submitted for publication in a scientific journal. Overall, this curriculum, with its emphasis on experiential learning, provides hands-on training with a variety of common laboratory techniques in molecular biology and biochemistry and builds experience with the process of scientific reasoning, along with reinforcement of essential transferrable skills such as critical thinking, information literacy, and written communication, all within the framework of an extended project having the look and feel of a research experience. © 2018 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 2018. © 2018 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  19. Argumentation in undergraduate chemistry laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Joi Phelps

    To address the need for reform in undergraduate science education a new instructional model called Argument-Driven Inquiry (ADI) was developed and then implemented in a undergraduate chemistry course at a community college in the southeastern United States (Sampson, Walker, & Grooms, 2009; Walker, Sampson, & Zimmerman, in press). The ADI instructional model is designed to give a more central place to argumentation and the role of argument in the social construction of scientific knowledge. This research investigated the growth in the quality of the student generated arguments and the scientific argumentation that took place over the course of a semester. Students enrolled in two sections of General Chemistry I laboratory at the community college participated in this study. The students worked in collaborative groups of three or four. The students were given a variation of the same performance task three times during the semester in order to measure individual ability to use evidence and justify their choice of evidence with appropriate rationale. Five ADI investigations took place during the semester and the laboratory reports for each were collected from each student and the argument section of each report was scored. All the student groups were video recorded five times during the semester as they generated and evaluated arguments and the quality of the group argumentation was assessed using an instrument called the Assessment of Scientific Argumentation in the Classroom (ASAC) observation protocol. As time was the independent variable in this study a repeated measure ANOVA was used to evaluate the significance of student improvement in each area (argumentation, written argument and performance task) over the course of the semester (Trochim, 1999). In addition, a multiple regression analysis was conducted to evaluate how well the ASAC scores predicted individual scores on both the performance task and the written arguments (Green & Salkind, 2005). There was

  20. Fluid Flow Experiment for Undergraduate Laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vilimpochapornkul, Viroj; Obot, Nsima T.

    1986-01-01

    The undergraduate fluid mechanics laboratory at Clarkson University consists of three experiments: mixing; drag measurements; and fluid flow and pressure drop measurements. The latter experiment is described, considering equipment needed, procedures used, and typical results obtained. (JN)

  1. Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory Safety

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luckenbaugh, Raymond W.

    1996-11-01

    Each organic chemistry student should become familiar with the educational and governmental laboratory safety requirements. One method for teaching laboratory safety is to assign each student to locate safety resources for a specific class laboratory experiment. The student should obtain toxicity and hazardous information for all chemicals used or produced during the assigned experiment. For example, what is the LD50 or LC50 for each chemical? Are there any specific hazards for these chemicals, carcinogen, mutagen, teratogen, neurotixin, chronic toxin, corrosive, flammable, or explosive agent? The school's "Chemical Hygiene Plan", "Prudent Practices for Handling Hazardous Chemicals in the Laboratory" (National Academy Press), and "Laboratory Standards, Part 1910 - Occupational Safety and Health Standards" (Fed. Register 1/31/90, 55, 3227-3335) should be reviewed for laboratory safety requirements for the assigned experiment. For example, what are the procedures for safe handling of vacuum systems, if a vacuum distillation is used in the assigned experiment? The literature survey must be submitted to the laboratory instructor one week prior to the laboratory session for review and approval. The student should then give a short presentation to the class on the chemicals' toxicity and hazards and describe the safety precautions that must be followed. This procedure gives the student first-hand knowledge on how to find and evaluate information to meet laboartory safety requirements.

  2. Guaiacol Peroxidase Zymography for the Undergraduate Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkesman, Jeff; Castro, Diana; Contreras, Lellys M.; Kurz, Liliana

    2014-01-01

    This laboratory exercise presents a novel way to introduce undergraduate students to the specific detection of enzymatic activity by electrophoresis. First, students prepare a crude peroxidase extract and then analyze the homogenate via electrophoresis. Zymography, that is, a SDS-PAGE method to detect enzyme activity, is used to specifically…

  3. Participation in a Year-Long CURE Embedded into Major Core Genetics and Cellular and Molecular Biology Laboratory Courses Results in Gains in Foundational Biological Concepts and Experimental Design Skills by Novice Undergraduate Researchers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcy A. Peteroy-Kelly

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available This two-year study describes the assessment of student learning gains arising from participation in a year-long curriculum consisting of a classroom undergraduate research experience (CURE embedded into second-year, major core Genetics and Cellular and Molecular Biology (CMB laboratory courses. For the first course in our CURE, students used micro-array or RNAseq analyses to identify genes important for environmental stress responses by Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The students were tasked with creating overexpressing mutants of their genes and designing their own original experiments to investigate the functions of those genes using the overexpression and null mutants in the second CURE course. In order to evaluate student learning gains, we employed three validated concept inventories in a pretest/posttest format and compared gains on the posttest versus the pretest with student laboratory final grades. Our results demonstrated that there was a significant correlation between students earning lower grades in the Genetics laboratory for both years of this study and gains on the Genetics Concept Assessment (GCA. We also demonstrated a correlation between students earning lower grades in the Genetics laboratory and gains on the Introductory Molecular and Cell Biology Assessment (IMCA for year 1 of the study. Students furthermore demonstrated significant gains in identifying the variable properties of experimental subjects when assessed using the Rubric for Experimental (RED design tool. Results from the administration of the CURE survey support these findings. Our results suggest that a year-long CURE enables lower performing students to experience greater gains in their foundational skills for success in the STEM disciplines.

  4. Undergraduate students' goals for chemistry laboratory coursework

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeKorver, Brittland K.

    Chemistry laboratory coursework has the potential to offer many benefits to students, yet few of these learning goals are realized in practice. Therefore, this study seeks to characterize undergraduate students' learning goals for their chemistry laboratory coursework. Data were collected by recording video of students completing laboratory experiments and conducting interviews with the students about their experiences that were analyzed utilizing the frameworks of Human Constructivism and Self-Regulated Learning. A cross-sectional sampling of students allowed comparisons to be made among students with varying levels of chemistry experience and interest in chemistry. The student goals identified by this study were compared to previously described laboratory learning goals of the faculty who instruct these courses in an effort to identify potential avenues to improve laboratory learning.

  5. Positron Annihilation in the Undergraduate Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engbrecht, Jason

    2017-04-01

    While there are a variety of undergraduate laboratory experiments in the literature, they tend to focus on specific positron experiments and use specialized equipment that limit their flexibility. Here we present a positron spectroscopy experimental apparatus designed for the undergraduate lab. Rather than specialized pulse processing the apparatus utilizes a PC oscilloscope as its primary data acquisition utility with pulse processing happening in software instead of hardware. This allows the apparatus to explore a variety of physical phenomena with the positron annihilation including material science, 2 and 3 gamma annihilation properties, polarimetry via Compton scattering, QED tests, and local hidden variable theories. The supporting software is flexible and allows students to pursue these experiments through exploration rather than simply supporting data acquisition. St. Olaf College.

  6. Undergraduate physics laboratory: Electrophoresis in chromatography paper

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hyde, Alexander; Batishchev, Oleg

    2015-12-01

    An experiment studying the physical principles of electrophoresis in liquids was developed for an undergraduate laboratory. We have improved upon the standard agarose gel electrophoresis experimental regime with a straightforward and cost-effective procedure, in which drops of widely available black food coloring were separated by electric field into their dye components on strips of chromatography paper soaked in a baking soda/water solution. Terminal velocities of seven student-safe dyes were measured as a function of the electric potential applied along the strips. The molecular mobility was introduced and calculated by analyzing data for a single dye. Sources of systematic and random errors were investigated.

  7. Method to Increase Undergraduate Laboratory Student Confidence in Performing Independent Research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Colton E. Kempton

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The goal of an undergraduate laboratory course should be not only to introduce the students to biology methodologies and techniques, but also to teach them independent analytical thinking skills and proper experiment design.  This is especially true for advanced biology laboratory courses that undergraduate students typically take as a junior or senior in college.  Many courses achieve the goal of teaching techniques, but fail to approach the larger goal of teaching critical thinking, experimental design, and student independence.  Here we describe a study examining the application of the scaffolding instructional philosophy in which students are taught molecular techniques with decreasing guidance to force the development of analytical thinking skills and prepare undergraduate students for independent laboratory research. This method was applied to our advanced molecular biology laboratory class and resulted in an increase of confidence among the undergraduate students in their abilities to perform independent research.

  8. European Molecular Biology Laboratory

    CERN Multimedia

    1973-01-01

    On 10 May an Agreement was signed at CERN setting up a new European Laboratory. It will be concerned with research in molecularbiology and will be located at Heidelberg in the Federal Republic of Germany.

  9. An Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment in Bioinorganic Chemistry: Ligation States of Myoglobin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bailey, James A.

    2011-01-01

    Although there are numerous inorganic model systems that are readily presented as undergraduate laboratory experiments in bioinorganic chemistry, there are few examples that explore the inorganic chemistry of actual biological molecules. We present a laboratory experiment using the oxygen-binding protein myoglobin that can be easily incorporated…

  10. Making Microscopy Motivating, Memorable, & Manageable for Undergraduate Students with Digital Imaging Laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weeks, Andrea; Bachman. Beverly; Josway, Sarah; North, Brittany; Tsuchiya, Mirian T.N.

    2013-01-01

    Microscopy and precise observation are essential skills that are challenging to teach effectively to large numbers of undergraduate biology students. We implemented student-driven digital imaging assignments for microscopy in a large enrollment laboratory for organismal biology. We detail how we promoted student engagement with the material and…

  11. Laboratory techniques in plant molecular biology taught with UniformMu insertion alleles of maize

    Science.gov (United States)

    An undergraduate course - Laboratory Techniques in Plant Molecular Biology - was organized around our research application of UniformMu insertion alleles to investigate mitochondrial functions in plant reproduction. The course objectives were to develop students’ laboratory, record keeping, bioinfor...

  12. Undergraduate Laboratory Exercises Specific to Food Spoilage Microbiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snyder, Abigail B.; Worobo, Randy W.; Orta-Ramirez, Alicia

    2016-01-01

    Food spoilage has an enormous economic impact, and microbial food spoilage plays a significant role in food waste and loss; subsequently, an equally significant portion of undergraduate food microbiology instruction should be dedicated to spoilage microbiology. Here, we describe a set of undergraduate microbiology laboratory exercises that focus…

  13. Measuring Dynamic Kidney Function in an Undergraduate Physiology Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medler, Scott; Harrington, Frederick

    2013-01-01

    Most undergraduate physiology laboratories are very limited in how they treat renal physiology. It is common to find teaching laboratories equipped with the capability for high-resolution digital recordings of physiological functions (muscle twitches, ECG, action potentials, respiratory responses, etc.), but most urinary laboratories still rely on…

  14. Introducing Undergraduates to a Research Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinberg, Robert

    1974-01-01

    Discusses a student project which is intended to teach undergraduates concepts and techniques of nuclear physics, experimental methods used in particle detection, and provide experience in a functioning research environment. Included are detailed procedures for carrying out the project. (CC)

  15. Environmental Regulation of Plant Gene Expression: An Rt-qPCR Laboratory Project for an Upper-Level Undergraduate Biochemistry or Molecular Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eickelberg, Garrett J.; Fisher, Alison J.

    2013-01-01

    We present a novel laboratory project employing "real-time" RT-qPCR to measure the effect of environment on the expression of the "FLOWERING LOCUS C" gene, a key regulator of floral timing in "Arabidopsis thaliana" plants. The project requires four 3-hr laboratory sessions and is aimed at upper-level undergraduate…

  16. Biology undergraduates' misconceptions about genetic drift.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrews, T M; Price, R M; Mead, L S; McElhinny, T L; Thanukos, A; Perez, K E; Herreid, C F; Terry, D R; Lemons, P P

    2012-01-01

    This study explores biology undergraduates' misconceptions about genetic drift. We use qualitative and quantitative methods to describe students' definitions, identify common misconceptions, and examine differences before and after instruction on genetic drift. We identify and describe five overarching categories that include 16 distinct misconceptions about genetic drift. The accuracy of students' conceptions ranges considerably, from responses indicating only superficial, if any, knowledge of any aspect of evolution to responses indicating knowledge of genetic drift but confusion about the nuances of genetic drift. After instruction, a significantly greater number of responses indicate some knowledge of genetic drift (p = 0.005), but 74.6% of responses still contain at least one misconception. We conclude by presenting a framework that organizes how students' conceptions of genetic drift change with instruction. We also articulate three hypotheses regarding undergraduates' conceptions of evolution in general and genetic drift in particular. We propose that: 1) students begin with undeveloped conceptions of evolution that do not recognize different mechanisms of change; 2) students develop more complex, but still inaccurate, conceptual frameworks that reflect experience with vocabulary but still lack deep understanding; and 3) some new misconceptions about genetic drift emerge as students comprehend more about evolution.

  17. Discovery of Escherichia coli CRISPR sequences in an undergraduate laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Militello, Kevin T; Lazatin, Justine C

    2017-05-01

    Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPRs) represent a novel type of adaptive immune system found in eubacteria and archaebacteria. CRISPRs have recently generated a lot of attention due to their unique ability to catalog foreign nucleic acids, their ability to destroy foreign nucleic acids in a mechanism that shares some similarity to RNA interference, and the ability to utilize reconstituted CRISPR systems for genome editing in numerous organisms. In order to introduce CRISPR biology into an undergraduate upper-level laboratory, a five-week set of exercises was designed to allow students to examine the CRISPR status of uncharacterized Escherichia coli strains and to allow the discovery of new repeats and spacers. Students started the project by isolating genomic DNA from E. coli and amplifying the iap CRISPR locus using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The PCR products were analyzed by Sanger DNA sequencing, and the sequences were examined for the presence of CRISPR repeat sequences. The regions between the repeats, the spacers, were extracted and analyzed with BLASTN searches. Overall, CRISPR loci were sequenced from several previously uncharacterized E. coli strains and one E. coli K-12 strain. Sanger DNA sequencing resulted in the discovery of 36 spacer sequences and their corresponding surrounding repeat sequences. Five of the spacers were homologous to foreign (non-E. coli) DNA. Assessment of the laboratory indicates that improvements were made in the ability of students to answer questions relating to the structure and function of CRISPRs. Future directions of the laboratory are presented and discussed. © 2016 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 45(3):262-269, 2017. © 2016 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  18. Investigation of Macrophage Differentiation and Cytokine Production in an Undergraduate Immunology Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berkes, Charlotte; Chan, Leo Li-Ying

    2015-01-01

    We have developed a semester-long laboratory project for an undergraduate immunology course in which students study multiple aspects of macrophage biology including differentiation from progenitors in the bone marrow, activation upon stimulation with microbial ligands, expression of cell surface markers, and modulation of cytokine production. In…

  19. Kinetics of Carbaryl Hydrolysis: An Undergraduate Environmental Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawker, Darryl

    2015-01-01

    Kinetics is an important part of undergraduate environmental chemistry curricula and relevant laboratory exercises are helpful in assisting students to grasp concepts. Such exercises are also useful in general chemistry courses because students can see relevance to real-world issues. The laboratory exercise described here involves determination of…

  20. Circular Dichroism Spectroscopy: Enhancing a Traditional Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory Experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Russell L.; Seal, Erin L.; Lorts, Aimee R.; Stewart, Amanda L.

    2017-01-01

    The undergraduate biochemistry laboratory curriculum is designed to provide students with experience in protein isolation and purification protocols as well as various data analysis techniques, which enhance the biochemistry lecture course and give students a broad range of tools upon which to build in graduate level laboratories or once they…

  1. An Undergraduate Nanotechnology Engineering Laboratory Course on Atomic Force Microscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russo, D.; Fagan, R. D.; Hesjedal, T.

    2011-01-01

    The University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON, Canada, is home to North America's first undergraduate program in nanotechnology. As part of the Nanotechnology Engineering degree program, a scanning probe microscopy (SPM)-based laboratory has been developed for students in their fourth year. The one-term laboratory course "Nanoprobing and…

  2. A Guided-Inquiry pH Laboratory Exercise for Introductory Biological Science Laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snodgrass, Meagan A.; Lux, Nicholas; Metz, Anneke M.

    2011-01-01

    There is a continuing need for engaging inquiry-based laboratory experiences for advanced high school and undergraduate biology courses. The authors describe a guided-inquiry exercise investigating the pH-dependence of lactase enzyme that uses an inexpensive, wide-range buffering system, lactase dietary supplement, over-the-counter glucose test…

  3. EDITORIAL: Student undergraduate laboratory and project work

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumacher, Dieter

    2007-05-01

    that new experiments which illustrate both fundamental physics and modern technology can be realized even with a small budget. Traditional labwork courses often provide a catalogue of well known experiments. The students must first learn the theoretical background. They then assemble the setup from specified equipment, collect the data and perform the default data processing. However, there is no way to learn to swim without water. In order to achieve a constructivist access to learning, 'project labs' are needed. In a project labwork course a small group of students works as a team on a mini research project. The students have to specify the question of research, develop a suitable experimental setup, conduct the experiment and find a suitable way to evaluate the data. Finally they must present their results e.g. in the framework of a public poster session. Three contributions refer to this approach, however they focus on different aspects: 'Project laboratory for first-year students' by Gorazd Planinšič, 'RealTime Physics: active learning laboratories' by David Sokoloff et al and 'Labs outside labs: miniprojects at a spring camp for future physics teachers' by Leos Dvorák. Is it possible to prepare the students specifically for project labwork? This question is answered by the contribution 'A new labwork course for physics students: devices, methods and research projects' by Knut Neumann and Manuela Welzel. The two main parts of the labwork course cover first experimental devices (e.g. multimeters, oscilloscopes, different sensors, operational amplifiers, step motors, AD/DA-converters). Then subjects such as data processing, consideration of measurement uncertainties, keeping records or using tools like LABVIEW etc are focused on. Another concrete proposal for a new curriculum is provided by James Sharp et al, in 'Computer based learning in an undergraduate physics laboratory: interfacing and instrument control using MATLAB'. One can well imagine that project labs

  4. Computerized Laboratories in an Undergraduate Psychology Department.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brazier, Mary M.

    A computer project sponsored by a National Science Foundation grant was completed in the psychology department at Loyola University. The purpose of the project was to upgrade existing laboratory equipment in both the operant learning and sensation/perception laboratories, to provide equipment for a cognition laboratory, and to allow increased and…

  5. Laboratory of Cell and Molecular Biology

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Laboratory of Cell and Molecular Biology investigates the organization, compartmentalization, and biochemistry of eukaryotic cells and the pathology associated...

  6. Measuring meaningful learning in the undergraduate chemistry laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galloway, Kelli R.

    The undergraduate chemistry laboratory has been an essential component in chemistry education for over a century. The literature includes reports on investigations of singular aspects laboratory learning and attempts to measure the efficacy of reformed laboratory curriculum as well as faculty goals for laboratory learning which found common goals among instructors for students to learn laboratory skills, techniques, experimental design, and to develop critical thinking skills. These findings are important for improving teaching and learning in the undergraduate chemistry laboratory, but research is needed to connect the faculty goals to student perceptions. This study was designed to explore students' ideas about learning in the undergraduate chemistry laboratory. Novak's Theory of Meaningful Learning was used as a guide for the data collection and analysis choices for this research. Novak's theory states that in order for meaningful learning to occur the cognitive, affective, and psychomotor domains must be integrated. The psychomotor domain is inherent in the chemistry laboratory, but the extent to which the cognitive and affective domains are integrated is unknown. For meaningful learning to occur in the laboratory, students must actively integrate both the cognitive domain and the affective domains into the "doing" of their laboratory work. The Meaningful Learning in the Laboratory Instrument (MLLI) was designed to measure students' cognitive and affective expectations and experiences within the context of conducting experiments in the undergraduate chemistry laboratory. Evidence for the validity and reliability of the data generated by the MLLI were collected from multiple quantitative studies: a one semester study at one university, a one semester study at 15 colleges and universities across the United States, and a longitudinal study where the MLLI was administered 6 times during two years of general and organic chemistry laboratory courses. Results from

  7. Undergraduate Laboratory Module on Skin Diffusion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norman, James J.; Andrews, Samantha N.; Prausnitz, Mark R.

    2011-01-01

    To introduce students to an application of chemical engineering directly related to human health, we developed an experiment for the unit operations laboratory at Georgia Tech examining diffusion across cadaver skin in the context of transdermal drug delivery. In this laboratory module, students prepare mouse skin samples, set up diffusion cells…

  8. Picture of Norwegian clinical learning laboratories for undergraduate nursing students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wellard, Sally J; Solvoll, Betty-Ann; Heggen, Kristin M

    2009-07-01

    Clinical preparation for practice is a vital part of undergraduate education in nursing. This study explored contemporary constructions of clinical skills laboratories in two nursing undergraduate programs in Norway using qualitative collective case study methods. Data were gathered using individual and group interviews and observation during site visits. The data revealed slightly different ways of organizing teaching and experimenting with use of pedagogical methods to facilitate learning of technical skills as well as encouraging students to activate relevant theoretical knowledge. While there was a lively and striking enthusiasm among staff about the way learning was managed within the laboratories, the pedagogical underpinnings for their particular approaches were less certain amongst participants. The paper concludes with the necessity to provide evidence for the outcome of laboratories learning and investigate suitable pedagogical methods for effective teaching and learning of practice skills. Hence, a need for research on transfer of knowledge and skills between the different sites (academy, clinical settings, and laboratories) is identified.

  9. Field Research Studying Whales in an Undergraduate Animal Behavior Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacLaren, R. David; Schulte, Dianna; Kennedy, Jen

    2012-01-01

    This work describes a new field research laboratory in an undergraduate animal behavior course involving the study of whale behavior, ecology and conservation in partnership with a non-profit research organization--the Blue Ocean Society for Marine Conservation (BOS). The project involves two weeks of training and five weekend trips on whale watch…

  10. Synthesis and Characterization of Silver Nanoparticles for an Undergraduate Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orbaek, Alvin W.; McHale, Mary M.; Barron, Andrew R.

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this simple, quick, and safe laboratory exercise is to provide undergraduate students an introduction to nanotechnology using nanoparticle (NP) synthesis. Students are provided two procedures that allow for the synthesis of different yet controlled sizes of silver NPs. After preparing the NPs, the students perform UV-visible…

  11. Basic neuron model electrical equivalent circuit: an undergraduate laboratory exercise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dabrowski, Katie M; Castaño, Diego J; Tartar, Jaime L

    2013-01-01

    We developed a hands-on laboratory exercise for undergraduate students in which they can build and manipulate a neuron equivalent circuit. This exercise uses electrical circuit components that resemble neuron components and are easy to construct. We describe the methods for creating the equivalent circuit and how to observe different neuron properties through altering the structure of the equivalent circuit. We explain how this hands-on laboratory activity allows for the better understanding of this fundamental neuroscience concept. At the conclusion of this laboratory exercise, undergraduate students will be able to apply the principles of Ohm's law, cable theory with regards to neurons, and understand the functions of resistance and capacitance in a neuron.

  12. Measuring Salivary Alpha-Amylase in the Undergraduate Neuroscience Laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bañuelos, Maria S; Musleh, Aya; Olson, Lisa E

    2017-01-01

    Undergraduate courses in biopsychology, neuroscience, and physiology often include laboratory exercises that examine responses to stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system with measurements of heart rate, blood pressure, or galvanic skin levels (sweat response). A newer bioindicator of the sympathetic nervous system is salivary alpha-amylase (sAA) measured with a colorimetic enzyme assay. Undergraduate students successfully measured a rise in sAA due to the stress of giving a class presentation (n=13). Students were enthusiastic to measure a physiological response to a real-life anxiety-producing situation. We describe potential difficulties in the assay and our adaptations to the manufacturer's protocol to make it more feasible in the undergraduate setting.

  13. Education Improves Plagiarism Detection by Biology Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holt, Emily A.

    2012-01-01

    Regrettably, the sciences are not untouched by the plagiarism affliction that threatens the integrity of budding professionals in classrooms around the world. My research, however, suggests that plagiarism training can improve students' recognition of plagiarism. I found that 148 undergraduate ecology students successfully identified plagiarized…

  14. A Fast and Inexpensive Western Blot Experiment for the Undergraduate Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farrell, Shawn O.; Farrell, Lynn E.

    1995-08-01

    Western blotting is an important, modern technique for transferring proteins from a gel onto nitrocellulose or other suitable support and then detecting a protein of interest using antibodies. We have developed an experiment and optimized the conditions for the undergraduate laboratory. The experiment can be done quickly using an electrophoretic blotter or more cheaply using passive transfer. This experiment allows the student to learn valuable procedures currently used in biochemistry and other biological sciences.

  15. Blended learning within an undergraduate exercise physiology laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elmer, Steven J; Carter, Kathryn R; Armga, Austin J; Carter, Jason R

    2016-03-01

    In physiological education, blended course formats (integration of face-to-face and online instruction) can facilitate increased student learning, performance, and satisfaction in classroom settings. There is limited evidence on the effectiveness of using blending course formats in laboratory settings. We evaluated the impact of blended learning on student performance and perceptions in an undergraduate exercise physiology laboratory. Using a randomized, crossover design, four laboratory topics were delivered in either a blended or traditional format. For blended laboratories, content was offloaded to self-paced video demonstrations (∼15 min). Laboratory section 1 (n = 16) completed blended laboratories for 1) neuromuscular power and 2) blood lactate, whereas section 2 (n = 17) completed blended laboratories for 1) maximal O2 consumption and 2) muscle electromyography. Both sections completed the same assignments (scored in a blinded manner using a standardized rubric) and practicum exams (evaluated by two independent investigators). Pre- and postcourse surveys were used to assess student perceptions. Most students (∼79%) watched videos for both blended laboratories. Assignment scores did not differ between blended and traditional laboratories (P = 0.62) or between sections (P = 0.91). Practicum scores did not differ between sections (both P > 0.05). At the end of the course, students' perceived value of the blended format increased (P physiology laboratories provided an alternative method for delivering content that was favorably perceived by students and did not compromise student performance. Copyright © 2016 The American Physiological Society.

  16. Analysis of undergraduate cell biology contents in Brazilian public universities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mermelstein, Claudia; Costa, Manoel Luis

    2017-04-01

    The enormous amount of information available in cell biology has created a challenge in selecting the core concepts we should be teaching our undergraduates. One way to define a set of essential core ideas in cell biology is to analyze what a specific cell biology community is teaching their students. Our main objective was to analyze the cell biology content currently being taught in Brazilian universities. We collected the syllabi of cell biology courses from public universities in Brazil and analyzed the frequency of cell biology topics in each course. We also compared the Brazilian data with the contents of a major cell biology textbook. Our analysis showed that while some cell biology topics such as plasma membrane and cytoskeleton was present in ∼100% of the Brazilian curricula analyzed others such as cell signaling and cell differentiation were present in only ∼35%. The average cell biology content taught in the Brazilian universities is quite different from what is presented in the textbook. We discuss several possible explanations for these observations. We also suggest a list with essential cell biology topics for any biological or biomedical undergraduate course. The comparative discussion of cell biology topics presented here could be valuable in other educational contexts. © 2017 The Authors. Cell Biology International Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of International Federation of Cell Biology.

  17. Video Episodes and Action Cameras in the Undergraduate Chemistry Laboratory: Eliciting Student Perceptions of Meaningful Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galloway, Kelli R.; Bretz, Stacey Lowery

    2016-01-01

    A series of quantitative studies investigated undergraduate students' perceptions of their cognitive and affective learning in the undergraduate chemistry laboratory. To explore these quantitative findings, a qualitative research protocol was developed to characterize student learning in the undergraduate chemistry laboratory. Students (N = 13)…

  18. Crossing Boundaries in Undergraduate Biology Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanderklein, Dirk; Munakata, Mika; McManus, Jason

    2016-01-01

    In an effort to make mathematics relevant to biology students, the authors developed two modules that sought to integrate mathematics and ecology instruction to differing degrees. The modules were developed by a team of biology and mathematics educators and were implemented in an ecology course using three different instructional methods for three…

  19. Meeting Report: Synthetic Biology Jamboree for Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, A. Malcolm

    2005-01-01

    The field of synthetic biology (the name is derived from an analogy to synthetic chemistry) has recognized itself as a "field" only since about 2002. Synthetic biology has gotten some high-profile attention recently, but most people are not aware the field even exists. Synthetic biologists apply engineering principles to genomic circuits to…

  20. Known structure, unknown function: An inquiry‐based undergraduate biochemistry laboratory course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, Cynthia; Price, Carol W.; Lee, Christopher T.; Dewald, Alison H.; Cline, Matthew A.; McAnany, Charles E.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Undergraduate biochemistry laboratory courses often do not provide students with an authentic research experience, particularly when the express purpose of the laboratory is purely instructional. However, an instructional laboratory course that is inquiry‐ and research‐based could simultaneously impart scientific knowledge and foster a student's research expertise and confidence. We have developed a year‐long undergraduate biochemistry laboratory curriculum wherein students determine, via experiment and computation, the function of a protein of known three‐dimensional structure. The first half of the course is inquiry‐based and modular in design; students learn general biochemical techniques while gaining preparation for research experiments in the second semester. Having learned standard biochemical methods in the first semester, students independently pursue their own (original) research projects in the second semester. This new curriculum has yielded an improvement in student performance and confidence as assessed by various metrics. To disseminate teaching resources to students and instructors alike, a freely accessible Biochemistry Laboratory Education resource is available at http://biochemlab.org. © 2015 The Authors Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 43(4):245–262, 2015. PMID:26148241

  1. Generative Mechanistic Explanation Building in Undergraduate Molecular and Cellular Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Southard, Katelyn M.; Espindola, Melissa R.; Zaepfel, Samantha D.; Bolger, Molly S.

    2017-01-01

    When conducting scientific research, experts in molecular and cellular biology (MCB) use specific reasoning strategies to construct mechanistic explanations for the underlying causal features of molecular phenomena. We explored how undergraduate students applied this scientific practice in MCB. Drawing from studies of explanation building among…

  2. Use of Lecture Capture in Undergraduate Biological Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiese, Candace; Newton, Genevieve

    2013-01-01

    This study examined the use of lecture capture in students in a large 3rd year undergraduate biological science course at the University of Guelph. Data regarding viewing behaviour, academic performance, and attendance were analyzed in relation to student learning approach (as assessed by the R-SPQ-2F), gender, and year of post-secondary…

  3. Better understanding of homologous recombination through a 12-week laboratory course for undergraduates majoring in biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ming; Shen, Xiaodong; Zhao, Yan; Hu, Xiaomei; Hu, Fuquan; Rao, Xiancai

    2017-07-08

    Homologous recombination, a central concept in biology, is defined as the exchange of DNA strands between two similar or identical nucleotide sequences. Unfortunately, undergraduate students majoring in biotechnology often experience difficulties in understanding the molecular basis of homologous recombination. In this study, we developed and implemented a 12-week laboratory course for biotechnology undergraduates in which gene targeting in Streptococcus suis was used to facilitate their understanding of the basic concept and process of homologous recombination. Students worked in teams of two to select a gene of interest to create a knockout mutant using methods that relied on homologous recombination. By integrating abstract knowledge and practice in the process of scientific research, students gained hands-on experience in molecular biology techniques while learning about the principle and process of homologous recombination. The learning outcomes and survey-based assessment demonstrated that students substantially enhanced their understanding of how homologous recombination could be used to study gene function. Overall, the course was very effective for helping biotechnology undergraduates learn the theory and application of homologous recombination, while also yielding positive effects in developing confidence and scientific skills for future work in research. © 2017 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 45(4):329-335, 2017. © 2017 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  4. On the Edge of Mathematics and Biology Integration: Improving Quantitative Skills in Undergraduate Biology Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feser, Jason; Vasaly, Helen; Herrera, Jose

    2013-01-01

    In this paper, the authors describe how two institutions are helping their undergraduate biology students build quantitative competencies. Incorporation of quantitative skills and reasoning in biology are framed through a discussion of two cases that both concern introductory biology courses, but differ in the complexity of the mathematics and the…

  5. Evaluation of the Redesign of an Undergraduate Cell Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    McEwen, Laura April; Harris, dik; Schmid, Richard F.; Vogel, Jackie; Western, Tamara; Harrison, Paul

    2009-01-01

    This article offers a case study of the evaluation of a redesigned and redeveloped laboratory-based cell biology course. The course was a compulsory element of the biology program, but the laboratory had become outdated and was inadequately equipped. With the support of a faculty-based teaching improvement project, the teaching team redesigned the…

  6. Designing an undergraduate laboratory course in general chemistry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vianna José F.

    1999-01-01

    Full Text Available From an analysis of a learning model based on the theory of information processing four hypothesis were developed for improving the design of laboratory courses. Three of these hypotheses concerned specific procedures to minimise the load on students' working memories (or working spaces and the fourth hypothesis was concerned with the value of mini-projects in enhancing meaningful learning of the knowledge and skills underpinning the set experiments. A three-year study of a first year undergraduate chemistry laboratory course at a Scottish university has been carried out to test these four hypotheses. This paper reports the results of the study relevant to the three hypotheses about the burden on students' working spaces. It was predicted from the learning model that the load on students working space should be reduced by appropriate changes to the written instructions and the laboratory organisation and by the introduction of prelab-work and prelab-training in laboratory techniques. It was concluded from research conducted over the three years period that all these hypothesised changes were effective both in reducing the load on students' working spaces and in improving their attitudes to the laboratory course.

  7. A qualitative characterization of an introductory college nonmajors biology laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Cherin Ann

    The nature of an undergraduate, nonmajors biology laboratory was investigated in this study. Student participants were enrolled in a general education biology laboratory course at the University of Northern Iowa. The researcher's purpose was to gain a characterization of the instructional format and laboratory activities experienced by students. Interpretation of student and instructor responses enabled an insider's view of the biology laboratory. The laboratory period was consistently described by both students and instructors as having three parts, Beginning, Middle, and End, with the End being of special importance for conceptual development. The instructional format of the three instructors differed within the three portions of the laboratory period, ranging from an inquiry-oriented, partial learning cycle to a fairly expository model labeled inform/verify/practice. There was striking similarity in intrasectional student and teacher descriptions of instructional format. Additionally, students experiencing the alternate instructor provided the same characterizations of instructional format as those provided by the instructor's usual students. There were no discernible patterns of instructional format based on sex or reasoning level. In addition to the central role of instructional format, three areas of importance emerged: the social aspects of learning, the collaborative and cooperative nature of laboratory work and learning, and the role of self-efficacy. Theory developed from and grounded in the data showed six factors important in the introductory college biology laboratory: collaborative and cooperative learning, student-student and teacher-student interactions, attitude and self-efficacy, learning process and learning style, effective instructional format, and science content. These factors were found to be similar to factors identified in the literature as important in K-12 science education. These factors were set in the context of schooling and learning

  8. Teaching synthetic biology, bioinformatics and engineering to undergraduates: the interdisciplinary Build-a-Genome course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dymond, Jessica S; Scheifele, Lisa Z; Richardson, Sarah; Lee, Pablo; Chandrasegaran, Srinivasan; Bader, Joel S; Boeke, Jef D

    2009-01-01

    A major challenge in undergraduate life science curricula is the continual evaluation and development of courses that reflect the constantly shifting face of contemporary biological research. Synthetic biology offers an excellent framework within which students may participate in cutting-edge interdisciplinary research and is therefore an attractive addition to the undergraduate biology curriculum. This new discipline offers the promise of a deeper understanding of gene function, gene order, and chromosome structure through the de novo synthesis of genetic information, much as synthetic approaches informed organic chemistry. While considerable progress has been achieved in the synthesis of entire viral and prokaryotic genomes, fabrication of eukaryotic genomes requires synthesis on a scale that is orders of magnitude higher. These high-throughput but labor-intensive projects serve as an ideal way to introduce undergraduates to hands-on synthetic biology research. We are pursuing synthesis of Saccharomyces cerevisiae chromosomes in an undergraduate laboratory setting, the Build-a-Genome course, thereby exposing students to the engineering of biology on a genomewide scale while focusing on a limited region of the genome. A synthetic chromosome III sequence was designed, ordered from commercial suppliers in the form of oligonucleotides, and subsequently assembled by students into approximately 750-bp fragments. Once trained in assembly of such DNA "building blocks" by PCR, the students accomplish high-yield gene synthesis, becoming not only technically proficient but also constructively critical and capable of adapting their protocols as independent researchers. Regular "lab meeting" sessions help prepare them for future roles in laboratory science.

  9. Identification of Forensic Samples via Mitochondrial DNA in the Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millard, Julie T.; Pilon, André M.

    2003-04-01

    A recent forensic approach for identification of unknown biological samples is mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequencing. We describe a laboratory exercise suitable for an undergraduate biochemistry course in which the polymerase chain reaction is used to amplify a 440 base pair hypervariable region of human mtDNA from a variety of "crime scene" samples (e.g., teeth, hair, nails, cigarettes, envelope flaps, toothbrushes, and chewing gum). Amplification is verified via agarose gel electrophoresis and then samples are subjected to cycle sequencing. Sequence alignments are made via the program CLUSTAL W, allowing students to compare samples and solve the "crime."

  10. Commentary: Why Abandoning Undergraduate Laboratories Is Not an Option

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, Manuel Joao

    2010-01-01

    Laboratory exercises (labs) are sometimes regarded as dispensable in biochemistry and molecular biology (BMB) education for various reasons including a combination of increased class costs and small budget allocations, pressing demands for more time to lecture to fit in new BMB discoveries within constant time span of courses, and the fact that…

  11. Toward a Conceptual Framework for Measuring the Effectiveness of Course-Based Undergraduate Research Experiences in Undergraduate Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brownell, Sara E.; Kloser, Matthew J.

    2015-01-01

    Recent calls for reform have advocated for extensive changes to undergraduate science lab experiences, namely providing more authentic research experiences for students. Course-based Undergraduate Research Experiences (CUREs) have attempted to eschew the limitations of traditional "cookbook" laboratory exercises and have received…

  12. Chiral Compounds and Green Chemistry in Undergraduate Organic Laboratories: Reduction of a Ketone by Sodium Borohydride and Baker's Yeast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohl, Nicola; Clague, Allen; Schwarz, Kimberly

    2002-06-01

    We describe an integrated set of experiments for the undergraduate organic laboratory that allows students to compare and contrast biological and chemical means of introducing chirality into a molecule. The racemic reduction of ethyl acetoacetate with sodium borohydride and the same reduction in the presence of a tartaric acid ligand are described, and a capillary gas chromatography column packed with a chiral material for product analysis is introduced. The results of these two hydride reactions are compared with the results of a common undergraduate experiment, the baker's yeast reduction of ethyl acetoacetate.

  13. Integrating bio-inorganic and analytical chemistry into an undergraduate biochemistry laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erasmus, Daniel J; Brewer, Sharon E; Cinel, Bruno

    2015-01-01

    Undergraduate laboratories expose students to a wide variety of topics and techniques in a limited amount of time. This can be a challenge and lead to less exposure to concepts and activities in bio-inorganic chemistry and analytical chemistry that are closely-related to biochemistry. To address this, we incorporated a new iron determination by atomic absorption spectroscopy exercise as part of a five-week long laboratory-based project on the purification of myoglobin from beef. Students were required to prepare samples for chemical analysis, operate an atomic absorption spectrophotometer, critically evaluate their iron data, and integrate these data into a study of myoglobin. © 2015 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  14. Innovations in teaching undergraduate biology and why we need them.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, William B

    2009-01-01

    A growing revolution is under way in the teaching of introductory science to undergraduates. It is driven by concerns about American competitiveness as well as results from recent educational research, which explains why traditional teaching approaches in large classes fail to reach many students and provides a basis for designing improved methods of instruction. Discipline-based educational research in the life sciences and other areas has identified several innovative promising practices and demonstrated their effectiveness for increasing student learning. Their widespread adoption could have a major impact on the introductory training of biology students.

  15. Connecting Biology and Organic Chemistry Introductory Laboratory Courses through a Collaborative Research Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boltax, Ariana L.; Armanious, Stephanie; Kosinski-Collins, Melissa S.; Pontrello, Jason K.

    2015-01-01

    Modern research often requires collaboration of experts in fields, such as math, chemistry, biology, physics, and computer science to develop unique solutions to common problems. Traditional introductory undergraduate laboratory curricula in the sciences often do not emphasize connections possible between the various disciplines. We designed an…

  16. Experiences of Judeo-Christian Students in Undergraduate Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, M. Elizabeth; Truong, Jasmine M.; Brownell, Sara E.

    2017-01-01

    A major research thrust in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education is focused on how to retain students as STEM majors. The accumulation of seemingly insignificant negative experiences in STEM classes can, over time, lead STEM students to have a low sense of belonging in their disciplines, and this can lead to lower retention. In this paper, we explore how Judeo-Christian students in biology have experiences related to their religious identities that could impact their retention in biology. In 28 interviews with Judeo-Christian students taking undergraduate biology classes, students reported a religious identity that can conflict with the secular culture and content of biology. Some students felt that, because they are religious, they fall within a minority in their classes and would not be seen as credible within the biology community. Students reported adverse experiences when instructors had negative dispositions toward religion and when instructors were rigid in their instructional practices when teaching evolution. These data suggest that this may be a population susceptible to experiences of cultural conflict between their religious identities and their STEM identities, which could have implications for retention. We argue that more research should explore how Judeo-Christian students’ experiences in biology classes influence their sense of belonging and retention. PMID:28232586

  17. Development of sensorial experiments and their implementation into undergraduate laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bromfield Lee, Deborah Christina

    "Visualization" of chemical phenomena often has been limited in the teaching laboratories to the sense of sight. We have developed chemistry experiments that rely on senses other than eyesight to investigate chemical concepts, make quantitative determinations, and familiarize students with chemical techniques traditionally designed using only eyesight. Multi-sensory learning can benefit all students by actively engaging them in learning through stimulation or an alternative way of experiencing a concept or ideas. Perception of events or concepts usually depends on the information from the different sensory systems combined. The use of multi-sensory learning can take advantage of all the senses to reinforce learning as each sense builds toward a more complete experience of scientific data. Research has shown that multi-sensory representations of scientific phenomena is a valuable tool for enhancing understanding of chemistry as well as displacing misconceptions through experience. Multi-sensory experiences have also been shown to enrich memory performance. There are few experiments published which utilize multiple senses in the teaching laboratory. The sensorial experiments chosen were conceptually similar to experiments currently performed in undergraduate laboratories; however students collect different types of data using multi-sensory observations. The experiments themselves were developed by using chemicals that would provide different sensory changes or capitalizing on sensory observations that were typically overlooked or ignored and obtain similar and precise results as in traditional experiments. Minimizing hazards and using safe practices are especially essential in these experiments as students utilize senses traditionally not allowed to be used in the laboratories. These sensorial experiments utilize typical equipment found in the teaching laboratories as well as inexpensive chemicals in order to aid implementation. All experiments are rigorously tested

  18. Tested Studies for Laboratory Teaching. Proceedings of the Workshop/Conference of the Association for Biology Laboratory Education (ABLE) (5th, Clemson, South Carolina, June 13-17, 1983).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldman, Corey A., Ed.; And Others

    The focus of the Association for Biology Laboratory Education (ABLE) is to improve the undergraduate biology laboratory experience by promoting the development and dissemination of interesting, innovative, and reliable laboratory exercises. This proceedings volume contains eight papers: "Bacterial Transformation" (M. J. Ernest & N. J. Rosenbaum);…

  19. Tested Studies for Laboratory Teaching. Proceedings of the Workshop/Conference of the Association for Biology Laboratory Education (ABLE) (15th, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, June 8-12, 1993). Volume 15.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldman, Corey A., Ed.

    The focus of the Association for Biology Laboratory Education (ABLE) is to improve the undergraduate biology laboratory experience by promoting the development and dissemination of interesting, innovative, and reliable laboratory exercises. This proceedings volume contains 18 papers: "Human DNA Fingerprinting by Polymerase Chain Reaction" (M. V.…

  20. Tested Studies for Laboratory Teaching. Proceedings of the Workshop/Conference of the Association for Biology Laboratory Education (ABLE) (13th, Laramie, Wyoming, June 11-15, 1991). Volume 13.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldman, Corey A., Ed.

    The focus of the Association for Biology Laboratory Education (ABLE) is to improve the undergraduate biology laboratory experience by promoting the development and dissemination of interesting, innovative, and reliable laboratory exercises. This proceedings volume contains 10 papers: "Testing Issues of Foraging and Flocking Behavior" (C. C.…

  1. Purification and Characterization of Taq Polymerase: A 9-Week Biochemistry Laboratory Project for Undergraduate Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bellin, Robert M.; Bruno, Mary K.; Farrow, Melissa A.

    2010-01-01

    We have developed a 9-week undergraduate laboratory series focused on the purification and characterization of "Thermus aquaticus" DNA polymerase (Taq). Our aim was to provide undergraduate biochemistry students with a full-semester continuing project simulating a research-like experience, while having each week's procedure focus on a single…

  2. [Undergraduate and postgraduate studies in the biological sciences in Chile (1985)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niemeyer, H

    1986-01-01

    A study group of scientists was convened by the Sociedad de Biología de Chile (Biological Society of Chile) and the Regional Program for Graduate Training in Biological Sciences, PNUD-Unesco, RLA 78/024, to assess undergraduate and graduate studies in life sciences in Chile. The group presented this report at the 28th Annual Meeting of the Society. Discussion centered on the features that should characterize the studies leading to the academic degrees of Licenciado (Licenciate), Magíster (Master) and Doctor (Ph. D) in Sciences, and also on the qualifications that the universities should satisfy in order to grant them. After analyzing the present situation of undergraduate and graduate studies in Biological Sciences in Chilean universities, the group made the following main suggestions: 1. It is recommended that Chilean universities agree on a 4-year plan for the Licenciado degree, without the requirement of a thesis. The importance of providing the students with good laboratory exercises and field experience and with the opportunity to perform short research projects is stressed. In addition, a sound theoretical training on mathematics, physics and chemistry in the education of a modern Biologist is important. Licenciate studies ought to be the basis for professional careers and the universities should offer to the Licenciados free access to their professional schools. 2. It is considered appropriate for Chile and its universities to develop graduate programs in those disciplines that have reached a level of excellence. To accomplish this aim, adequate finance of the universities is necessary to permit them to provide the essential facilities for doing research, and to create a wide system of fellowships for graduate students. Direct government support for research and graduate student fellowships is requested. 3. Research experience of the kind needed for the preparation of a doctoral thesis is recommended as the academic level appropriate for those engaged in

  3. The Quartz-Crystal Microbalance in an Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment: I. Fundamentals and Instrumentation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsionsky, Vladimir

    2007-01-01

    The fundamentals, as well as the instrumentation of the quartz-crystal microbalance (QCM) technique that is used in an undergraduate laboratory experiment are being described. The QCM response can be easily used to change the properties of any system.

  4. Using Yeast to Determine the Functional Consequences of Mutations in the Human p53 Tumor Suppressor Gene: An Introductory Course-Based Undergraduate Research Experience in Molecular and Cell Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hekmat-Scafe, Daria S.; Brownell, Sara E.; Seawell, Patricia Chandler; Malladi, Shyamala; Imam, Jamie F. Conklin; Singla, Veena; Bradon, Nicole; Cyert, Martha S.; Stearns, Tim

    2017-01-01

    The opportunity to engage in scientific research is an important, but often neglected, component of undergraduate training in biology. We describe the curriculum for an innovative, course-based undergraduate research experience (CURE) appropriate for a large, introductory cell and molecular biology laboratory class that leverages students' high…

  5. Measuring Meaningful Learning in the Undergraduate Chemistry Laboratory: A National, Cross-Sectional Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galloway, Kelli R.; Bretz, Stacey Lowery

    2015-01-01

    Research on laboratory learning points to the need to better understand what and how students learn in the undergraduate chemistry laboratory. The Meaningful Learning in the Laboratory Instrument (MLLI) was administered to general and organic chemistry students from 15 colleges and universities across the United States in order to measure the…

  6. Measuring Meaningful Learning in the Undergraduate General Chemistry and Organic Chemistry Laboratories: A Longitudinal Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galloway, Kelli R.; Bretz, Stacey Lowery

    2015-01-01

    Understanding how students learn in the undergraduate chemistry teaching laboratory is an essential component to developing evidence-based laboratory curricula. The Meaningful Learning in the Laboratory Instrument (MLLI) was developed to measure students' cognitive and affective expectations and experiences for learning in the chemistry…

  7. Known Structure, Unknown Function: An Inquiry-Based Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, Cynthia; Price, Carol W.; Lee, Christopher T.; Dewald, Alison H.; Cline, Matthew A.; McAnany, Charles E.; Columbus, Linda; Mura, Cameron

    2015-01-01

    Undergraduate biochemistry laboratory courses often do not provide students with an authentic research experience, particularly when the express purpose of the laboratory is purely instructional. However, an instructional laboratory course that is inquiry- and research-based could simultaneously impart scientific knowledge and foster a student's…

  8. A Laboratory Course for Teaching Laboratory Techniques, Experimental Design, Statistical Analysis, and Peer Review Process to Undergraduate Science Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gliddon, C. M.; Rosengren, R. J.

    2012-01-01

    This article describes a 13-week laboratory course called Human Toxicology taught at the University of Otago, New Zealand. This course used a guided inquiry based laboratory coupled with formative assessment and collaborative learning to develop in undergraduate students the skills of problem solving/critical thinking, data interpretation and…

  9. Options for Online Undergraduate Courses in Biology at American Colleges and Universities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varty, Alison K

    I aimed to document the online undergraduate course supply in biology to evaluate how well biology educators are serving the diverse and growing population of online students. I documented online biology course offerings in the 2015-2016 academic year at 96 American colleges and universities. I quantified differences in variety, extent, and availability of courses offered by different kinds of academic institutions and characterized 149 online biology courses offered. Although there was no relationship between an institution's enrollment size and any measure of its online biology offerings, I found significantly more online biology course options at 2-year public compared with 4-year public and 4-year private schools. Courses offered for nonmajors, including students pursuing healthcare-related degrees, were three times as common as those intended for biology majors, who were more likely to be offered hybrid courses with face-to-face laboratories. These data indicate some deficiencies in online biology course options; options for students majoring in biology are limited at all types of institutions examined with a minority of 4-year institutions having any online options in biology. Significant investment of institutional resources in faculty training and technological support are necessary to develop online biology courses that will benefit a larger student population. © 2016 A. K. Varty. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  10. Interdisciplinary Biomathematics: Engaging Undergraduates in Research on the Fringe of Mathematical Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fowler, Kathleen; Luttman, Aaron; Mondal, Sumona

    2013-01-01

    The US National Science Foundation's (NSF's) Undergraduate Biology and Mathematics (UBM) program significantly increased undergraduate research in the biomathematical sciences. We discuss three UBM-funded student research projects at Clarkson University that lie at the intersection of not just mathematics and biology, but also other fields. The…

  11. Using Phylogenetic Analysis to Detect Market Substitution of Atlantic Salmon for Pacific Salmon: An Introductory Biology Laboratory Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cline, Erica; Gogarten, Jennifer

    2012-01-01

    We describe a laboratory exercise developed for the cell and molecular biology quarter of a year-long majors' undergraduate introductory biology sequence. In an analysis of salmon samples collected by students in their local stores and restaurants, DNA sequencing and phylogenetic analysis were used to detect market substitution of Atlantic salmon…

  12. Positioning Genomics in Biology Education: Content Mapping of Undergraduate Biology Textbooks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naomi L. B. Wernick

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Biological thought increasingly recognizes the centrality of the genome in constituting and regulating processes ranging from cellular systems to ecology and evolution. In this paper, we ask whether genomics is similarly positioned as a core concept in the instructional sequence for undergraduate biology. Using quantitative methods, we analyzed the order in which core biological concepts were introduced in textbooks for first-year general and human biology. Statistical analysis was performed using self-organizing map algorithms and conventional methods to identify clusters of terms and their relative position in the books. General biology textbooks for both majors and nonmajors introduced genome-related content after text related to cell biology and biological chemistry, but before content describing higher-order biological processes. However, human biology textbooks most often introduced genomic content near the end of the books. These results suggest that genomics is not yet positioned as a core concept in commonly used textbooks for first-year biology and raises questions about whether such textbooks, or courses based on the outline of these textbooks, provide an appropriate foundation for understanding contemporary biological science.

  13. An undergraduate laboratory exercise examining the psychomotor stimulant effects of caffeine in laboratory rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pham, Kara; Romeo, Russell D

    2012-01-01

    This paper describes an exercise in a Systems and Behavioral Neuroscience with Laboratory class, an introductory laboratory class taken by Barnard College students majoring in a wide range of academic topics. The study took place over three weeks, allowing students to assess the effects of caffeine on motor stimulation in laboratory rats. The within-subject design involved injecting rats with three different caffeine doses and measuring five different motor outputs in a standard open field. Students completed four different assignments related to this study, demonstrating acquisition of the stated learning goals. This lab exercise allowed students to learn about basal ganglia neural circuitry and stimulant pharmacology, to work directly with an animal model, and to generate enough data to perform statistical analyses. Course evaluations suggest that students liked learning about caffeine, a stimulant many of them have personal experience consuming. They also expressed appreciation for working with rats and for learning how to analyze data. This study can easily be implemented at most undergraduate institutions under minimal cost. The wide-ranging effects of caffeine also permit for flexibility in experimental design, allowing instructors and students options for different avenues of investigation.

  14. Use of Lecture Capture in Undergraduate Biological Science Education

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Candace Wiese

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available This study examined the use of lecture capture in students in a large 3rd year undergraduate biological science course at the University of Guelph. Data regarding viewing behaviour, academic performance, and attendance were analyzed in relation to student learning approach (as assessed by the R-SPQ-2F, gender, and year of post-secondary education. It was found that relative to historic controls, students provided lecture capture videos increased their final exam grade by approximately 5%. It was also found that learning approach was significantly related to video viewing behaviour, final exam performance, and attendance, with a deep learning approach being associated with more video views, better performance, and a greater tendency to watch videos to master and review material. A surface approach showed contrasting associations. Moreover, a higher deep approach score was related to fewer absences, while a higher surface approach score was related to more absences and increased the likelihood of a student missing a class. Gender also influenced viewing behaviour, with females being more likely than males to watch videos to generate notes and to review material. This research demonstrates that learning approach and gender are significant predictors of lecture capture behaviour, performance, and/or attendance in biological science education, and provides support for the use of lecture capture as a tool to improve academic performance.

  15. Synthesizing Novel Anthraquinone Natural Product-Like Compounds to Investigate Protein-Ligand Interactions in Both an in Vitro and in Vivo Assay: An Integrated Research-Based Third-Year Chemical Biology Laboratory Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKenzie, Nancy; McNulty, James; McLeod, David; McFadden, Meghan; Balachandran, Naresh

    2012-01-01

    A new undergraduate program in chemical biology was launched in 2008 to provide a unique learning experience for those students interested in this interdisciplinary science. An innovative undergraduate chemical biology laboratory course at the third-year level was developed as a key component of the curriculum. The laboratory course introduces…

  16. Laboratory biological safety cabinet (BSC) explosion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Al-Dahhan, Wedad H.; Al-Zuhairi, Ali Jasim; Hussein, Falah H.; Rodda, Kabrena E.; Yousif, Emad

    2016-12-01

    Scientists at universities across Iraq are actively working to report actual incidents and accidents occurring in their laboratories in order to raise awareness and encourage openness, leading to widespread adoption of robust Chemical Safety and Security (CSS) practices. This manuscript is the first in a series of five case studies describing laboratory incidents and accidents in Iraqi university laboratories in order to share lessons learned and minimize the possibility of similar incidents in the future. In this study, we describe a serious event that resulted in a postgraduate student sustaining serious injuries when the biological safety cabinet (BSC) she was using exploded. Of particular note, the paper highlights how a combination of failures and deficiencies at many levels within an organization and its technical community (rather than a single piece of faulty equipment or the careless behavior of one person) can lead to a dangerous, potentially life-threatening incident. By openly sharing what happened along with the lessons learned from the accident, we hope to minimize the possibility of another researcher being injured in a similar incident in the future.

  17. Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment Modules for Probing Gold Nanoparticle Interfacial Phenomena

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karunanayake, Akila G.; Gunatilake, Sameera R.; Ameer, Fathima S.; Gadogbe, Manuel; Smith, Laura; Mlsna, Deb; Zhang, Dongmao

    2015-01-01

    Three gold-nanoparticle (AuNP) undergraduate experiment modules that are focused on nanoparticles interfacial phenomena have been developed. Modules 1 and 2 explore the synthesis and characterization of AuNPs of different sizes but with the same total gold mass. These experiments enable students to determine how particle size affects the AuNP…

  18. Aza-Michael Reaction for an Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nigam, Manisha; Rush, Brittney; Patel, Jay; Castillo, Raul; Dhar, Preeti

    2016-01-01

    A green, aza-Michael reaction is described that can be used to teach undergraduate students conjugate addition of nitrogen nucleophile to an a,ß-unsaturated ester. Students analyze spectral data of the product obtained from the assigned reaction to determine product structure and propose the mechanism of its formation. The experiment requires…

  19. Determination of Sulfate by Conductometric Titration: An Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia, Jennifer; Schultz, Linda D.

    2016-01-01

    The classic technique for sulfate analysis in an undergraduate quantitative analysis lab involves precipitation as the barium salt with barium chloride, collection of the precipitate by gravity filtration using ashless filter paper, and removal of the filter paper by charring over a Bunsen burner. The entire process is time-consuming, hazardous,…

  20. Acoustic resonance spectroscopy for the advanced undergraduate laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franco-Villafañe, J. A.; Flores-Olmedo, E.; Báez, G.; Gandarilla-Carrillo, O.; Méndez-Sánchez, R. A.

    2012-11-01

    We present a simple experiment that allows advanced undergraduates to learn the principles and applications of spectroscopy. The technique, known as acoustic resonance spectroscopy, is applied to study a vibrating rod. The setup includes electromagnetic-acoustic transducers, an audio amplifier and a vector network analyzer. Typical results of compressional, torsional and bending waves are analyzed and compared with analytical results.

  1. Green Chemistry Decision-Making in an Upper-Level Undergraduate Organic Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edgar, Landon J. G.; Koroluk, Katherine J.; Golmakani, Mehrnaz; Dicks, Andrew P.

    2014-01-01

    A self-directed independent synthesis experiment was developed for a third-year undergraduate organic laboratory. Students were provided with the CAS numbers of starting and target compounds and devised a synthetic plan to be executed over two 4.5 h laboratory periods. They consulted the primary literature in order to develop and carry out an…

  2. Hairy Root as a Model System for Undergraduate Laboratory Curriculum and Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keyes, Carol A.; Subramanian, Senthil; Yu, Oliver

    2009-01-01

    Hairy root transformation has been widely adapted in plant laboratories to rapidly generate transgenic roots for biochemical and molecular analysis. We present hairy root transformations as a versatile and adaptable model system for a wide variety of undergraduate laboratory courses and research. This technique is easy, efficient, and fast making…

  3. A Survey of the Practices, Procedures, and Techniques in Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Teaching Laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Christopher B.; Schmidt, Monica; Soniat, Michael

    2011-01-01

    A survey was conducted of four-year institutions that teach undergraduate organic chemistry laboratories in the United States. The data include results from over 130 schools, describes the current practices at these institutions, and discusses the statistical results such as the scale of the laboratories performed, the chemical techniques applied,…

  4. Spectroscopy 101: A Practical Introduction to Spectroscopy and Analysis for Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrill, Lucas A.; Kammeyer, Jacquelin K.; Garg, Neil K.

    2017-01-01

    An undergraduate organic chemistry laboratory that provides an introduction to various spectroscopic techniques is reported. Whereas organic spectroscopy is most often learned and practiced in the context of reaction analyses, this laboratory experiment allows students to become comfortable with [superscript 1]H NMR, [superscript 13]C NMR, and IR…

  5. Green Fluorescent Protein-Focused Bioinformatics Laboratory Experiment Suitable for Undergraduates in Biochemistry Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rowe, Laura

    2017-01-01

    An introductory bioinformatics laboratory experiment focused on protein analysis has been developed that is suitable for undergraduate students in introductory biochemistry courses. The laboratory experiment is designed to be potentially used as a "stand-alone" activity in which students are introduced to basic bioinformatics tools and…

  6. A Comprehensive Microfluidics Device Construction and Characterization Module for the Advanced Undergraduate Analytical Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piunno, Paul A. E.; Zetina, Adrian; Chu, Norman; Tavares, Anthony J.; Noor, M. Omair; Petryayeva, Eleonora; Uddayasankar, Uvaraj; Veglio, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    An advanced analytical chemistry undergraduate laboratory module on microfluidics that spans 4 weeks (4 h per week) is presented. The laboratory module focuses on comprehensive experiential learning of microfluidic device fabrication and the core characteristics of microfluidic devices as they pertain to fluid flow and the manipulation of samples.…

  7. Upper-Level Undergraduate Chemistry Students' Goals for Their Laboratory Coursework

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeKorver, Brittland K.; Towns, Marcy H.

    2016-01-01

    Efforts to reform undergraduate chemistry laboratory coursework typically focus on the curricula of introductory-level courses, while upper-level courses are bypassed. This study used video-stimulated recall to interview 17 junior- and senior- level chemistry majors after they carried out an experiment as part of a laboratory course. It is assumed…

  8. An Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment for Upper-Level Forensic Science, Biochemistry, or Molecular Biology Courses: Human DNA Amplification Using STR Single Locus Primers by Real-Time PCR with SYBR Green Detection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elkins, Kelly M.; Kadunc, Raelynn E.

    2012-01-01

    In this laboratory experiment, real-time polymerase chain reaction (real-time PCR) was conducted using published human TPOX single-locus DNA primers for validation and various student-designed short tandem repeat (STR) primers for Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) loci. SYBR Green was used to detect the amplification of the expected amplicons. The…

  9. A survey on faculty perspectives on the transition to a biochemistry course-based undergraduate research experience laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Craig, Paul A

    2017-09-01

    It will always remain a goal of an undergraduate biochemistry laboratory course to engage students hands-on in a wide range of biochemistry laboratory experiences. In 2006, our research group initiated a project for in silico prediction of enzyme function based only on the 3D coordinates of the more than 3800 proteins "of unknown function" in the Protein Data Bank, many of which resulted from the Protein Structure Initiative. Students have used the ProMOL plugin to the PyMOL molecular graphics environment along with BLAST, Pfam, and Dali to predict protein functions. As young scientists, these undergraduate research students wanted to see if their predictions were correct and so they developed an approach for in vitro testing of predicted enzyme function that included literature exploration, selection of a suitable assay and the search for commercially available substrates. Over the past two years, a team of faculty members from seven different campuses (California Polytechnic San Luis Obispo, Hope College, Oral Roberts University, Rochester Institute of Technology, St. Mary's University, Ursinus College, and Purdue University) have transferred this approach to the undergraduate biochemistry teaching laboratory as a Course-based Undergraduate Research Experience. A series of ten course modules and eight instructional videos have been created (www.promol.org/home/basil-modules-1) and the group is now expanding these resources, creating assessments and evaluating how this approach helps student to grow as scientists. The focus of this manuscript will be the logistical implications of this transition on campuses that have different cultures, expectations, schedules, and student populations. © 2017 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 45(5):426-436, 2017. © 2017 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  10. A Model System for the Study of Gene Expression in the Undergraduate Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hargadon, Kristian M.

    2016-01-01

    The flow of genetic information from DNA to RNA to protein, otherwise known as the "central dogma" of biology, is one of the most basic and overarching concepts in the biological sciences. Nevertheless, numerous studies have reported student misconceptions at the undergraduate level of this fundamental process of gene expression. This…

  11. A Laboratory to Teach Leadership to Undergraduate Students

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pelzmann, Sabine; Winkler, Ingo

    2014-01-01

    This article reports on a leadership laboratory provided as an elective within a Bachelor degree programme in Business Administration. The core understanding of this laboratory was that people can learn leadership. Moreover, the laboratory built on the assumption that an experienced-based approach...... to learn about leadership offers many advantages to leadership novices, in this case students without prior work experience....

  12. A Laboratory to Teach Leadership to Undergraduate Students

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pelzmann, Sabine; Winkler, Ingo

    2014-01-01

    This article reports on a leadership laboratory provided as an elective within a Bachelor degree programme in Business Administration. The core understanding of this laboratory was that people can learn leadership. Moreover, the laboratory built on the assumption that an experienced-based approac...

  13. Processing laboratory of radio sterilized biological tissues

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aguirre H, Paulina; Zarate S, Herman; Silva R, Samy; Hitschfeld, Mario

    2005-01-01

    The nuclear development applications have also reached those areas related to health. The risk of getting contagious illnesses through applying biological tissues has been one of the paramount worries to be solved since infectious illnesses might be provoked by virus, fungis or bacterias coming from donors or whether they have been introduced by means of intermediate stages before the use of these tissues. Therefore it has been concluded that the tissue allografts must be sterilized. The sterilization of medical products has been one of the main applications of the ionizing radiations and that it is why the International Organization of Atomic Energy began in the 70s promoting works related to the biological tissue sterilization and pharmaceutical products. The development of different tissue preservation methods has made possible the creation of tissue banks in different countries, to deal with long-term preservation. In our country, a project was launched in 1998, 'Establishment of a Tissue Bank in Latino america', this project was supported by the OIEA through the project INT/ 6/ 049, and was the starting of the actual Processing Laboratory of Radioesterilized Biological Tissues (LPTR), leaded by the Chilean Nuclear Energy Commission (CCHEN). This first organization is part of a number of entities compounding the Tissue Bank in Chile, organizations such as the Transplantation Promotion Corporation hospitals and the LPTR. The working system is carried out by means of the interaction between the hospitals and the laboratory. The medical professionals perform the procuring of tissues in the hospitals, then send them to the LPTR where they are processed and sterilized with ionizing radiation. The cycle ends up with the tissues return released to the hospitals, where they are used, and then the result information is sent to the LPTR as a form of feedback. Up to now, human skin has been processed (64 donors), amniotic membranes (35 donors) and pig skin (175 portions

  14. Incorporating Biological Mass Spectrometry into Undergraduate Teaching Labs, Part 2: Peptide Identification via Molecular Mass Determination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnquist, Isaac J.; Beussman, Douglas J.

    2009-01-01

    Mass spectrometry has become a routine analytical tool in the undergraduate curriculum in the form of GC-MS. While relatively few undergraduate programs have incorporated biological mass spectrometry into their programs, the importance of these techniques, as demonstrated by their recognition with the 2002 Nobel Prize, will hopefully lead to…

  15. Biological Course-Based Undergraduate Research Experiences: An Examination of an Introductory Level Implementation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knoth, Kenneth Charles

    Course-based undergraduate research experiences (CUREs) provide authentic research benefits to an entire laboratory course population. CURE experiences are proposed to enhance research skills, critical thinking, productivity, and retention in science. CURE curriculum developers face numerous obstacles, such as the logistics and time commitment involved in bringing a CURE to larger student populations. In addition, an ideal CURE topic requires affordable resources, lab techniques that can be quickly mastered, time for multiple iterations within one semester, and the opportunity to generate new data. This study identifies some of the CURE activities that lead to proposed participant outcomes. Introductory Biology I CURE lab students at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville completed research related to the process of converting storage lipids in microalgae into biodiesel. Data collected from CURE and traditional lab student participants indicate increased CURE student reports of project ownership, scientific self-efficacy, identification as a scientist, and sense of belonging to a science community. Study limitations and unanticipated benefits are discussed.

  16. The use of writing assignments to help students synthesize content in upper-level undergraduate biology courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sparks-Thissen, Rebecca L

    2017-02-01

    Biology education is undergoing a transformation toward a more student-centered, inquiry-driven classroom. Many educators have designed engaging assignments that are designed to help undergraduate students gain exposure to the scientific process and data analysis. One of these types of assignments is use of a grant proposal assignment. Many instructors have used these assignments in lecture-based courses to help students process information in the literature and apply that information to a novel problem such as design of an antiviral drug or a vaccine. These assignments have been helpful in engaging students in the scientific process in the absence of an inquiry-driven laboratory. This commentary discusses the application of these grant proposal writing assignments to undergraduate biology courses. © FEMS 2017. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  17. Creative Report Writing in Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory Inspires Nonmajors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henary, Maged; Owens, Eric A.; Tawney, Joseph G.

    2015-01-01

    Laboratory-based courses require students to compose reports based on the performed experiments to assess their overall understanding of the presented material; unfortunately, the sterile and formulated nature of the laboratory report disinterests most students. As a result, the outcome is a lower-quality product that does not reveal full…

  18. Permanent foresty plots: a potentially valuable teaching resource in undergraduate biology porgrams for the Caribbean

    Science.gov (United States)

    H. Valles; C.M.S. Carrington

    2016-01-01

    There has been a recent proposal to change the way that biology is taught and learned in undergraduate biology programs in the USA so that students develop a better understanding of science and the natural world. Here, we use this new, recommended teaching– learning framework to assert that permanent forestry plots could be a valuable tool to help develop biology...

  19. Options for Online Undergraduate Courses in Biology at American Colleges and Universities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varty, Alison K.

    2016-01-01

    I aimed to document the online undergraduate course supply in biology to evaluate how well biology educators are serving the diverse and growing population of online students. I documented online biology course offerings in the 2015-2016 academic year at 96 American colleges and universities. I quantified differences in variety, extent, and…

  20. Six Classroom Exercises to Teach Natural Selection to Undergraduate Biology Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalinowski, Steven T.; Leonard, Mary J.; Andrews, Tessa M.; Litt, Andrea R.

    2013-01-01

    Students in introductory biology courses frequently have misconceptions regarding natural selection. In this paper, we describe six activities that biology instructors can use to teach undergraduate students in introductory biology courses how natural selection causes evolution. These activities begin with a lesson introducing students to natural…

  1. An Undergraduate Laboratory Activity on Molecular Dynamics Simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spitznagel, Benjamin; Pritchett, Paige R.; Messina, Troy C.; Goadrich, Mark; Rodriguez, Juan

    2016-01-01

    Vision and Change [AAAS, 2011] outlines a blueprint for modernizing biology education by addressing conceptual understanding of key concepts, such as the relationship between structure and function. The document also highlights skills necessary for student success in 21st century Biology, such as the use of modeling and simulation. Here we…

  2. Optical Beam Deflection Based AFM with Integrated Hardware and Software Platform for an Undergraduate Engineering Laboratory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siu Hong Loh

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Atomic force microscopy (AFM has been used extensively in nanoscience research since its invention. Recently, many teaching laboratories in colleges, undergraduate institutions, and even high schools incorporate AFM as an effective teaching tool for nanoscience education. This paper presents an optical beam deflection (OBD based atomic force microscope, designed specifically for the undergraduate engineering laboratory as a teaching instrument. An electronic module for signal conditioning was built with components that are commonly available in an undergraduate electronic laboratory. In addition to off-the-shelf mechanical parts and optics, the design of custom-built mechanical parts waskept as simple as possible. Hence, the overall cost for the setup is greatly reduced. The AFM controller was developed using National Instruments Educational Laboratory Virtual Instrumentation Suite (NI ELVIS, an integrated hardware and software platform which can be programmed in LabVIEW. A simple yet effective control algorithm for scanning and feedback control was developed. Despite the use of an educational platform and low-cost components from the undergraduate laboratory, the developed AFM is capable of performing imaging in constant-force mode with submicron resolution and at reasonable scanning speed (approximately 18 min per image. Therefore, the AFM is suitable to be used as an educational tool for nanoscience. Moreover, the construction of the system can be a valuable educational experience for electronic and mechanical engineering students.

  3. Culturally relevant inquiry-based laboratory module implementations in upper-division genetics and cell biology teaching laboratories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siritunga, Dimuth; Montero-Rojas, María; Carrero, Katherine; Toro, Gladys; Vélez, Ana; Carrero-Martínez, Franklin A

    2011-01-01

    Today, more minority students are entering undergraduate programs than ever before, but they earn only 6% of all science or engineering PhDs awarded in the United States. Many studies suggest that hands-on research activities enhance students' interest in pursuing a research career. In this paper, we present a model for the implementation of laboratory research in the undergraduate teaching laboratory using a culturally relevant approach to engage students. Laboratory modules were implemented in upper-division genetics and cell biology courses using cassava as the central theme. Students were asked to bring cassava samples from their respective towns, which allowed them to compare their field-collected samples against known lineages from agricultural stations at the end of the implementation. Assessment of content and learning perceptions revealed that our novel approach allowed students to learn while engaged in characterizing Puerto Rican cassava. In two semesters, based on the percentage of students who answered correctly in the premodule assessment for content knowledge, there was an overall improvement of 66% and 55% at the end in the genetics course and 24% and 15% in the cell biology course. Our proposed pedagogical model enhances students' professional competitiveness by providing students with valuable research skills as they work on a problem to which they can relate.

  4. Kimchi: Spicy Science for the Undergraduate Microbiology Laboratory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Virginia A. Young

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Undergraduate microbiology courses offer a perfect opportunity to introduce students to historical food preservation processes that are still in use today. The fermentation of vegetables, as occurs in the preparation of sauerkraut and kimchi, uses an enrichment step to select for the growth of naturally occurring lactic acid bacteria (LAB.  This is an active learning exercise in which students learn a food preparation skill and basic microbiological terms such as selection and enrichment.  When performed in conjunction with cultured fermentations, such as yogurt making, students can see the difference between fermentations by naturally occurring microorganisms versus inoculated microorganisms. Additionally, this exercise introduces students to concepts of food safety, intrinsic factors influencing microbial growth such as pH, and cultural uses of fermentation to preserve locally available foods.

  5. Developing a Computer Laboratory for Undergraduate Sociology Courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raymondo, James C.

    1996-01-01

    Discusses the development of a computer laboratory for sociology courses, as well as some advantages and disadvantages of incorporating computer technology into the classroom. Examines the proposal and proposal-review process. Provides tips for writing a successful proposal. (MJP)

  6. Cell Migration Analysis: A Low-Cost Laboratory Experiment for Cell and Developmental Biology Courses Using Keratocytes from Fish Scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prieto, Daniel; Aparicio, Gonzalo; Sotelo-Silveira, Jose R.

    2017-01-01

    Cell and developmental processes are complex, and profoundly dependent on spatial relationships that change over time. Innovative educational or teaching strategies are always needed to foster deep comprehension of these processes and their dynamic features. However, laboratory exercises in cell and developmental biology at the undergraduate level…

  7. Molecular biology problem solver : a laboratory guide

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Gerstein, Alan S., 1957

    2001-01-01

    ... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xi Chapter 1. Preparing for Success in the Laboratory Phillip P. Franciskovich . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Chapter 2. Getting What You Need...

  8. Molecular biology problem solver: a laboratory guide

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Gerstein, Alan S

    2001-01-01

    ... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xi Chapter 1. Preparing for Success in the Laboratory Phillip P. Franciskovich . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Chapter 2. Getting What You Need...

  9. Bring Your Own Device: A Digital Notebook for Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory Using a Free, Cross-Platform Application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Dyke, Aaron R.; Smith-Carpenter, Jillian

    2017-01-01

    The majority of undergraduates own a smartphone, yet fewer than half view it as a valuable learning technology. Consequently, a digital laboratory notebook (DLN) was developed for an upper-division undergraduate biochemistry laboratory course using the free mobile application Evernote. The cloud-based DLN capitalized on the unique features of…

  10. Anisotropic Rotational Diffusion Studied by Nuclear Spin Relaxation and Molecular Dynamics Simulation: An Undergraduate Physical Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuson, Michael M.

    2017-01-01

    Laboratories studying the anisotropic rotational diffusion of bromobenzene using nuclear spin relaxation and molecular dynamics simulations are described. For many undergraduates, visualizing molecular motion is challenging. Undergraduates rarely encounter laboratories that directly assess molecular motion, and so the concept remains an…

  11. Development of an Assessment Tool to Measure Students' Meaningful Learning in the Undergraduate Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galloway, Kelli R.; Bretz, Stacey Lowery

    2015-01-01

    Research on learning in the undergraduate chemistry laboratory necessitates an understanding of students' perspectives of learning. Novak's Theory of Meaningful Learning states that the cognitive (thinking), affective (feeling), and psychomotor (doing) domains must be integrated for meaningful learning to occur. The psychomotor domain is the…

  12. A Static Method as an Alternative to Gel Chromatography: An Experiment for the Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burum, Alex D.; Splittgerber, Allan G.

    2008-01-01

    This article describes a static method as an alternative to gel chromatography, which may be used as an undergraduate laboratory experiment. In this method, a constant mass of Sephadex gel is swollen in a series of protein solutions. UV-vis spectrophotometry is used to find a partition coefficient, KD, that indicates the fraction of the interior…

  13. An Integrated Visualization and Basic Molecular Modeling Laboratory for First-Year Undergraduate Medicinal Chemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, Joseph M.

    2014-01-01

    A 3D model visualization and basic molecular modeling laboratory suitable for first-year undergraduates studying introductory medicinal chemistry is presented. The 2 h practical is embedded within a series of lectures on drug design, target-drug interactions, enzymes, receptors, nucleic acids, and basic pharmacokinetics. Serving as a teaching aid…

  14. An Undergraduate Course and Laboratory in Digital Signal Processing with Field Programmable Gate Arrays

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer-Base, U.; Vera, A.; Meyer-Base, A.; Pattichis, M. S.; Perry, R. J.

    2010-01-01

    In this paper, an innovative educational approach to introducing undergraduates to both digital signal processing (DSP) and field programmable gate array (FPGA)-based design in a one-semester course and laboratory is described. While both DSP and FPGA-based courses are currently present in different curricula, this integrated approach reduces the…

  15. Forensic Analysis of Canine DNA Samples in the Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carson, Tobin M.; Bradley, Sharonda Q.; Fekete, Brenda L.; Millard, Julie T.; LaRiviere, Frederick J.

    2009-01-01

    Recent advances in canine genomics have allowed the development of highly distinguishing methods of analysis for both nuclear and mitochondrial DNA. We describe a laboratory exercise suitable for an undergraduate biochemistry course in which the polymerase chain reaction is used to amplify hypervariable regions of DNA from dog hair and saliva…

  16. Understanding Our Energy Footprint: Undergraduate Chemistry Laboratory Investigation of Environmental Impacts of Solid Fossil Fuel Wastes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berger, Michael; Goldfarb, Jillian L.

    2017-01-01

    Engaging undergraduates in the environmental consequences of fossil fuel usage primes them to consider their own anthropogenic impact, and the benefits and trade-offs of converting to renewable fuel strategies. This laboratory activity explores the potential contaminants (both inorganic and organic) present in the raw fuel and solid waste…

  17. An Advanced Undergraduate Chemistry Laboratory Experiment Exploring NIR Spectroscopy and Chemometrics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wanke, Randall; Stauffer, Jennifer

    2007-01-01

    An advanced undergraduate chemistry laboratory experiment to study the advantages and hazards of the coupling of NIR spectroscopy and chemometrics is described. The combination is commonly used for analysis and process control of various ingredients used in agriculture, petroleum and food products.

  18. Peer Mentor Program for the General Chemistry Laboratory Designed to Improve Undergraduate STEM Retention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Damkaci, Fehmi; Braun, Timothy F.; Gublo, Kristin

    2017-01-01

    We describe the design and implementation of an undergraduate peer mentor program that can overlay an existing general chemistry laboratory and is designed to improve STEM student retention. For the first four freshman cohorts going through the program, year-to-year retention improved by a four-year average of 20% for students in peer-mentored…

  19. Transitioning from Expository Laboratory Experiments to Course-Based Undergraduate Research in General Chemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Ted M.; Ricciardo, Rebecca; Weaver, Tyler

    2016-01-01

    General chemistry courses predominantly use expository experiments that shape student expectations of what a laboratory activity entails. Shifting within a semester to course-based undergraduate research activities that include greater decision-making, collaborative work, and "messy" real-world data necessitates a change in student…

  20. Purification and Characterization of Enzymes from Yeast: An Extended Undergraduate Laboratory Sequence for Large Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johanson, Kelly E.; Watt, Terry J.; McIntyre, Neil R.; Thompson, Marleesa

    2013-01-01

    Providing a project-based experience in an undergraduate biochemistry laboratory class can be complex with large class sizes and limited resources. We have designed a 6-week curriculum during which students purify and characterize the enzymes invertase and phosphatase from bakers yeast. Purification is performed in two stages via ethanol…

  1. 3D Printing of Protein Models in an Undergraduate Laboratory: Leucine Zippers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Scott C.

    2015-01-01

    An upper-division undergraduate laboratory experiment is described that explores the structure/function relationship of protein domains, namely leucine zippers, through a molecular graphics computer program and physical models fabricated by 3D printing. By generating solvent accessible surfaces and color-coding hydrophobic, basic, and acidic amino…

  2. Small Laccase from "Streptomyces Coelicolor"--An Ideal Model Protein/Enzyme for Undergraduate Laboratory Experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Ryan; Hannon, Drew; Southard, Jonathan N.; Majumdar, Sudipta

    2018-01-01

    A one semester undergraduate biochemistry laboratory experience is described for an understanding of recombinant technology from gene cloning to protein characterization. An integrated experimental design includes three sequential modules: molecular cloning, protein expression and purification, and protein analysis and characterization. Students…

  3. Incorporation of Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry into the Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giarikos, Dimitrios G.; Patel, Sagir; Lister, Andrew; Razeghifard, Reza

    2013-01-01

    Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) is a powerful analytical tool for detection, identification, and quantification of many volatile organic compounds. However, many colleges and universities have not fully incorporated this technique into undergraduate teaching laboratories despite its wide application and ease of use in organic…

  4. Testing Plastic Deformations of Materials in the Introductory Undergraduate Mechanics Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romo-Kroger, C. M.

    2012-01-01

    Normally, a mechanics laboratory at the undergraduate level includes an experiment to verify compliance with Hooke's law in materials, such as a steel spring and an elastic rubber band. Stress-strain curves are found for these elements. Compression in elastic bands is practically impossible to achieve due to flaccidity. A typical experiment for…

  5. Comparing Amide-Forming Reactions Using Green Chemistry Metrics in an Undergraduate Organic Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fennie, Michael W.; Roth, Jessica M.

    2016-01-01

    In this laboratory experiment, upper-division undergraduate chemistry and biochemistry majors investigate amide-bond-forming reactions from a green chemistry perspective. Using hydrocinnamic acid and benzylamine as reactants, students perform three types of amide-forming reactions: an acid chloride derivative route; a coupling reagent promoted…

  6. Cross-Disciplinary Thermoregulation and Sweat Analysis Laboratory Experiences for Undergraduate Chemistry and Exercise Science Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulligan, Gregory; Taylor, Nichole; Glen, Mary; Tomlin, Dona; Gaul, Catherine A.

    2011-01-01

    Cross-disciplinary (CD) learning experiences benefit student understanding of concepts and curriculum by offering opportunities to explore topics from the perspectives of alternate fields of study. This report involves a qualitative evaluation of CD health sciences undergraduate laboratory experiences in which concepts and students from two…

  7. Analyzing Exonuclease-Induced Hyperchromicity by Uv Spectroscopy: An Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ackerman, Megan M.; Ricciardi, Christopher; Weiss, David; Chant, Alan; Kraemer-Chant, Christina M.

    2016-01-01

    An undergraduate biochemistry laboratory experiment is described that utilizes free online bioinformatics tools along with readily available exonucleases to study the effects of base stacking and hydrogen bonding on the UV absorbance of DNA samples. UV absorbance of double-stranded DNA at the ?[subscript max] is decreased when the DNA bases are…

  8. A Measure of the Effectiveness of Incorporating 3D Human Anatomy into an Online Undergraduate Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilbelink, Amy J.

    2009-01-01

    Results of a study designed to determine the effectiveness of implementing three-dimensional (3D) stereo images of a human skull in an undergraduate human anatomy online laboratory were gathered and analysed. Mental model theory and its applications to 3D relationships are discussed along with the research results. Quantitative results on 62 pairs…

  9. Computation of Chemical Shifts for Paramagnetic Molecules: A Laboratory Experiment for the Undergraduate Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pritchard, Benjamin P.; Simpson, Scott; Zurek, Eva; Autschbach, Jochen

    2014-01-01

    A computational experiment investigating the [superscript 1]H and [superscript 13]C nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) chemical shifts of molecules with unpaired electrons has been developed and implemented. This experiment is appropriate for an upper-level undergraduate laboratory course in computational, physical, or inorganic chemistry. The…

  10. The Quartz-Crystal Microbalance in an Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment: Measuring Mass

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsionsky, Vladimir

    2007-01-01

    The study explains the quartz-crystal microbalance (QCM) technique, which is often used as an undergraduate laboratory experiment for measuring the mass of a system. QCM can be used as a mass sensor only when the measured mass is rigidly attached to the surface.

  11. High-Performance Liquid Chromatography in the Undergraduate Chemical Engineering Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frey, Douglas D.; Guo, Hui; Karnik, Nikhila

    2013-01-01

    This article describes the assembly of a simple, low-cost, high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) system and its use in the undergraduate chemical engineering laboratory course to perform simple experiments. By interpreting the results from these experiments students are able to gain significant experience in the general method of…

  12. Incorporating Course-Based Undergraduate Research Experiences into Analytical Chemistry Laboratory Curricula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerr, Melissa A.; Yan, Fei

    2016-01-01

    A continuous effort within an undergraduate university setting is to improve students' learning outcomes and thus improve students' attitudes about a particular field of study. This is undoubtedly relevant within a chemistry laboratory. This paper reports the results of an effort to introduce a problem-based learning strategy into the analytical…

  13. Integrating Bio-Inorganic and Analytical Chemistry into an Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erasmus, Daniel J.; Brewer, Sharon E.; Cinel, Bruno

    2015-01-01

    Undergraduate laboratories expose students to a wide variety of topics and techniques in a limited amount of time. This can be a challenge and lead to less exposure to concepts and activities in bio-inorganic chemistry and analytical chemistry that are closely-related to biochemistry. To address this, we incorporated a new iron determination by…

  14. The Perceptions, Views and Opinions of University Students about Physics Learning during Undergraduate Laboratory Work

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanif, M.; Sneddon, P. H.; Al-Ahmadi, F. M.; Reid, N.

    2009-01-01

    The physics laboratory has long been a distinctive feature of physics education. It has been given a central role in the teaching and learning of physics at school and undergraduate levels in universities. The literature indicates that science educators have suggested that there are academically rich benefits in the learning and understanding of…

  15. A Green Polymerization of Aspartic Acid for the Undergraduate Organic Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennett, George D.

    2005-01-01

    The green polymerization of aspartic acid carried out during an organic-inorganic synthesis laboratory course for undergraduate students is described. The procedure is based on work by Donlar Corporation, a Peru, Illinois-based company that won a Green Chemistry Challenge Award in 1996 in the Small Business category for preparing thermal…

  16. Implementation of a Collaborative Series of Classroom-Based Undergraduate Research Experiences Spanning Chemical Biology, Biochemistry, and Neurobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kowalski, Jennifer R.; Hoops, Geoffrey C.; Johnson, R. Jeremy

    2016-01-01

    Classroom undergraduate research experiences (CUREs) provide students access to the measurable benefits of undergraduate research experiences (UREs). Herein, we describe the implementation and assessment of a novel model for cohesive CUREs focused on central research themes involving faculty research collaboration across departments. Specifically, we implemented three collaborative CUREs spanning chemical biology, biochemistry, and neurobiology that incorporated faculty members’ research interests and revolved around the central theme of visualizing biological processes like Mycobacterium tuberculosis enzyme activity and neural signaling using fluorescent molecules. Each CURE laboratory involved multiple experimental phases and culminated in novel, open-ended, and reiterative student-driven research projects. Course assessments showed CURE participation increased students’ experimental design skills, attitudes and confidence about research, perceived understanding of the scientific process, and interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines. More than 75% of CURE students also engaged in independent scientific research projects, and faculty CURE contributors saw substantial increases in research productivity, including increased undergraduate student involvement and academic outputs. Our collaborative CUREs demonstrate the advantages of multicourse CUREs for achieving increased faculty research productivity and traditional CURE-associated student learning and attitude gains. Our collaborative CURE design represents a novel CURE model for ongoing laboratory reform that benefits both faculty and students. PMID:27810870

  17. The PASCO Wireless Smart Cart: A Game Changer in the Undergraduate Physics Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shakur, Asif; Connor, Rainor

    2018-03-01

    With the introduction of the Wireless Smart Cart by PASCO scientific in April 2016, we expect a paradigm shift in undergraduate physics laboratory instruction. We have evaluated the feasibility of using the smart cart by carrying out experiments that are usually performed using traditional PASCO equipment. The simplicity, convenience, and cost-saving achieved by replacing a plethora of traditional laboratory sensors, wires, and equipment clutter with the smart cart are reported here.

  18. Vectors and Fomites: An Investigative Laboratory for Undergraduates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adamo, Joseph A.; Gealt, Michael A.

    1996-01-01

    Presents a laboratory model system for introductory microbiology students that involves hands-on studies of bacteria vectored in soil nematodes. Describes a series of experiments designed to demonstrate vector-fomite transmission, bacterial survival, and disinfectant activity. Introduces the concept of genetically engineered microorganisms and the…

  19. An Enzyme Kinetics Experiment for the Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olsen, Robert J.; Olsen, Julie A.; Giles, Greta A.

    2010-01-01

    An experiment using [superscript 1]H NMR spectroscopy to observe the kinetics of the acylase 1-catalyzed hydrolysis of "N"-acetyl-DL-methionine has been developed for the organic laboratory. The L-enantiomer of the reactant is hydrolyzed completely in less than 2 h, and [superscript 1]H NMR spectroscopic data from a single sample can be worked up…

  20. Common Learning Objectives for Undergraduate Control Systems Laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reck, Rebecca M.

    2017-01-01

    Course objectives, like research objectives and product requirements, help provide clarity and direction for faculty and students. Unfortunately, course and laboratory objectives are not always clearly stated. Without a clear set of objectives, it can be hard to design a learning experience and determine whether students are achieving the intended…

  1. Glycosidation of Methanol with Ribose: An Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, Erin; Cook, Katie; Pritchard, Meredith R.; Stripe, Wayne; Bruch, Martha; Bendinskas, Kestutis

    2010-01-01

    This exercise provides students hands-on experience with the topics of glycosidation, hemiacetal and acetal formation, proton nuclear magnetic resonance ([superscript 1]H NMR) spectroscopy, and kinetic and thermodynamic product formation. In this laboratory experiment, the methyl acetal of ribose is synthesized, and the kinetic and thermodynamic…

  2. Laboratory Safety Awareness Among General Physics Undergraduate Students

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. O. Ponferrada

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Safety awareness in the laboratory is essential to reduce occupational risks. This study was conducted to determine the students’ safety awareness in a Physics laboratory. This study determined the student perception towards safety awareness by factors of gender and college from which students are enrolled. A sum of 324 students enrolled in Physics10 (Mechanics and Heat and Physics11 (Electricity and Magnetism in the Mindanao University of Science and Technology (MUST were randomly selected as survey respondents. A modified survey questionnaire was used as research instrument. The results show that the students had positive level of safety awareness and perceived positively on the preventive measures to reduce laboratory risk. Further, regardless of gender students enrolled in Physics 10 were more positively aware towards safety awareness than students enrolled in Physics 11. Similarly, a variation among the students perception towards safety awareness from the College of Engineering and Architecture (CEA and College of Industrial and Information Technology (CIIT occurred. Overall, present findings indicate a need to introduce laboratory safety awareness in Physics classes.

  3. Creatine Synthesis: An Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Andri L.; Tan, Paula

    2006-01-01

    Students in introductory chemistry classes typically appreciate seeing the connection between course content and the "real world". For this reason, we have developed a synthesis of creatine monohydrate--a popular supplement used in sports requiring short bursts of energy--for introductory organic chemistry laboratory courses. Creatine monohydrate…

  4. Blended Learning within an Undergraduate Exercise Physiology Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elmer, Steven J.; Carter, Kathryn R.; Armga, Austin J.; Carter, Jason R.

    2016-01-01

    In physiological education, blended course formats (integration of face-to-face and online instruction) can facilitate increased student learning, performance, and satisfaction in classroom settings. There is limited evidence on the effectiveness of using blending course formats in laboratory settings. We evaluated the impact of blended learning…

  5. A Green Enantioselective Aldol Condensation for the Undergraduate Organic Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennett, George D.

    2006-01-01

    A number of laboratory exercises for the organic chemistry curriculum that emphasize enantioselective synthesis of the aldol condensation which involves the proline-catalyzed condensation between acetone and isobutyraldehyde are explored. The experiment illustrates some of the trade-offs involved in green chemistry like the use of acetone in large…

  6. Comparison of Learner Involvement in Biology Laboratory ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Performance in the biology practical paper has been poor at Kenya national examinations in the past five years (1998-2002). This may imply a lack of emphasis on the teaching of biology through the process-based approach. This study investigated the level of learner involvement in biology practical investigations in ...

  7. Fighting Tuberculosis in an Undergraduate Laboratory: Synthesizing, Evaluating and Analyzing Inhibitors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daniels, David; Berkes, Charlotte; Nekoie, Arjan; Franco, Jimmy

    2015-01-01

    A drug discovery project has been successfully implemented in a first-year general, organic, and biochemistry (GOB) health science course and second-year organic undergraduate chemistry course. This project allows students to apply the fundamental principles of chemistry and biology to a problem of medical significance, practice basic laboratory…

  8. Competency-based reforms of the undergraduate biology curriculum: integrating the physical and biological sciences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Katerina V; Chmielewski, Jean; Gaines, Michael S; Hrycyna, Christine A; LaCourse, William R

    2013-06-01

    The National Experiment in Undergraduate Science Education project funded by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute is a direct response to the Scientific Foundations for Future Physicians report, which urged a shift in premedical student preparation from a narrow list of specific course work to a more flexible curriculum that helps students develop broad scientific competencies. A consortium of four universities is working to create, pilot, and assess modular, competency-based curricular units that require students to use higher-order cognitive skills and reason across traditional disciplinary boundaries. Purdue University; the University of Maryland, Baltimore County; and the University of Miami are each developing modules and case studies that integrate the biological, chemical, physical, and mathematical sciences. The University of Maryland, College Park, is leading the effort to create an introductory physics for life sciences course that is reformed in both content and pedagogy. This course has prerequisites of biology, chemistry, and calculus, allowing students to apply strategies from the physical sciences to solving authentic biological problems. A comprehensive assessment plan is examining students' conceptual knowledge of physics, their attitudes toward interdisciplinary approaches, and the development of specific scientific competencies. Teaching modules developed during this initial phase will be tested on multiple partner campuses in preparation for eventual broad dissemination.

  9. Measurement of the sound absorption coefficient for an advanced undergraduate physics laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macho-Stadler, E.; Elejalde-García, M. J.

    2017-09-01

    We present a simple experiment that allows advanced undergraduates to learn the basics of the acoustic properties of materials. The impedance tube-standing wave method is applied to study the normal absorption coefficient of acoustics insulators. The setup includes a tube, a speaker, a microphone, a digital function generator and an oscilloscope, material available in an undergraduate laboratory. Results of the change of the absorption coefficient with the frequency, the sample thickness and the sample density are analysed and compared with those obtained with a commercial system.

  10. Using Capillary Electrophoresis to Determine the Purity of Acetylsalicylic Acid Synthesized in the Undergraduate Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welder, Frank; Colyer, Christa L.

    2001-11-01

    Capillary electrophoresis (CE), although a powerful analytical tool, has found only limited application in undergraduate laboratory study. In an effort to expose freshman and sophomore chemistry students to this technique, thereby giving them practical instrumental experience early in their careers, we propose to use CE in the analysis of student-synthesized acetylsalicylic acid (ASA). The synthesis of ASA from salicylic acid (SA) is a routine undergraduate laboratory, although students rarely have the opportunity to test the purity of their product. The CE method described herein provides students with a method to test purity and yield of their product and to determine the effect of aging on their sample. CE can accomplish this in a short period of time, with minimal disruption to the regular laboratory curriculum. Optimized separation conditions, limits of detection, and linear range for ASA and SA are also given.

  11. Finding Clarity by Fostering Confusion: Reflections on Teaching an Undergraduate Integrated Biological Systems Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Kirsten H.

    2015-01-01

    Undergraduate biology programs in smaller liberal arts colleges are increasingly becoming focused on health science fields. This narrowing of focus potentially decreases opportunities for these students to explore other sub-fields of biology. This perspectives article highlights how one small university in Connecticut decided to institute a…

  12. Connecting Undergraduate Plant Cell Biology Students with the Scientists about Whom They Learn: A Bibliography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wayne, Randy; Staves, Mark P.

    1998-01-01

    Details the teaching of an undergraduate plant-cell biology class in the manner proposed by Jean Baptiste Carnoy when he established the first institute of cellular biology. Integrates mathematics, astronomy, physics, chemistry, anatomy, physiology, and ecology. Contains 226 references. (DDR)

  13. Campus Eco Tours: An Integrative & Interactive Field Project for Undergraduate Biology Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boes, Katie E.

    2013-01-01

    Outdoor areas within or near college campuses offer an opportunity for biology students to observe the natural world and apply concepts from class. Here, I describe an engaging and integrative project where undergraduate non-major biology students work in teams to develop and present professional "eco tours." This project takes place over multiple…

  14. Evolutionary Theory in Undergraduate Biology Programs at Lebanese Universities: A Comparative Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vlaardingerbroek, Barend; Hachem-El-Masri, Yasmine

    2006-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to gauge the profile of evolutionary theory in Lebanese undergraduate biology programs. The research focused mainly on the views of university biology department heads, given that they are the people who exercise the most direct influence over their departments' ethos. An Australasian sample was chosen as a reference…

  15. Experiential Engineering through iGEM--An Undergraduate Summer Competition in Synthetic Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Rudolph; Dori, Yehudit Judy; Kuldell, Natalie H.

    2011-01-01

    Unlike students in other engineering disciplines, undergraduates in biological engineering typically have limited opportunity to develop design competencies, and even fewer chances to implement their designed projects. The international Genetically Engineered Machines (iGEM) competition is a student Synthetic Biology competition that, in 2009,…

  16. Hormones and Antibiotics in Nature: A Laboratory Module Designed to Broaden Undergraduate Perspectives on Typically Human-Centered Topics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolyn F. Weber

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Bringing discovery-based research into undergraduate laboratory courses increases student motivation and learning gains over traditional exercises that merely teach technique or demonstrate well-documented phenomena. Laboratory experiences are further enhanced when they are designed to challenge student perspectives on topics relevant to their lives. To this end, a laboratory module on antibiotics and hormones, which are generally discussed in the context of human health, was developed for students to explore the multifaceted roles of antibiotics and hormones in nature (e.g. interspecies communication via reading primary scientific literature and performing discovery-based experiments. The main objective of this module was to increase the general biological literacy of students as determined by their ability to connect the Five Core Concepts of Biological Literacy (American Association for the Advancement of Science, Vision and Change in Undergraduate Education: A Call to Action, 2011 to the topics “hormones” and “antibiotics” in pre- and postmodule surveys. After discussing unpublished research findings, cell biology students performed experiments demonstrating that: 1 fungi may promote fern growth via hormone production, 2 novel bacterial isolates in the genus Streptomyces produce antifungal compounds, and 3 subinhibitory antibiotic concentrations may enhance soil bacterial growth. The third finding provided evidence supporting a hypothesis framed in a scientific article that students read and discussed. Student perspectives on premodule surveys focused on roles of hormones and antibiotics in the human body (e.g. development, fighting infection, but their broadened postmodule perspectives encompassed the roles of these molecules in organismal communication and possibly the evolution of multicellularity.

  17. Hormones and antibiotics in nature: a laboratory module designed to broaden undergraduate perspectives on typically human-centered topics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, Carolyn F

    2014-12-01

    Bringing discovery-based research into undergraduate laboratory courses increases student motivation and learning gains over traditional exercises that merely teach technique or demonstrate well-documented phenomena. Laboratory experiences are further enhanced when they are designed to challenge student perspectives on topics relevant to their lives. To this end, a laboratory module on antibiotics and hormones, which are generally discussed in the context of human health, was developed for students to explore the multifaceted roles of antibiotics and hormones in nature (e.g. interspecies communication) via reading primary scientific literature and performing discovery-based experiments. The main objective of this module was to increase the general biological literacy of students as determined by their ability to connect the Five Core Concepts of Biological Literacy (American Association for the Advancement of Science, Vision and Change in Undergraduate Education: A Call to Action, 2011) to the topics "hormones" and "antibiotics" in pre- and postmodule surveys. After discussing unpublished research findings, cell biology students performed experiments demonstrating that: 1) fungi may promote fern growth via hormone production, 2) novel bacterial isolates in the genus Streptomyces produce antifungal compounds, and 3) subinhibitory antibiotic concentrations may enhance soil bacterial growth. The third finding provided evidence supporting a hypothesis framed in a scientific article that students read and discussed. Student perspectives on premodule surveys focused on roles of hormones and antibiotics in the human body (e.g. development, fighting infection), but their broadened postmodule perspectives encompassed the roles of these molecules in organismal communication and possibly the evolution of multicellularity.

  18. Biotechniques Laboratory: An Enabling Course in the Biological Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Trapani, Giovanna; Clarke, Frank

    2012-01-01

    Practical skills and competencies are critical to student engagement and effective learning in laboratory courses. This article describes the design of a yearlong, stand-alone laboratory course--the Biotechniques Laboratory--a common core course in the second year of all our degree programs in the biological sciences. It is an enabling,…

  19. Monitoring undergraduate student needs and activities at Experimental Biology: APS pilot survey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nichols, Nicole L; Ilatovskaya, Daria V; Matyas, Marsha L

    2017-06-01

    Life science professional societies play important roles for undergraduates in their fields and increasingly offer membership, fellowships, and awards for undergraduate students. However, the overall impacts of society-student interactions have not been well studied. Here, we sought to develop and test a pilot survey of undergraduate students to determine how they got involved in research and in presenting at the Experimental Biology (EB) meeting, what they gained from the scientific and career development sessions at the meeting, and how the American Physiological Society (APS) can best support and engage undergraduate students. This survey was administered in 2014 and 2015 to undergraduate students who submitted physiology abstracts for and attended EB. More than 150 students responded (38% response rate). Respondents were demographically representative of undergraduate students majoring in life sciences in the United States. Most students (72%) became involved in research through a summer research program or college course. They attended a variety of EB sessions, including poster sessions and symposia, and found them useful. Undergraduate students interacted with established researchers at multiple venues. Students recommended that APS provide more research fellowships (25%) and keep in touch with students via both e-mail (46%) and social media (37%). Our results indicate that APS' EB undergraduate activities are valued by students and are effective in helping them have a positive scientific meeting experience. These results also guided the development of a more streamlined survey for use in future years. Copyright © 2017 the American Physiological Society.

  20. Explorations: A Research-Based Program Introducing Undergraduates to Diverse Biology Research Topics Taught by Grad Students and Postdocs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brownell, Sara E.; Khalfan, Waheeda; Bergmann, Dominique; Simoni, Robert

    2013-01-01

    Undergraduate biology majors are often overwhelmed by and underinformed about the diversity and complexity of biological research that is conducted on research-intensive campuses. We present a program that introduces undergraduates to the diversity and scope of biological research and also provides unique teaching opportunities for graduate…

  1. Virtual Laboratories in Chemistry, Biochemistry, & Molecular Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    May, Michael; Achiam, Marianne

    2013-01-01

    Report (state-of-the-art review) from a research and development project on virtual laboratories supported by Markedmodningsfonden (tidl. "Fornyelsesfonden")(2012-2014). http://markedsmodningsfonden.dk/projekt/0/34/495....

  2. pGLO Mutagenesis: A Laboratory Procedure in Molecular Biology for Biology Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bassiri, Eby A.

    2011-01-01

    A five-session laboratory project was designed to familiarize or increase the laboratory proficiency of biology students and others with techniques and instruments commonly used in molecular biology research laboratories and industries. In this project, the EZ-Tn5 transposon is used to generate and screen a large number of cells transformed with…

  3. Virtual Laboratories in Chemistry, Biochemistry, & Molecular Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    May, Michael; Achiam, Marianne

    2013-01-01

    Report (state-of-the-art review) from a research and development project on virtual laboratories supported by Markedmodningsfonden (tidl. "Fornyelsesfonden")(2012-2014). http://markedsmodningsfonden.dk/projekt/0/34/495.......Report (state-of-the-art review) from a research and development project on virtual laboratories supported by Markedmodningsfonden (tidl. "Fornyelsesfonden")(2012-2014). http://markedsmodningsfonden.dk/projekt/0/34/495....

  4. Metrology in an ISO 15189 accredited medical biology laboratory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guichet C.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available All French medical biology laboratories must be accredited according to ISO 15189 for all tests conducted. Metrology is therefore critical and covers a wide variety of areas. This presentation will focus on the metrology manager’s role which is tailored to the medical biology laboratory: human resources in place, methods used, parameters followed, equipment used and strategies implemented when using equipment which is not connected to the International System of Units. It will be illustrated by examples of in vitro and in vivo clinical biochemistry, biological haematology, human toxicology and radiotoxicology. The presentation will cover the exploitation of results of internal controls and interlaboratory comparisons in order to calculate uncertainties and provide doctors with a result along with an interpretation or opinion to ensure optimum patient care. The conclusion will present the steps carried out at the Laboratoire National d’Essai (French National Testing Laboratory to provide medical biology laboratories with certified clinical biology standards.

  5. Six Classroom Exercises to Teach Natural Selection to Undergraduate Biology Students

    OpenAIRE

    Kalinowski, Steven T.; Leonard, Mary J.; Andrews, Tessa M.; Litt, Andrea R.

    2013-01-01

    Students in introductory biology courses frequently have misconceptions regarding natural selection. In this paper, we describe six activities that biology instructors can use to teach undergraduate students in introductory biology courses how natural selection causes evolution. These activities begin with a lesson introducing students to natural selection and also include discussions on sexual selection, molecular evolution, evolution of complex traits, and the evolution of behavior. The set...

  6. Red seaweed enzyme-catalyzed bromination of bromophenol red: An inquiry-based kinetics laboratory experiment for undergraduates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jittam, Piyachat; Boonsiri, Patcharee; Promptmas, Chamras; Sriwattanarothai, Namkang; Archavarungson, Nattinee; Ruenwongsa, Pintip; Panijpan, Bhinyo

    2009-03-01

    Haloperoxidase enzymes are of interest for basic and applied bioscientists because of their increasing importance in pharmaceutical industry and environmental cleanups. In a guided inquiry-based laboratory experiment for life-science, agricultural science, and health science undergraduates, the bromoperoxidase from a red seaweed was used to brominate bromophenol red, a novel starting substrate. Substrate and enzyme concentration dependence of this enzyme-catalyzed reaction as followed colorimetrically yielded initial rates of reaction that the students compared with those of their peers. The students worked as collaborative groups partially designing their own experiments and carrying them out. In performing the laboratory experiment, they were minimally guided by the instructor and teaching assistants. To engage the students before the laboratory, a short activity involving the enzyme-induced color change was carried out. At the end of the laboratory session, student groups discussed their results in front of the class and reached their own conclusions. Most students had better understanding of important concepts in enzyme kinetics and showed good attitude toward the overall student-centered laboratory exercise. Copyright © 2009 International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  7. Accelerator-based techniques for the support of senior-level undergraduate physics laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, J. R.; Clark, J. C.; Isaacs-Smith, T.

    2001-07-01

    Approximately three years ago, Auburn University replaced its aging Dynamitron accelerator with a new 2MV tandem machine (Pelletron) manufactured by the National Electrostatics Corporation (NEC). This new machine is maintained and operated for the University by Physics Department personnel, and the accelerator supports a wide variety of materials modification/analysis studies. Computer software is available that allows the NEC Pelletron to be operated from a remote location, and an Internet link has been established between the Accelerator Laboratory and the Upper-Level Undergraduate Teaching Laboratory in the Physics Department. Additional software supplied by Canberra Industries has also been used to create a second Internet link that allows live-time data acquisition in the Teaching Laboratory. Our senior-level undergraduates and first-year graduate students perform a number of experiments related to radiation detection and measurement as well as several standard accelerator-based experiments that have been added recently. These laboratory exercises will be described, and the procedures used to establish the Internet links between our Teaching Laboratory and the Accelerator Laboratory will be discussed.

  8. Accelerator-based techniques for the support of senior-level undergraduate physics laboratories

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Williams, J.R.; Clark, J.C.; Isaacs-Smith, T.

    2001-01-01

    Approximately three years ago, Auburn University replaced its aging Dynamitron accelerator with a new 2MV tandem machine (Pelletron) manufactured by the National Electrostatics Corporation (NEC). This new machine is maintained and operated for the University by Physics Department personnel, and the accelerator supports a wide variety of materials modification/analysis studies. Computer software is available that allows the NEC Pelletron to be operated from a remote location, and an Internet link has been established between the Accelerator Laboratory and the Upper-Level Undergraduate Teaching Laboratory in the Physics Department. Additional software supplied by Canberra Industries has also been used to create a second Internet link that allows live-time data acquisition in the Teaching Laboratory. Our senior-level undergraduates and first-year graduate students perform a number of experiments related to radiation detection and measurement as well as several standard accelerator-based experiments that have been added recently. These laboratory exercises will be described, and the procedures used to establish the Internet links between our Teaching Laboratory and the Accelerator Laboratory will be discussed

  9. Structured Inquiry-Based Learning: Drosophila GAL4 Enhancer Trap Characterization in an Undergraduate Laboratory Course

    OpenAIRE

    Dunne, Christopher R.; Cillo, Anthony R.; Glick, Danielle R.; John, Katherine; Johnson, Cody; Kanwal, Jaspinder; Malik, Brian T.; Mammano, Kristina; Petrovic, Stefan; Pfister, William; Rascoe, Alexander S.; Schrom, Diane; Shapiro, Scott; Simkins, Jeffrey W.; Strauss, David

    2014-01-01

    We have developed and tested two linked but separable structured inquiry exercises using a set of Drosophila melanogaster GAL4 enhancer trap strains for an upper-level undergraduate laboratory methods course at Bucknell University. In the first, students learn to perform inverse PCR to identify the genomic location of the GAL4 insertion, using FlyBase to identify flanking sequences and the primary literature to synthesize current knowledge regarding the nearest gene. In the second, we cross e...

  10. An undergraduate laboratory study of the polarisation of annihilation photons using Compton scattering

    OpenAIRE

    Knights, Patrick; Ryburn, Finlay; Tungate, Garry; Nikolopoulos, Konstantinos

    2018-01-01

    An experiment for the advanced undergraduate laboratory which allows students to study the effect of photon polarisation in Compton scattering and to explore q\\ uantum entanglement is described. The quantum entangled photons are produced through electron-positron annihilation in the $S$-state, and their polarisations a\\ re analysed using the Compton scattering cross-section dependence on the photon polarisation. The equipment necessary for this experiment is available at a typ\\ ical undergrad...

  11. Implementation of a Collaborative Series of Classroom-Based Undergraduate Research Experiences Spanning Chemical Biology, Biochemistry, and Neurobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kowalski, Jennifer R; Hoops, Geoffrey C; Johnson, R Jeremy

    2016-01-01

    Classroom undergraduate research experiences (CUREs) provide students access to the measurable benefits of undergraduate research experiences (UREs). Herein, we describe the implementation and assessment of a novel model for cohesive CUREs focused on central research themes involving faculty research collaboration across departments. Specifically, we implemented three collaborative CUREs spanning chemical biology, biochemistry, and neurobiology that incorporated faculty members' research interests and revolved around the central theme of visualizing biological processes like Mycobacterium tuberculosis enzyme activity and neural signaling using fluorescent molecules. Each CURE laboratory involved multiple experimental phases and culminated in novel, open-ended, and reiterative student-driven research projects. Course assessments showed CURE participation increased students' experimental design skills, attitudes and confidence about research, perceived understanding of the scientific process, and interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines. More than 75% of CURE students also engaged in independent scientific research projects, and faculty CURE contributors saw substantial increases in research productivity, including increased undergraduate student involvement and academic outputs. Our collaborative CUREs demonstrate the advantages of multicourse CUREs for achieving increased faculty research productivity and traditional CURE-associated student learning and attitude gains. Our collaborative CURE design represents a novel CURE model for ongoing laboratory reform that benefits both faculty and students. © 2016 J. R. Kowalski et al. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). Two months after publication it is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  12. A Transformative Model for Undergraduate Quantitative Biology Education

    OpenAIRE

    Usher, David C.; Driscoll, Tobin A.; Dhurjati, Prasad; Pelesko, John A.; Rossi, Louis F.; Schleiniger, Gilberto; Pusecker, Kathleen; White, Harold B.

    2010-01-01

    The BIO2010 report recommended that students in the life sciences receive a more rigorous education in mathematics and physical sciences. The University of Delaware approached this problem by (1) developing a bio-calculus section of a standard calculus course, (2) embedding quantitative activities into existing biology courses, and (3) creating a new interdisciplinary major, quantitative biology, designed for students interested in solving complex biological problems using advanced mathematic...

  13. SOFTICE: Facilitating both Adoption of Linux Undergraduate Operating Systems Laboratories and Students' Immersion in Kernel Code

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessio Gaspar

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper discusses how Linux clustering and virtual machine technologies can improve undergraduate students' hands-on experience in operating systems laboratories. Like similar projects, SOFTICE relies on User Mode Linux (UML to provide students with privileged access to a Linux system without creating security breaches on the hosting network. We extend such approaches in two aspects. First, we propose to facilitate adoption of Linux-based laboratories by using a load-balancing cluster made of recycled classroom PCs to remotely serve access to virtual machines. Secondly, we propose a new approach for students to interact with the kernel code.

  14. A Transformative Model for Undergraduate Quantitative Biology Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Driscoll, Tobin A.; Dhurjati, Prasad; Pelesko, John A.; Rossi, Louis F.; Schleiniger, Gilberto; Pusecker, Kathleen; White, Harold B.

    2010-01-01

    The BIO2010 report recommended that students in the life sciences receive a more rigorous education in mathematics and physical sciences. The University of Delaware approached this problem by (1) developing a bio-calculus section of a standard calculus course, (2) embedding quantitative activities into existing biology courses, and (3) creating a new interdisciplinary major, quantitative biology, designed for students interested in solving complex biological problems using advanced mathematical approaches. To develop the bio-calculus sections, the Department of Mathematical Sciences revised its three-semester calculus sequence to include differential equations in the first semester and, rather than using examples traditionally drawn from application domains that are most relevant to engineers, drew models and examples heavily from the life sciences. The curriculum of the B.S. degree in Quantitative Biology was designed to provide students with a solid foundation in biology, chemistry, and mathematics, with an emphasis on preparation for research careers in life sciences. Students in the program take core courses from biology, chemistry, and physics, though mathematics, as the cornerstone of all quantitative sciences, is given particular prominence. Seminars and a capstone course stress how the interplay of mathematics and biology can be used to explain complex biological systems. To initiate these academic changes required the identification of barriers and the implementation of solutions. PMID:20810949

  15. A transformative model for undergraduate quantitative biology education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Usher, David C; Driscoll, Tobin A; Dhurjati, Prasad; Pelesko, John A; Rossi, Louis F; Schleiniger, Gilberto; Pusecker, Kathleen; White, Harold B

    2010-01-01

    The BIO2010 report recommended that students in the life sciences receive a more rigorous education in mathematics and physical sciences. The University of Delaware approached this problem by (1) developing a bio-calculus section of a standard calculus course, (2) embedding quantitative activities into existing biology courses, and (3) creating a new interdisciplinary major, quantitative biology, designed for students interested in solving complex biological problems using advanced mathematical approaches. To develop the bio-calculus sections, the Department of Mathematical Sciences revised its three-semester calculus sequence to include differential equations in the first semester and, rather than using examples traditionally drawn from application domains that are most relevant to engineers, drew models and examples heavily from the life sciences. The curriculum of the B.S. degree in Quantitative Biology was designed to provide students with a solid foundation in biology, chemistry, and mathematics, with an emphasis on preparation for research careers in life sciences. Students in the program take core courses from biology, chemistry, and physics, though mathematics, as the cornerstone of all quantitative sciences, is given particular prominence. Seminars and a capstone course stress how the interplay of mathematics and biology can be used to explain complex biological systems. To initiate these academic changes required the identification of barriers and the implementation of solutions.

  16. The development of Metacognition test in genetics laboratory for undergraduate students

    Science.gov (United States)

    A-nongwech, Nattapong; Pruekpramool, Chaninan

    2018-01-01

    The purpose of this research was to develop a Metacognition test in a Genetics Laboratory for undergraduate students. The participants were 30 undergraduate students of a Rajabhat university in Rattanakosin group in the second semester of the 2016 academic year using purposive sampling. The research instrument consisted of 1) Metacognition test and 2) a Metacognition test evaluation form for experts focused on three main points which were an accurate evaluation form of content, a consistency between Metacognition experiences and questions and the appropriateness of the test. The quality of the test was analyzed by using the Index of Consistency (IOC), discrimination and reliability. The results of developing Metacognition test were summarized as 1) The result of developing Metacognition test in a Genetics Laboratory for undergraduate students found that the Metacognition test contained 56 items of open - ended questions. The test composed of 1) four scientific situations, 2) fourteen items of open - ended questions in each scientific situation for evaluating components of Metacognition. The components of Metacognition consisted of Metacognitive knowledge, which were divided into person knowledge, task knowledge and strategy knowledge and Metacognitive experience, which were divided into planning, monitoring and evaluating, and 3) fourteen items of scoring criteria divided into four scales. 2) The results of the item analysis of Metacognition in Genetics Laboratory for undergraduate students found that Index of Consistency between Metacognitive experiences and questions were in the range between 0.75 - 1.00. An accuracy of content equaled 1.00. The appropriateness of the test equaled 1.00 in all situations and items. The discrimination of the test was in the range between 0.00 - 0.73. Furthermore, the reliability of the test equaled 0.97.

  17. Transforming the Learning Environment of Undergraduate Physics Laboratories to Enhance Physics Inquiry Processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregory P. Thomas

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Concerns persist regarding the lack of promotion of students’ scientific inquiry processes in undergraduate physics laboratories. The consensus in the literature is that, especially in the early years of undergraduate physics programs, students’ laboratory work is characterized by recipe type, step-by-step instructions for activities where the aim is often confirmation of an already well-established physics principle or concept. In response to evidence reflecting these concerns at their university, the authors successfully secured funding for this study. A mixed-method design was employed. In the 2011/2012 academic year baseline data were collected. A quantitative survey, the Undergraduate Physics Laboratory Learning Environment Scale (UPLLES was developed, validated, and used to explore students’ perceptions of their physics laboratory environments. Analysis of data from the UPLLES and from interviews confirmed the concerns evident in the literature and in a previous evaluation of laboratories undertaken in 2002. To address these concerns the activities that students were to perform in the laboratory section of the course/s were re/designed to engage students in more inquiry oriented thinking and activity. In Fall 2012, the newly developed laboratory activities and tutorials, were implemented for the first time in PHYS124; a first year course. These changes were accompanied by structured training of teaching assistants and changes to the structure of the evaluation of students’ laboratory performance. At the end of that term the UPLLES was administered (n = 266 and interviews with students conducted (n = 16 to explore their perceptions of their laboratory environments. Statistically significant differences (p<.001 between the students in the PHYS 124 classes of 2011/2012 and 2012/2013 across all dimensions were found. Effect sizes of 0.82 to 1.3, between the views of students in the first semester physics classes of 2011/2012 and 2012

  18. Biology Student Teachers' Ideas about Purpose of Laboratory Work

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dikmenli, Musa

    2009-01-01

    The aim of this study is to investigate biology student teachers' ideas about the purpose of laboratory work in teaching biology. Data has been collected from 82 participating students using an open-ended questionnaire and analyzed using content analysis techniques. The results show that almost all of the student teachers considered laboratory…

  19. Integration of Bioinformatics into an Undergraduate Biology Curriculum and the Impact on Development of Mathematical Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wightman, Bruce; Hark, Amy T.

    2012-01-01

    The development of fields such as bioinformatics and genomics has created new challenges and opportunities for undergraduate biology curricula. Students preparing for careers in science, technology, and medicine need more intensive study of bioinformatics and more sophisticated training in the mathematics on which this field is based. In this…

  20. RNA Isolation from Plant Tissues: A Hands-on Laboratory Experimental Experience for Undergraduates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Nianhui; Yu, Dong; Zhu, Xiaofeng

    2017-12-29

    The practice of RNA isolation in undergraduate experimental courses is rare because of the existence of robust, ubiquitous and stable ribonucleases. We reported here modifications to our original protocol for RNA isolation from plant tissues, including the recovery of nucleic acids by ethanol precipitation at 0 °C for 10 min and the assessment of RNA quality by visualizing the banding profile of the separated RNAs on a standard nondenaturing agarose gel to shorten the duration of the whole procedure and simplify the operation. As a result, the modified procedure, including RNA isolation and quality control analysis could be finished in 4 hr and divided into two sessions. Because endogenous ribonucleases released upon disruption of the organelles and vacuoles were effectively and quickly inactivated, measures were taken to protect RNA integrity throughout the whole procedure so that total RNA with high purity and integrity as well as an appropriate yield could be obtained by students. The RNA isolation protocol described here was simple, efficient, flexible, and low cost. Therefore, it is an ideal approach for undergraduates to learn about RNA techniques. The pedagogical approach of the correlation of experimental work with the rationale for the whole protocol described in this report is an effective way for undergraduates to improve their learning of the techniques of RNA isolation and analysis and the theories behind them, as well as experimental design and data analysis. © 2017 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 2017. © 2017 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  1. Establishing a national biological laboratory safety and security monitoring program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blaine, James W

    2012-12-01

    The growing concern over the potential use of biological agents as weapons and the continuing work of the Biological Weapons Convention has promoted an interest in establishing national biological laboratory biosafety and biosecurity monitoring programs. The challenges and issues that should be considered by governments, or organizations, embarking on the creation of a biological laboratory biosafety and biosecurity monitoring program are discussed in this article. The discussion focuses on the following questions: Is there critical infrastructure support available? What should be the program focus? Who should be monitored? Who should do the monitoring? How extensive should the monitoring be? What standards and requirements should be used? What are the consequences if a laboratory does not meet the requirements or is not willing to comply? Would the program achieve the results intended? What are the program costs? The success of a monitoring program can depend on how the government, or organization, responds to these questions.

  2. UV-Vis Spectrophotometric Analysis and Quantification of Glyphosate for an Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Felton, Daniel E.; Ederer, Martina; Steffens, Timothy; Hartzell, Patricia L.; Waynant, Kristopher V.

    2018-01-01

    Glyphosate (N-(phosphonomethyl)glycine) is the most widely used herbicide on earth. A simple assay to quantify glyphosate concentrations in environmental samples was developed as part of an interdisciplinary effort linking introductory laboratory courses in chemistry, biology, and microbiology. In this 3 h laboratory experiment, students used…

  3. A Transformative Model for Undergraduate Quantitative Biology Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Usher, David C.; Driscoll, Tobin A.; Dhurjati, Prasad; Pelesko, John A.; Rossi, Louis F.; Schleiniger, Gilberto; Pusecker, Kathleen; White, Harold B.

    2010-01-01

    The "BIO2010" report recommended that students in the life sciences receive a more rigorous education in mathematics and physical sciences. The University of Delaware approached this problem by (1) developing a bio-calculus section of a standard calculus course, (2) embedding quantitative activities into existing biology courses, and (3)…

  4. The essence of student visual-spatial literacy and higher order thinking skills in undergraduate biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milner-Bolotin, Marina; Nashon, Samson Madera

    2012-02-01

    Science, engineering and mathematics-related disciplines have relied heavily on a researcher's ability to visualize phenomena under study and being able to link and superimpose various abstract and concrete representations including visual, spatial, and temporal. The spatial representations are especially important in all branches of biology (in developmental biology time becomes an important dimension), where 3D and often 4D representations are crucial for understanding the phenomena. By the time biology students get to undergraduate education, they are supposed to have acquired visual-spatial thinking skills, yet it has been documented that very few undergraduates and a small percentage of graduate students have had a chance to develop these skills to a sufficient degree. The current paper discusses the literature that highlights the essence of visual-spatial thinking and the development of visual-spatial literacy, considers the application of the visual-spatial thinking to biology education, and proposes how modern technology can help to promote visual-spatial literacy and higher order thinking among undergraduate students of biology.

  5. A new method of measuring gravitational acceleration in an undergraduate laboratory program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Qiaochu; Wang, Chang; Xiao, Yunhuan; Schulte, Jurgen; Shi, Qingfan

    2018-01-01

    This paper presents a high accuracy method to measure gravitational acceleration in an undergraduate laboratory program. The experiment is based on water in a cylindrical vessel rotating about its vertical axis at a constant speed. The water surface forms a paraboloid whose focal length is related to rotational period and gravitational acceleration. This experimental setup avoids classical source errors in determining the local value of gravitational acceleration, so prevalent in the common simple pendulum and inclined plane experiments. The presented method combines multiple physics concepts such as kinematics, classical mechanics and geometric optics, offering the opportunity for lateral as well as project-based learning.

  6. Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment: Measuring Matter Antimatter Asymmetries at the Large Hadron Collider

    CERN Document Server

    Parkes, Chris; Gutierrez, J

    2015-01-01

    This document is the student manual for a third year undergraduate laboratory experiment at the University of Manchester. This project aims to measure a fundamental difference between the behaviour of matter and antimatter through the analysis of data collected by the LHCb experiment at the Large Hadron Collider. The three-body dmecays $B^\\pm \\rightarrow h^\\pm h^+ h^-$, where $h^\\pm$ is a $\\pi^\\pm$ or $K^\\pm$ are studied. The inclusive matter antimatter asymmetry is calculated, and larger asymmetries are searched for in localized regions of the phase-space.

  7. Connecting biology and organic chemistry introductory laboratory courses through a collaborative research project.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boltax, Ariana L; Armanious, Stephanie; Kosinski-Collins, Melissa S; Pontrello, Jason K

    2015-01-01

    Modern research often requires collaboration of experts in fields, such as math, chemistry, biology, physics, and computer science to develop unique solutions to common problems. Traditional introductory undergraduate laboratory curricula in the sciences often do not emphasize connections possible between the various disciplines. We designed an interdisciplinary, medically relevant, project intended to help students see connections between chemistry and biology. Second term organic chemistry laboratory students designed and synthesized potential polymer inhibitors or inducers of polyglutamine protein aggregation. The use of novel target compounds added the uncertainty of scientific research to the project. Biology laboratory students then tested the novel potential pharmaceuticals in Huntington's disease model assays, using in vitro polyglutamine peptide aggregation and in vivo lethality studies in Drosophila. Students read articles from the primary literature describing the system from both chemical and biological perspectives. Assessment revealed that students emerged from both courses with a deeper understanding of the interdisciplinary nature of biology and chemistry and a heightened interest in basic research. The design of this collaborative project for introductory biology and organic chemistry labs demonstrated how the local interests and expertise at a university can be drawn from to create an effective way to integrate these introductory courses. Rather than simply presenting a series of experiments to be replicated, we hope that our efforts will inspire other scientists to think about how some aspect of authentic work can be brought into their own courses, and we also welcome additional collaborations to extend the scope of the scientific exploration. © 2015 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  8. Development, Evaluation and Use of a Student Experience Survey in Undergraduate Science Laboratories: The Advancing Science by Enhancing Learning in the Laboratory Student Laboratory Learning Experience Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrie, Simon C.; Bucat, Robert B.; Buntine, Mark A.; Burke da Silva, Karen; Crisp, Geoffrey T.; George, Adrian V.; Jamie, Ian M.; Kable, Scott H.; Lim, Kieran F.; Pyke, Simon M.; Read, Justin R.; Sharma, Manjula D.; Yeung, Alexandra

    2015-07-01

    Student experience surveys have become increasingly popular to probe various aspects of processes and outcomes in higher education, such as measuring student perceptions of the learning environment and identifying aspects that could be improved. This paper reports on a particular survey for evaluating individual experiments that has been developed over some 15 years as part of a large national Australian study pertaining to the area of undergraduate laboratories-Advancing Science by Enhancing Learning in the Laboratory. This paper reports on the development of the survey instrument and the evaluation of the survey using student responses to experiments from different institutions in Australia, New Zealand and the USA. A total of 3153 student responses have been analysed using factor analysis. Three factors, motivation, assessment and resources, have been identified as contributing to improved student attitudes to laboratory activities. A central focus of the survey is to provide feedback to practitioners to iteratively improve experiments. Implications for practitioners and researchers are also discussed.

  9. Desegregating undergraduate mathematics and biology--interdisciplinary instruction with emphasis on ongoing biomedical research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robeva, Raina

    2009-01-01

    The remarkable advances in the field of biology in the last decade, specifically in the areas of biochemistry, genetics, genomics, proteomics, and systems biology, have demonstrated how critically important mathematical models and methods are in addressing questions of vital importance for these disciplines. There is little doubt that the need for utilizing and developing mathematical methods for biology research will only grow in the future. The rapidly increasing demand for scientists with appropriate interdisciplinary skills and knowledge, however, is not being reflected in the way undergraduate mathematics and biology courses are structured and taught in most colleges and universities nationwide. While a number of institutions have stepped forward and addressed this need by creating and offering interdisciplinary courses at the juncture of mathematics and biology, there are still many others at which there is little, if any, interdisciplinary interaction between the curricula. This chapter describes an interdisciplinary course and a textbook in mathematical biology developed collaboratively by faculty from Sweet Briar College and the University of Virginia School of Medicine. The course and textbook are designed to provide a bridge between the mathematical and biological sciences at the lower undergraduate level. The course is developed for and is being taught in a liberal arts setting at Sweet Briar College, Virginia, but some of the advanced modules are used in a course at the University of Virginia for advanced undergraduate and beginning graduate students. The individual modules are relatively independent and can be used as stand-alone projects in conventional mathematics and biology courses. Except for the introductory material, the course and textbook topics are based on current biomedical research.

  10. Validating the collision-dominated Child-Langmuir law for a dc discharge cathode sheath in an undergraduate laboratory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lisovskiy, V; Yegorenkov, V

    2009-01-01

    In this paper, we propose a simple method of observing the collision-dominated Child-Langmuir law in the course of an undergraduate laboratory work devoted to studying the properties of gas discharges. To this end we employ the dc gas discharge whose properties are studied in sufficient detail. The undergraduate laboratory work itself is reduced to registering the voltage drop across the electrodes, the discharge current as well as the cathode sheath thickness. We can easily perform the measurements of all three quantities with sufficient accuracy in a laboratory equipped with vacuum pumps.

  11. Microwave-Enhanced Organic Syntheses for the Undergraduate Laboratory: Diels-Alder Cycloaddition, Wittig Reaction, and Williamson Ether Synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baar, Marsha R.; Falcone, Danielle; Gordon, Christopher

    2010-01-01

    Microwave heating enhanced the rate of three reactions typically performed in our undergraduate organic chemistry laboratory: a Diels-Alder cycloaddition, a Wittig salt formation, and a Williamson ether synthesis. Ninety-minute refluxes were shortened to 10 min using a laboratory-grade microwave oven. In addition, yields improved for the Wittig…

  12. "Anisakis Simplex" Infection in Mackerel: A Reliable Laboratory Exercise to Demonstrate Important Principles in Parasitology to Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coombs, I.; Tatner, M.; Paterson, V.

    2013-01-01

    Practical laboratory work in parasitology can be very limited, due to the difficulty in maintaining multi-host parasite life cycles, especially for a large, once-yearly undergraduate laboratory class for life science students. The use of mackerel, "Scomber scombrus," bought from a local fishmonger, is an ideal model to investigate important…

  13. Assessing an effective undergraduate module teaching applied bioinformatics to biology students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madlung, Andreas

    2018-01-01

    Applied bioinformatics skills are becoming ever more indispensable for biologists, yet incorporation of these skills into the undergraduate biology curriculum is lagging behind, in part due to a lack of instructors willing and able to teach basic bioinformatics in classes that don't specifically focus on quantitative skill development, such as statistics or computer sciences. To help undergraduate course instructors who themselves did not learn bioinformatics as part of their own education and are hesitant to plunge into teaching big data analysis, a module was developed that is written in plain-enough language, using publicly available computing tools and data, to allow novice instructors to teach next-generation sequence analysis to upper-level undergraduate students. To determine if the module allowed students to develop a better understanding of and appreciation for applied bioinformatics, various tools were developed and employed to assess the impact of the module. This article describes both the module and its assessment. Students found the activity valuable for their education and, in focus group discussions, emphasized that they saw a need for more and earlier instruction of big data analysis as part of the undergraduate biology curriculum.

  14. Learning physical biology via modeling/simulation: An interdisciplinary undergraduate course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Philip

    Undergraduate life-science curricula remain largely rooted in descriptive approaches, even though much current research involves quantitative modeling. Not only does our pedagogy not reflect current reality; it also reinforces the silos that prevent students from connecting disciplines. I'll describe a course that has attracted undergraduates in several science and engineering majors. Students acquire research skills that are often not addressed in traditional undergraduate courses, using a general-purpose platform like MATLAB or Python. The combination of experimental data, modeling, and physical reasoning used in this course represents an entirely new mode of ''how to learn'' for most of the students. These basic skills are presented in the context of case studies from cell biology, specifically control theory and its applications to synthetic biology. Documented outcomes include student reports of improved ability to gain research positions as undergraduates, and greater effectiveness in such positions, as well as students enrolling in more challenging later courses than they would otherwise have chosen. Work supported by NSF under Grants EF 0928048 and DMR 0832802.

  15. Memorable Exemplification in Undergraduate Biology: Instructor Strategies and Student Perceptions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, Alandeom W.; Bretzlaff, Tiffany; Brown, Adam O.

    2018-03-01

    The present study examines the exemplification practices of a university biology instructor during a semester-long course. Attention is given specifically to how the instructor approaches memorable exemplification—classroom episodes identified by students as a source of memorable learning experiences. A mixed-method research approach is adopted wherein descriptive statistics is combined with qualitative multimodal analysis of video recordings and survey data. Our findings show that memorable experiencing of examples may depend on a multiplicity of factors, including whether students can relate to the example, how unique and extreme the example is, how much detail is provided, whether the example is enacted rather than told, and whether the example makes students feel sad, surprised, shocked, and/or amused. It is argued that, rather than simply assuming that all examples are equally effective, careful consideration needs be given to how exemplification can serve as an important source of memorable science learning experiences.

  16. The ATLAS project: The effects of a constructionist digital laboratory project on undergraduate laboratory performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoepe, Todd C; Cavedon, Dana K; Derian, Joseph M; Levy, Celine S; Morales, Amy

    2015-01-01

    Anatomical education is a dynamic field where developments in the implementation of constructive, situated-learning show promise in improving student achievement. The purpose of this study was to examine the effectiveness of an individualized, technology heavy project in promoting student performance in a combined anatomy and physiology laboratory course. Mixed-methods research was used to compare two cohorts of anatomy laboratories separated by the adoption of a new laboratory atlas project, which were defined as preceding (PRE) and following the adoption of the Anatomical Teaching and Learning Assessment Study (ATLAS; POST). The ATLAS project required the creation of a student-generated, photographic atlas via acquisition of specimen images taken with tablet technology and digital microscope cameras throughout the semester. Images were transferred to laptops, digitally labeled and photo edited weekly, and compiled into a digital book using Internet publishing freeware for final project submission. An analysis of covariance confirmed that student final examination scores were improved (P project (PRE, n = 75; POST, n = 90; means ± SE; 74.9 ± 0.9 versus 78.1 ± 0.8, respectively) after controlling for cumulative student grade point average. Analysis of questionnaires collected (n = 68) from the post group suggested students identified with atlas objectives, appreciated the comprehensive value in final examination preparation, and the constructionism involved, but recommended alterations in assignment logistics and the format of the final version. Constructionist, comprehensive term-projects utilizing student-preferred technologies could be used to improve performance toward student learning outcomes. © 2014 American Association of Anatomists.

  17. Observing Chemotaxis in Vibrio fischeri Using Soft Agar Assays in an Undergraduate Microbiology Laboratory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cindy R. DeLoney-Marino

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Chemotaxis, the directed movement of cells towards or away from a chemical, is both an exciting and complicated behavior observed in many bacterial species. Attempting to adequately visualize or demonstrate the chemotaxic response of bacteria in the classroom is difficult at best, with good models to illustrate the concept lacking. The BSL-1 marine bacterium Vibrio fischeri (a.k.a. Aliivibrio fischeri is easy to culture, making it an ideal candidate for experiments in an undergraduate microbiology course. A number of chemoattractants for V. fischeri have been identified, including a variety of sugars, nucleosides, and amino acids (1, 2. Below presents how the soft agar-based chemotaxis assay can be implemented in the undergraduate laboratory. As bacterial cells migrate towards one or more attractants in soft agar, students can directly observe the chemotaxic behavior of V. fischeri without the need to learn complicated techniques or use specialized equipment. Once the bands of bacterial cells are observed, the migration can then be disrupted by the addition of excess attractant to the soft agar, thereby visualizing what happens once cells are no longer in a gradient of attractant. In addition, soft agar plates lacking attractants can be used to visualize the random movements of bacterial cells that are non-chemotaxing. These exercises can be used in the microbiology laboratory to help students understand the complex behavior of bacterial chemotaxis.

  18. Influence of study approaches and course design on academic success in the undergraduate anatomy laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eleazer, Courtney D; Scopa Kelso, Rebecca

    2018-01-04

    Many pre-health professional programs require completion of an undergraduate anatomy course with a laboratory component, yet grades in these courses are often low. Many students perceive anatomy as a more challenging subject than other coursework, and the resulting anxiety surrounding this perception may be a significant contributor to poor performance. Well-planned and deliberate guidance from instructors, as well as thoughtful course design, may be necessary to assist students in finding the best approach to studying for anatomy. This article assesses which study habits are associated with course success and whether course design influences study habits. Surveys (n = 1,274) were administered to students enrolled in three undergraduate human anatomy laboratory courses with varying levels of cooperative learning and structured guidance. The surveys collected information on potential predictors of performance, including student demographics, educational background, self-assessment ability, and study methods (e.g., flashcards, textbooks, diagrams). Compared to low performers, high performers perceive studying in laboratory, asking the instructor questions, quizzing alone, and quizzing others as more effective for learning. Additionally, students co-enrolled in a flipped, active lecture anatomy course achieve higher grades and find active learning activities (e.g., quizzing alone and in groups) more helpful for their learning in the laboratory. These results strengthen previous research suggesting that student performance is more greatly enhanced by an active classroom environment that practices successful study strategies rather than one that simply encourages students to employ such strategies inside and outside the classroom. Anat Sci Educ. © 2018 American Association of Anatomists. © 2018 American Association of Anatomists.

  19. The Genomics Education Partnership: Successful Integration of Research into Laboratory Classes at a Diverse Group of Undergraduate Institutions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaffer, Christopher D.; Alvarez, Consuelo; Bailey, Cheryl; Barnard, Daron; Bhalla, Satish; Chandrasekaran, Chitra; Chandrasekaran, Vidya; Chung, Hui-Min; Dorer, Douglas R.; Du, Chunguang; Eckdahl, Todd T.; Poet, Jeff L.; Frohlich, Donald; Goodman, Anya L.; Gosser, Yuying; Hauser, Charles; Hoopes, Laura L. M.; Johnson, Diana; Jones, Christopher J.; Kaehler, Marian; Kokan, Nighat; Kopp, Olga R.; Kuleck, Gary A.; McNeil, Gerard; Moss, Robert; Myka, Jennifer L.; Nagengast, Alexis; Morris, Robert; Overvoorde, Paul J.; Shoop, Elizabeth; Parrish, Susan; Reed, Kelynne; Regisford, E. Gloria; Revie, Dennis; Rosenwald, Anne G.; Saville, Ken; Schroeder, Stephanie; Shaw, Mary; Skuse, Gary; Smith, Christopher; Smith, Mary; Spana, Eric P.; Spratt, Mary; Stamm, Joyce; Thompson, Jeff S.; Wawersik, Matthew; Wilson, Barbara A.; Youngblom, Jim; Leung, Wilson; Buhler, Jeremy; Mardis, Elaine R.; Lopatto, David; Elgin, Sarah C. R.

    2010-01-01

    Genomics is not only essential for students to understand biology but also provides unprecedented opportunities for undergraduate research. The goal of the Genomics Education Partnership (GEP), a collaboration between a growing number of colleges and universities around the country and the Department of Biology and Genome Center of Washington…

  20. Using Analogy Role-Play Activity in an Undergraduate Biology Classroom to Show Central Dogma Revision

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takemura, Masaharu; Kurabayashi, Mario

    2014-01-01

    For the study of biology in an undergraduate classroom, a classroom exercise was developed: an analogy role-play to learn mechanisms of gene transcription and protein translation (central dogma). To develop the central dogma role-play exercise, we made DNA and mRNA using paper sheets, tRNA using a wire dress hanger, and amino acids using Lego®…

  1. Critical components required to improve deployable laboratory biological hazards identification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niemeyer, Debra M.

    2004-08-01

    An ever-expanding global military mission necessitates quick and accurate identification of biological hazards, whether naturally occurring or man-made. Coupled with an ever-present threat of biological attack, an expanded U.S. presence in worn-torn locations like Southwest Asia presents unique public health challenges. We must heed modern day "lessons learned" from Operation Desert Shield and the Soviet Afghanistan Campaign and guard against rapid incapacitation of troop strength from endemic disease and biological attack. To minimize readiness impacts, field hygiene is enforced, and research on better medical countermeasures such as antibiotics and vaccines continues. However, there are no preventions or remedies for all military-relevant infectious diseases or biological agents. A deployable, streamlined, self-contained diagnostic and public health surveillance laboratory capability with a reach-back communication is critical to meeting global readiness challenges. Current deployable laboratory packages comprise primarily diagnostic or environmental sample testing capabilities. Discussion will focus on critical components needed to improve existing laboratory assets, and to facilitate deployment of small, specialized packages far forward. The ideal laboratory model described will become an essential tool for the Combatant or Incident Commander to maintain force projection in the expeditionary environment.

  2. What is the perception of biological risk by undergraduate nursing students?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno-Arroyo, Mª Carmen; Puig-Llobet, Montserrat; Falco-Pegueroles, Anna; Lluch-Canut, Maria Teresa; García, Irma Casas; Roldán-Merino, Juan

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Objective: to analyze undergraduate nursing students' perception of biological risk and its relationship with their prior practical training. Method: a descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted among undergraduate nursing students enrolled in clinical practice courses in the academic year 2013-2014 at the School of Nursing at the University of Barcelona. Variables: sociodemographic variables, employment, training, clinical experience and other variables related to the assessment of perceived biological risk were collected. Both a newly developed tool and the Dimensional Assessment of Risk Perception at the worker level scale (Escala de Evaluación Dimensional del Riesgo Percibido por el Trabajador, EDRP-T) were used. Statistical analysis: descriptive and univariate analysis were used to identify differences between the perception of biological risk of the EDRP-T scale items and sociodemographic variables. Results: students without prior practical training had weaker perceptions of biological risk compared to students with prior practical training (p=0.05 and p=0.04, respectively). Weaker perceptions of biological risk were found among students with prior work experience. Conclusion: practical training and work experience influence the perception of biological risk among nursing students. PMID:27384468

  3. Biological and Physical Space Research Laboratory 2002 Science Review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curreri, P. A. (Editor); Robinson, M. B. (Editor); Murphy, K. L. (Editor)

    2003-01-01

    With the International Space Station Program approaching core complete, our NASA Headquarters sponsor, the new Code U Enterprise, Biological and Physical Research, is shifting its research emphasis from purely fundamental microgravity and biological sciences to strategic research aimed at enabling human missions beyond Earth orbit. Although we anticipate supporting microgravity research on the ISS for some time to come, our laboratory has been vigorously engaged in developing these new strategic research areas.This Technical Memorandum documents the internal science research at our laboratory as presented in a review to Dr. Ann Whitaker, MSFC Science Director, in July 2002. These presentations have been revised and updated as appropriate for this report. It provides a snapshot of the internal science capability of our laboratory as an aid to other NASA organizations and the external scientific community.

  4. Professor Created On-line Biology Laboratory Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowman, Arthur W.

    2010-01-01

    This paper will share the creation, implementation, and modification of an online college level general biology laboratory course offered for non-science majors as a part of a General Education Curriculum. The ability of professors to develop quality online laboratories will address a growing need in Higher Education as more institutions combine course sections and look for suitable alternative course delivery formats due to declining departmental budgets requiring reductions in staffing, equipment, and supplies. Also, there is an equal or greater need for more professors to develop the ability to create online laboratory experiences because many of the currently available online laboratory course packages from publishers do not always adequately parallel on-campus laboratory courses, or are not as aligned with the companion lecture sections. From a variety of scientific simulation and animation web sites, professors can easily identify material that closely fit the specific needs of their courses, instructional environment, and students that they serve. All too often, on-campus laboratory courses in the sciences provide what are termed confirmation experiences that do NOT allow students to experience science as would be carried out by scientists. Creatively developed online laboratory experiences can often provide the type of authentic investigative experiences that are not possible on-campus due to the time constraints of a typical two-hour, once-per-week-meeting laboratory course. In addition, online laboratory courses can address issues related to the need for students to more easily complete missing laboratory assignments, and to have opportunities to extend introductory exercises into more advanced undertakings where a greater sense of scientific discovery can be experienced. Professors are strongly encourages to begin creating online laboratory exercises for their courses, and to consider issues regarding assessment, copyrights, and Intellectual Property

  5. Advancing Space Sciences through Undergraduate Research Experiences at UC Berkeley's Space Sciences Laboratory - a novel approach to undergraduate internships for first generation community college students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raftery, C. L.; Davis, H. B.; Peticolas, L. M.; Paglierani, R.

    2015-12-01

    The Space Sciences Laboratory at UC Berkeley launched an NSF-funded Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program in the summer of 2015. The "Advancing Space Sciences through Undergraduate Research Experiences" (ASSURE) program recruited heavily from local community colleges and universities, and provided a multi-tiered mentorship program for students in the fields of space science and engineering. The program was focussed on providing a supportive environment for 2nd and 3rd year undergraduates, many of whom were first generation and underrepresented students. This model provides three levels of mentorship support for the participating interns: 1) the primary research advisor provides academic and professional support. 2) The program coordinator, who meets with the interns multiple times per week, provides personal support and helps the interns to assimilate into the highly competitive environment of the research laboratory. 3) Returning undergraduate interns provided peer support and guidance to the new cohort of students. The impacts of this program on the first generation students and the research mentors, as well as the lessons learned will be discussed.

  6. The effect of graphic organizers on students' attitudes and academic performance in undergraduate general biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cleveland, Lacy

    High attrition among undergraduate Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) majors has led national and business leaders in the United States to call for both research and educational reform within the collegiate STEM classrooms. Included among suggestions for reform are ideas to improve retention of first-year students and to improve critical thinking and depth of knowledge, instead of covering large quantities of materials. Past research on graphic organizers suggest these tools assist students in learning information and facilitate conceptual and critical thinking. Despite their widespread use in high school science departments, collegiate humanities departments, and even medical schools, their use is considerably less prevalent in the undergraduate biology classroom. In addition to their lack of use, little research has been conducted on their academic benefits in the collegiate classroom. Based on national calls for improving retention among undergraduate STEM majors and research suggesting that academic success during an individual first major's related course highly determine if that individual will continue on in their intended major, the researcher of this dissertation chose to conduct research on an introductory general biology class. Using both quantitative and qualitative methods, the research in this dissertation examines the effectiveness of graphic organizers in promoting academic success and also examines their influence on student attitudes. This research is grounded in the theories of constructivism and cognitive load theory. Constructivism suggests that individuals must build their knowledge from their personal experiences, while the cognitive load theory recognizes the limited nature of one's working memory and suggests that instructional practices minimize cognitive overload. The results of this dissertation suggest that the use of graphic organizers in an undergraduate general biology classroom can increase students' academic

  7. Removal design report for the 108-F Biological Laboratory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1997-09-01

    Most of the 100-F facilities were deactivated with the reactor and have since been demolished. Of the dozen or so reactor-related structures, only the 105-F Reactor Building and the 108-F Biology Laboratory remain standing today. The 108-F Biology Laboratory was intended to be used as a facility for the mixing and addition of chemicals used in the treatment of the reactor cooling water. Shortly after F Reactor began operation, it was determined that the facility was not needed for this purpose. In 1949, the building was converted for use as a biological laboratory. In 1962, the lab was expanded by adding a three-story annex to the original four-story structure. The resulting lab had a floor area of approximately 2,883 m 2 (main building and annex) that operated until 1973. The building contained 47 laboratories, a number of small offices, a conference room, administrative section, lunch and locker rooms, and a heavily shielded, high-energy exposure cell. The purpose of this removal design report is to establish the methods of decontamination and decommissioning and the supporting functions associated with facility removal and disposal

  8. Removal design report for the 108-F Biological Laboratory

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1997-09-01

    Most of the 100-F facilities were deactivated with the reactor and have since been demolished. Of the dozen or so reactor-related structures, only the 105-F Reactor Building and the 108-F Biology Laboratory remain standing today. The 108-F Biology Laboratory was intended to be used as a facility for the mixing and addition of chemicals used in the treatment of the reactor cooling water. Shortly after F Reactor began operation, it was determined that the facility was not needed for this purpose. In 1949, the building was converted for use as a biological laboratory. In 1962, the lab was expanded by adding a three-story annex to the original four-story structure. The resulting lab had a floor area of approximately 2,883 m{sup 2} (main building and annex) that operated until 1973. The building contained 47 laboratories, a number of small offices, a conference room, administrative section, lunch and locker rooms, and a heavily shielded, high-energy exposure cell. The purpose of this removal design report is to establish the methods of decontamination and decommissioning and the supporting functions associated with facility removal and disposal.

  9. Laboratory Techniques in Geology: Embedding Analytical Methods into the Undergraduate Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baedke, S. J.; Johnson, E. A.; Kearns, L. E.; Mazza, S. E.; Gazel, E.

    2014-12-01

    Paid summer REU experiences successfully engage undergraduate students in research and encourage them to continue to graduate school and scientific careers. However these programs only accommodate a limited number of students due to funding constraints, faculty time commitments, and limited access to needed instrumentation. At JMU, the Department of Geology and Environmental Science has embedded undergraduate research into the curriculum. Each student fulfilling a BS in Geology or a BA in Earth Science completes 3 credits of research, including a 1-credit course on scientific communication, 2 credits of research or internship, followed by a presentation of that research. Our department has successfully acquired many analytical instruments and now has an XRD, SEM/EDS, FTIR, handheld Raman, AA, ion chromatograph, and an IRMS. To give as many students as possible an overview to the scientific uses and operation methods for these instruments, we revived a laboratory methods course that includes theory and practical use of instrumentation at JMU, plus XRF sample preparation and analysis training at Virginia Tech during a 1-day field trip. In addition to practical training, projects included analytical concepts such as evaluating analytical vs. natural uncertainty, determining error on multiple measurements, signal-to-noise ratio, and evaluating data quality. State funding through the 4-VA program helped pay for analytical supplies and support for students to complete research projects over the summer or during the next academic year using instrumentation from the course. This course exemplifies an alternative path to broadening participation in undergraduate research and creating stronger partnerships between PUI's and research universities.

  10. Improving Online Interactions: Lessons from an Online Anatomy Course with a Laboratory for Undergraduate Students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Attardi, Stefanie M; Barbeau, Michele L; Rogers, Kem A

    2018-03-01

    An online section of a face-to-face (F2F) undergraduate (bachelor's level) anatomy course with a prosection laboratory was offered in 2013-2014. Lectures for F2F students (353) were broadcast to online students (138) using Blackboard Collaborate (BBC) virtual classroom. Online laboratories were offered using BBC and three-dimensional (3D) anatomical computer models. This iteration of the course was modified from the previous year to improve online student-teacher and student-student interactions. Students were divided into laboratory groups that rotated through virtual breakout rooms, giving them the opportunity to interact with three instructors. The objectives were to assess student performance outcomes, perceptions of student-teacher and student-student interactions, methods of peer interaction, and helpfulness of the 3D computer models. Final grades were statistically identical between the online and F2F groups. There were strong, positive correlations between incoming grade average and final anatomy grade in both groups, suggesting prior academic performance, and not delivery format, predicts anatomy grades. Quantitative student perception surveys (273 F2F; 101 online) revealed that both groups agreed they were engaged by teachers, could interact socially with teachers and peers, and ask them questions in both the lecture and laboratory sessions, though agreement was significantly greater for the F2F students in most comparisons. The most common methods of peer communication were texting, Facebook, and meeting F2F. The perceived helpfulness of the 3D computer models improved from the previous year. While virtual breakout rooms can be used to adequately replace traditional prosection laboratories and improve interactions, they are not equivalent to F2F laboratories. Anat Sci Educ. © 2018 American Association of Anatomists. © 2018 American Association of Anatomists.

  11. Structural biology at York Structural Biology Laboratory; laboratory information management systems for structural genomics

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Dohnálek, Jan

    2005-01-01

    Roč. 12, č. 1 (2005), s. 3 ISSN 1211-5894. [Meeting of Structural Biologists /4./. 10.03.2005-12.03.2005, Nové Hrady] R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) 1K05008 Keywords : structural biology * LIMS * structural genomics Subject RIV: CD - Macromolecular Chemistry

  12. Measuring the spatial resolution of an optical system in an undergraduate optics laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leung, Calvin; Donnelly, T. D.

    2017-06-01

    Two methods of quantifying the spatial resolution of a camera are described, performed, and compared, with the objective of designing an imaging-system experiment for students in an undergraduate optics laboratory. With the goal of characterizing the resolution of a typical digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) camera, we motivate, introduce, and show agreement between traditional test-target contrast measurements and the technique of using Fourier analysis to obtain the modulation transfer function (MTF). The advantages and drawbacks of each method are compared. Finally, we explore the rich optical physics at work in the camera system by calculating the MTF as a function of wavelength and f-number. For example, we find that the Canon 40D demonstrates better spatial resolution at short wavelengths, in accordance with scalar diffraction theory, but is not diffraction-limited, being significantly affected by spherical aberration. The experiment and data analysis routines described here can be built and written in an undergraduate optics lab setting.

  13. Design and construction of a two-temperature preference behavioral assay for undergraduate neuroscience laboratories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daniels, Richard L; McKemy, David D

    2010-01-01

    Behavioral assays in the undergraduate neuroscience laboratory are useful for illustrating a variety of physiological concepts. An example is homeostatic temperature regulation (thermoregulation). Many model organisms, from flies to mice, regulate internal temperatures in part by moving to suitable climates (thermotaxis). A particularly reliable method of quantifying temperature-dependent thermotactic behaviors is the two-temperature preference behavioral assay. In this preparation, an organism is free to move between two temperature-controlled surfaces, thus revealing its preferred thermal environment. Here we present the design and construction of a two-temperature preference assay chamber. The device uses Peltier-based thermoelectric modules (TECs) for heating and cooling, and is capable of precision control of temperatures from -5ºC to 60ºC. Our approach can be easily adapted for use in a variety of physiological and behavioral assays that require precise temperature control over a wide range of temperatures.

  14. One-dimensional light localization with classical scatterers: An advanced undergraduate laboratory experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kemp, K. J.; Barker, S.; Guthrie, J.; Hagood, B.; Havey, M. D.

    2016-10-01

    The phenomenon of electronic wave localization through disorder remains an important area of fundamental and applied research. Localization of all wave phenomena, including light, is thought to exist in a restricted one-dimensional geometry. We present here a series of experiments to illustrate, using a straightforward experimental arrangement and approach, the localization of light in a quasi-one-dimensional physical system. In the experiments, reflected and transmitted light from a stack of glass slides of varying thickness reveals an Ohm's law type behavior for small thicknesses, and evolution to exponential decay of the transmitted power for larger thicknesses. For larger stacks of slides, a weak departure from one-dimensional behavior is also observed. The experiment and analysis of the results, showing many of the essential features of wave localization, is relatively straightforward, economical, and suitable for laboratory experiments at an undergraduate level.

  15. Vision and change in biology undergraduate education: Vision and change from the funding front.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holm, Bethany; Carter, Virginia Celeste; Woodin, Terry

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this short article is to (a) briefly summarize the findings of two important recent resources concerning the future of biology in the 21(st) century; one, Vision and Change, A Call to Action [AAAS, 2009. AAAS, Washington, DC], concerned with undergraduate education in biology, the other, A New Biology for the 21st Century [National Research Council, 2009. National Academies Press, Washington, DC], concerned with advances within the discipline itself; (b) urge you, the reader of BAMBED, to review the material on the Vision and Change website [AAAS, 2009. AAAS: Washington, DC] and then to think how you might change things at your own institution and within your courses, and; (c) make readers aware of the programs at the National Science Foundation (NSF) that might support change efforts, as well as refer you to efforts other funding agencies are making to help biology undergraduate education respond to the challenges and opportunities chronicled in these two reports. Although NSF funding opportunities are specifically available to US investigators, the recommendations of the two reports should be of interest to a wide spectrum of international researchers. Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Cross-disciplinary thermoregulation and sweat analysis laboratory experiences for undergraduate Chemistry and Exercise Science students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulligan, Gregory; Taylor, Nichole; Glen, Mary; Tomlin, Dona; Gaul, Catherine A

    2011-06-01

    Cross-disciplinary (CD) learning experiences benefit student understanding of concepts and curriculum by offering opportunities to explore topics from the perspectives of alternate fields of study. This report involves a qualitative evaluation of CD health sciences undergraduate laboratory experiences in which concepts and students from two distinct disciplines [chemistry (CHEM) and exercise physiology (EPHE)] combined to study exercise thermoregulation and sweat analysis. Twenty-eight senior BSc Kinesiology (EPHE) students and 42 senior BSc CHEM students participated as part of their mutually exclusive, respective courses. The effectiveness of this laboratory environment was evaluated qualitatively using written comments collected from all students as well as from formal focus groups conducted after the CD laboratory with a representative cohort from each class (n = 16 CHEM students and 9 EPHE students). An open coding strategy was used to analyze the data from written feedback and focus group transcripts. Coding topics were generated and used to develop five themes found to be consistent for both groups of students. These themes reflected the common student perceptions that the CD experience was valuable and that students enjoyed being able to apply academic concepts to practical situations as well as the opportunity to interact with students from another discipline of study. However, students also reported some challenges throughout this experience that stemmed from the combination of laboratory groups from different disciplines with limited modification to the design of the original, pre-CD, learning environments. The results indicate that this laboratory created an effective learning opportunity that fostered student interest and enthusiasm for learning. The findings also provide information that could inform subsequent design and implementation of similar CD experiences to enhance engagement of all students and improve instructor efficacy.

  17. The experimental teaching reform in biochemistry and molecular biology for undergraduate students in Peking University Health Science Center.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xiaohan; Sun, Luyang; Zhao, Ying; Yi, Xia; Zhu, Bin; Wang, Pu; Lin, Hong; Ni, Juhua

    2015-01-01

    Since 2010, second-year undergraduate students of an eight-year training program leading to a Doctor of Medicine degree or Doctor of Philosophy degree in Peking University Health Science Center (PKUHSC) have been required to enter the "Innovative talent training project." During that time, the students joined a research lab and participated in some original research work. There is a critical educational need to prepare these students for the increasing accessibility of research experience. The redesigned experimental curriculum of biochemistry and molecular biology was developed to fulfill such a requirement, which keeps two original biochemistry experiments (Gel filtration and Enzyme kinetics) and adds a new two-experiment component called "Analysis of anti-tumor drug induced apoptosis." The additional component, also known as the "project-oriented experiment" or the "comprehensive experiment," consists of Western blotting and a DNA laddering assay to assess the effects of etoposide (VP16) on the apoptosis signaling pathways. This reformed laboratory teaching system aims to enhance the participating students overall understanding of important biological research techniques and the instrumentation involved, and to foster a better understanding of the research process all within a classroom setting. Student feedback indicated that the updated curriculum helped them improve their operational and self-learning capability, and helped to increase their understanding of theoretical knowledge and actual research processes, which laid the groundwork for their future research work. © 2015 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  18. Does the Pedagogy for the Teaching of First Year Undergraduate Laboratory Practicals Still Meet the Needs of the Curriculum?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ann Hopper

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available This work examines the teaching approach for chemistry laboratory practicals for first year undergraduate students to determine if the underpinning pedagogical strategy meets the requirements for these students for the remainder of their undergraduate programme. This is based on the knowledge, skills, content and learning outcomes for undergraduate chemistry courses. This work aims to enhance the first year experience of chemistry education by facilitating greater student engagement and “deeper” learning of relevant content during practical laboratory experiences by focusing on the learners’ needs. During this research, a survey of undergraduate science students from 2nd, 3rd and 4th years was carried out to determine if first year chemistry practicals facilitated the development of skills needed in further science education. It concluded that overall there was a positive response to first year laboratory practicals, that students engaged with them and felt they assisted with skills required for subsequent years of undergraduate study. Participants were most satisfied with the organic chemistry experiments while, for the physical/analytical chemistry experiments, the results obtained reiterated difficulties with mathematical calculations that are accepted as an issue in other aspects of third level STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics subjects. As a result of these findings, modifications that were made to the laboratory practical element included a pre-populated workbook supplied to the students and the introduction of pre-laboratory questions to be completed by each student before each session to reduce cognitive load and improve the students’ knowledge and understanding of 2 the purpose and potential outcomes of each laboratory practical. Also, the total first year chemistry syllabus was re-organised, as was the scheduling of the experiments to synchronise the theory lectures with the experiments as far as was

  19. Six classroom exercises to teach natural selection to undergraduate biology students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalinowski, Steven T; Leonard, Mary J; Andrews, Tessa M; Litt, Andrea R

    2013-01-01

    Students in introductory biology courses frequently have misconceptions regarding natural selection. In this paper, we describe six activities that biology instructors can use to teach undergraduate students in introductory biology courses how natural selection causes evolution. These activities begin with a lesson introducing students to natural selection and also include discussions on sexual selection, molecular evolution, evolution of complex traits, and the evolution of behavior. The set of six topics gives students the opportunity to see how natural selection operates in a variety of contexts. Pre- and postinstruction testing showed students' understanding of natural selection increased substantially after completing this series of learning activities. Testing throughout this unit showed steadily increasing student understanding, and surveys indicated students enjoyed the activities.

  20. Fitting It All In: Adapting a Green Chemistry Extraction Experiment for Inclusion in an Undergraduate Analytical Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buckley, Heather L.; Beck, Annelise R.; Mulvihill, Martin J.; Douskey, Michelle C.

    2013-01-01

    Several principles of green chemistry are introduced through this experiment designed for use in the undergraduate analytical chemistry laboratory. An established experiment of liquid CO2 extraction of D-limonene has been adapted to include a quantitative analysis by gas chromatography. This facilitates drop-in incorporation of an exciting…

  1. Ab Initio Determinations of Photoelectron Spectra Including Vibronic Features: An Upper-Level Undergraduate Physical Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lord, Richard L.; Davis, Lisa; Millam, Evan L.; Brown, Eric; Offerman, Chad; Wray, Paul; Green, Susan M. E.

    2008-01-01

    We present a first-principles determination of the photoelectron spectra of water and hypochlorous acid as a laboratory exercise accessible to students in an undergraduate physical chemistry course. This paper demonstrates the robustness and user-friendliness of software developed for the Franck-Condon factor calculation. While the calculator is…

  2. Preparation of (+)-α-terpineol from (+)-limonene: monoterpenes with pleasant odor in a project for undergraduate organic chemistry laboratory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Baptistella, Lucia Helena Brito; Imamura, Paulo Mitsuo; Melo, Leandro Vilela de; Castello, Claudio

    2009-01-01

    A synthesis of (+)-α-terpineol from (+)-limonene was proposed as a project for undergraduate organic laboratory course. Terpineol is a useful flavor and fragrance compound, and several aspects of this preparation are suited for experimental organic classes, including basic techniques for extraction and analyses of essential oils, different reaction types and the possibility of a high degree of student interest. (author)

  3. Red Seaweed Enzyme-Catalyzed Bromination of Bromophenol Red: An Inquiry-Based Kinetics Laboratory Experiment for Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jittam, Piyachat; Boonsiri, Patcharee; Promptmas, Chamras; Sriwattanarothai, Namkang; Archavarungson, Nattinee; Ruenwongsa, Pintip; Panijpan, Bhinyo

    2009-01-01

    Haloperoxidase enzymes are of interest for basic and applied bioscientists because of their increasing importance in pharmaceutical industry and environmental cleanups. In a guided inquiry-based laboratory experiment for life-science, agricultural science, and health science undergraduates, the bromoperoxidase from a red seaweed was used to…

  4. Nickel-Catalyzed Suzuki-Miyaura Cross-Coupling in a Green Alcohol Solvent for an Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hie, Liana; Chang, Jonah J.; Garg, Neil K.

    2015-01-01

    A modern undergraduate organic chemistry laboratory experiment involving the Suzuki-Miyaura coupling is reported. Although Suzuki-Miyaura couplings typically employ palladium catalysts in environmentally harmful solvents, this experiment features the use of inexpensive nickel catalysis, in addition to a "green" alcohol solvent. The…

  5. The Cyclohexanol Cycle and Synthesis of Nylon 6,6: Green Chemistry in the Undergraduate Organic Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dintzner, Matthew R.; Kinzie, Charles R.; Pulkrabek, Kimberly; Arena, Anthony F.

    2012-01-01

    A one-term synthesis project that incorporates many of the principles of green chemistry is presented for the undergraduate organic laboratory. In this multistep scheme of reactions, students react, recycle, and ultimately convert cyclohexanol to nylon 6,6. The individual reactions in the project employ environmentally friendly methodologies, and…

  6. Oxidation of Borneol to Camphor Using Oxone and Catalytic Sodium Chloride: A Green Experiment for the Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lang, Patrick T.; Harned, Andrew M.; Wissinger, Jane E.

    2011-01-01

    A new green oxidation procedure was developed for the undergraduate organic teaching laboratories using Oxone and a catalytic quantity of sodium chloride for the conversion of borneol to camphor. This simple 1 h, room temperature reaction afforded high quality and yield of product, was environmentally friendly, and produced negligible quantities…

  7. HPLC of the Polypeptides in a Hydrolyzate of Egg-White Lysozyme. An Experiment for the Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richardson, W. S., III; Burns, L.

    1988-01-01

    Describes a simple high-performance liquid chromatography experiment for undergraduate biochemistry laboratories. The experiment illustrates the separation of polypeptides by a step gradient elution using a single pump instrument with no gradient attachments. Discusses instrumentation, analysis, a sample preparation, and results. (CW)

  8. Controlled Synthesis of Nanomaterials at the Undergraduate Laboratory: Cu(OH)[subscript 2] and CuO Nanowires

    Science.gov (United States)

    da Silva, Anderson G. M.; Rodrigues, Thenner S.; Parussulo, Andre´ L. A.; Candido, Eduardo G.; Geonmonond, Rafael S.; Brito, Hermi F.; Toma, Henrique E.; Camargo, Pedro H. C.

    2017-01-01

    Undergraduate-level laboratory experiments that involve the synthesis of nanomaterials with well-defined/controlled shapes are very attractive under the umbrella of nanotechnology education. Herein we describe a low-cost and facile experiment for the synthesis of Cu(OH)[subscript 2] and CuO nanowires comprising three main parts: (i) synthesis of…

  9. Enhancing Hispanic Minority Undergraduates' Botany Laboratory Experiences: Implementation of an Inquiry-Based Plant Tissue Culture Module Exercise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siritunga, Dimuth; Navas, Vivian; Diffoot, Nanette

    2012-01-01

    Early involvement of students in hands-on research experiences are known to demystify research and promote the pursuit of careers in science. But in large enrollment departments such opportunities for undergraduates to participate in research are rare. To counteract such lack of opportunities, inquiry-based laboratory module in plant tissue…

  10. Acid-Catalyzed Preparation of Biodiesel from Waste Vegetable Oil: An Experiment for the Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bladt, Don; Murray, Steve; Gitch, Brittany; Trout, Haylee; Liberko, Charles

    2011-01-01

    This undergraduate organic laboratory exercise involves the sulfuric acid-catalyzed conversion of waste vegetable oil into biodiesel. The acid-catalyzed method, although inherently slower than the base-catalyzed methods, does not suffer from the loss of product or the creation of emulsion producing soap that plagues the base-catalyzed methods when…

  11. Assembly of a Modular Fluorimeter and Associated Software: Using LabVIEW in an Advanced Undergraduate Analytical Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Algar, W. Russ; Massey, Melissa; Krull, Ulrich J.

    2009-01-01

    A laboratory activity for an upper-level undergraduate course in instrumental analysis has been created around LabVIEW. Students learn rudimentary programming and interfacing skills during the construction of a fluorimeter assembled from common modular components. The fluorimeter consists of an inexpensive data acquisition module, LED light…

  12. Synthesis of 10-Ethyl Flavin: A Multistep Synthesis Organic Chemistry Laboratory Experiment for Upper-Division Undergraduate Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sichula, Vincent A.

    2015-01-01

    A multistep synthesis of 10-ethyl flavin was developed as an organic chemistry laboratory experiment for upper-division undergraduate students. Students synthesize 10-ethyl flavin as a bright yellow solid via a five-step sequence. The experiment introduces students to various hands-on experimental organic synthetic techniques, such as column…

  13. Oxorhenium Complexes for Catalytic Hydrosilylation and Hydrolytic Hydrogen Production: A Multiweek Advanced Laboratory Experiment for Undergraduate Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ison, A.; Ison, E. A.; Perry, C. M.

    2017-01-01

    An effective way of teaching undergraduates a full complement of research skills is through a multiweek advanced laboratory experiment. Here we outline a comprehensive set of experiments adapted from current primary literature focusing on organic and inorganic synthesis, catalysis, reactivity, and reaction kinetics. The catalyst,…

  14. Nickel-Catalyzed Suzuki–Miyaura Cross-Coupling in a Green Alcohol Solvent for an Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory

    OpenAIRE

    Hie, Liana; Chang, Jonah J.; Garg, Neil K.

    2014-01-01

    A modern undergraduate organic chemistry laboratory experiment involving the Suzuki–Miyaura coupling is reported. Although Suzuki–Miyaura couplings typically employ palladium catalysts in environmentally harmful solvents, this experiment features the use of inexpensive nickel catalysis, in addition to a “green” alcohol solvent. The experiment employs heterocyclic substrates, which are important pharmaceutical building blocks. Thus, this laboratory procedure exposes students to a variety of co...

  15. Gene amplification by PCR and subcloning into a GFP-fusion plasmid expression vector as a molecular biology laboratory course*.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bornhorst, Joshua A; Deibel, Michael A; Mulnix, Amy B

    2004-05-01

    A novel experimental sequence for the advanced undergraduate laboratory course has been developed at Earlham College. Utilizing recent improvements in molecular techniques for a time-sensitive environment, undergraduates were able to create a chimera of a selected gene and green fluorescent protein (GFP) in a bacterial expression plasmid over the course of a single semester in a weekly 3-h laboratory period. Students designed PCR primers for amplification of the selected gene using computational DNA sequence analysis tools. During the experimental portion of the course, students amplified and ligated the target DNA into a commercially available GFP expression vector. Following transformation of the ligation product, plasmids were harvested from the resulting bacterial colonies and were analyzed by restriction digestion to confirm the creation of the chimeric GFP-DNA. This course gave students valuable experience with commonly used molecular techniques in an authentic research project. In addition, students gained experience with experimental design and execution. The techniques presented here are flexible and can be generalized for use with almost any DNA sequence and expression vector. This series also serves as an example of how faculty can adapt their ongoing research projects to the undergraduate laboratory. Copyright © 2004 International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  16. Integration of physics and biology: synergistic undergraduate education for the 21st century.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodin, Terry; Vasaly, Helen; McBride, Duncan; White, Gary

    2013-06-01

    This is an exciting time to be a biologist. The advances in our field and the many opportunities to expand our horizons through interaction with other disciplines are intellectually stimulating. This is as true for people tasked with helping the field move forward through support of research and education projects that serve the nation's needs as for those carrying out that research and educating the next generation of biologists. So, it is a pleasure to contribute to this edition of CBE-Life Sciences Education. This column will cover three aspects of the interactions of physics and biology as seen from the viewpoint of four members of the Division of Undergraduate Education of the National Science Foundation. The first section places the material to follow in context. The second reviews some of the many interdisciplinary physics-biology projects we support. The third highlights mechanisms available for supporting new physics-biology undergraduate education projects based on ideas that arise, focusing on those needing and warranting outside support to come to fruition.

  17. Examining the Role of Leadership in an Undergraduate Biology Institutional Reform Initiative

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matz, Rebecca L.; Jardeleza, Sarah E.

    2016-01-01

    Undergraduate science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education reform continues to be a national priority. We studied a reform process in undergraduate biology at a research-intensive university to explore what leadership issues arose in implementation of the initiative when characterized with a descriptive case study method. The data were drawn from transcripts of meetings that occurred over the first 2 years of the reform process. Two literature-based models of change were used as lenses through which to view the data. We find that easing the burden of an undergraduate education reform initiative on faculty through articulating clear outcomes, developing shared vision across stakeholders on how to achieve those outcomes, providing appropriate reward systems, and ensuring faculty have ample opportunity to influence the initiative all appear to increase the success of reform. The two literature-based models were assessed, and an extended model of change is presented that moves from change in STEM instructional strategies to STEM organizational change strategies. These lessons may be transferable to other institutions engaging in education reform. PMID:27856545

  18. Science Café Course: An Innovative Means of Improving Communication Skills of Undergraduate Biology Majors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Goldina

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available To help bridge the increasing gap between scientists and the public, we developed an innovative two-semester course, called Science Café. In this course undergraduate biology majors learn to develop communication skills to be better able to explain science concepts and current developments in science to non-scientists. Students develop and host outreach events on various topics relevant to the community, thereby increasing interactions between budding scientists and the public. Such a Science Cafe course emphasizes development of science communication skills early, at the undergraduate level and empowers students to use their science knowledge in every day interactions with the public to increase science literacy, get involved in the local community and engage the public in a dialogue on various pressing science issues. We believe that undergraduate science majors can be great ambassadors for science and are often overlooked since many aspire to go on to medical/veterinary/pharmacy schools. However, science communication skills are especially important for these types of students because when they become healthcare professionals, they will interact with the public as part of their everyday jobs and can thus be great representatives for the field.

  19. Azeotropic Preparation of a "C"-Phenyl "N"-Aryl Imine: An Introductory Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silverberg, Lee J.; Coyle, David J.; Cannon, Kevin C.; Mathers, Robert T.; Richards, Jeffrey A.; Tierney, John

    2016-01-01

    Imines are important in biological chemistry and as intermediates in organic synthesis. An experiment for introductory undergraduate organic chemistry is presented in which benzaldehyde was condensed with "p"-methoxyaniline in toluene to give 4-methoxy-"N"-(phenylmethylene)benzenamine. Water was removed by azeotropic…

  20. Immersing Undergraduate Students in the Research Experience: A Practical Laboratory Module on Molecular Cloning of Microbial Genes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jack T. H.; Schembri, Mark A.; Ramakrishna, Mathitha; Sagulenko, Evgeny; Fuerst, John A.

    2012-01-01

    Molecular cloning skills are an essential component of biological research, yet students often do not receive this training during their undergraduate studies. This can be attributed to the complexities of the cloning process, which may require many weeks of progressive design and experimentation. To address this issue, we incorporated an…

  1. Exploring the MACH Model's Potential as a Metacognitive Tool to Help Undergraduate Students Monitor Their Explanations of Biological Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trujillo, Caleb M.; Anderson, Trevor R.; Pelaez, Nancy J.

    2016-01-01

    When undergraduate biology students learn to explain biological mechanisms, they face many challenges and may overestimate their understanding of living systems. Previously, we developed the MACH model of four components used by expert biologists to explain mechanisms: Methods, Analogies, Context, and How. This study explores the implementation of…

  2. Biology of Dermacentor marginatus (Acari: Ixodidae under laboratory conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Mehdi Darvishi

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To investigate and survey the biology of Dermacentor marginatus (D. marginatus under laboratory conditions. Methods: In this investigation, D. marginatus adult ticks were collected from sheep in Semnan province. Then various developmental stages of D. marginatus including larvae, nymphs and adult males and females under laboratory condition were bred and their biology was scrutinized. Results: The requisite time to complete the life cycle of D. marginatus under controlled laboratory conditions for larvae (26 °C, 75% relative humidity and nymph (26 °C, 95% relative humidity moulting, was on average 92 d (range 75-104 d, including preoviposition and egg incubation (22.5 d, larvae incubation (20.5 d, nymphal stage (28 d along with male maturation (21 d. The index of conversion efficiency and the index of reproduction efficiency in females were 0.397 and 8.300, respectively. Conclusions: Although in this investigation, there was no meaningful correlation between preoviposition period and the weight of female ticks which were laid successfully. The significant linear relationship was fully observed between the weight of engorged female of D. marginatus and the number of eggs laid. The mean of preoviposition period from 5.4 d in autumn to 34.2 d in spring increased. The minimum weight of ticks with laying capacity was 69 mg and lighter ticks (21 mg either did not lay or if they did their eggs did not hatch.

  3. Nickel-Catalyzed Suzuki-Miyaura Cross-Coupling in a Green Alcohol Solvent for an Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hie, Liana; Chang, Jonah J; Garg, Neil K

    2015-03-10

    A modern undergraduate organic chemistry laboratory experiment involving the Suzuki-Miyaura coupling is reported. Although Suzuki-Miyaura couplings typically employ palladium catalysts in environmentally harmful solvents, this experiment features the use of inexpensive nickel catalysis, in addition to a "green" alcohol solvent. The experiment employs heterocyclic substrates, which are important pharmaceutical building blocks. Thus, this laboratory procedure exposes students to a variety of contemporary topics in organic chemistry, including transition metal-catalyzed cross-couplings, green chemistry, and the importance of heterocycles in drug discovery, none of which are well represented in typical undergraduate organic chemistry curricula. The experimental protocol uses commercially available reagents and is useful in both organic and inorganic instructional laboratories.

  4. Do Biology Students Really Hate Math? Empirical Insights into Undergraduate Life Science Majors' Emotions about Mathematics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wachsmuth, Lucas P; Runyon, Christopher R; Drake, John M; Dolan, Erin L

    2017-01-01

    Undergraduate life science majors are reputed to have negative emotions toward mathematics, yet little empirical evidence supports this. We sought to compare emotions of majors in the life sciences versus other natural sciences and math. We adapted the Attitudes toward the Subject of Chemistry Inventory to create an Attitudes toward the Subject of Mathematics Inventory (ASMI). We collected data from 359 science and math majors at two research universities and conducted a series of statistical tests that indicated that four AMSI items comprised a reasonable measure of students' emotional satisfaction with math. We then compared life science and non-life science majors and found that major had a small to moderate relationship with students' responses. Gender also had a small relationship with students' responses, while students' race, ethnicity, and year in school had no observable relationship. Using latent profile analysis, we identified three groups-students who were emotionally satisfied with math, emotionally dissatisfied with math, and neutral. These results and the emotional satisfaction with math scale should be useful for identifying differences in other undergraduate populations, determining the malleability of undergraduates' emotional satisfaction with math, and testing effects of interventions aimed at improving life science majors' attitudes toward math. © 2017 L.P. Wachsmuth et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2017 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  5. [Hygiene and security management in medical biology laboratory].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vinner, E; Odou, M F; Fovet, B; Ghnassia, J C

    2013-06-01

    Risk management in Medical Biology Laboratory (MBL) which includes hygiene and waste management, is an integrated process to the whole MBL organisation. It is composed of three stages: risks factors identification, grading and prioritization, and their evaluation in the system. From the legislation and NF EN ISO 15189 standard's requirements viewpoint, prevention and protection actions to implement are described, at premises level, but also at work station environment's one (human resources and equipments) towards biological, chemical, linked to gas, to ionizing or non ionizing radiations and fire riks, in order not to compromise patients safety, employees safety, and quality results. Then, although NF EN 15189 standard only enacts requirements in terms of prevention, curative actions after established blood or chemical exposure accident are defined.

  6. Features of Knowledge Building in Biology: Understanding Undergraduate Students’ Ideas about Molecular Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Southard, Katelyn; Wince, Tyler; Meddleton, Shanice; Bolger, Molly S.

    2016-01-01

    Research has suggested that teaching and learning in molecular and cellular biology (MCB) is difficult. We used a new lens to understand undergraduate reasoning about molecular mechanisms: the knowledge-integration approach to conceptual change. Knowledge integration is the dynamic process by which learners acquire new ideas, develop connections between ideas, and reorganize and restructure prior knowledge. Semistructured, clinical think-aloud interviews were conducted with introductory and upper-division MCB students. Interviews included a written conceptual assessment, a concept-mapping activity, and an opportunity to explain the biomechanisms of DNA replication, transcription, and translation. Student reasoning patterns were explored through mixed-method analyses. Results suggested that students must sort mechanistic entities into appropriate mental categories that reflect the nature of MCB mechanisms and that conflation between these categories is common. We also showed how connections between molecular mechanisms and their biological roles are part of building an integrated knowledge network as students develop expertise. We observed differences in the nature of connections between ideas related to different forms of reasoning. Finally, we provide a tentative model for MCB knowledge integration and suggest its implications for undergraduate learning. PMID:26931398

  7. Analysis of a SNP linked to lactase persistence: An exercise for teaching molecular biology techniques to undergraduates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schultheis, Patrick J; Bowling, Bethany V

    2011-01-01

    Recent experimental evidence indicates that the ability of adults to tolerate milk, cheese, and other lactose-containing dairy products is an autosomal dominant trait that co-evolved with dairy farming in Central Europe about 7,500 years ago. Among persons of European descent, this trait is strongly associated with a C to T substitution at a polymorphic site 13,910 bp upstream of the lactase gene. This mutation results in the persistent expression of lactase into adulthood enabling individuals carrying a T(-13,910) allele to digest lactose as adults. In this report, we describe a laboratory exercise for an undergraduate molecular biology course in which students determine their own genotype at the -13,910 polymorphic site and correlate this with their ability to tolerate dairy products. The exercise is used as a tool to teach basic molecular biology procedures such as agarose gel electrophoresis, PCR1, and DNA sequencing. Students are actively engaged in the learning process, not only by analyzing their own DNA but also by applying their knowledge and skills to answer an authentic question. The exercise is also integrated with lecture material on the control of gene expression at the transcriptional level, in particular, how transcription factors can influence the activity of a promoter by binding to cis-acting DNA regulatory elements located within the proximal promoter of a gene or distant enhancer regions. Copyright © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Features of Knowledge Building in Biology: Understanding Undergraduate Students' Ideas about Molecular Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Southard, Katelyn; Wince, Tyler; Meddleton, Shanice; Bolger, Molly S

    2016-01-01

    Research has suggested that teaching and learning in molecular and cellular biology (MCB) is difficult. We used a new lens to understand undergraduate reasoning about molecular mechanisms: the knowledge-integration approach to conceptual change. Knowledge integration is the dynamic process by which learners acquire new ideas, develop connections between ideas, and reorganize and restructure prior knowledge. Semistructured, clinical think-aloud interviews were conducted with introductory and upper-division MCB students. Interviews included a written conceptual assessment, a concept-mapping activity, and an opportunity to explain the biomechanisms of DNA replication, transcription, and translation. Student reasoning patterns were explored through mixed-method analyses. Results suggested that students must sort mechanistic entities into appropriate mental categories that reflect the nature of MCB mechanisms and that conflation between these categories is common. We also showed how connections between molecular mechanisms and their biological roles are part of building an integrated knowledge network as students develop expertise. We observed differences in the nature of connections between ideas related to different forms of reasoning. Finally, we provide a tentative model for MCB knowledge integration and suggest its implications for undergraduate learning. © 2016 K. Southard et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  9. [A Perspective on Innovation for Efficient Medical Practice in View of Undergraduate and Postgraduate Education and Training in Laboratory Medicine].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawai, Tadashi

    2015-10-01

    Continuous advances in medical laboratory technology have driven major changes in the practice of laboratory medicine over the past two decades. The importance of the overall quality of a medical laboratory has been ever-increasing in order to improve and ensure the quality and safety of clinical practice by physicians in any type of medical facility. Laboratory physicians and professional staff should challenge themselves more than ever in various ways to cooperate and contribute with practicing physicians for the appropriate utilization of laboratory testing. This will certainly lead to a decrease in inappropriate or unnecessary laboratory testing, resulting in reducing medical costs. In addition, not only postgraduate, but also undergraduate medical education/training systems must be markedly innovated, considering recent rapid progress in electronic information and communication technologies.

  10. Biological aspects of Hylesia metapyrrha (Lepidoptera; Saturniidae; Hemileucinae, in laboratory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Specht

    Full Text Available The aim of this work was to study biological aspects and the life cycle of Hylesia Metapyrrha in a laboratory. Laboratorial breeding was made at 25 ± 1 °C, 70 ± 10% UR and 14 hours of photophase, feeding the larvae with guava leaves (Psidium guayava L. - Myrtaceae. Time was evaluated on the days of all the development stages; morphometry was evaluated in millimeters and the pupa’s mass in grams. The eggs were disposed in groups and covered by urticating abdominal hair. The incubation period lasted 52 days. The larvae, with gregarious habits, presented background black coloration, yellowish scoli and two orange longitudinal lines above and below the spiracles, during the development which lasted an average period of 74.59 days and went through seven instars. The pre-pupa and the pupa stages lasted on average 8.82 and 50.56 days, respectively; the female pupae presented a duration, weight and size which was significantly bigger. The adult stage lasted on average 5.50 days with periods of pre, post and oviposition of 2.30, 1.90 and 1.00 days, respectively. This study broadens the knowledge of the immature stages, biological, morphological and behavioral aspects, until then restricted to the morphology and to registers of the occurrence of the adult forms.

  11. Developing a new experimental system for an undergraduate laboratory exercise to teach theories of visuomotor learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasuga, Shoko; Ushiba, Junichi

    2014-01-01

    Humans have a flexible motor ability to adapt their movements to changes in the internal/external environment. For example, using arm-reaching tasks, a number of studies experimentally showed that participants adapt to a novel visuomotor environment. These results helped develop computational models of motor learning implemented in the central nervous system. Despite the importance of such experimental paradigms for exploring the mechanisms of motor learning, because of the cost and preparation time, most students are unable to participate in such experiments. Therefore, in the current study, to help students better understand motor learning theories, we developed a simple finger-reaching experimental system using commonly used laptop PC components with an open-source programming language (Processing Motor Learning Toolkit: PMLT). We found that compared to a commercially available robotic arm-reaching device, our PMLT accomplished similar learning goals (difference in the error reduction between the devices, P = 0.10). In addition, consistent with previous reports from visuomotor learning studies, the participants showed after-effects indicating an adaptation of the motor learning system. The results suggest that PMLT can serve as a new experimental system for an undergraduate laboratory exercise of motor learning theories with minimal time and cost for instructors.

  12. Structured inquiry-based learning: Drosophila GAL4 enhancer trap characterization in an undergraduate laboratory course.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher R Dunne

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available We have developed and tested two linked but separable structured inquiry exercises using a set of Drosophila melanogaster GAL4 enhancer trap strains for an upper-level undergraduate laboratory methods course at Bucknell University. In the first, students learn to perform inverse PCR to identify the genomic location of the GAL4 insertion, using FlyBase to identify flanking sequences and the primary literature to synthesize current knowledge regarding the nearest gene. In the second, we cross each GAL4 strain to a UAS-CD8-GFP reporter strain, and students perform whole mount CNS dissection, immunohistochemistry, confocal imaging, and analysis of developmental expression patterns. We have found these exercises to be very effective in teaching the uses and limitations of PCR and antibody-based techniques as well as critical reading of the primary literature and scientific writing. Students appreciate the opportunity to apply what they learn by generating novel data of use to the wider research community.

  13. Structured Inquiry-Based Learning: Drosophila GAL4 Enhancer Trap Characterization in an Undergraduate Laboratory Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunne, Christopher R.; Cillo, Anthony R.; Glick, Danielle R.; John, Katherine; Johnson, Cody; Kanwal, Jaspinder; Malik, Brian T.; Mammano, Kristina; Petrovic, Stefan; Pfister, William; Rascoe, Alexander S.; Schrom, Diane; Shapiro, Scott; Simkins, Jeffrey W.; Strauss, David; Talai, Rene; Tomtishen, John P.; Vargas, Josephine; Veloz, Tony; Vogler, Thomas O.; Clenshaw, Michael E.; Gordon-Hamm, Devin T.; Lee, Kathryn L.; Marin, Elizabeth C.

    2014-01-01

    We have developed and tested two linked but separable structured inquiry exercises using a set of Drosophila melanogaster GAL4 enhancer trap strains for an upper-level undergraduate laboratory methods course at Bucknell University. In the first, students learn to perform inverse PCR to identify the genomic location of the GAL4 insertion, using FlyBase to identify flanking sequences and the primary literature to synthesize current knowledge regarding the nearest gene. In the second, we cross each GAL4 strain to a UAS-CD8-GFP reporter strain, and students perform whole mount CNS dissection, immunohistochemistry, confocal imaging, and analysis of developmental expression patterns. We have found these exercises to be very effective in teaching the uses and limitations of PCR and antibody-based techniques as well as critical reading of the primary literature and scientific writing. Students appreciate the opportunity to apply what they learn by generating novel data of use to the wider research community. PMID:25549104

  14. Adsorption laboratory experiment for undergraduate chemical engineering: Introducing kinetic, equilibrium and thermodynamic concepts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muryanto, S.; Djatmiko Hadi, S.

    2016-11-01

    Adsorption laboratory experiment for undergraduate chemical engineering program is discussed. The experiment demonstrated adsorption of copper ions commonly found in wastewater using bio-sorbent, i.e. agricultural wastes. The adsorption was performed in a batch mode under various parameters: adsorption time (up to 120 min), initial pH (2 to 6), adsorbent dose (2.0 to 12.0 g L-1), adsorbent size (50 to 170 mesh), initial Cu2+ concentration (25 to 100 ppm) and temperatures (room temp to 40°C). The equilibrium and kinetic data of the experiments were calculated using the two commonly used isotherms: Langmuir and Lagergren pseudo-first-order kinetics. The maximum adsorption capacity for Cu2+ was found as 94.34 mg g-1. Thermodynamically, the adsorption process was spontaneous and endothermic. The calculated activation energy for the adsorption was observed as high as 127.94 kJ mol-1. Pedagogically, the experiment was assumed to be important in increasing student understanding of kinetic, equilibrium and thermodynamic concepts.

  15. State of laboratory manual instruction in California community college introductory (non-majors) biology laboratory instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Priest, Michelle

    College students must complete a life science course prior to graduation for a bachelor's degree. Generally, the course has lecture and laboratory components. It is in the laboratory where there are exceptional opportunities for exploration, challenge and application of the material learned. Optimally, this would utilize the best of inquiry based approaches. Most community colleges are using a home-grown or self written laboratory manual for the direction of work in the laboratory period. Little was known about the motivation, development and adaptation of use. It was also not known about the future of the laboratory manuals in light of the recent learning reform in California Community Colleges, Student Learning Outcomes. Extensive interviews were conducted with laboratory manual authors to determine the motivation, process of development, who was involved and learning framework used in the creation of the manuals. It was further asked of manual authors their ideas about the future of the manual, the development of staff and faculty and finally, the role Student Learning Outcomes would play in the manual. Science faculty currently teaching the non-majors biology laboratories for at least two semesters were surveyed on-line about actual practice of the manual, assessment, manual flexibility, faculty training and incorporation of Student Learning Outcomes. Finally, an evaluation of the laboratory manual was done using an established Laboratory Task Analysis Instrument. Laboratory manuals were evaluated on a variety of categories to determine the level of inquiry instruction done by students in the laboratory section. The results were that the development of homegrown laboratory manuals was done by community colleges in the Los Angeles and Orange Counties in an effort to minimize the cost of the manual to the students, to utilize all the exercises in a particular lab and to effectively utilize the materials already owned by the department. Further, schools wanted to

  16. Facilitating problem based learning in an online biology laboratory course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wesolowski, Meredith C.

    Online instruction offers many benefits to underserved populations in higher education, particularly increased access. However, incorporation of preferred pedagogical methods, particularly those involving student collaboration, can be more difficult to facilitate in online courses due to geographic separation. In the area of laboratory science education, there is a strong argument for use of constructivist, collaborative pedagogy to promote many facets of student learning. This EPP describes the process used to develop two problem based learning (PBL) laboratory activities based on recommendations found in the literature, their incorporation into an online biology laboratory science course (BIO101) and their impact on student achievement and critical thinking skills. Data analysis revealed a high level of achievement within the study semester. In addition, use of synchronous group discussions as part of the PBL framework resulted in a broad range of discussions reflective of successful problem solving interactions described in the literature. Together, these suggest a observed benefit from incorporation of PBL in this online course. In addition, specific areas for modification were identified as potential future improvements.

  17. Using a Module-Based Laboratory to Incorporate Inquiry into a Large Cell Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, David R.; Miskowski, Jennifer A.

    2005-01-01

    Because cell biology has rapidly increased in breadth and depth, instructors are challenged not only to provide undergraduate science students with a strong, up-to-date foundation of knowledge, but also to engage them in the scientific process. To these ends, revision of the Cell Biology Lab course at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse was…

  18. Peer Learning and Support of Technology in an Undergraduate Biology Course to Enhance Deep Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsaushu, Masha; Tal, Tali; Sagy, Ornit; Kali, Yael; Gepstein, Shimon; Zilberstein, Dan

    2012-01-01

    This study offers an innovative and sustainable instructional model for an introductory undergraduate course. The model was gradually implemented during 3 yr in a research university in a large-lecture biology course that enrolled biology majors and nonmajors. It gives priority to sources not used enough to enhance active learning in higher education: technology and the students themselves. Most of the lectures were replaced with continuous individual learning and 1-mo group learning of one topic, both supported by an interactive online tutorial. Assessment included open-ended complex questions requiring higher-order thinking skills that were added to the traditional multiple-choice (MC) exam. Analysis of students’ outcomes indicates no significant difference among the three intervention versions in the MC questions of the exam, while students who took part in active-learning groups at the advanced version of the model had significantly higher scores in the more demanding open-ended questions compared with their counterparts. We believe that social-constructivist learning of one topic during 1 mo has significantly contributed to student deep learning across topics. It developed a biological discourse, which is more typical to advanced stages of learning biology, and changed the image of instructors from “knowledge transmitters” to “role model scientists.” PMID:23222836

  19. Peer learning and support of technology in an undergraduate biology course to enhance deep learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsaushu, Masha; Tal, Tali; Sagy, Ornit; Kali, Yael; Gepstein, Shimon; Zilberstein, Dan

    2012-01-01

    This study offers an innovative and sustainable instructional model for an introductory undergraduate course. The model was gradually implemented during 3 yr in a research university in a large-lecture biology course that enrolled biology majors and nonmajors. It gives priority to sources not used enough to enhance active learning in higher education: technology and the students themselves. Most of the lectures were replaced with continuous individual learning and 1-mo group learning of one topic, both supported by an interactive online tutorial. Assessment included open-ended complex questions requiring higher-order thinking skills that were added to the traditional multiple-choice (MC) exam. Analysis of students' outcomes indicates no significant difference among the three intervention versions in the MC questions of the exam, while students who took part in active-learning groups at the advanced version of the model had significantly higher scores in the more demanding open-ended questions compared with their counterparts. We believe that social-constructivist learning of one topic during 1 mo has significantly contributed to student deep learning across topics. It developed a biological discourse, which is more typical to advanced stages of learning biology, and changed the image of instructors from "knowledge transmitters" to "role model scientists."

  20. Demand for Interdisciplinary Laboratories for Physiology Research by Undergraduate Students in Biosciences and Biomedical Engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clase, Kari L.; Hein, Patrick W.; Pelaez, Nancy J.

    2008-01-01

    Physiology as a discipline is uniquely positioned to engage undergraduate students in interdisciplinary research in response to the 2006-2011 National Science Foundation Strategic Plan call for innovative transformational research, which emphasizes multidisciplinary projects. To prepare undergraduates for careers that cross disciplinary…

  1. Anticipation of Personal Genomics Data Enhances Interest and Learning Environment in Genomics and Molecular Biology Undergraduate Courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, K Scott; Jensen, Jamie L; Johnson, Steven M

    2015-01-01

    An important discussion at colleges is centered on determining more effective models for teaching undergraduates. As personalized genomics has become more common, we hypothesized it could be a valuable tool to make science education more hands on, personal, and engaging for college undergraduates. We hypothesized that providing students with personal genome testing kits would enhance the learning experience of students in two undergraduate courses at Brigham Young University: Advanced Molecular Biology and Genomics. These courses have an emphasis on personal genomics the last two weeks of the semester. Students taking these courses were given the option to receive personal genomics kits in 2014, whereas in 2015 they were not. Students sent their personal genomics samples in on their own and received the data after the course ended. We surveyed students in these courses before and after the two-week emphasis on personal genomics to collect data on whether anticipation of obtaining their own personal genomic data impacted undergraduate student learning. We also tested to see if specific personal genomic assignments improved the learning experience by analyzing the data from the undergraduate students who completed both the pre- and post-course surveys. Anticipation of personal genomic data significantly enhanced student interest and the learning environment based on the time students spent researching personal genomic material and their self-reported attitudes compared to those who did not anticipate getting their own data. Personal genomics homework assignments significantly enhanced the undergraduate student interest and learning based on the same criteria and a personal genomics quiz. We found that for the undergraduate students in both molecular biology and genomics courses, incorporation of personal genomic testing can be an effective educational tool in undergraduate science education.

  2. Organization of a radioisotope based molecular biology laboratory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2006-12-01

    Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) has revolutionized the application of molecular techniques to medicine. Together with other molecular biology techniques it is being increasingly applied to human health for identifying prognostic markers and drug resistant profiles, developing diagnostic tests and genotyping systems and for treatment follow-up of certain diseases in developed countries. Developing Member States have expressed their need to also benefit from the dissemination of molecular advances. The use of radioisotopes, as a step in the detection process or for increased sensitivity and specificity is well established, making it ideally suitable for technology transfer. Many molecular based projects using isotopes for detecting and studying micro organisms, hereditary and neoplastic diseases are received for approval every year. In keeping with the IAEA's programme, several training activities and seminars have been organized to enhance the capabilities of developing Member States to employ in vitro nuclear medicine technologies for managing their important health problems and for undertaking related basic and clinical research. The background material for this publication was collected at training activities and from feedback received from participants at research and coordination meetings. In addition, a consultants' meeting was held in June 2004 to compile the first draft of this report. Previous IAEA TECDOCS, namely IAEA-TECDOC-748 and IAEA-TECDOC-1001, focused on molecular techniques and their application to medicine while the present publication provides information on organization of the laboratory, quality assurance and radio-safety. The technology has specific requirements of the way the laboratory is organized (e.g. for avoiding contamination and false positives in PCR) and of quality assurance in order to provide accurate information to decision makers. In addition while users of the technology accept the scientific rationale of using radio

  3. Central Dog-ma Disease Detectives: A Molecular Biology Inquiry Activity for Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quan, T. K.; Yuh, P.; Black, F.

    2010-12-01

    The Minority Access to Research Careers (MARC) and Minority Biomedical Research Support (MBRS) are programs at the University of California at Santa Cruz designed to support minority undergraduate students majoring in the sciences. Each summer MARC/MBRS sponsors a Summer Institute that involves week long "rotations" with different faculty mentors. In 2008, the Center for Adaptive Optics (CfAO) Professional Development Program (PDP) was responsible for overseeing one week of the Summer Institute, and designed it to be a Biomedical Short Course. As part of this short course, we designed a four-hour activity in which students collected their own data and explored relationships between the basic biomolecules DNA, RNA, and protein. The goal was to have the students use experimental data to support their explanation of the "Central Dogma" of molecular biology. Here we describe details of our activity and provide a post-teaching reflection on its success.

  4. Formative evaluation of traditional instruction and cooperative inquiry projects in undergraduate chemistry laboratory courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panichas, Michael A.

    Reform agendas for practice in undergraduate chemistry are moving curriculum beyond traditional behaviorist teaching strategies to include constructivist approaches, for extending student learning beyond simple mastery of chemistry content (Bunce & Robinson, 1997; Lagowski, 1998; Herron & Nurrenburn, 1999). Yet implementing new strategies requires assessment of their benefit to learning. This study was undertaken to provide a formal and formative evaluation of the curricula in General and Organic chemistry laboratory courses, which are structured with both Traditional expository lab exercises, and a cooperative inquiry exercise called the Open Ended Project. Using a mixed-methodological case study framework, the primary goal of the research was to determine how the inclusion of these teaching strategies impacts student learning in the areas of Academic Achievement and Affective Learning from the perspective of the students enrolled in these lab classes. The findings suggest that the current curriculum structure of including both Traditional Instruction and the Open Ended Project does address students' Academic Achievement and Affective Learning. However, students perceived that these curriculum components each contributed differently to their learning. For Academic Achievement, Traditional Experiments and the Project had a positive impact on students' operational skills, such as how to use and choose lab techniques for performing or designing experiments, as well as their conceptual learning, such as understanding concepts, and relating those concepts during data analysis. Yet for Affective Learning, such as students' sense of confidence, accomplishment, and engagement, the Project, which has a cooperative learning element, had a positive impact on student learning, while Traditional Experiments, which do not have a cooperative learning element, had a moderate negative impact. The findings point to Cooperative Learning as the key element, which makes the positive

  5. Conceptions of the Nature of Science Held by Undergraduate Pre-Service Biology Teachers in South-West Nigeria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adedoyin, A. O.; Bello, G.

    2017-01-01

    This study investigated the conceptions of the nature of science held by pre-service undergraduate biology teachers in South-West, Nigeria. Specifically, the study examined the influence of their gender on their conceptions of the nature of science. The study was a descriptive research of the survey method. The population for the study comprised…

  6. The Effects of Case-Based Instruction on Undergraduate Biology Students' Understanding of the Nature of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burniston, Amy Lucinda

    Undergraduate science education is currently seeing a dramatic pedagogical push towards teaching the philosophies underpinning science as well as an increase in strategies that employ active learning. Many active learning strategies stem from constructivist ideals and have been shown to affect a student's understanding of how science operates and its impact on society- commonly referred to as the nature of science (NOS). One particular constructivist teaching strategy, case-based instruction (CBI), has been recommended by researchers and science education reformists as an effective instructional strategy for teaching NOS. Furthermore, when coupled with explicit-reflective instruction, CBI has been found to significantly increasing understanding of NOS in elementary and secondary students. However, few studies aimed their research on CBI and NOS towards higher education. Thus, this study uses a quasi-experimental, nonequivalent group design to study the effects of CBI on undergraduate science students understandings of NOS. Undergraduate biology student's understanding of NOS were assessed using the Views of Science Education (VOSE) instrument pre and post CBI intervention in Cellular and Molecular Biology and Human Anatomy and Physiology II. Data analysis indicated statistically significant differences between students NOS scores in experimental versus control sections for both courses, with experimental groups obtaining higher posttest scores. The results of this study indicate that undergraduate male and female students have similarly poor understandings of NOS and the use of historical case based instruction can be used as a means to increase undergraduate understanding of NOS.

  7. Advantages and challenges of using physics curricula as a model for reforming an undergraduate biology course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donovan, D A; Atkins, L J; Salter, I Y; Gallagher, D J; Kratz, R F; Rousseau, J V; Nelson, G D

    2013-06-01

    We report on the development of a life sciences curriculum, targeted to undergraduate students, which was modeled after a commercially available physics curriculum and based on aspects of how people learn. Our paper describes the collaborative development process and necessary modifications required to apply a physics pedagogical model in a life sciences context. While some approaches were easily adapted, others provided significant challenges. Among these challenges were: representations of energy, introducing definitions, the placement of Scientists' Ideas, and the replicability of data. In modifying the curriculum to address these challenges, we have come to see them as speaking to deeper differences between the disciplines, namely that introductory physics--for example, Newton's laws, magnetism, light--is a science of pairwise interaction, while introductory biology--for example, photosynthesis, evolution, cycling of matter in ecosystems--is a science of linked processes, and we suggest that this is how the two disciplines are presented in introductory classes. We illustrate this tension through an analysis of our adaptations of the physics curriculum for instruction on the cycling of matter and energy; we show that modifications of the physics curriculum to address the biological framework promotes strong gains in student understanding of these topics, as evidenced by analysis of student work.

  8. [Psychoactive substances in biological samples--toxicological laboratory data].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomółka, Ewa; Wilimowska, Jolanta; Piekoszewski, Wojciech; Groszek, Barbara

    2004-01-01

    The subject of the research was the analysis of frequency and type of psychoactive substances used, basing on the determinations the blood and/or urine samples, performed in the toxicological laboratory of the Department of Clinical and Industrial Toxicology Jagiellonian University in Kraków in the period from December 2001 to November 2003. From 17,649 performed determinations--45.5% were positive. 50% of the positive determinations were psychoactive substances. The most often psychoactive substance determined was ethyl alcohol (52.86%), next benzodiazepines (17.41%), amphetamines (10.54%), opiates (8.05%), THC (6.87%), barbiturates (3.74%), and occasionally atropine and cocaine. There was observed a variety of mixed, simultaneously taking psychoactive substances, especially ethyl alcohol, opiates, amphetamine derivatives and cannabinoids. The analysis of the occurrence of psychoactive substances in biological samples from patients treated in different hospital departments, others hospitals and ordered by private persons also was performed. In the last two years 369 private patients ordered psychoactive substances determinations and 78 of them were positive.

  9. Quality of Undergraduate Physics Students' Written Scientific Arguments: How to Promote Students' Appropriation of Scientific Discourse in Physics Laboratory Reports?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aydeniz, Mehmet; Yeter-Aydeniz, Kubra

    2015-03-01

    In this study we challenged 18 undergraduate physics students to develop four written scientific arguments across four physics labs: 1) gravity-driven acceleration, 2) conservation of mechanical energy, 3) conservation of linear momentum and 4) boyle's law, in a mechanics and thermodynamics laboratory course. We evaluated quality of the written scientific arguments developed by the participants using the Claim, Evidence, Reasoning and Rebuttal (CERR) rubric. The results indicate that while students developed adequate scientific explanations that summarized the findings of their experiments, they experienced unique difficulties in using a persuasive and critical discourse in their written arguments. Students experienced the most difficulty in considering alternative explanations in formulating their written scientific arguments. We elaborate on the implications of these findings for teaching physics laboratories and assessing students' learning in physics laboratories. We especially focus on the importance of framing in helping students to appropriate the epistemic norms of science in writing scientific arguments.

  10. Gender, Math Confidence, and Grit: Relationships with Quantitative Skills and Performance in an Undergraduate Biology Course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flanagan, K M; Einarson, J

    2017-01-01

    In a world filled with big data, mathematical models, and statistics, the development of strong quantitative skills is becoming increasingly critical for modern biologists. Teachers in this field must understand how students acquire quantitative skills and explore barriers experienced by students when developing these skills. In this study, we examine the interrelationships among gender, grit, and math confidence for student performance on a pre-post quantitative skills assessment and overall performance in an undergraduate biology course. Here, we show that females significantly underperformed relative to males on a quantitative skills assessment at the start of term. However, females showed significantly higher gains over the semester, such that the gender gap in performance was nearly eliminated by the end of the semester. Math confidence plays an important role in the performance on both the pre and post quantitative skills assessments and overall performance in the course. The effect of grit on student performance, however, is mediated by a student's math confidence; as math confidence increases, the positive effect of grit decreases. Consequently, the positive impact of a student's grittiness is observed most strongly for those students with low math confidence. We also found grit to be positively associated with the midterm score and the final grade in the course. Given the relationships established in this study among gender, grit, and math confidence, we provide "instructor actions" from the literature that can be applied in the classroom to promote the development of quantitative skills in light of our findings. © 2017 K. M. Flanagan and J. Einarson. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2017 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http

  11. Integration of bioinformatics into an undergraduate biology curriculum and the impact on development of mathematical skills.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wightman, Bruce; Hark, Amy T

    2012-01-01

    The development of fields such as bioinformatics and genomics has created new challenges and opportunities for undergraduate biology curricula. Students preparing for careers in science, technology, and medicine need more intensive study of bioinformatics and more sophisticated training in the mathematics on which this field is based. In this study, we deliberately integrated bioinformatics instruction at multiple course levels into an existing biology curriculum. Students in an introductory biology course, intermediate lab courses, and advanced project-oriented courses all participated in new course components designed to sequentially introduce bioinformatics skills and knowledge, as well as computational approaches that are common to many bioinformatics applications. In each course, bioinformatics learning was embedded in an existing disciplinary instructional sequence, as opposed to having a single course where all bioinformatics learning occurs. We designed direct and indirect assessment tools to follow student progress through the course sequence. Our data show significant gains in both student confidence and ability in bioinformatics during individual courses and as course level increases. Despite evidence of substantial student learning in both bioinformatics and mathematics, students were skeptical about the link between learning bioinformatics and learning mathematics. While our approach resulted in substantial learning gains, student "buy-in" and engagement might be better in longer project-based activities that demand application of skills to research problems. Nevertheless, in situations where a concentrated focus on project-oriented bioinformatics is not possible or desirable, our approach of integrating multiple smaller components into an existing curriculum provides an alternative. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. A unique large-scale undergraduate research experience in molecular systems biology for non-mathematics majors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kappler, Ulrike; Rowland, Susan L; Pedwell, Rhianna K

    2017-05-01

    Systems biology is frequently taught with an emphasis on mathematical modeling approaches. This focus effectively excludes most biology, biochemistry, and molecular biology students, who are not mathematics majors. The mathematical focus can also present a misleading picture of systems biology, which is a multi-disciplinary pursuit requiring collaboration between biochemists, bioinformaticians, and mathematicians. This article describes an authentic large-scale undergraduate research experience (ALURE) in systems biology that incorporates proteomics, bacterial genomics, and bioinformatics in the one exercise. This project is designed to engage students who have a basic grounding in protein chemistry and metabolism and no mathematical modeling skills. The pedagogy around the research experience is designed to help students attack complex datasets and use their emergent metabolic knowledge to make meaning from large amounts of raw data. On completing the ALURE, participants reported a significant increase in their confidence around analyzing large datasets, while the majority of the cohort reported good or great gains in a variety of skills including "analysing data for patterns" and "conducting database or internet searches." An environmental scan shows that this ALURE is the only undergraduate-level system-biology research project offered on a large-scale in Australia; this speaks to the perceived difficulty of implementing such an opportunity for students. We argue however, that based on the student feedback, allowing undergraduate students to complete a systems-biology project is both feasible and desirable, even if the students are not maths and computing majors. © 2016 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 45(3):235-248, 2017. © 2016 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  13. Development and evaluation of an active instructional framework for undergraduate biology education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lysne, Steven John

    The practice of science education in American colleges and universities is changing and the role of faculty is changing as well. There is momentum in higher education to transform our instruction and do a better job at supporting more students' success in science and engineering programs. New teaching approaches are transforming undergraduate science instruction and new research demonstrates that these new approaches are more engaging for students, result in greater achievement, and create more positive attitudes toward science careers. Additionally, teaching scholars have described a paradigm shift toward placing the burden of content coverage on students which allows more time for in-class activities such as discussion and problem solving. Teaching faculty have been asked to redesign their courses and rebrand themselves as facilitators of student learning, rather than purveyors of information, to improve student engagement, achievement, and attitudes. This dissertation is a critical evaluation of both the assumption that active learning improves student achievement and knowledge retention and my own assumptions regarding science education research and my students' resiliency. This dissertation is a collection of research articles, published or in preparation, presenting the chronological development (Chapters 2 and 3) and evaluation (Chapters 4 and 5) of an active instructional model for undergraduate biology instruction. Chapters 1 and 6.provide a broad introduction and summary, respectively. Chapter 2 is an exploration of student engagement through interviews with a variety of students. From these interviews I identified several themes that students felt were important, and science instructors need to address, including the place where learning happens and strategies for better engaging students. Chapter 3 presents a review of the science education literature broadly and more focused review on the how students learn and how faculty teach. Consistent with what

  14. Solvent Extraction of Copper: An Extractive Metallurgy Exercise for Undergraduate Teaching Laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smellie, Iain A.; Forgan, Ross S.; Brodie, Claire; Gavine, Jack S.; Harris, Leanne; Houston, Daniel; Hoyland, Andrew D.; McCaughan, Rory P.; Miller, Andrew J.; Wilson, Liam; Woodhall, Fiona M.

    2016-01-01

    A multidisciplinary experiment for advanced undergraduate students has been developed in the context of extractive metallurgy. The experiment serves as a model of an important modern industrial process that combines aspects of organic/inorganic synthesis and analysis. Students are tasked to prepare a salicylaldoxime ligand and samples of the…

  15. Online Protocol Annotation: A Method to Enhance Undergraduate Laboratory Research Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruble, Julie E.; Lom, Barbara

    2008-01-01

    A well-constructed, step-by-step protocol is a critical starting point for teaching undergraduates new techniques, an important record of a lab's standard procedures, and a useful mechanism for sharing techniques between labs. Many research labs use websites to archive and share their protocols for these purposes. Here we describe our experiences…

  16. A Cost-Effective Atomic Force Microscope for Undergraduate Control Laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, C. N.; Goncalves, J.

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a simple, cost-effective and robust atomic force microscope (AFM), which has been purposely designed and built for use as a teaching aid in undergraduate controls labs. The guiding design principle is to have all components be open and visible to the students, so the inner functioning of the microscope has been made clear to…

  17. Integration of Computational Chemistry into the Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esselman, Brian J.; Hill, Nicholas J.

    2016-01-01

    Advances in software and hardware have promoted the use of computational chemistry in all branches of chemical research to probe important chemical concepts and to support experimentation. Consequently, it has become imperative that students in the modern undergraduate curriculum become adept at performing simple calculations using computational…

  18. Synthesis and Characterization of Calixarene Tetraethers: An Exercise in Supramolecular Chemistry for the Undergraduate Organic Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debbert, Stefan L.; Hoh, Bradley D.; Dulak, David J.

    2016-01-01

    In this experiment for an introductory undergraduate organic chemistry lab, students tetraalkylate tertbutylcalix[4]arene, a bowl-shaped macrocyclic oligophenol, and examine the supramolecular chemistry of the tetraether product by proton nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. Complexation with a sodium ion reduces the conformational…

  19. Rapid Multistep Synthesis of a Bioactive Peptidomimetic Oligomer for the Undergraduate Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Utku, Yeliz; Rohatgi, Abhinav; Yoo, Barney; Kirshenbaum, Kent; Zuckermann, Ronald N.; Pohl, Nicola L.

    2010-01-01

    Peptidomimetic compounds are increasingly important in drug-discovery applications. We introduce the synthesis of an N-substituted glycine oligomer, a bioactive "peptoid" trimer. The six-step protocol is conducted on solid-phase resin, enabling the synthesis to be performed by undergraduate organic chemistry students. This synthesis lab was…

  20. Organic Materials in the Undergraduate Laboratory: Microscale Synthesis and Investigation of a Donor-Acceptor Molecule

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pappenfus, Ted M.; Schliep, Karl B.; Dissanayake, Anudaththa; Ludden, Trevor; Nieto-Ortega, Belen; Lopez Navarrete, Juan T.; Ruiz Delgado, M. Carmen; Casado, Juan

    2012-01-01

    A series of experiments for undergraduate courses (e.g., organic, physical) have been developed in the area of small molecule organic materials. These experiments focus on understanding the electronic and redox properties of a donor-acceptor molecule that is prepared in a convenient one-step microscale reaction. The resulting intensely colored…

  1. Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment Facilitating Active Learning of Concepts in Transport Phenomena: Experiment with a Subliming Solid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Utgikar, Vivek P.

    2015-01-01

    An experiment based on the sublimation of a solid was introduced in the undergraduate Transport Phenomena course. The experiment required the students to devise their own apparatus and measurement techniques. The theoretical basis, assignment of the experiment, experimental results, and student/instructor observations are described in this paper.…

  2. An Undergraduate Laboratory Class Using CRISPR/Cas9 Technology to Mutate Drosophila Genes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adame, Vanesa; Chapapas, Holly; Cisneros, Marilyn; Deaton, Carol; Deichmann, Sophia; Gadek, Chauncey; Lovato, TyAnna L.; Chechenova, Maria B.; Guerin, Paul; Cripps, Richard M.

    2016-01-01

    CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing technology is used in the manipulation of genome sequences and gene expression. Because of the ease and rapidity with which genes can be mutated using CRISPR/Cas9, we sought to determine if a single-semester undergraduate class could be successfully taught, wherein students isolate mutants for specific genes using…

  3. Hydrogen Storage Experiments for an Undergraduate Laboratory Course--Clean Energy: Hydrogen/Fuel Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bailey, Alla; Andrews, Lisa; Khot, Ameya; Rubin, Lea; Young, Jun; Allston, Thomas D.; Takacs, Gerald A.

    2015-01-01

    Global interest in both renewable energies and reduction in emission levels has placed increasing attention on hydrogen-based fuel cells that avoid harm to the environment by releasing only water as a byproduct. Therefore, there is a critical need for education and workforce development in clean energy technologies. A new undergraduate laboratory…

  4. [Historic Development of Clinical Biology Laboratories in Luxembourg].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wennig R; Humbel R-L

    2014-01-01

    After a short overview on the development of diagnostic tools in clinical biology at an international level from Antiquity towards today, a history of the clinical biology including public and private institutions in Luxembourg will be outlined.

  5. Gene Amplification by PCR and Subcloning into a GFP-Fusion Plasmid Expression Vector as a Molecular Biology Laboratory Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bornhorst, Joshua A.; Deibel, Michael A.; Mulnix, Amy B.

    2004-01-01

    A novel experimental sequence for the advanced undergraduate laboratory course has been developed at Earlham College. Utilizing recent improvements in molecular techniques for a time-sensitive environment, undergraduates were able to create a chimera of a selected gene and green fluorescent protein (GFP) in a bacterial expression plasmid over the…

  6. Aerobic Alcohol Oxidation Using a Copper(I)/TEMPO Catalyst System: A Green, Catalytic Oxidation Reaction for the Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Nicholas J.; Hoover, Jessica M.; Stahl, Shannon S.

    2013-01-01

    Modern undergraduate organic chemistry textbooks provide detailed discussion of stoichiometric Cr- and Mn-based reagents for the oxidation of alcohols, yet the use of such oxidants in instructional and research laboratories, as well as industrial chemistry, is increasingly avoided. This work describes a laboratory exercise that uses ambient air as…

  7. Determining the Transference Number of H[superscript +](aq) by a Modified Moving Boundary Method: A Directed Study for the Undergraduate Physical Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dabke, Rajeev B.; Gebeyehu, Zewdu; Padelford, Jonathan

    2012-01-01

    A directed study for the undergraduate physical chemistry laboratory for determining the transference number of H[superscript +](aq) using a modified moving boundary method is presented. The laboratory study combines Faraday's laws of electrolysis with mole ratios and the perfect gas equation. The volume of hydrogen gas produced at the cathode is…

  8. Validation and Application of the Survey of Teaching Beliefs and Practices for Undergraduates (STEP-U): Identifying Factors Associated with Valuing Important Workplace Skills among Biology Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marbach-Ad, Gili; Rietschel, Carly; Thompson, Katerina V.

    2016-01-01

    We present a novel assessment tool for measuring biology students' values and experiences across their undergraduate degree program. Our Survey of Teaching Beliefs and Practices for Undergraduates (STEP-U) assesses the extent to which students value skills needed for the workplace (e.g., ability to work in groups) and their experiences with…

  9. A Writing-Intensive Course Improves Biology Undergraduates' Perception and Confidence of Their Abilities to Read Scientific Literature and Communicate Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brownell, Sara E.; Price, Jordan V.; Steinman, Lawrence

    2013-01-01

    Most scientists agree that comprehension of primary scientific papers and communication of scientific concepts are two of the most important skills that we can teach, but few undergraduate biology courses make these explicit course goals. We designed an undergraduate neuroimmunology course that uses a writing-intensive format. Using a mixture of…

  10. Impact of Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Research in Mathematics and Biology on the Development of a New Course Integrating Five STEM Disciplines

    OpenAIRE

    Caudill, Lester; Hill, April; Hoke, Kathy; Lipan, Ovidiu

    2010-01-01

    Funded by innovative programs at the National Science Foundation and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of Richmond faculty in biology, chemistry, mathematics, physics, and computer science teamed up to offer first- and second-year students the opportunity to contribute to vibrant, interdisciplinary research projects. The result was not only good science but also good science that motivated and informed course development. Here, we describe four recent undergraduate research proj...

  11. Molecular biology at the cutting edge: A review on CRISPR/CAS9 gene editing for undergraduates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thurtle-Schmidt, Deborah M; Lo, Te-Wen

    2018-03-01

    Disrupting a gene to determine its effect on an organism's phenotype is an indispensable tool in molecular biology. Such techniques are critical for understanding how a gene product contributes to the development and cellular identity of organisms. The explosion of genomic sequencing technologies combined with recent advances in genome-editing techniques has elevated the possibilities of genetic manipulations in numerous organisms in which these experiments were previously not readily accessible or possible. Introducing the next generation of molecular biologists to these emerging techniques is key in the modern biology classroom. This comprehensive review introduces undergraduates to CRISPR/Cas9 editing and its uses in genetic studies. The goals of this review are to explain how CRISPR functions as a prokaryotic immune system, describe how researchers generate mutations with CRISPR/Cas9, highlight how Cas9 has been adapted for new functions, and discuss ethical considerations of genome editing. Additionally, anticipatory guides and questions for discussion are posed throughout the review to encourage active exploration of these topics in the classroom. Finally, the supplement includes a study guide and practical suggestions to incorporate CRISPR/Cas9 experiments into lab courses at the undergraduate level. © 2018 The Authors Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 46(2):195-205, 2018. © 2018 The Authors Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  12. You get what you need: an examination of purpose- based inheritance reasoning in undergraduates, preschoolers, and biological experts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ware, Elizabeth A; Gelman, Susan A

    2014-03-01

    This set of seven experiments examines reasoning about the inheritance and acquisition of physical properties in preschoolers, undergraduates, and biology experts. Participants (N = 390) received adoption vignettes in which a baby animal was born to one parent but raised by a biologically unrelated parent, and they judged whether the offspring would have the same property as the birth or rearing parent. For each vignette, the animal parents had contrasting values on a physical property dimension (e.g., the birth parent had a short tail; the rearing parent had a long tail). Depending on the condition, the distinct properties had distinct functions (“function-predictive”) were associated with distinct habitats (“habitat-predictive”), or had no implications (“non-predictive”). Undergraduates' bias to view properties as inherited from the birth parent was reduced in the function- and habitat-predictive conditions. This result indicates a purpose-based view of inheritance, whereby animals can acquire properties that serve a purpose in their environment. This stance was not found in experts or preschoolers. We discuss the results in terms of how undergraduates' purpose-based inheritance reasoning develops and relates to larger-scale misconceptions about Darwinian evolutionary processes, and implications for biology education.

  13. Urban Field Experiences for Undergraduate Liberal Arts Students: Using Compromised Environments as Living Laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacAvoy, S. E.; Knee, K.

    2015-12-01

    While urban environments may lack the beauty of relatively pristine field sites, they can be used to deliver an effective demonstration of actual environmental damage. Students demanding applied field experiences from their undergraduate environmental science programs can be well served in urban settings. Here, we present strategies for integrating degraded urban systems into the undergraduate field experience. Urban locations provide an opportunity for a different type of local "field-work" than would otherwise be available. In the upper-level undergraduate Environmental Methods class, we relied on a National Park area located a 10-minute walk from campus for most field exercises. Activities included soil analysis, measuring stream flow and water quality parameters, dendrochronology, and aquatic microbe metabolism. In the non-majors class, we make use of our urban location to contrast water quality in parks and highly channelized urban streams. Students spend labs immersed in streams and wetlands heavily impacted by the urban runoff their city generates. Here we share lesson plans and budgets for field activities that can be completed during a class period of 2.5 hours with a $75 course fee, show how these activities help students gain quantitative competency.

  14. Teaching statistics in biology: using inquiry-based learning to strengthen understanding of statistical analysis in biology laboratory courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Metz, Anneke M

    2008-01-01

    There is an increasing need for students in the biological sciences to build a strong foundation in quantitative approaches to data analyses. Although most science, engineering, and math field majors are required to take at least one statistics course, statistical analysis is poorly integrated into undergraduate biology course work, particularly at the lower-division level. Elements of statistics were incorporated into an introductory biology course, including a review of statistics concepts and opportunity for students to perform statistical analysis in a biological context. Learning gains were measured with an 11-item statistics learning survey instrument developed for the course. Students showed a statistically significant 25% (p biology. Students improved their scores on the survey after completing introductory biology, even if they had previously completed an introductory statistics course (9%, improvement p biology showed no loss of their statistics knowledge as measured by this instrument, suggesting that the use of statistics in biology course work may aid long-term retention of statistics knowledge. No statistically significant differences in learning were detected between male and female students in the study.

  15. Group processing in an undergraduate biology course for preservice teachers: Experiences and attitudes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schellenberger, Lauren Brownback

    Group processing is a key principle of cooperative learning in which small groups discuss their strengths and weaknesses and set group goals or norms. However, group processing has not been well-studied at the post-secondary level or from a qualitative or mixed methods perspective. This mixed methods study uses a phenomenological framework to examine the experience of group processing for students in an undergraduate biology course for preservice teachers. The effect of group processing on students' attitudes toward future group work and group processing is also examined. Additionally, this research investigated preservice teachers' plans for incorporating group processing into future lessons. Students primarily experienced group processing as a time to reflect on past performance. Also, students experienced group processing as a time to increase communication among group members and become motivated for future group assignments. Three factors directly influenced students' experiences with group processing: (1) previous experience with group work, (2) instructor interaction, and (3) gender. Survey data indicated that group processing had a slight positive effect on students' attitudes toward future group work and group processing. Participants who were interviewed felt that group processing was an important part of group work and that it had increased their group's effectiveness as well as their ability to work effectively with other people. Participants held positive views on group work prior to engaging in group processing, and group processing did not alter their atittude toward group work. Preservice teachers who were interviewed planned to use group work and a modified group processing protocol in their future classrooms. They also felt that group processing had prepared them for their future professions by modeling effective collaboration and group skills. Based on this research, a new model for group processing has been created which includes extensive

  16. An Introductory Undergraduate Course Covering Animal Cell Culture Techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mozdziak, Paul E.; Petitte, James N.; Carson, Susan D.

    2004-01-01

    Animal cell culture is a core laboratory technique in many molecular biology, developmental biology, and biotechnology laboratories. Cell culture is a relatively old technique that has been sparingly taught at the undergraduate level. The traditional methodology for acquiring cell culture training has been through trial and error, instruction when…

  17. Microwave system for research biological effects on laboratory animals

    OpenAIRE

    Kopylov, Alexei; Kruglik, Olga; Khlebopros, Rem

    2014-01-01

    This research is concerned with development of the microwave system for research the radiophysical microwave radiation effects on laboratory animals. The frequency was 1 GHz. The results obtained demonstrate the metabolic changes in mice under the electromagnetic field influence.

  18. Students' attitudes towards science and science learning in an introductory undergraduate biology course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Floro, Nicole

    Science education strives to cultivate individuals who understand scientific concepts as well as the nature of science and science learning. This study focused on the potential benefits of the flipped classroom on students' attitudes towards science and science learning. Our study investigated changes in and effects of students' attitudes towards science and science learning in a flipped introductory biology course at the University of Massachusetts Boston. We used The Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey for Biology to assess students' attitudes at pre and post-instruction. We investigated the effect of a flipped classroom on students' attitudes towards science and science learning by measuring the impact of different teaching approaches (flipped vs. traditional lecture). Following the prior literature, we hypothesized that there would be a negative shift in students' attitudes over the semester in the traditional classroom and that this negative shift would not occur in the flipped. Our results showed there was no significant difference in the shift of students' attitudes between the traditional and flipped sections. We also examined the relationship between students' attitudes and academic performance. We hypothesized there would be a positive correlation between students' attitudes and their academic performance, as measured by exam average. In support of the prior literature, we found a significant positive correlation. Finally, we examined whether the relationship between students' attitudes and performance was mediated by learning behavior. Specifically, we considered if students with more favorable attitudes solved more on-line problems correctly and whether this aspect of problem solving was associated with greater achievement. We hypothesized there would be a positive correlation between attitudes and problem solving behavior as well as problem solving behavior and achievement. We did not find a significant correlation between attitudes and

  19. Biology of Triatoma sherlocki (Hemiptera: Reduviidae) Under Laboratory Conditions: Biological Cycle and Resistance to Starvation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lima-Neiva, Vanessa; Gonçalves, Teresa C M; Bastos, Leonardo S; Gumiel, Marcia; Correia, Nathália C; Silva, Catia C; Almeida, Carlos E; Costa, Jane

    2017-07-01

    Triatoma sherlocki Papa, Jurberg, Carcavallo, Cerqueira & Barata was described in 2002, based on specimens caught in the wild in the municipality of Gentio do Ouro, Bahia, Brazil. In 2009, nymphs and adults were detected inside homes and sylvatic specimens were positive for Trypanosoma cruzi (Chagas). No information on the bionomics of T. sherlocki exists, although such data are considered essential to estimate its vector and colonization potential in domestic environments. Herein, the biological cycle of T. sherlocki was studied based on 123 eggs, with nymphs and adults fed on Mus musculus (Linnaeus). Nymphal development time phases, number of meals consumed, and stage-specific mortality rates were analyzed. Survival time under starvation conditions was measured between ecdysis and death among 50 nymphs (first to fifth instar) and 50 male and female adults. The median development time from egg to adult was 621.0 (CI: 489-656) d. The number of meals consumed ranged from 1 to 20 for nymphs of the first to fifth instar. The fifth instar showed the greatest resistance to starvation, with a mean of 156.5 d. The high number of meals consumed by T. sherlocki favored infection with and transmission of T. cruzi. The full development of this species under laboratory conditions with a low mortality rate indicates that this vector presents biological characteristics that may contribute to its adaptation to artificial human ecotopes. Its high resistance to starvation emphasizes the importance of entomological surveillance for this species. © The Authors 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. Genomics and Bioinformatics in Undergraduate Curricula: Contexts for Hybrid Laboratory/Lecture Courses for Entering and Advanced Science Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Temple, Louise; Cresawn, Steven G.; Monroe, Jonathan D.

    2010-01-01

    Emerging interest in genomics in the scientific community prompted biologists at James Madison University to create two courses at different levels to modernize the biology curriculum. The courses are hybrids of classroom and laboratory experiences. An upper level class uses raw sequence of a genome (plasmid or virus) as the subject on which to…

  1. Problem-Based Learning in Undergraduate Instruction. A Sophomore Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ram, Preetha

    1999-08-01

    Problem-based learning (PBL) is a pedagogical approach based on recent advances in cognitive science research on human learning. PBL has been used in medical schools for many years. This paper describes the application of PBL in undergraduate courses and discusses the specific needs of this environment. Practical information and guidance are given on how to develop a challenging problem, how to ensure coverage of syllabus topics, how to structure the discussions, and how to evaluate the progress of the course. The paper describes an implementation of PBL methodologies in an undergraduate science course. In this course, students work with a voluntary environmental advocacy group, the Upper Chattahoochee RiverKeeper, to monitor the quality of water in the Chattahoochee watershed. Students learn experimental analytical chemistry techniques and problem-solving skills in this context. A PBL classroom is organized around collaborative problem-solving activities, which provide a context for learning and discovery. Students show enthusiasm and motivation to learn, and they achieve a deeper understanding of the material because it is information they have learned in a context of an interesting problem. PBL also provides them with an opportunity to acquire effective problem-solving techniques and to improve their communication skills and their ability to work in cooperative groups.

  2. Using a Logic Model to Evaluate Undergraduate Instruction in a Laboratory Preschool

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monroe, Lisa; Horm, Diane M.

    2012-01-01

    Research Findings: Utilization-focused, process evaluations of university-based laboratory preschools in their role with teacher preparation programs are rare in the current literature. This paper describes a self-study evaluation designed and implemented at a university laboratory preschool. A theory approach logic model was developed and used to…

  3. How can we improve problem solving in undergraduate biology? Applying lessons from 30 years of physics education research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoskinson, A-M; Caballero, M D; Knight, J K

    2013-06-01

    If students are to successfully grapple with authentic, complex biological problems as scientists and citizens, they need practice solving such problems during their undergraduate years. Physics education researchers have investigated student problem solving for the past three decades. Although physics and biology problems differ in structure and content, the instructional purposes align closely: explaining patterns and processes in the natural world and making predictions about physical and biological systems. In this paper, we discuss how research-supported approaches developed by physics education researchers can be adopted by biologists to enhance student problem-solving skills. First, we compare the problems that biology students are typically asked to solve with authentic, complex problems. We then describe the development of research-validated physics curricula emphasizing process skills in problem solving. We show that solving authentic, complex biology problems requires many of the same skills that practicing physicists and biologists use in representing problems, seeking relationships, making predictions, and verifying or checking solutions. We assert that acquiring these skills can help biology students become competent problem solvers. Finally, we propose how biology scholars can apply lessons from physics education in their classrooms and inspire new studies in biology education research.

  4. A semester-long project for teaching basic techniques in molecular biology such as restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis to undergraduate and graduate students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DiBartolomeis, Susan M

    2011-01-01

    Several reports on science education suggest that students at all levels learn better if they are immersed in a project that is long term, yielding results that require analysis and interpretation. I describe a 12-wk laboratory project suitable for upper-level undergraduates and first-year graduate students, in which the students molecularly locate and map a gene from Drosophila melanogaster called dusky and one of dusky's mutant alleles. The mapping strategy uses restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis; hence, students perform most of the basic techniques of molecular biology (DNA isolation, restriction enzyme digestion and mapping, plasmid vector subcloning, agarose and polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, DNA labeling, and Southern hybridization) toward the single goal of characterizing dusky and the mutant allele dusky(73). Students work as individuals, pairs, or in groups of up to four students. Some exercises require multitasking and collaboration between groups. Finally, results from everyone in the class are required for the final analysis. Results of pre- and postquizzes and surveys indicate that student knowledge of appropriate topics and skills increased significantly, students felt more confident in the laboratory, and students found the laboratory project interesting and challenging. Former students report that the lab was useful in their careers.

  5. A Semester-Long Project for Teaching Basic Techniques in Molecular Biology Such as Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism Analysis to Undergraduate and Graduate Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    DiBartolomeis, Susan M.

    2011-01-01

    Several reports on science education suggest that students at all levels learn better if they are immersed in a project that is long term, yielding results that require analysis and interpretation. I describe a 12-wk laboratory project suitable for upper-level undergraduates and first-year graduate students, in which the students molecularly locate and map a gene from Drosophila melanogaster called dusky and one of dusky's mutant alleles. The mapping strategy uses restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis; hence, students perform most of the basic techniques of molecular biology (DNA isolation, restriction enzyme digestion and mapping, plasmid vector subcloning, agarose and polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, DNA labeling, and Southern hybridization) toward the single goal of characterizing dusky and the mutant allele dusky73. Students work as individuals, pairs, or in groups of up to four students. Some exercises require multitasking and collaboration between groups. Finally, results from everyone in the class are required for the final analysis. Results of pre- and postquizzes and surveys indicate that student knowledge of appropriate topics and skills increased significantly, students felt more confident in the laboratory, and students found the laboratory project interesting and challenging. Former students report that the lab was useful in their careers. PMID:21364104

  6. Using particle tracking to measure flow instabilities in an undergraduate laboratory experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelley, Douglas H.; Ouellette, Nicholas T.

    2011-03-01

    Much of the drama and complexity of fluid flow occurs because its governing equations lack unique solutions. The observed behavior depends on the stability of the multitude of solutions, which can change with the experimental parameters. Instabilities cause sudden global shifts in behavior. We have developed a low-cost experiment to study a classical fluid instability. By using an electromagnetic technique, students drive Kolmogorov flow in a thin fluid layer and measure it quantitatively with a webcam. They extract positions and velocities from movies of the flow using Lagrangian particle tracking and compare their measurements to several theoretical predictions, including the effect of the drive current, the spatial structure of the flow, and the parameters at which instability occurs. The experiment can be tailored to undergraduates at any level or to graduate students by appropriate emphasis on the physical phenomena and the sophisticated mathematics that govern them.

  7. A laboratory module on radiometry, photometry and colorimetry for an undergraduate optics course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polak, Robert D.

    2014-07-01

    The bachelor's degree in Physics at Loyola University Chicago requires both an upper-division course in Optics as well as a companion Optics Laboratory course. Recently, the laboratory course has undergone dramatic changes. Traditional weekly laboratories have been replaced with three laboratory modules, where students focus on a single topic over several weeks after which the students submit a laboratory report written in the style of a journal article following American Institute of Physics style manual. With this method, students are able to gain a deeper understanding of the specific topic areas of radiometry, photometry and colorimetry, lens design and aberrations, and polarization and interference while using industry-standard equipment and simulation software. In particular, this work will provide the details of the laboratory module on radiometry, photometry and colorimetry where students use a photoradiometer and integrating sphere to characterize the optical properties of an LCD monitor, light bulb and a fiber optic light source calculating properties such as luminous flux, luminous intensity, luminance, CIE color coordinates, NTSC ratio, color temperature and luminous efficacy.

  8. Design and operation of an inexpensive far-field laser scanning microscope suitable for use in an undergraduate laboratory course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pallone, Arthur; Hawk, Eric

    2013-03-01

    Scanning microscope applications span the science disciplines yet their costs limit their use at educational institutions. The basic concepts of scanning microscopy are simple. The microscope probe - whether it produces a photon, electron or ion beam - moves relative to the surface of the sample object. The beam interacts with the sample to produce a detected signal that depends on the desired property to be measured at the probe location on the sample. The microscope transforms the signal for output in a form desired by the user. Undergraduate students can easily construct a far-field laser scanning microscope that illustrates each of these principles from parts available at local electronics and hardware stores and use the microscope to explore properties of devices such as light dependent resistors and biological samples such as leaves. Students can record, analyze and interpret results using a computer and free software.

  9. IHR (2005) Compliance: Laboratory Capacities and Biological Risks

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-08-01

    by sharing logistical, technical, and financial 3 support through various mechanisms (bilateral, regional networks and WHO regional offices, and...laboratories -Available in multiple languages http://www.who.int/ csr /resources/publications/biosafety/WHO_CDS_CSR_LYO _2004_11/en/ U.S. NIH and CDC...Organization, Global Infection Prevention and Control (GIPC) Network 2014. World Health Organization, Geneva, 2014. http://www.who.int/ csr

  10. Demonstrations of Extraterrestrial Life Detection Techniques in the High School Biology Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saltinski, Ronald

    1969-01-01

    Discusses the experimental procedures and equipment for exobiology projects at the high school level. An interdisciplinary approach involving electronic equipment and micro-biological laboratory techniques is used. Photographs and diagrams of equipment are included. Bibliography. (LC)

  11. The Miracle Fruit: An Undergraduate Laboratory Exercise in Taste Sensation and Perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lipatova, Olga; Campolattaro, Matthew M

    2016-01-01

    "Miracle Fruit" is a taste-altering berry that causes sour foods to be perceived as sweet. The present paper describes a laboratory exercise that uses Miracle Fruit to educate students about the sensation and perception of taste. This laboratory exercise reinforces course material pertaining to the function of sweet taste receptors covered in a Sensation and Perception course at Christopher Newport University. Here we provide a step-by-step explanation of the methodology, and an example of data collected and analyzed by one group of students who participated in this laboratory exercise. The origins of the Miracle Fruit, the structure and the physiological function of miraculin (the glycoprotein responsible for the taste-modifying effect found in the pulp of the Miracle Fruit) were discussed before the laboratory exercise. Students then sampled foods known to target different types of tastes (i.e., sweet, sour, bitter and salty) and rated their perception of taste intensity for each food item. Next, students each consumed Miracle Fruit berries, then resampled each original food item and again recorded their perception of taste intensity ratings for these foods. The data confirmed that the sour food items were perceived sweeter after the Miracle Fruit was consumed. The students also completed a written assignment to assess what they learned about the origins, structure, and physiological function of Miracle Fruit. This hands-on laboratory exercise received positive feedback from students. The exercise can be used by other neuroscience educators to teach concepts related to the sensory system of taste.

  12. Engaging Students in Authentic Microbiology Research in an Introductory Biology Laboratory Course is Correlated with Gains in Student Understanding of the Nature of Authentic Research and Critical Thinking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brittany J. Gasper

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Recent recommendations for biology education highlight the role of authentic research experiences early in undergraduate education as a means of increasing the number and quality of biology majors. These experiences will inform students on the nature of science, increase their confidence in doing science, as well as foster critical thinking skills, an area that has been lacking despite it being one of the desired outcomes at undergraduate institutions and with future employers. With these things in mind, we have developed an introductory biology laboratory course where students design and execute an authentic microbiology research project. Students in this course are assimilated into the community of researchers by engaging in scholarly activities such as participating in inquiry, reading scientific literature, and communicating findings in written and oral formats. After three iterations of a semester-long laboratory course, we found that students who took the course showed a significant increase in their understanding of the nature of authentic research and their level of critical thinking skills.

  13. Preparation of a Cobalt(II) Cage: An Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment That Produces a ParaSHIFT Agent for Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burns, Patrick J.; Tsitovich, Pavel B.; Morrow, Janet R.

    2016-01-01

    Laboratory experiments that demonstrate the effect of paramagnetic complexes on chemical shifts and relaxation times of protons are a useful way to introduce magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) probes or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) contrast agents. In this undergraduate inorganic chemistry experiment, a paramagnetic Co(II) cage complex is…

  14. Introduction of a Simple Experiment for the Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory Demonstrating the Lewis Acid and Shape-Selective Properties of Zeolite Na-Y

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maloney, Vincent; Szczepanski, Zach

    2017-01-01

    A simple, inexpensive, discovery-based experiment for undergraduate organic laboratories has been developed that demonstrates the Lewis acid and shape-selective properties of zeolites. Calcined zeolite Na-Y promotes the electrophilic aromatic bromination of toluene with a significantly higher para/ortho ratio than observed under conventional…

  15. Virtual and Traditional Slides for Teaching Cellular Morphology to Medical Laboratory Science Undergraduates: A Comparative Study of Performance Outcomes, Retention, and Self-Efficacy Beliefs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solberg, Brooke L.

    2011-01-01

    As a result of massive retirement and educational program expense and closure, the field of Medical Laboratory Science (MLS) is facing a critical workforce shortage. Combatting this issue by increasing undergraduate class size is a difficult proposition due to the intense psychomotor curricular requirements of MLS programs. Technological advances…

  16. A Research-Based Undergraduate Organic Laboratory Project: Investigation of a One-Pot, Multicomponent, Environmentally Friendly Prins-Friedel-Crafts-Type Reaction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dintzner, Matthew R.; Maresh, Justin J.; Kinzie, Charles R.; Arena, Anthony F.; Speltz, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    Students in the undergraduate organic laboratory synthesize tetrahydro-2-(4-nitrophenyl)-4-phenyl-2"H"-pyran via the Montmorillonite K10 clay-catalyzed reaction of p-nitrobenzaldehye with methanol, 3-buten-1-ol, and benzene. The synthesis comprises an environmentally friendly tandem Prins-Friedel-Crafts-type multicomponent reaction (MCR) and sets…

  17. Synthesis and Catalytic Activity of Ruthenium-Indenylidene Complexes for Olefin Metathesis: Microscale Experiments for the Undergraduate Inorganic or Organometallic Laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pappenfus, Ted M.; Hermanson, David L.; Ekerholm, Daniel P.; Lilliquist, Stacie L.; Mekoli, Megan L.

    2007-01-01

    A series of experiments for undergraduate laboratory courses (e.g., inorganic, organometallic or advanced organic) have been developed. These experiments focus on understanding the design and catalytic activity of ruthenium-indenylidene complexes for olefin metathesis. Included in the experiments are the syntheses of two ruthenium-indenylidene…

  18. Ligand-Free Suzuki-Miyaura Coupling Reactions Using an Inexpensive Aqueous Palladium Source: A Synthetic and Computational Exercise for the Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Nicholas J.; Bowman, Matthew D.; Esselman, Brian J.; Byron, Stephen D.; Kreitinger, Jordan; Leadbeater, Nicholas E.

    2014-01-01

    An inexpensive procedure for introducing the Suzuki-Miyaura coupling reaction into a high-enrollment undergraduate organic chemistry laboratory course is described. The procedure employs an aqueous palladium solution as the catalyst and a range of para-substituted aryl bromides and arylboronic acids as substrates. The coupling reactions proceed…

  19. Volumetric Titrations Using Electrolytically Generated Reagents for the Determination of Ascorbic Acid and Iron in Dietary Supplement Tablets: An Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scanlon, Christopher; Gebeyehu, Zewdu; Griffin, Kameron; Dabke, Rajeev B.

    2014-01-01

    An undergraduate laboratory experiment for the volumetric quantitative analysis of ascorbic acid and iron in dietary supplement tablets is presented. Powdered samples of the dietary supplement tablets were volumetrically titrated against electrolytically generated reagents, and the mass of dietary reagent in the tablet was determined from the…

  20. A Simplified Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment to Evaluate the Effect of the Ionic Strength on the Equilibrium Concentration Quotient of the Bromcresol Green Dye

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, Hernan B.; Mirenda, Martin

    2012-01-01

    A modified laboratory experiment for undergraduate students is presented to evaluate the effects of the ionic strength, "I", on the equilibrium concentration quotient, K[subscript c], of the acid-base indicator bromcresol green (BCG). The two-step deprotonation of the acidic form of the dye (sultone form), as it is dissolved in water, yields…

  1. Using Mole Ratios of Electrolytic Products of Water for Analysis of Household Vinegar: An Experiment for the Undergraduate Physical Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dabke, Rajeev B.; Gebeyehu, Zewdu

    2012-01-01

    A simple 3-h physical chemistry undergraduate experiment for the quantitative analysis of acetic acid in household vinegar is presented. The laboratory experiment combines titration concept with electrolysis and an application of the gas laws. A vinegar sample was placed in the cathode compartment of the electrolysis cell. Electrolysis of water…

  2. Changing undergraduate human anatomy and physiology laboratories: perspectives from a large-enrollment course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griff, Edwin R

    2016-09-01

    In the present article, a veteran lecturer of human anatomy and physiology taught several sections of the laboratory component for the first time and shares his observations and analysis from this unique perspective. The article discusses a large-enrollment, content-heavy anatomy and physiology course in relationship to published studies on learning and student self-efficacy. Changes in the laboratory component that could increase student learning are proposed. The author also points out the need for research to assess whether selective curricular changes could increase the depth of understanding and retention of learned material. Copyright © 2016 The American Physiological Society.

  3. [Biological analysis of proteinuria in the laboratory: quantitative features].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Bricon, T

    2001-01-01

    Total protein analysis is one of the most frequent laboratory analyses in urine. A proteinuria above 150 mg/L is often observed in a random way in preventive or school medicine (dipsticks) or during laboratory analysis (quantitative determination). Complete (quantitative, then qualitative) and repeated evaluation of proteinuria is of major interest for the clinician to establish a diagnosis of abnormality and for therapeutic follow-up of a nephropathy, uropathy or a non-renal disease (diabetes, multiple myeloma). Most frequent (90% of cases) and severe forms of proteinuria are of glomerular type, associated to the nephrotic syndrome, hypertension, and progressive renal failure. Attention should be paid by the biologist to the pre-analytical phase (specimen collection, treatment, and storage), to clinical data, and to prescription of drugs that could interfere with protein analysis. During the last past 10 years, significant analytical advances have been made: dipstick analysis has been dropped (false positives and most importantly false negatives) as manual precipitation techniques with turbidimetric detection (poor inter-laboratory coefficients of variation, CV), replacement of Coomassie blue by pyrogallol red (improved practicability). Urinary quality control data reflect these positive changes, as demonstrated by a dramatic reduction in reported CVs. There is, however, still no reference method for total urinary protein determination and limits of existing pyrogallol red methods should be emphasized: variable reagent composition between manufacturers (such as the presence of SDS additive), limited sensitivity, difficulty in the choice of a calibration material, underestimation of free light chains, and interference with gelatin based vascular replacement fluids.

  4. Advantages and Challenges of Using Physics Curricula as a Model for Reforming an Undergraduate Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donovan, D. A.; Atkins, L. J.; Salter, I. Y.; Gallagher, D. J.; Kratz, R. F.; Rousseau, J. V.; Nelson, G. D.

    2013-01-01

    We report on the development of a life sciences curriculum, targeted to undergraduate students, which was modeled after a commercially available physics curriculum and based on aspects of how people learn. Our paper describes the collaborative development process and necessary modifications required to apply a physics pedagogical model in a life…

  5. Beyond the Cell: Using Multiscalar Topics to Bring Interdisciplinarity into Undergraduate Cellular Biology Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, Carolyn F.

    2016-01-01

    Western science has grown increasingly reductionistic and, in parallel, the undergraduate life sciences curriculum has become disciplinarily fragmented. While reductionistic approaches have led to landmark discoveries, many of the most exciting scientific advances in the late 20th century have occurred at disciplinary interfaces; work at these…

  6. Writing toward a Scientific Identity: Shifting from Prescriptive to Reflective Writing in Undergraduate Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otfinowski, Rafael; Silva-Opps, Marina

    2015-01-01

    Analytical writing enhances retention of science learning and is integral to student-centered classrooms. Despite this, scientific writing in undergraduate programs is often presented as a series of sentence-level conventions of grammar, syntax, and citation formats, reinforcing students' perceptions of its highly prescriptive nature. The authors…

  7. Structural Biology of Tumor Necrosis Factor Demonstrated for Undergraduates Instruction by Computer Simulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roy, Urmi

    2016-01-01

    This work presents a three-dimensional (3D) modeling exercise for undergraduate students in chemistry and health sciences disciplines, focusing on a protein-group linked to immune system regulation. Specifically, the exercise involves molecular modeling and structural analysis of tumor necrosis factor (TNF) proteins, both wild type and mutant. The…

  8. Biocatalyzed Regioselective Synthesis in Undergraduate Organic Laboratories: Multistep Synthesis of 2-Arachidonoylglycerol

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, Meghan R.; Makriyannis, Alexandros; Whitten, Kyle M.; Drew, Olivia C.; Best, Fiona A.

    2016-01-01

    In order to introduce the concepts of biocatalysis and its utility in synthesis to organic chemistry students, a multistep synthesis of endogenous cannabinergic ligand 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) was tailored for use as a laboratory exercise. Over four weeks, students successfully produced 2-AG, purifying and characterizing products at each…

  9. A Metabolic Murder Mystery: A Case-Based Experiment for the Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Childs-Disney, Jessica L.; Kauffmann, Andrew D.; Poplawski, Shane G.; Lysiak, Daniel R.; Stewart, Robert J.; Arcadi, Jane K.; Dinan, Frank J.

    2010-01-01

    In 1990, a woman was wrongly convicted of poisoning her infant son and was sentenced to life in prison. Her conviction was based on laboratory work that wrongly identified ethylene glycol as present in her son's blood and in the formula he drank prior to his death. The actual cause of the infant's death, a metabolic disease, was eventually…

  10. Dehydration of 2-Methyl-1-Cyclohexanol: New Findings from a Popular Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friesen, J. Brent; Schretzman, Robert

    2011-01-01

    The mineral acid-catalyzed dehydration of 2-methyl-1-cyclohexanol has been a popular laboratory exercise in second-year organic chemistry for several decades. The dehydration experiment is often performed by organic chemistry students to illustrate Zaitsev's rule. However, sensitive analytical techniques reveal that the results do not entirely…

  11. Computer Based Learning in an Undergraduate Physics Laboratory: Interfacing and Instrument Control Using Matlab

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharp, J. S.; Glover, P. M.; Moseley, W.

    2007-01-01

    In this paper we describe the recent changes to the curriculum of the second year practical laboratory course in the School of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Nottingham. In particular, we describe how Matlab has been implemented as a teaching tool and discuss both its pedagogical advantages and disadvantages in teaching undergraduate…

  12. To What Extent Does A-Level Physics Prepare Students for Undergraduate Laboratory Work?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Alaric

    2012-01-01

    This paper is a summary of a small-scale research project carried out to investigate the transition from A-level to university physics, with a specific focus on practical or laboratory skills. A brief description of the methods used precedes the headline findings of the research. A non-evidential discussion of the possible reasons behind any…

  13. Successful Implementation of Inquiry-Based Physiology Laboratories in Undergraduate Major and Nonmajor Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casotti, G.; Rieser-Danner, L.; Knabb, M. T.

    2008-01-01

    Recent evidence has demonstrated that inquiry-based physiology laboratories improve students' critical- and analytical-thinking skills. We implemented inquiry-based learning into three physiology courses: Comparative Vertebrate Physiology (majors), Human Physiology (majors), and Human Anatomy and Physiology (nonmajors). The aims of our curricular…

  14. Studying Epigenetic DNA Modifications in Undergraduate Laboratories Using Complementary Bioinformatic and Molecular Approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Militello, Kevin T.

    2013-01-01

    Epigenetic inheritance is the inheritance of genetic information that is not based on DNA sequence alone. One type of epigenetic information that has come to the forefront in the last few years is modified DNA bases. The most common modified DNA base in nature is 5-methylcytosine. Herein, we describe a laboratory experiment that combines…

  15. Gravimetric Analysis of Bismuth in Bismuth Subsalicylate Tablets: A Versatile Quantitative Experiment for Undergraduate Laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Eric; Cheung, Ken; Pauls, Steve; Dick, Jonathan; Roth, Elijah; Zalewski, Nicole; Veldhuizen, Christopher; Coeler, Joel

    2015-01-01

    In this laboratory experiment, lower- and upper-division students dissolved bismuth subsalicylate tablets in acid and precipitated the resultant Bi[superscript 3+] in solution with sodium phosphate for a gravimetric determination of bismuth subsalicylate in the tablets. With a labeled concentration of 262 mg/tablet, the combined data from three…

  16. Multiweek Cell Culture Project for Use in Upper-Level Biology Laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marion, Rebecca E.; Gardner, Grant E.; Parks, Lisa D.

    2012-01-01

    This article describes a laboratory protocol for a multiweek project piloted in a new upper-level biology laboratory (BIO 426) using cell culture techniques. Human embryonic kidney-293 cells were used, and several culture media and supplements were identified for students to design their own experiments. Treatments included amino acids, EGF,…

  17. An Interdisciplinary Guided Inquiry Laboratory for First Year Undergraduate Forensic Science Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cresswell, Sarah L.; Loughlin, Wendy A.

    2015-01-01

    An effective guided inquiry forensic case study (a pharmacy break-in) is described for first-year students. Four robust introductory forensic chemistry and biology experiments are used to analyze potential drug samples and determine the identity of a possible suspect. Students perform presumptive tests for blood on a "point of entry…

  18. Human Spirometry: Computerized Data Acquisition in the Undergraduate Human Physiology Laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braun, Bradley T.; Mulstay, Richard E.

    1993-01-01

    Applies microcomputer technology to the development of a data acquisition and analysis system for the study of measuring the human lung capacity and metabolism. Discusses the chain-compensated spirometer, interfacing hardware, data acquisition hardware and software, and the applicability of the system to other biological measurements. (MDH)

  19. A Survey of Biology Teachers Use of Activity-Oriented, Laboratory Practical Exercises to Promote Functional Biology Education

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abigail Mgboyibo Osuafor

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available A major goal of science education is fostering students’ intellectual competencies such as independent learning, problem-solving, decision-making and critical thinking. This goal can only be achieved when students are actively involved in the teaching-learning process through activity-based, practical-oriented instructional methods involving the use of laboratories. This study therefore, investigated the extent to which the biology teachers employ activity-oriented, laboratory/practical instructional methods in order to improve the learning outcome of their students. The descriptive survey involved 73 Biology teachers randomly selected from all the six education zones of Anambra state, Nigeria. Four research questions were posed and four hypotheses were formulated to guide the conduct of the study. A 32-item structured questionnaire which has reliability co-efficient of 0.82 was used to collect data. Data were analyzed using mean, standard deviation and t-tests. Results show that Biology teachers adopt practical-oriented strategies in teaching biology, conduct practical activities to a high extent, and perceive practical exercises as essential to effective teaching and learning of the subject. Provision of adequate number of laboratory materials, employment of adequate number of biology teachers, making provision for well designed laboratory activities in the curriculum and training of teachers on how to effectively combine theory with practical are some of the strategies that will encourage biology teachers to conduct practical lessons. There was no significant difference between male and female biology teachers in their responses to the different aspects investigated. Based on these findings, some recommendations were made that include that curriculum designers should incorporate guides for practical activities that go with each topic in the curriculum so as to encourage the teachers to teach theory with practical as a unified whole to

  20. Climate-Literacy Laboratory Exercises for Undergraduate Students in an Introductory Weather and Climate Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diem, J.; Elliott, W.; Criswell, B.; Morrow, C. A.

    2012-12-01

    A suite of NASA-sponsored, Web-based exercises are in development for an introductory weather and climate course at Georgia State University (GSU) to improve climate literacy among undergraduate students. An extremely small percentage of the students are STEM majors. The exercises make extensive use of NASA resources and are guided in part by the concepts in Climate Literacy: The Essential Principles of Climate Science. At least two thousand undergraduate students have completed a majority of the exercises over the past two years. Nine of the twelve exercises in the course are connected strongly to climate literacy. The topics of those nine exercises are as follows: (1) Solar Irradiance, (2) Stratospheric Ozone, (3) Tropospheric Air, (4) The Carbon Cycle, (5) Global Surface Temperature, (6) Glacial-Interglacial Cycles, (7) Temperature Changes during the Past Millennium, (8) Climate & Ecosystems, and (9) Current & Future Climate Change. Two of the exercises (Tropospheric Air and The Carbon Cycle) make use of carbon dioxide (CO2) measurements made by students themselves and by a stationary CO2 monitor at GSU. The three remaining exercises, The Hadley Cell, Atlanta Weather, and Air Pollution, are less connected to multiple climate-literacy concepts; nonetheless, they provide a more complete experience for the students in the understanding of climate processes, differences between weather and climate, and human impacts on the atmosphere. All exercises are based on an inquiry-based learning cycle (i.e. 7 Es) and require substantial amounts of engagement, applied thinking, and critical thinking by the students. Not only do students become knowledgeable about the essential principles of climate change, especially global warming, but extensive use of geographical-information software and hand-held measurement devices has provided students with training in geography and technology. Student attitudes towards the labs were gathered via an on-line, anonymous survey from

  1. Laboratory studies of biological effects of sulfur oxides

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dalbey, W. E.

    1979-01-01

    Selected results from exposures of laboratory animals to airborne sulfur oxides were briefly summarized. The main observation during acute exposures was reflex bronchoconstriction and a resultant increase in pulmonary resistance. The increase in resistance due to sulfur dioxide (SO/sub 2/) was potentiated by simultaneous exposure to aerosols under conditions which would increase the transfer of sulfur oxides into the respiratory tract and promote transformation to a higher oxidation state, especially one that is acid. Sulfate aerosols, particularly sulfuric acid aerosols, were more potent than SO/sub 2/ in causing bronchoconstriction. Chronic exposure to high concentrations (400 to 650 ppM) of SO/sub 2/ resulted in experimental bronchitis in several species. Longterm exposure to more realistic concentrations of SO/sub 2/ produced little or no changes in respiratory function or morphology. Significant alterations in both pulmonary function and morphology have been reported after chronic exposure to sulfuric acid aerosols. Recent data indicate that changes in the lung may progress after cessation of such exposures.

  2. The effectiveness and user perception of 3-dimensional digital human anatomy in an online undergraduate anatomy laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilbelink, Amy Joanne

    2007-12-01

    The primary purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of implementing desktop 3-dimensional (3D) stereo images of human anatomy into an undergraduate human anatomy distance laboratory. User perceptions of 2D and 3D images were gathered via questionnaire in order to determine ease of use and level of satisfaction associated with the 3D software in the online learning environment. Mayer's (2001, p. 184) principles of design were used to develop the study materials that consisted of PowerPoint presentations and AVI files accessed via Blackboard. The research design employed a mixed-methods approach. Volunteers each were administered a demographic survey and were then stratified into groups based upon pre-test scores. A total sample size of 62 pairs was available for combined data analysis. Quantitative research questions regarding the effectiveness of 2D versus the 3D treatment were analyzed using a doubly-multivariate repeated measures (Doubly-MANOVA) design. Paired test scores achieved by undergraduates on a laboratory practical of identification and spatial relationships of the bones and features of a human skull were used in the analysis. The questionnaire designed to gather user perceptions consisted of quantitative and qualitative questions. Response frequencies were analyzed for the two groups and common themes were noted. Results revealed a statistically significant difference in group means for the main effect of the treatment groups 2D and 3D and for the variables of identification and relationship with the 3D group outperforming the 2D group on both dependent variables. Effect sizes were determined to be small, 0.215 for the identification variable and 0.359 for the relationship variable. Overall, all students liked the convenience of using PowerPoint and AVI files online. The 3D group felt their PowerPoint was more realistic than did the 2D group and both groups appreciated the detailed labeling of the online images. One third of the

  3. Integrating Responsible Conduct of Research Education into Undergraduate Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Laboratory Curricula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hendrickson, Tamara L.

    2015-01-01

    Recently, a requirement for directed responsible conduct in research (RCR) education has become a priority in the United States and elsewhere. In the US, both the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation require RCR education for all students who are financially supported by federal awards. The guidelines produced by these…

  4. Building Design Guidelines of Interior Architecture for Bio safety Levels of Biology Laboratories

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    ElDib, A.A.

    2014-01-01

    This paper discusses the pivotal role of the Interior Architecture As one of the scientific disciplines minute to complete the Architectural Sciences, which relied upon the achievement and development of facilities containing scientific research laboratories, in terms of planning and design, particularly those containing biological laboratories using radioactive materials, adding to that, the application of the materials or raw materials commensurate with each discipline of laboratory and its work nature, and by the discussion the processing of design techniques and requirements of interior architecture dealing with Research Laboratory for electronic circuits an their applications with the making of its prototypes

  5. Practice makes pretty good: assessment of primary literature reading abilities across multiple large-enrollment biology laboratory courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Brian K; Kadandale, Pavan; He, Wenliang; Murata, Paige M N; Latif, Yama; Warschauer, Mark

    2014-01-01

    Primary literature is essential for scientific communication and is commonly utilized in undergraduate biology education. Despite this, there is often little time spent training our students how to critically analyze a paper. To address this, we introduced a primary literature module in multiple upper-division laboratory courses. In this module, instructors conduct classroom discussions that dissect a paper as researchers do. While previous work has identified classroom interventions that improve primary literature comprehension within a single course, our goal was to determine whether including a scientific paper module in our classes could produce long-term benefits. On the basis of performance in an assessment exam, we found that our module resulted in longitudinal gains, including increased comprehension and critical-thinking abilities in subsequent lab courses. These learning gains were specific to courses utilizing our module, as no longitudinal gains were seen in students who had taken other upper-division labs that lacked extensive primary literature discussion. In addition, we assessed whether performance on our assessment correlated with a variety of factors, including grade point average, course performance, research background, and self-reported confidence in understanding of the article. Furthermore, all of the study conclusions are independent of biology disciplines, as we observe similar trends within each course. © 2014 B. K. Sato et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2014 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  6. Student-Driven Engagement: An Interdisciplinary-Team Research-Learning Renewable Energy Laboratory Experience for Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuominen, Mark

    How does engagement and deep learning happen? Every science department seeks to cultivate an excellent level of scientific skills and knowledge in its undergraduate students. Yet, this is not sufficient to thrive as a professional. Engaging directly in real-world challenges can foster a professional attitude: a high level of self-efficacy, a genuine sense of relevance, and proactivity. This talk will describe pedagogical developments of a junior-year renewable energy laboratory course at the University of Massachusetts Amherst that is part of a four-year Integrated Concentration in Science (iCons) program. Over the four years, the interdisciplinary iCons students-from 24 various majors-work through case studies, selection and analysis of real-world problems, inception and development of potential solutions, integrative communication, experimental practice, and capstone research. The team dynamic is a central aspect of the experience, yielding significant educational and developmental benefits. The third-year energy course uses adopts a culture of a small vibrant R and D company (I3E - ``Energy, Powered By Intelligence''), in which every person in the course has a vital responsibility and creative resourcefulness must be employed in the project work. The course emphasizes the practice of using reflection and redesign, as a means of generating better solutions and embedding the practice of learning in a real-world context. This work is supported in part by NSF Grant DUE-1140805.

  7. Leaf LIMS: A Flexible Laboratory Information Management System with a Synthetic Biology Focus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Craig, Thomas; Holland, Richard; D'Amore, Rosalinda; Johnson, James R; McCue, Hannah V; West, Anthony; Zulkower, Valentin; Tekotte, Hille; Cai, Yizhi; Swan, Daniel; Davey, Robert P; Hertz-Fowler, Christiane; Hall, Anthony; Caddick, Mark

    2017-12-15

    This paper presents Leaf LIMS, a flexible laboratory information management system (LIMS) designed to address the complexity of synthetic biology workflows. At the project's inception there was a lack of a LIMS designed specifically to address synthetic biology processes, with most systems focused on either next generation sequencing or biobanks and clinical sample handling. Leaf LIMS implements integrated project, item, and laboratory stock tracking, offering complete sample and construct genealogy, materials and lot tracking, and modular assay data capture. Hence, it enables highly configurable task-based workflows and supports data capture from project inception to completion. As such, in addition to it supporting synthetic biology it is ideal for many laboratory environments with multiple projects and users. The system is deployed as a web application through Docker and is provided under a permissive MIT license. It is freely available for download at https://leaflims.github.io .

  8. Biological inquiry: a new course and assessment plan in response to the call to transform undergraduate biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldey, Ellen S; Abercrombie, Clarence L; Ivy, Tracie M; Kusher, Dave I; Moeller, John F; Rayner, Doug A; Smith, Charles F; Spivey, Natalie W

    2012-01-01

    We transformed our first-year curriculum in biology with a new course, Biological Inquiry, in which >50% of all incoming, first-year students enroll. The course replaced a traditional, content-driven course that relied on outdated approaches to teaching and learning. We diversified pedagogical practices by adopting guided inquiry in class and in labs, which are devoted to building authentic research skills through open-ended experiments. Students develop core biological knowledge, from the ecosystem to molecular level, and core skills through regular practice in hypothesis testing, reading primary literature, analyzing data, interpreting results, writing in disciplinary style, and working in teams. Assignments and exams require higher-order cognitive processes, and students build new knowledge and skills through investigation of real-world problems (e.g., malaria), which engages students' interest. Evidence from direct and indirect assessment has guided continuous course revision and has revealed that compared with the course it replaced, Biological Inquiry produces significant learning gains in all targeted areas. It also retains 94% of students (both BA and BS track) compared with 79% in the majors-only course it replaced. The project has had broad impact across the entire college and reflects the input of numerous constituencies and close collaboration among biology professors and students.

  9. A writing-intensive course improves biology undergraduates' perception and confidence of their abilities to read scientific literature and communicate science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brownell, Sara E; Price, Jordan V; Steinman, Lawrence

    2013-03-01

    Most scientists agree that comprehension of primary scientific papers and communication of scientific concepts are two of the most important skills that we can teach, but few undergraduate biology courses make these explicit course goals. We designed an undergraduate neuroimmunology course that uses a writing-intensive format. Using a mixture of primary literature, writing assignments directed toward a layperson and scientist audience, and in-class discussions, we aimed to improve the ability of students to 1) comprehend primary scientific papers, 2) communicate science to a scientific audience, and 3) communicate science to a layperson audience. We offered the course for three consecutive years and evaluated its impact on student perception and confidence using a combination of pre- and postcourse survey questions and coded open-ended responses. Students showed gains in both the perception of their understanding of primary scientific papers and of their abilities to communicate science to scientific and layperson audiences. These results indicate that this unique format can teach both communication skills and basic science to undergraduate biology students. We urge others to adopt a similar format for undergraduate biology courses to teach process skills in addition to content, thus broadening and strengthening the impact of undergraduate courses.

  10. Do Biology Students Really Hate Math? Empirical Insights into Undergraduate Life Science Majors’ Emotions about Mathematics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wachsmuth, Lucas P.; Runyon, Christopher R.; Drake, John M.; Dolan, Erin L.

    2017-01-01

    Undergraduate life science majors are reputed to have negative emotions toward mathematics, yet little empirical evidence supports this. We sought to compare emotions of majors in the life sciences versus other natural sciences and math. We adapted the Attitudes toward the Subject of Chemistry Inventory to create an Attitudes toward the Subject of Mathematics Inventory (ASMI). We collected data from 359 science and math majors at two research universities and conducted a series of statistical tests that indicated that four AMSI items comprised a reasonable measure of students’ emotional satisfaction with math. We then compared life science and non–life science majors and found that major had a small to moderate relationship with students’ responses. Gender also had a small relationship with students’ responses, while students’ race, ethnicity, and year in school had no observable relationship. Using latent profile analysis, we identified three groups—students who were emotionally satisfied with math, emotionally dissatisfied with math, and neutral. These results and the emotional satisfaction with math scale should be useful for identifying differences in other undergraduate populations, determining the malleability of undergraduates’ emotional satisfaction with math, and testing effects of interventions aimed at improving life science majors’ attitudes toward math. PMID:28798211

  11. An analysis of cognitive growth of undergraduate students in a problem-centered general chemistry laboratory curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szeto, Alan Ka-Fai

    This study explored how undergraduate students in a new problem-centered General Chemistry Laboratory curriculum achieved cognitive growth. The new curriculum had three instructional segments: the highly-structured, semi-structured, and open-ended segments. The pedagogical approaches adopted were expository, guided-inquiry, and open-inquiry styles, respectively. Sixty-seven first-year undergraduate students who enrolled in the course in Spring semester, 2000, at Columbia University and three Ph.D.-level chemistry experts were included in the study. A qualitative approach was used including data collection through "think-aloud" problem solving; however, quantitative data such as test scores were also used. The findings from this study confirmed that chemistry experts possessed sophisticated and domain-specific conceptual knowledge structures; they mobilized and applied conceptual knowledge in conjunction with use of heuristics, tacit knowledge, and experience in authentic problem solving. They validated the new curriculum design in preparing students for inquiry-type of problem solving. For novices, solving of semi-structured before ill-structured problems had a positive effect on the solvers' chance of success in solving the latter type of problems as their abilities to mobilize and apply conceptual knowledge and use effective strategies appeared to be critical for successful problem solving. Students in the new course curriculum had grown cognitively as evidenced by their performance on the Case Study projects and Final Examination. High academic achievers were found to perform well independently while the medium and relatively low academic achievers should benefit from sustained and intensive instruction. It is proposed that ill-structured problems should be used to assess and identify the best from the better students. Finally, it was found that no significant change in students' attitudes had resulted from their curriculum experience. Gender and cognitive style

  12. Protein crystallization screens developed at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorrec, Fabrice

    2016-05-01

    In order to solve increasingly challenging protein structures with crystallography, crystallization reagents and screen formulations are regularly investigated. Here, we briefly describe 96-condition screens developed at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology: the LMB sparse matrix screen, Pi incomplete factorial screens, the MORPHEUS grid screens and the ANGSTROM optimization screen. In this short review, we also discuss the difficulties and advantages associated with the development of protein crystallization screens. Copyright © 2016 MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  13. Integrating a Discovery-Based Laboratory to Teach Supply Chain Management Fundamentals in an Undergraduate Management Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, Amy; Johnson, Sharon

    2009-01-01

    Using experiential simulation games is a commonly used pedagogical method to enrich classroom discussions and to facilitate students' learning in supply chain management education at both undergraduate and graduate levels. However, existing games are inappropriate for undergraduate students that are first-time learners of the subject. In this…

  14. Examining the effects of students' classroom expectations on undergraduate biology course reform

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Kristi Lyn

    In this dissertation, I perform and compare three studies of introductory biology students' classroom expectations -- what students expect to be the nature of the knowledge that they are learning, what they think they should be (or are) doing in order to learn, and what they think they should be (or are) doing in order to be successful. Previous work has shown that expectations can impact how students approach learning, yet biology education researchers have been reluctant to acknowledge or address the effects of student expectations on curricular reform (NRC, 2012). Most research in biology education reform has focused on students' conceptual understandings of biology and the efficacy of specific changes to content and pedagogy. The current research is lacking a deeper understanding of how students perceive the classroom environment and how those perceptions can shape students' interactions with the content and pedagogy. For present and future reforms in biology to reach their full potential, I argue that biology education should actively address the different ways students think about and approach learning in biology classes. The first study uses a Likert-scale instrument, adapted from the Maryland Physics Expectations Survey (Redish, Saul, & Steinberg, 1998). This new survey, the Maryland Biology Expectations Survey (MBEX) documents two critical results in biology classrooms: (i) certain student-centered pedagogical contexts can produce favorable changes in students' expectations, and (ii) more traditional classroom contexts appear to produce negative epistemological effects. The second study utilizes a modified version of the MBEX and focuses on students' interdisciplinary views. This study documents that: (i) biology students have both discipline-specific and context-specific classroom expectations, (ii) students respond more favorably to interdisciplinary content in the biology courses we surveyed (as opposed to biology content introduced into the physics

  15. Two Successful Outreach Programs at Storm Peak Laboratory: GRASP for Undergraduates and Partnership for 5th Grade Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hallar, A. G.; McCubbin, I. B.; Wright, J.

    2007-12-01

    The Desert Research Institute operates a high elevation facility, Storm Peak Laboratory (SPL), located on the Steamboat Springs Ski Resort at an elevation 10,500 ft. SPL provides an ideal location for long-term atmospheric research. The SPL mission statement is to ensure that the laboratory will continue to integrate climate research and education by advancing discovery and understanding within the field of pollution, aerosol and cloud interactions. During the last year, SPL has created two successful outreach programs reaching very different audiences. First, to engage students from local elementary schools, SPL established a 5th grade climate education program. This program is based on a partnership between SPL and Yampatika's&penvironmental educators. Yampatika is a non-profit outdoor environmental education organization. The program spans three days for each school and includes five elementary schools. During the first day, educators from Yampatika visit each classroom to introduce the concepts of climate and weather as well as teach students how to use scientific equipment. During the field program on the second day, students measure and record information about temperature, pressure, relative humidity, wind speed, and particle concentration while they travel to SPL via the gondola (in winter) or Suburban (in fall). Once at the laboratory, students tour the facility, discuss SPL research activities, and explore application of these activities to their curriculum. Following the field trip, Yampatika educators and SPL scientists will visit the school for a follow-up to help children explore concepts, answer questions, and evaluate students" learning. The second program, Geoscience Research at Storm Peak (GRASP), was designed to engage students from underrepresented groups and created a partnership between three Minority Serving Institutions and the University of Nevada, Reno (UNR). Undergraduate students from Tennessee State University, Howard University

  16. A DNA Fingerprinting Simulation Laboratory for Biology Students: Hands-on Experimentation To Solve a Mock Forensic Problem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palladino, Michael A.; Cosentino, Emily

    2001-01-01

    Presents an alternative approach to DNA fingerprinting. Demonstrates how undergraduate students can be involved in many aspects of this type of experiment and how DNA fingerprinting experiments can be incorporated into the laboratory curriculum of courses for majors and nonmajors. (NB)

  17. The Genome Solver Website: A Virtual Space Fostering High Impact Practices for Undergraduate Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne G. Rosenwald

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available While the tools for analysis of prokaryotic genomes are available on the internet and are relatively easy for undergraduates to master, the challenge lies with faculty inexperienced in teaching bioinformatics. To meet this challenge we developed the Genome Solver (GS website, a community of practice for faculty support and student learning. At the GS site, faculty can learn about face-to-face training opportunities or use the virtual training materials such as primers on the pertinent science, tools, and techniques. Faculty can also find colleagues engaged in similar work as well as relevant curricular materials. The GS site also helps facilitate sharing of student work, so that students can engage in peer-to-peer review. Finally, genomics experts also have a presence on GS and can weigh in on problems or discuss methods.  

  18. A comparison of student reactions to biology instruction by interactive videodisc or conventional laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonard, William H.

    This study was designed to learn if students perceived an interactive computer/videodisc learning system to represent a viable alternative to (or extension of) the conventional laboratory for learning biology skills and concepts normally taught under classroom laboratory conditions. Data were collected by questionnaire for introductory biology classes at a large midwestern university where students were randomly assigned to two interactive videodisc/computer lessons titled Respiration and Climate and Life or traditional laboratory investigation with the same titles and concepts. The interactive videodisc system consisted of a TRS-80 Model III microcomputer interfaced to a Pioneer laser-disc player and a color TV monitor. Students indicated an overall level satisfaction with this strategy very similar to that of conventional laboratory instruction. Students frequently remarked that videodisc instruction gave them more experimental and procedural options and more efficient use of instructional time than did the conventional laboratory mode. These two results are consistent with past CAI research. Students also had a strong perception that the images on the videodisc were not real and this factor was perceived as having both advantages and disadvantages. Students found the two approaches to be equivalent to conventional laboratory instruction in the areas of general interest, understanding of basic principles, help on examinations, and attitude toward science. The student-opinion data in this study do not suggest that interactive videodisc technology serve as a substitute to the wet laboratory experience, but that this medium may enrich the spectrum of educational experiences usually not possible in typical classroom settings.

  19. Biological assessment for the effluent reduction program, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, New Mexico

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cross, S.P.

    1996-08-01

    This report describes the biological assessment for the effluent recution program proposed to occur within the boundaries of Los Alamos National Laboratory. Potential effects on wetland plants and on threatened and endangered species are discussed, along with a detailed description of the individual outfalls resulting from the effluent reduction program.

  20. A Statistical Analysis of Student Questions in a Cell Biology Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keeling, Elena L.; Polacek, Kelly M.; Ingram, Ella L.

    2009-01-01

    Asking questions is an essential component of the practice of science, but question-asking skills are often underemphasized in science education. In this study, we examined questions written by students as they prepared for laboratory exercises in a senior-level cell biology class. Our goals were to discover 1) what types of questions students…

  1. Audio-Tutorial Versus Conventional Lecture-Laboratory Instruction in a University Animal Biology Course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rowsey, Robert E.

    The purpose of this study was to analyze two methods of instruction used in an animal biology course. One group of students, the experimental group, was taught using an audio-tutorial program, and another group, the control group, was taught using the conventional lecture-laboratory method. Pretest and posttest data were collected from achievement…

  2. An Inquiry-Infused Introductory Biology Laboratory That Integrates Mendel's Pea Phenotypes with Molecular Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kudish, Philip; Schlag, Erin; Kaplinsky, Nicholas J.

    2015-01-01

    We developed a multi-week laboratory in which college-level introductory biology students investigate Mendel's stem length phenotype in peas. Students collect, analyze and interpret convergent evidence from molecular and physiological techniques. In weeks 1 and 2, students treat control and experimental plants with Gibberellic Acid (GA) to…

  3. Variability of Biological Degradation of Phenolic Hydrocarbons in an Aerobic Aquifer Determined by Laboratory Batch Experiments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Per Henning; Christensen, Thomas Højlund

    1994-01-01

    The biological aerobic degradation of 7 phenolic hydrocarbons (phenol, o-cresol, o-nitrophenol, p-nitrophenol, 2,6-dichlorophenol, 2,4-dichlorophenol, 4,6-o-dichlorocresol) and 1 aromatic hydrocarbon (nitrobenzene) was studied for 149 days in replicate laboratory batch microcosms with sediment...

  4. Variability of Biological Degradation of Aromatic Hydrocarbons in an Aerobic Aquifer Determined by Laboratory Batch Experiments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Per Henning; Christensen, Thomas Højlund

    1994-01-01

    The biological aerobic degradation of 7 aromatic hydrocarbons (benzene, toluene, o-xylene, p-dichlorobenzene, o-dichlorobenzene, naphthalene and biphenyl) was studied for 149 days in replicate laboratory batch experiments with groundwater and sediment from 8 localities representing a 15 m × 30 m...

  5. Infusing Bioinformatics and Research-Like Experience into a Molecular Biology Laboratory Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nogaj, Luiza A.

    2014-01-01

    A nine-week laboratory project designed for a sophomore level molecular biology course is described. Small groups of students (3-4 per group) choose a tumor suppressor gene (TSG) or an oncogene for this project. Each group researches the role of their TSG/oncogene from primary literature articles and uses bioinformatics engines to find the gene…

  6. Semester-Long Inquiry-Based Molecular Biology Laboratory: Transcriptional Regulation in Yeast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oelkers, Peter M.

    2017-01-01

    A single semester molecular biology laboratory has been developed in which students design and execute a project examining transcriptional regulation in "Saccharomyces cerevisiae." Three weeks of planning are allocated to developing a hypothesis through literature searches and use of bioinformatics. Common experimental plans address a…

  7. Detection of the "cp4 epsps" Gene in Maize Line NK603 and Comparison of Related Protein Structures: An Advanced Undergraduate Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swope, Nicole K.; Fryfogle, Patrick J.; Sivy, Tami L.

    2015-01-01

    A flexible, rigorous laboratory experiment for upper-level biochemistry undergraduates is described that focuses on the Roundup Ready maize line. The work is appropriate for undergraduate laboratory courses that integrate biochemistry, molecular biology, or bioinformatics. In this experiment, DNA is extracted and purified from maize kernel and…

  8. On making nursing undergraduate human reproductive physiology content meaningful and relevant: discussion of human pleasure in its biological context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McClusky, Leon Mendel

    2012-01-01

    The traditional presentation of the Reproductive Physiology component in an Anatomy and Physiology course to nursing undergraduates focuses on the broad aspects of hormonal regulation of reproduction and gonadal anatomy, with the role of the higher centres of the brain omitted. An introductory discussion is proposed which could precede the lectures on the reproductive organs. The discussion gives an overview of the biological significance of human pleasure, the involvement of the neurotransmitter dopamine, and the role of pleasure in the survival of the individual and even species. Pleasure stimuli (positive and negative) and the biological significance of naturally-induced pleasurable experiences are briefly discussed in the context of reproduction and the preservation of genetic material with an aim to foster relevancy between subject material and human behaviour in any type of society. The tenderness of this aspect of the human existence is well-understood because of its invariable association with soul-revealing human expressions such as love, infatuation, sexual flirtations, all of which are underpinned by arousal, desire and/or pleasure. Assuming that increased knowledge correlates with increased confidence, the proposed approach may provide the nurse with an adequate knowledge base to overcome well-known barriers in communicating with their patients about matters of sexual health and intimacy. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Examining the Effects of Students' Classroom Expectations on Undergraduate Biology Course Reform

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Kristi Lyn

    2013-01-01

    In this dissertation, I perform and compare three studies of introductory biology students' classroom expectations--what students expect to be the nature of the knowledge that they are learning, what they think they should be (or are) doing in order to learn, and what they think they should be (or are) doing in order to be successful. Previous…

  10. The Student Writing Toolkit: Enhancing Undergraduate Teaching of Scientific Writing in the Biological Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dirrigl, Frank J., Jr.; Noe, Mark

    2014-01-01

    Teaching scientific writing in biology classes is challenging for both students and instructors. This article offers and reviews several useful "toolkit" items that improve student writing. These include sentence and paper-length templates, funnelling and compartmentalisation, and preparing compendiums of corrections. In addition,…

  11. Assessment of Student Learning Associated with Tree Thinking in an Undergraduate Introductory Organismal Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, James J.; Cheruvelil, Kendra Spence; Auvenshine, Stacie

    2013-01-01

    Phylogenetic trees provide visual representations of ancestor-descendant relationships, a core concept of evolutionary theory. We introduced "tree thinking" into our introductory organismal biology course (freshman/sophomore majors) to help teach organismal diversity within an evolutionary framework. Our instructional strategy consisted…

  12. What Skills Should Students of Undergraduate Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Programs Have upon Graduation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Harold B.; Benore, Marilee A.; Sumter, Takita F.; Caldwell, Benjamin D.; Bell, Ellis

    2013-01-01

    Biochemistry and molecular biology (BMB) students should demonstrate proficiency in the foundational concepts of the discipline and possess the skills needed to practice as professionals. To ascertain the skills that should be required, groups of BMB educators met in several focused workshops to discuss the expectations with the ultimate goal of…

  13. An Off-the-Shelf, Authentic, and Versatile Undergraduate Molecular Biology Practical Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitworth, David E.

    2015-01-01

    We provide a prepackaged molecular biology course, which has a broad context and is scalable to large numbers of students. It is provided complete with technical setup guidance, a reliable assessment regime, and can be readily implemented without any development necessary. Framed as a forensic examination of blue/white cloning plasmids, the course…

  14. A systematic development and evaluation of an undergraduate course in zoo biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burchfield, Patrick Mullen

    The biology curricula offered by most institutions of higher education follow a classic pattern of basic taxonomy, phylogeny, physiology, genetics, molecular biology and biometry. This course regimen certainly provides a knowledge structure within the discipline, but is somewhat lacking in information that is directly applicable within the field of zoo biology. The zoo biology curriculum set forth in this dissertation was designed to offer students immersion into the rapidly evolving field of zoo biology. It also offers insight and perspectives into the zoo profession, encompassing 185 accredited zoological parks and aquariums, which employ numerous biologists. There is not a degree granting college or university in Texas that currently offers coursework in this specialization. In order to determine the merit and worth of a course in zoo biology, a field trial and a revised course were presented and subjected to a systematic evaluation. Four evaluative categories were utilized following Benton's (1992) design: (a) consistency between terminal performance objectives, activities and test instrument items, (b) effect on scientific knowledge, (c) activity usefulness as perceived by course participants and the instructor, (d) course worth. Student (N = 49) and component data were measured using a pre-post-test design, a questionnaire, and other informal instruments during the antecedent, transaction and outcome phases. Data from the pre-post-tests were analyzed using t-tests for correlated means. The analysis of activities and test items indicated that they were consistent with the terminal performance objectives. The pre-post-test results indicated that the course had a positive effect on knowledge gain within the field of study. A significant statistical difference was found between the test means at a probability of p ≤ 0.001. A post course attitudinal questionnaire elicited a rating of 4.65 on a Likert scale of 5.0 on perceived usefulness to the participants. A

  15. Biological risks and laboratory-acquired infections. A reality that cannot be ignored in health biotechnology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Cláudia Coelho

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Advances and research in biotechnology have applications over a wide range of areas such as microbiology, medicine, the food industry, agriculture, genetically modified organisms and nanotechnology, among others. However, research with pathogenic agents such as virus, parasites, fungi, rickettsia, bacterial microorganisms or genetic modified organisms has generated concern because of their potential biological risk - not only for people, but also for the environment due to their unpredictable behavior. In addition, concern for biosafety is associated with the emergence of new diseases or re-emergence of diseases that were already under control. Biotechnology laboratories require biosafety measures designed to protect their staff, the population and the environment, which may be exposed to hazardous organisms and materials. Laboratory staff training and education is essential, not only to acquire a good understanding about the direct handling of hazardous biological agents but also knowledge of the epidemiology, pathogenicity and human susceptibility to the biological materials used in research. Biological risk can be reduced and controlled by the correct application of internationally recognized procedures such as proper microbiological techniques, proper containment apparatus, adequate facilities, protective barriers and special training and education of laboratory workers. To avoid occupational infections, knowledge about standardized microbiological procedures and techniques and the use of containment devices, facilities and protective barriers is necessary. Training and education about the epidemiology, pathogenicity and biohazards of the microorganisms involved may prevent or decrease the risk. In this way, the scientific community may benefit from the lessons learned in the past to anticipate future problems.

  16. Multiweek cell culture project for use in upper-level biology laboratories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marion, Rebecca E; Gardner, Grant E; Parks, Lisa D

    2012-06-01

    This article describes a laboratory protocol for a multiweek project piloted in a new upper-level biology laboratory (BIO 426) using cell culture techniques. Human embryonic kidney-293 cells were used, and several culture media and supplements were identified for students to design their own experiments. Treatments included amino acids, EGF, caffeine, epinephrine, heavy metals, and FBS. Students researched primary literature to determine their experimental variables, made their own solutions, and treated their cells over a period of 2 wk. Before this, a sterile technique laboratory was developed to teach students how to work with the cells and minimize contamination. Students designed their experiments, mixed their solutions, seeded their cells, and treated them with their control and experimental media. Students had the choice of manipulating a number of variables, including incubation times, exposure to treatment media, and temperature. At the end of the experiment, students observed the effects of their treatment, harvested and dyed their cells, counted relative cell numbers in control and treatment flasks, and determined the ratio of living to dead cells using a hemocytometer. At the conclusion of the experiment, students presented their findings in a poster presentation. This laboratory can be expanded or adapted to include additional cell lines and treatments. The ability to design and implement their own experiments has been shown to increase student engagement in the biology-related laboratory activities as well as develop the critical thinking skills needed for independent research.

  17. Males Under-Estimate Academic Performance of Their Female Peers in Undergraduate Biology Classrooms.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Z Grunspan

    Full Text Available Women who start college in one of the natural or physical sciences leave in greater proportions than their male peers. The reasons for this difference are complex, and one possible contributing factor is the social environment women experience in the classroom. Using social network analysis, we explore how gender influences the confidence that college-level biology students have in each other's mastery of biology. Results reveal that males are more likely than females to be named by peers as being knowledgeable about the course content. This effect increases as the term progresses, and persists even after controlling for class performance and outspokenness. The bias in nominations is specifically due to males over-nominating their male peers relative to their performance. The over-nomination of male peers is commensurate with an overestimation of male grades by 0.57 points on a 4 point grade scale, indicating a strong male bias among males when assessing their classmates. Females, in contrast, nominated equitably based on student performance rather than gender, suggesting they lacked gender biases in filling out these surveys. These trends persist across eleven surveys taken in three different iterations of the same Biology course. In every class, the most renowned students are always male. This favoring of males by peers could influence student self-confidence, and thus persistence in this STEM discipline.

  18. Males Under-Estimate Academic Performance of Their Female Peers in Undergraduate Biology Classrooms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grunspan, Daniel Z; Eddy, Sarah L; Brownell, Sara E; Wiggins, Benjamin L; Crowe, Alison J; Goodreau, Steven M

    2016-01-01

    Women who start college in one of the natural or physical sciences leave in greater proportions than their male peers. The reasons for this difference are complex, and one possible contributing factor is the social environment women experience in the classroom. Using social network analysis, we explore how gender influences the confidence that college-level biology students have in each other's mastery of biology. Results reveal that males are more likely than females to be named by peers as being knowledgeable about the course content. This effect increases as the term progresses, and persists even after controlling for class performance and outspokenness. The bias in nominations is specifically due to males over-nominating their male peers relative to their performance. The over-nomination of male peers is commensurate with an overestimation of male grades by 0.57 points on a 4 point grade scale, indicating a strong male bias among males when assessing their classmates. Females, in contrast, nominated equitably based on student performance rather than gender, suggesting they lacked gender biases in filling out these surveys. These trends persist across eleven surveys taken in three different iterations of the same Biology course. In every class, the most renowned students are always male. This favoring of males by peers could influence student self-confidence, and thus persistence in this STEM discipline.

  19. Biological dosimetry laboratory of the Hospital General Gregorio Maranon. A review of cases investigated

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gomez-Espi, M.; Herranz, R.; Olivares, P.; Orera, M.

    1992-01-01

    Since 1989, in part because of our initiatory, and due in part to the support of the 'Consejo de Seguridad Nuclear', the biological dosimetry laboratory of the 'Hospital General Gregorio Maranon' is attending the individuals that are sent to the level I and II Radiopathology and Radioprotection Center with a suspicion of ionizing radiation overexposure. We have performed chromosomal aberration analysis in peripheral lymphocytes in 31 cases (June 1991). We present here the first biological dosimetry analysis performed in our Country, to demonstrate the usefulness of a technique that is commonly used outside our Country. (author)

  20. OCCUPATIONAL ACCIDENTS WITH BIOLOGICAL MATERIALS IN CLINICAL ANALYSIS LABORATORY: CAUSES AND CONSEQUENCES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. M. Azevedo

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Accidents involving biological material can cause diseases to the professional healthcare and also bring psychosocial effects. The aim of this study was to characterize the accidents occurring with biological material with professional of clinical laboratories of Sinop-MT. Data were collected by a questionnaire consisting of sociodemographic and health variables. 21 (87.5% of respondents stated that they never suffered any kind of accident. One of the injured workers reported that there was involvement in your emotional life. It is observed underreporting of occupational accidents by employees affected, making it difficult to increase research on the subject and actions about the problem.

  1. [Experience of the development special medical technical laboratory for studies of effects caused by potent electromagnetic radiation in biologic objects].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorodetsky, B N; Kalyada, T V; Petrov, S V

    2015-01-01

    This article covers topics of creating special medical technical laboratory for medial and biologic studies concerning influence of potent high-frequency elecromagnetic radiation on various biologic objects. The authors gave example of such laboratory, described its construction features, purpose and main characteristics of the included devices.

  2. Recommendations for accreditation of laboratories in molecular biology of hematologic malignancies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flandrin-Gresta, Pascale; Cornillet, Pascale; Hayette, Sandrine; Gachard, Nathalie; Tondeur, Sylvie; Mauté, Carole; Cayuela, Jean-Michel

    2015-01-01

    Over recent years, the development of molecular biology techniques has improved the hematological diseases diagnostic and follow-up. Consequently, these techniques are largely used in the biological screening of these diseases; therefore the Hemato-oncology molecular diagnostics laboratories must be actively involved in the accreditation process according the ISO 15189 standard. The French group of molecular biologists (GBMHM) provides requirements for the implementation of quality assurance for the medical molecular laboratories. This guideline states the recommendations for the pre-analytical, analytical (methods validation procedures, quality controls, reagents), and post-analytical conditions. In addition, herein we state a strategy for the internal quality control management. These recommendations will be regularly updated.

  3. [RESAOLAB: West African network of laboratories to enhance the quality of clinical biology].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delorme, L; Machuron, J L; Sow, I; Diagne, R; Sakandé, J; Nikiéma, A; Bougoudogo, F; Keita, A; Longuet, C

    2015-02-01

    The Fondation Mérieux, in partnership with the Ministries of Health of Burkina Faso, Mali and Senegal, implemented for four years a project to reinforce the laboratory sector in the three participating countries: the RESAOLAB project (West African Network of Biomedical Analysis Laboratories).The objective of RESAOLAB project, in partnership with the WHO Office for West Africa and the West African Health Organization, was to strengthen the systems of biomedical laboratories to improve diagnostic services, access, monitoring and management of infectious diseases. Following the successful results achieved under the RESAOLAB project and due to the demand of the neighbour countries ministries, the RESAOLAB project is now extended to four other countries of the West African region: Benin, Guinea-Conakry, Niger and Togo. The RESAOLAB project has become the RESAOLAB programme, its purpose is to strengthen the quality of the medical biology services thanks to a regional and transversal approach.

  4. Journal of Undergraduate Research, Volume IX, 2009

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stiner, K. S.; Graham, S.; Khan, M.; Dilks, J.; Mayer, D.

    2009-01-01

    Each year more than 600 undergraduate students are awarded paid internships at the Department of Energy’s (DOE) National Laboratories. Th ese interns are paired with research scientists who serve as mentors in authentic research projects. All participants write a research abstract and present at a poster session and/or complete a fulllength research paper. Abstracts and selected papers from our 2007–2008 interns that represent the breadth and depth of undergraduate research performed each year at our National Laboratories are published here in the Journal of Undergraduate Research. The fields in which these students worked included: Biology; Chemistry; Computer Science; Engineering; Environmental Science; General Science; Materials Science; Medical and Health Sciences; Nuclear Science; Physics; Science Policy; and Waste Management.

  5. Inquiry-based laboratory investigations and student performance on standardized tests in biological science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patke, Usha

    Achievement data from the 3rd International Mathematics and Sciences Study and Program for International Student Assessment in science have indicated that Black students from economically disadvantaged families underachieve at alarming rates in comparison to White and economically advantaged peer groups. The study site was a predominately Black, urban school district experiencing underachievement. The purpose of this correlational study was to examine the relationship between students' use of inquiry-based laboratory investigations and their performance on the Biology End of Course Test, as well as to examine the relationship while partialling out the effects of student gender. Constructivist theory formed the theoretical foundation of the study. Students' perceived levels of experience with inquiry-based laboratory investigations were measured using the Laboratory Program Variable Inventory (LPVI) survey. LPVI scores of 256 students were correlated with test scores and were examined by student gender. The Pearson correlation coefficient revealed a small direct correlation between students' experience in inquiry-based laboratory investigation classes and standardized test scores on the Biology EOCT. A partial correlational analysis indicated that the correlation remained after controlling for gender. This study may prompt a change from teacher-centered to student-centered pedagogy at the local site in order to increase academic achievement for all students. The results of this study may also influence administrators and policy makers to initiate local, state, or nationwide curricular development. A change in curriculum may promote social change as students become more competent, and more able, to succeed in life beyond secondary school.

  6. What Skills Should Students of Undergraduate Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Programs Have Upon Graduation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Harold B.; Benore, Marilee A.; Sumter, Takita F.; Caldwell, Benjamin D.; Bell, Ellis

    2014-01-01

    Biochemistry and molecular biology (BMB) students should demonstrate proficiency in the foundational concepts of the discipline and possess the skills needed to practice as professionals. To ascertain the skills that should be required, groups of BMB educators met in several focused workshops to discuss the expectations with the ultimate goal of clearly articulating the skills required. The results of these discussions highlight the critical importance of experimental, mathematical, and interpersonal skills including collaboration, teamwork, safety, and ethics. The groups also found experimental design, data interpretation and analysiand the ability to communicate findings to diverse audience to be essential skills. To aid in the development of appropriate assessments these skills are grouped into three categories, 1) Process of Science, 2) Communication and Comprehension of Science, and 3) Community of Practice Aspects of Science. Finally, the groups worked to align these competencies with the best practices in both teaching and in skills assessment. PMID:24019246

  7. A Semester-Long Project for Teaching Basic Techniques in Molecular Biology Such as Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism Analysis to Undergraduate and Graduate Students

    OpenAIRE

    DiBartolomeis, Susan M.

    2011-01-01

    Several reports on science education suggest that students at all levels learn better if they are immersed in a project that is long term, yielding results that require analysis and interpretation. I describe a 12-wk laboratory project suitable for upper-level undergraduates and first-year graduate students, in which the students molecularly locate and map a gene from Drosophila melanogaster called dusky and one of dusky's mutant alleles. The mapping strategy uses restriction fragment length ...

  8. Embedding Hands-On Mini Laboratory Experiences in a Core Undergraduate Fluid Mechanics Course: A Pilot Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Duanduan; Ugaz, Victor

    2017-01-01

    Three self-contained mini-labs were integrated into a core undergraduate fluid mechanics course, with the goal of delivering hands-on content in a manner scalable to large class sizes. These mini-labs supported learning objectives involving friction loss in pipes, flow measurement, and centrifugal pump analysis. The hands-on experiments were…

  9. Modeling Stretching Modes of Common Organic Molecules with the Quantum Mechanical Harmonic Oscillator: An Undergraduate Vibrational Spectroscopy Laboratory Exercise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parnis, J. Mark; Thompson, Matthew G. K.

    2004-01-01

    An introductory undergraduate physical organic chemistry exercise that introduces the harmonic oscillator's use in vibrational spectroscopy is developed. The analysis and modeling exercise begins with the students calculating the stretching modes of common organic molecules with the help of the quantum mechanical harmonic oscillator (QMHO) model.

  10. qHNMR Analysis of Purity of Common Organic Solvents--An Undergraduate Quantitative Analysis Laboratory Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, Peter T.; Whaley, W. Lance; Tochterman, Alyssa D.; Mueller, Karl S.; Schultz, Linda D.

    2017-01-01

    NMR spectroscopy is currently a premier technique for structural elucidation of organic molecules. Quantitative NMR (qNMR) methodology has developed more slowly but is now widely accepted, especially in the areas of natural product and medicinal chemistry. However, many undergraduate students are not routinely exposed to this important concept.…

  11. Determination of Surface Tension of Surfactant Solutions through Capillary Rise Measurements: An Image-Processing Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huck-Iriart, Cristia´n; De-Candia, Ariel; Rodriguez, Javier; Rinaldi, Carlos

    2016-01-01

    In this work, we described an image processing procedure for the measurement of surface tension of the air-liquid interface using isothermal capillary action. The experiment, designed for an undergraduate course, is based on the analysis of a series of solutions with diverse surfactant concentrations at different ionic strengths. The objective of…

  12. Implementation of a Collaborative Series of Classroom-Based Undergraduate Research Experiences Spanning Chemical Biology, Biochemistry, and Neurobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kowalski, Jennifer R.; Hoops, Geoffrey C.; Johnson, R. Jeremy

    2016-01-01

    Classroom undergraduate research experiences (CUREs) provide students access to the measurable benefits of undergraduate research experiences (UREs). Herein, we describe the implementation and assessment of a novel model for cohesive CUREs focused on central research themes involving faculty research collaboration across departments. Specifically,…

  13. Tweets from the forest: using Twitter to increase student engagement in an undergraduate field biology course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soluk, Lauren; Buddle, Christopher M.

    2015-01-01

    Twitter is a cold medium that allows users to deliver content-rich but small packets of information to other users, and provides an opportunity for active and collaborative communication. In an education setting, this social media tool has potential to increase active learning opportunities, and increase student engagement with course content. The effects of Twitter on learning dynamics was tested in a field biology course offered by a large Canadian University: 29 students agreed to take part in the Twitter project and quantitative and qualitative data were collected, including survey data from 18 students. Students published 200% more public Tweets than what was required, and interacted frequently with the instructor and teaching assistant, their peers, and users external to the course. Almost 80% of students stated that Twitter increased opportunities for among-group communication, and 94% of students felt this kind of collaborative communication was beneficial to their learning. Although students did not think they would use Twitter after the course was over, 77% of the students still felt it was a good learning tool, and 67% of students felt Twitter had a positive impact on how they engaged with course content. These results suggest social media tools such as Twitter can help achieve active and collaborative learning in higher education. PMID:26594328

  14. Tweets from the forest: using Twitter to increase student engagement in an undergraduate field biology course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soluk, Lauren; Buddle, Christopher M

    2015-01-01

    Twitter is a cold medium that allows users to deliver content-rich but small packets of information to other users, and provides an opportunity for active and collaborative communication. In an education setting, this social media tool has potential to increase active learning opportunities, and increase student engagement with course content. The effects of Twitter on learning dynamics was tested in a field biology course offered by a large Canadian University: 29 students agreed to take part in the Twitter project and quantitative and qualitative data were collected, including survey data from 18 students. Students published 200% more public Tweets than what was required, and interacted frequently with the instructor and teaching assistant, their peers, and users external to the course. Almost 80% of students stated that Twitter increased opportunities for among-group communication, and 94% of students felt this kind of collaborative communication was beneficial to their learning. Although students did not think they would use Twitter after the course was over, 77% of the students still felt it was a good learning tool, and 67% of students felt Twitter had a positive impact on how they engaged with course content. These results suggest social media tools such as Twitter can help achieve active and collaborative learning in higher education.

  15. Mailing lists are preferred to newsgroups as teaching tools for undergraduate biology classes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Machart, J M; Silverthorn, D U

    2000-06-01

    Effective communication between instructors and students is a challenge regardless of the instructor-to-student ratio. Instructors of large classes, in particular, have resorted to various forms of Internet communication, such as mailing lists and newsgroups, to supplement class time and office hours. Mailing lists are closed discussions among subscribers who receive and send messages via an electronic mail program (e.g., Eudora). Newsgroups are public discussions to which anyone can gain access and respond via a newsreader program (e.g., Nuntius). Newsgroup messages are posted to a bulletin board that the subscriber must visit to read. Mailing lists and newsgroups share many advantages (convenience, greater anonymity, and speed of communication) and disadvantages (computer access required, impersonal nature, junk mail, and lack of graphics in older programs). However, surveys of both faculty and students in biology indicate that mailing lists are generally favored over newsgroups. Reasons given for mailing list popularity included greater familiarity with the E-mail format and ease of access.

  16. Using yeast to determine the functional consequences of mutations in the human p53 tumor suppressor gene: An introductory course-based undergraduate research experience in molecular and cell biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hekmat-Scafe, Daria S; Brownell, Sara E; Seawell, Patricia Chandler; Malladi, Shyamala; Imam, Jamie F Conklin; Singla, Veena; Bradon, Nicole; Cyert, Martha S; Stearns, Tim

    2017-03-04

    The opportunity to engage in scientific research is an important, but often neglected, component of undergraduate training in biology. We describe the curriculum for an innovative, course-based undergraduate research experience (CURE) appropriate for a large, introductory cell and molecular biology laboratory class that leverages students' high level of interest in cancer. The course is highly collaborative and emphasizes the analysis and interpretation of original scientific data. During the course, students work in teams to characterize a collection of mutations in the human p53 tumor suppressor gene via expression and analysis in yeast. Initially, student pairs use both qualitative and quantitative assays to assess the ability of their p53 mutant to activate expression of reporter genes, and they localize their mutation within the p53 structure. Through facilitated discussion, students suggest possible molecular explanations for the transactivation defects displayed by their p53 mutants and propose experiments to test these hypotheses that they execute during the second part of the course. They use a western blot to determine whether mutant p53 levels are reduced, a DNA-binding assay to test whether recognition of any of three p53 target sequences is compromised, and fluorescence microscopy to assay nuclear localization. Students studying the same p53 mutant periodically convene to discuss and interpret their combined data. The course culminates in a poster session during which students present their findings to peers, instructors, and the greater biosciences community. Based on our experience, we provide recommendations for the development of similar large introductory lab courses. © 2016 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 45(2):161-178, 2017. © 2016 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  17. [Biological and non-biological elimination therapy of acute liver failure. Experimental study on large laboratory animal].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryska, M; Lásziková, E; Pantoflícek, T; Kieslichová, E; Ryska, O; Prazák, J; Koblihová, E; Skibová, J

    2008-01-01

    Development of biological and non-biological artificial liver devices in the previous 20 years enabled effective treatment of acute liver failure (ALF) of patients waiting for liver transplantation or for spontaneous liver parenchyma regeneration. Aim of the study was the evaluation of the effectiveness of biological (BAL - bioartificial liver) and non-biological (FPSA - Fractionated plasma separation and adsorption) methods in the treatment of experimental ALF on large laboratory animal. Surgical model of ALF with liver devascularization in pigs (weight 25-40 kg) was provided following monitoring of ALF markers (AST, ALT, bilirubin, ammoniac, glycaemia, INR) including intracranial pressure (ICP). Control group included animals without treatment of ALF. Results of both experimental groups were compared and statistically worked-out with that of controls by T-test and Mann-Whitney non-parametric test by EXCEL and QUATRO. BAL group: 10 pigs (weight 30 +/- 5 kg) with ALF were treated by BAL with isolated hepatocytes. When plasma bilirubin was compared, significant differences (p < 0.05) in 6 and 9 hours interval were found favouring BAL group (18.1 vs. 13.1, 22.9 vs. 13.2 mmol/l). The value of ICP in both groups was no significant. Prometheus group: 14 pigs weight 35 kg (35 +/- 5 kg) with the identical ALF were treated by Prometheus (FPSA). Level of serum bilirubin in experimental group when compared to control group was significantly lower (p < 0.01) at 6 hour interval 12.81 +/- 6.54 vs. 29.84 +/- 9.99 at 9 hour 11.94 +/- 4.14 vs. 29.95 +/- 12.36 and at 12 hour 13.88 +/- 6.31 vs. 26.10 +/- 12.23 mmol/l. No significant difference in serum ammonia level was found. ICP was significantly different from 9 hour to 12 hour interval in favour of FPSA group (p < 0.01): 9 hour 19.1 +/- 4.09 vs. 24.1 +/- 2.85, 10 hour 21.9 +/- 3.63 vs. 25.1 +/- 2.19, 11 hour 22.5 +/- 3.98 vs. 26.3 +/- 3.50 and 12 hour 24.0 +/- 4.66 vs. 29.8 +/- 5.88 mm Hg. Significant improvement of bilirubin

  18. Becoming a scientist: A qualitative study of the educational experience of undergraduates working in an American and a Brazilian research laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pascoa, Maria Beatriz Amorim

    Because the production of scientific and technological innovations has been at the center of debates for economic growth, scientists are recognized as important actors in the current global market. In this study, I will examine the undergraduate education of future scientists by focusing on students working in research projects of faculty members. This research activity has been promoted by American and Brazilian public agencies as an attempt to attract more college students to scientific careers as well as to improve their future performance in science. Evaluations of these programs have focused on important quantitative indicators focusing mainly on the amount of students that later choose to pursue scientific careers. However, these studies fail to address important educational aspects of undergraduates' experience. In this research, I explore the educational processes taking place as students are introduced to the making of science in order to understand how and what they are learning. Three bodies of literature illuminates the formulation and the analysis of the research questions: (1) theories of globalization situate the education of scientists within the dynamics of a broader social, economic, cultural, and historical framework; (2) the critical pedagogy of Paulo Freire is the basis for the understanding of the pedagogical processes shaping undergraduate students' experiences within the research site; (3) Critical and Cultural Studies of Science and Technology illuminate the analysis of the complex interactions and practices constructed within the laboratory. In order to understand the educational processes shaping the experiences of undergraduate students engaged in research activities, I conducted a qualitative investigation based on participant-observation and in-depth interviews in an American and a Brazilian laboratories. The two sites constituted insightful case studies that illuminated the understanding of inquires about the training of students in

  19. Student and instructor perceptions of the use of inquiry practices in a Biology Survey Laboratory course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fayer, Lisbeth Ann

    The level of inquiry in science education has been the subject of a great deal of research by organizations such as The National Resource Council, The National Science Teachers Association, and The National Science Resources Center. Although inquiry has been promulgated as best practice, most colleges have not included inquiry science instruction in their coursework. The purpose of this study was to determine the perceptions of the level of inquiry, which students and instructors in a Biology Survey Laboratory I course consider the most supportive of student learning at a small, rural, Midwestern university. A survey instrument developed using the Inquiry Level Rubric designed by Buck et al., (2008) and the Likert Scale (1932) was used to collect data from 192 Biology Survey Laboratory I course students and their two instructors. The instrument consisted of 36 five-point Likert scale items followed by four demographic questions. A total of 190 (99.0%) students' surveys contained usable information for statistical analyses. Semi-structured instructor interviews were completed after the survey. Descriptive statistics including means and standard deviations were analyzed to determine the perceptions of students and their instructors regarding the best level of inquiry to learn biology. Inferential statistical analysis with independent t tests were utilized to determine if there were statistically significant differences between education majors and non-education majors, underrepresented groups and students typically represented in the science fields, and students with high versus low inquiry experience K--12. Qualitative phenomenological data were collected and analyzed from instructor interviews. Descriptive analyses revealed that students perceived that they would learn best with Open or Authentic inquiry levels, while instructors' perceptions leaned towards Open or Guided inquiry levels in the Biology Survey Laboratory I course (Buck et al., 2008). Inferential data

  20. Culturally Relevant Inquiry-Based Laboratory Module Implementations in Upper-Division Genetics and Cell Biology Teaching Laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siritunga, Dimuth; Montero-Rojas, Maria; Carrero, Katherine; Toro, Gladys; Velez, Ana; Carrero-Martinez, Franklin A.

    2011-01-01

    Today, more minority students are entering undergraduate programs than ever before, but they earn only 6% of all science or engineering PhDs awarded in the United States. Many studies suggest that hands-on research activities enhance students' interest in pursuing a research career. In this paper, we present a model for the implementation of…

  1. Undergraduate nursing students' experiences when examining nursing skills in clinical simulation laboratories with high-fidelity patient simulators: A phenomenological research study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sundler, Annelie J; Pettersson, Annika; Berglund, Mia

    2015-12-01

    Simulation has become a widely used and established pedagogy for teaching clinical nursing skills. Nevertheless, the evidence in favour of this pedagogical approach is weak, and more knowledge is needed in support of its use. The aim of this study was (a) to explore the experiences of undergraduate nursing students when examining knowledge, skills and competences in clinical simulation laboratories with high-fidelity patient simulators and (b) to analyse these students' learning experiences during the examination. A phenomenological approach was used, and qualitative interviews were conducted among 23 second-year undergraduate nursing students-17 women and 6 men. The findings revealed that, irrespective of whether they passed or failed the examination, it was experienced as a valuable assessment of the students' knowledge and skills. Even if the students felt that the examination was challenging, they described it as a learning opportunity. In the examination, the students were able to integrate theory with practice, and earlier established knowledge was scrutinised when reflecting on the scenarios. The examination added aspects to the students' learning that prepared them for the real world of nursing in a safe environment without risking patient safety. The study findings suggest that examinations in clinical simulation laboratories can be a useful teaching strategy in nursing education. The use of high-fidelity patient simulators made the examination authentic. The reflections and feedback on the scenario were described as significant for the students' learning. Undergraduate nursing students can improve their knowledge, understanding, competence and skills when such examinations are performed in the manner used in this study. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Use of a virtual human performance laboratory to improve integration of mathematics and biology in sports science curricula in Sweden and the United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garza, D; Besier, T; Johnston, T; Rolston, B; Schorsch, A; Matheson, G; Annerstedt, C; Lindh, J; Rydmark, M

    2007-01-01

    New fields such as bioengineering are exploring the role of the physical sciences in traditional biological approaches to problems, with exciting results in device innovation, medicine, and research biology. The integration of mathematics, biomechanics, and material sciences into the undergraduate biology curriculum will better prepare students for these opportunities and enhance cooperation among faculty and students at the university level. We propose the study of sports science as the basis for introduction of this interdisciplinary program. This novel integrated approach will require a virtual human performance laboratory dual-hosted in Sweden and the United States. We have designed a course model that involves cooperative learning between students at Göteborg University and Stanford University, utilizes new technologies, encourages development of original research and will rely on frequent self-assessment and reflective learning. We will compare outcomes between this course and a more traditional didactic format as well as assess the effectiveness of multiple web-hosted virtual environments. We anticipate the grant will result in a network of original faculty and student research in exercise science and pedagogy as well as provide the opportunity for implementation of the model in more advance training levels and K-12 programs.

  3. A Biology Laboratory Exercise Using Macromolecule Assays to Distinguish Four Types of Milk

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charlotte W. Pratt

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available One of the drawbacks of cookbook-style laboratory exercises for General Biology courses is that students are not challenged to develop skills in scientific reasoning, such as formulating hypotheses and designing and carrying out experiments. Several traditional laboratory curricula include exercises involving semi-quantitative colorimetric assays to detect proteins (biuret test, reducing sugars (Benedict’s test, starch (Lugol’s test, and lipids (Sudan red test in a variety of easily prepared solutions (glucose, albumin, glycine, etc. and familiar food items (lemon juice, cornstarch, egg white, etc.. An extension of this lab exercise was developed to allow students to use their knowledge of the macromolecule assays to design an experiment to distinguish four types of “milk”: whole milk, skim milk, cream, and soy milk (rice milk or almond milk could also be included.

  4. Lurking in the Lab: Analysis of Data from Molecular Biology Laboratory Instruments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jen Ferguson

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: This project examined primary research data files found on instruments in a molecular biology teaching laboratory. Experimental data files were analyzed in order to learn more about the types of data generated by these instruments (e.g. file formats, and to evaluate current laboratory data management practices.SETTING: This project examined experimental data files from instruments in a teaching laboratory at Brandeis University.METHODOLOGY: Experimental data files and associated metadata on instrument hard drives were captured and analyzed using Xplorer2 software. Formats were categorized as proprietary or open, and characteristics such as file naming conventions were noted. Discussions with the faculty member and lab staff guided the project scope and informed the findings.RESULTS: Files in both proprietary and open formats were found on the instrument hard drives. 62% of the experimental data files were in proprietary formats. Image files in various formats accounted for the most prevalent types of data found. Instrument users varied widely in their approaches to data management tasks such as file naming conventions.CONCLUSIONS: This study found inconsistent approaches to managing data on laboratory instruments. Prevalence of proprietary file formats is a concern with this type of data. Students express frustration in working with these data, and files in these proprietary formats could pose curation and preservation challenges in the future. Teaching labs afford an opportunity for librarians interested in learning more about primary research data and data management practices.

  5. Teaching outside the Can: A New Approach to Introductory Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ronsheim, Margaret L.; Pregnall, A. Marshall; Schwarz, Jodi; Schlessman, Mark A.; Raley-Susman, Kathleen M.

    2009-01-01

    We describe a new approach to teaching introductory biology. Our introductory experience for undergraduates is a laboratory course that is entirely inquiry and discovery based. We introduce our students to fundamental concepts in biology in the framework of three multi-week laboratory modules, each of which is an open-ended investigation of a…

  6. Cell physiology at the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory: a brief look back and forward

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    The Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory (MDIBL) has played important roles in the development of modern physiological concepts and tools, particularly in the fields of kidney and epithelial cell physiology. Over the last decade, MDIBL has undergone remarkable growth and evolution. This article will briefly review MDIBL's past and outline its future directions. It is hoped that this overview will renew and stimulate interest in MDIBL and, in particular, will encourage an even wider community of physiologists to participate in its ongoing growth and development. PMID:21068363

  7. Sampling and Analysis Instruction for the Demolition of the Masonry Block for the 108-F Biological Laboratory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Byrnes, M. E.

    1999-01-01

    This sampling and analysis instruction (SAI) has been prepared to clearly define the sampling and analysis activities to be performed in support of the demolition and disposition (or disposal) of the 108-F Biological Laboratory masonry block walls

  8. Cocaine Use among the College Age Group: Biological and Psychological Effects--Clinical and Laboratory Research Findings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicholi, Armand M., Jr.

    1984-01-01

    Knowledge about cocaine's effect on the human mind and body is limited and not clearly documented. This article discusses various biological and psychological effects of the drug based on clinical and laboratory studies of man. (Author/DF)

  9. Introducing Undergraduate Students to Real-Time PCR

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hancock, Dale; Funnell, Alister; Jack, Briony; Johnston, Jill

    2010-01-01

    An experiment is conducted, which in four 3 h laboratory sessions, introduces third year undergraduate Biochemistry students to the technique of real-time PCR in a biological context. The model used is a murine erythroleukemia cell line (MEL cells). These continuously cycling, immature red blood cells, arrested at an early stage in erythropoiesis,…

  10. Molecular Biology Can Change the Classic Laboratory Approach for Intestinal Protozoan Infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Formenti, Fabio; Valerio, Matteo; Guerriero, Massimo; Perandin, Francesca; Pajola, Barbara; Mistretta, Manuela; Tais, Stefano; Degani, Monica; Bisoffi, Zeno

    2017-01-01

    For many years microscopy has been considered the mainstay of the diagnosis of parasitic infections. In our laboratory, before the advent of molecular biology, the approach for the identification of parasitic infections in stools was the microscopic exam of three samples. Once we adopted molecular biology, a real-time PCR on one single sample was added to the classical coproparasitological exam of three samples. Given the high sensitivity of real-time PCR (Rt-PCR), we then decided to evaluate if a change of our routine was justified. In detail, we intended to assess if a much more practical routine, based on the analysis of a single fecal sample, was sufficiently sensitive to replace the routine described above. The new approach to be evaluated included, on the same and unique fecal sample, a classical coproparasitological exam plus Rt-PCR. The data obtained showed that the sensitivity of the new proposed approach remains very high, despite the reduction of coproparasitological exams from three to one, with the advantage of reducing costs and saving time, both for patients and for the laboratory.

  11. How to Generate Understanding of the Scientific Process in Introductory Biology: A Student-Designed Laboratory Exercise on Yeast Fermentation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Linda T.; Bell, Rebekah P.

    2004-01-01

    Heavy faculty teaching loads and limited funds biology teachers designed certain objectives in order to increase the understandability of the subject matter of the laboratory exercises they write. In relation to these objectives an old "cookbook" laboratory exercise on yeast fermentation is introduced which involve students asking questions,…

  12. What Is the True Color of Fresh Meat? A Biophysical Undergraduate Laboratory Experiment Investigating the Effects of Ligand Binding on Myoglobin Using Optical, EPR, and NMR Spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linenberger, Kimberly; Bretz, Stacey Lowery; Crowder, Michael W.; McCarrick, Robert; Lorigan, Gary A.; Tierney, David L.

    2011-01-01

    With an increased focus on integrated upper-level laboratories, we present an experiment integrating concepts from inorganic, biological, and physical chemistry content areas. Students investigate the effects of ligand strength on the spectroscopic properties of the heme center in myoglobin using UV-vis, [superscript 1]H NMR, and EPR…

  13. A statistical analysis of student questions in a cell biology laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keeling, Elena L; Polacek, Kelly M; Ingram, Ella L

    2009-01-01

    Asking questions is an essential component of the practice of science, but question-asking skills are often underemphasized in science education. In this study, we examined questions written by students as they prepared for laboratory exercises in a senior-level cell biology class. Our goals were to discover 1) what types of questions students asked about laboratory activities, 2) whether the types or quality of questions changed over time, and 3) whether the quality of questions or degree of improvement was related to academic performance. We found a majority of questions were about laboratory outcomes or seeking additional descriptive information about organisms or processes to be studied. Few questions earned the highest possible ranking, which required demonstration of extended thought, integration of information, and/or hypotheses and future experiments, although a majority of students asked such a question at least once. We found no correlation between types of student questions or improvement in questions and final grades. Only a small improvement in overall question quality was seen despite considerable practice at writing questions about science. Our results suggest that improving students' ability to generate higher-order questions may require specific pedagogical intervention.

  14. The use of U.S. Geological Survey CD-ROM-based petroleum assessments in undergraduate geology laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eves, R.L.; Davis, L.E.; Dyman, T.S.; Takahashi, K.I.

    2002-01-01

    Domestic oil production is declining and United States reliance on imported oil is increasing. America will be faced with difficult decisions that address the strategic, economic, and political consequences of its energy resources shortage. The geologically literate under-graduate student needs to be aware of current and future United States energy issues. The U.S. Geological Survey periodically provides energy assessment data via digitally-formatted CD-ROM publications. These publications are free to the public, and are well suited for use in undergraduate geology curricula. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) 1995 National Assessment of United States Oil and Gas Resources (Digital Data Series or DDS-30) (Gautier and others, 1996) is an excellent resource for introducing students to the strategies of hydrocarbon exploration and for developing skills in problem-solving and evaluating real data. This paper introduces the reader to DDS-30, summarizes the essential terminology and methodology of hydrocarbon assessment, and offers examples of exercises or questions that might be used in the introductory classroom. The USGS contact point for obtaining DDS-30 and other digital assessment volumes is also provided. Completing the sample exercises in this report requires a copy of DDS-30.

  15. Team-Based Learning, Faculty Research, and Grant Writing Bring Significant Learning Experiences to an Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Hedeel Guy; Heyl, Deborah L.; Liggit, Peggy

    2016-01-01

    This biochemistry laboratory course was designed to provide significant learning experiences to expose students to different ways of succeeding as scientists in academia and foster development and improvement of their potential and competency as the next generation of investigators. To meet these goals, the laboratory course employs three…

  16. Clays as mineral dust aerosol: An integrated approach to studying climate, atmospheric chemistry, and biogeochemical effects of atmospheric clay minerals in an undergraduate research laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hatch, C. D.; Crane, C. C.; Harris, K. J.; Thompson, C. E.; Miles, M. K.; Weingold, R. M.; Bucuti, T.

    2011-12-01

    Entrained mineral dust aerosol accounts for 45% of the global annual atmospheric aerosol load and can have a significant influence on important environmental issues, including climate, atmospheric chemistry, cloud formation, biogeochemical processes, visibility, and human health. 70% of all mineral aerosol mass originating from Africa consists of layered aluminosilicates, including illite, kaolinite, and montmorillonite clays. Clay minerals are a largely neglected component of mineral aerosol, yet they have unique physiochemical properties, including a high reactive surface area, large cation exchange capacities, small particle sizes, and a relatively large capacity to take up adsorbed water, resulting in expansion of clay layers (and a larger reactive surface area for heterogeneous interactions) in some cases. An integrated laboratory research approach has been implemented at Hendrix College, a Primarily Undergraduate Institution, in which undergraduate students are involved in independent and interdisciplinary research projects that relate the chemical aging processes (heterogeneous chemistry) of clay minerals as a major component of mineral aerosol to their effects on climate (water adsorption), atmospheric chemistry (trace gas uptake), and biogeochemistry (iron dissolution and phytoplankton biomarker studies). Preliminary results and future directions will be reported.

  17. Impact of backwards faded scaffolding approach to inquiry-based astronomy laboratory experiences on undergraduate non-science majors' views of scientific inquiry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyons, Daniel J.

    This study explored the impact of a novel inquiry-based astronomy laboratory curriculum designed using the Backwards Faded Scaffolding inquiry teaching framework on non-science majoring undergraduate students' views of the nature of scientific inquiry (NOSI). The study focused on two aspects of NOSI: The Distinction between Data and Evidence (DvE), and The Multiple Methods of Science (MMS). Participants were 220 predominately non-science majoring undergraduate students at a small, doctoral granting, research-extensive university in the Rocky Mountain region of the United States. The student participants were enrolled in an introductory astronomy survey course with an associated laboratory section and were selected in two samples over consecutive fall and spring semesters. The participants also included four of the graduate student instructors who taught the laboratory courses using the intervention curriculum. In the first stage, student participant views of NOSI were measured using the VOSI-4 research instrument before and after the intervention curriculum was administered. The responses were quantified, and the distributions of pre and posttest scores of both samples were separately analyzed to determine if there was a significant improvement in understanding of either of the two aspects of NOSI. The results from both samples were compared to evaluate the consistency of the results. In the second stage, the quantitative results were used to strategically design a qualitative investigation, in which the four lab instructors were interviewed about their observations of how the student participants interacted with the intervention curriculum as compared to traditional lab activities, as well as their suggestions as to how the curriculum may or may not have contributed to the results of the first stage. These interviews were summarized and analyzed for common themes as to how the intervention curriculum influenced the students' understandings of the two aspect of

  18. An analysis of laboratory activities found in "Applications In Biology/Chemistry: A Contextual Approach to Laboratory Science"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haskins, Sandra Sue

    The purpose of this study was to quantitatively determine whether the material found in ABC promotes scientific inquiry through the inclusion of science process skills, and to quantitatively determine the type (experimental, comparative, or descriptive) and character (wet-lab, paper and pencil, model, or computer) of laboratory activities. The research design allowed for an examination of the frequency and type of science process skills required of students in 79 laboratory activities sampled from all 12 units utilizing a modified 33-item laboratory analysis inventory (LAI) (Germane et al, 1996). Interrater reliability for the science process skills was completed on 19 of the laboratory activities with a mean score of 86.1%. Interrater reliability for the type and character of the laboratory, on the same 19 laboratory activities, was completed with mean scores of 79.0% and 96.5%, respectively. It was found that all laboratory activities provide a prelaboratory activity. In addition, the science process skill category of student performance is required most often of students with the skill of learning techniques or manipulating apparatus occurring 99% of the time. The science process skill category observed the least was student planning and design, occurring only 3% of the time. Students were rarely given the opportunity to practice science process skills such as developing and testing hypotheses through experiments they have designed. Chi-square tests, applied at the .05 level of significance, revealed that there was a significant difference in the type of laboratory activities; comparative laboratory activities appeared more often (59%). In addition the character of laboratory activities, "wet-lab" activities appeared more often (90%) than any of the others.

  19. Analytical quality assurance in laboratories using tracers for biological and environmental studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Melaj, Mariana; Martin, Olga; Lopez, Silvia; Rojas de Tramontini, Susana

    1999-01-01

    This work describe the way we are organizing a quality assurance system to apply in the analytical measurements of the relation 14 N/ 15 N in biological and soil material. The relation 14 / 15 is measured with a optic emission spectrometer (NOI6PC), which distinguish the differences in wave length of electromagnetic radiation emitted by N-28, N-29 and N-30. The major problem is the 'cross contamination' of samples with different enrichments. The elements that are been considered to reach satisfactory analytical results are: 1) A proper working area; 2) The samples must be homogeneous and the samples must represent the whole sampled system; 3) The use of reference materials. In each digestion, a known reference sample must be added; 4) Adequate equipment operation; 5) Standard operating procedures; 6) Control charts, laboratory and equipment books. All operations using the equipment is registered in a book; 7) Training of the operators. (author)

  20. A brief history of fish osmoregulation: the central role of the Mt. Desert Island Biological Laboratory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David H Evans

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available The Mt. Desert Island Biological Laboratory has played a central role in the study of fish osmoregulation for the past 80 years. In particular, scientists at the MDIBL have made significant discoveries in the basic pattern of fish osmoregulation, the function of aglomerular kidneys and proximal tubular secretion, the roles of NaCl cotransporters in intestinal uptake and gill and rectal gland secretion, the role of the shark rectal gland in osmoregulation, the mechanisms of salt secretion by the teleost fish gill epithelium, and the evolution of the ionic uptake mechanisms in fish gills. This short review presents the history of these discoveries and their relationships to the study of epithelial transport in general.

  1. Automated Protocols for Macromolecular Crystallization at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorrec, Fabrice; Löwe, Jan

    2018-01-24

    When high quality crystals are obtained that diffract X-rays, the crystal structure may be solved at near atomic resolution. The conditions to crystallize proteins, DNAs, RNAs, and their complexes can however not be predicted. Employing a broad variety of conditions is a way to increase the yield of quality diffraction crystals. Two fully automated systems have been developed at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology (Cambridge, England, MRC-LMB) that facilitate crystallization screening against 1,920 initial conditions by vapor diffusion in nanoliter droplets. Semi-automated protocols have also been developed to optimize conditions by changing the concentrations of reagents, the pH, or by introducing additives that potentially enhance properties of the resulting crystals. All the corresponding protocols will be described in detail and briefly discussed. Taken together, they enable convenient and highly efficient macromolecular crystallization in a multi-user facility, while giving the users control over key parameters of their experiments.

  2. Using a Molecular-Genetic Approach to Investigate Bacterial Physiology in a Continuous, Research-Based, Semester-Long Laboratory for Undergraduates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeremiah Foster Ault

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Designing investigative laboratory exercises that encourage critical thinking, problem solving, and independent thought for upper-division biology courses is a difficult but worthwhile task. In an effort to do so, we developed a semester-long, continuous, research-based investigative laboratory that integrates numerous genetic and molecular biology methods into the investigation of a bacterial physiological process. In this lab, students use random Tn5 transposon mutagenesis to create prodigiosin pigment mutants in the bacterium, Serratia marcescens. This is followed by phenotypic characterization, cloning, and sequencing the Tn insertion site to identify genes involved in pigment biosynthesis. During this lab, students gain ample experience performing basic lab techniques while learning about — and applying — methods for elucidating gene function. The approach to the laboratory and the outcomes are intimately integrated into the teaching of many fundamental physiological processes underlying prodigiosin production in bacteria. The result is a cohesive course that integrates the theory and application of molecular genetic techniques with the study of bacterial physiology. Assessments of student learning objectives demonstrated that students greatly improved their understanding of both physiological processes and the genetic techniques used to investigate them. In addition, students felt that this semester-long exercise provided the necessary laboratory experience they needed and desired in preparation for careers in molecular biology, microbiology, and biochemistry.

  3. Do Biology Students Really Hate Math? Empirical Insights into Undergraduate Life Science Majors' Emotions about Mathematics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wachsmuth, Lucas P.; Runyon, Christopher R.; Drake, John M.; Dolan, Erin L.

    2017-01-01

    Undergraduate life science majors are reputed to have negative emotions toward mathematics, yet little empirical evidence supports this. We sought to compare emotions of majors in the life sciences versus other natural sciences and math. We adapted the Attitudes toward the Subject of Chemistry Inventory to create an Attitudes toward the Subject of…

  4. Learning physical biology via modeling and simulation: A new course and textbook for science and engineering undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Philip

    To a large extent, undergraduate physical-science curricula remain firmly rooted in pencil-and-paper calculation, despite the fact that most research is done with computers. To a large extent, undergraduate life-science curricula remain firmly rooted in descriptive approaches, despite the fact that much current research involves quantitative modeling. Not only does our pedagogy not reflect current reality; it also creates a spurious barrier between the fields, reinforcing the narrow silos that prevent students from connecting them. I'll describe an intermediate-level course on ``Physical Models of Living Systems.'' The prerequisite is first-year university physics and calculus. The course is a response to rapidly growing interest among undergraduates in a broad range of science and engineering majors. Students acquire several research skills that are often not addressed in traditional undergraduate courses: •Basic modeling skills; •Probabilistic modeling skills; •Data analysis methods; •Computer programming using a general-purpose platform like MATLAB or Python; •Pulling datasets from the Web for analysis; •Data visualization; •Dynamical systems, particularly feedback control. Partially supported by the NSF under Grants EF-0928048 and DMR-0832802.

  5. The Experimental Teaching Reform in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology for Undergraduate Students in Peking University Health Science Center

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xiaohan; Sun, Luyang; Zhao, Ying; Yi, Xia; Zhu, Bin; Wang, Pu; Lin, Hong; Ni, Juhua

    2015-01-01

    Since 2010, second-year undergraduate students of an eight-year training program leading to a Doctor of Medicine degree or Doctor of Philosophy degree in Peking University Health Science Center (PKUHSC) have been required to enter the "Innovative talent training project." During that time, the students joined a research lab and…

  6. An "in Silico" DNA Cloning Experiment for the Biochemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elkins, Kelly M.

    2011-01-01

    This laboratory exercise introduces students to concepts in recombinant DNA technology while accommodating a major semester project in protein purification, structure, and function in a biochemistry laboratory for junior- and senior-level undergraduate students. It is also suitable for forensic science courses focused in DNA biology and advanced…

  7. Laboratory and field evaluation of a biological monitoring system using Corbicula fluminea and Mulinia lateralis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Waller, W.T.; Allen, H.J.; Schwalm, F.U.; Acevedo, M.F.; Ammann, L.P.; Dickson, K.L.; Kennedy, J.H. [Univ. of North Texas, Denton, TX (United States); Morgan, E.L. [Tennessee Technological Univ., Cookeville, TN (United States)

    1995-12-31

    Laboratory and field experiments have been performed to evaluate a non-invasive biomonitoring system using the Asiatic clam Corbicula fluminea and Mulinia lateralis. C. fluminea was exposed to simulated episodic toxicity events in the laboratory using copper, diazinon, and regulated flow rates. Group behavior during these simulated events was compared to behavior during unstressed periods to develop a statistical model and an alarm criteria. Bayou Chico, Pensacola Bay, FL, was the site for field experiments in which M. lateralis was placed in situ to evaluate the performance of the biomonitoring system. The biomonitoring system consists of proximity sensors which detect an aluminum foil target attached to the valve of an organism. Valve movements of the clams are then digitally recorded using a personal computer. Data collected from remote sites are telemetered to the lab using short wave radio. In its final form, the authors envision an in situ biological monitoring system using bivalves deployed in aquatic systems in conjunction with automated monitoring systems like those found at USGS gauging stations. A tool such as this could be used as a warning system to increase the probability of detecting toxic events as they occur.

  8. Chloridrate of N-isopropyl-p-iodoamphetamine labeled with Iodine-131. Biological distribution in laboratory animals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Colturato, Maria Tereza; Muramoto, Emiko; Carvalho, Olga Goncalves de

    2000-01-01

    The development of this work was based on a great interest from the medical class in the utilization of chloridrate of N-isopropyl-p-iodoamphetamine (IMP) labeled with 123 I, for brain perfusion evaluation. Studies were performed to optimize the labeling parameters of IMP with 131 I using nucleophilic substitution: temperature and, time reaction, ascorbic acid mass, pH and relation IMP mass/radioiodo activity, and stability of the final product. Radiochemistry purity method used showed to be efficient, quick and of easily handling for routine production. Biological distribution studies were performed in mice to determine the percent administered dose in the blood, different organs and whole body after intravenous administration of the radiopharmaceutical. The product crossed the intact blood brain barrier, allowing a follow up of further studies after the intravenous administration of the radiopharmaceutical. The principal elimination route 131 I-IMP was the urinary. Based on the results from radiochemical purity, stability and biological behavior in laboratory animals, we concluded that the studied radiopharmaceutical presents all ideal characteristics for clinical use in brain studies in nuclear medicine. (author)

  9. Activities developed by the biological dosimetry laboratory of the Autoridad Regulatoria Nuclear - ARN of Argentina

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Radl, A.; Sapienza, C.E.; Taja, M.R.; Bubniak, R.; Deminge, M.; Di Giorgio, M.

    2013-01-01

    Biological dosimetry (DB) allows to estimate doses absorbed in individuals exposed to ionizing radiation through the quantification of stable and unstable chromosome aberrations (SCA and UCA). The frequency of these aberrations is referred to a calibration dose response curve (in vitro) to determine the doses of the individual to the whole body. The DB is a necessary support for programs of national radiation protection and response systems in nuclear or radiological emergencies in the event of accidental or incidental, single overexposure or large scale. In this context the Laboratory of Dosimetry Biological (LDB) of the Authority Regulatory Nuclear (ARN) Argentina develops and applies different dosimeters cytogenetic from four decades ago. These dosimeters provide a fact more within the whole of the information necessary for an accidental, complementing the physical and clinical dosimetry exposure assessment. The most widely used in the DB biodosimetric method is the quantification of SCA (dicentrics and rings Central) from a sample of venous blood. The LDB is accredited for the trial, under rules IRAM 301: 2005 (ISO / IEC 17025: 2005) and ISO 19238:2004. Test applies to the immediate dosimetry evaluation of acute exposures, all or a large part of the body in the range 0,1-5 Gy. In this context the LDB is part of the Latin American network of DB (LBDNet), BioDoseNet-who and response system in radiological emergencies and nuclear IAEA-RANET, being enabled to summon the LBDNet if necessary

  10. Mouse Genome Informatics (MGI) Resource: Genetic, Genomic, and Biological Knowledgebase for the Laboratory Mouse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eppig, Janan T

    2017-07-01

    The Mouse Genome Informatics (MGI) Resource supports basic, translational, and computational research by providing high-quality, integrated data on the genetics, genomics, and biology of the laboratory mouse. MGI serves a strategic role for the scientific community in facilitating biomedical, experimental, and computational studies investigating the genetics and processes of diseases and enabling the development and testing of new disease models and therapeutic interventions. This review describes the nexus of the body of growing genetic and biological data and the advances in computer technology in the late 1980s, including the World Wide Web, that together launched the beginnings of MGI. MGI develops and maintains a gold-standard resource that reflects the current state of knowledge, provides semantic and contextual data integration that fosters hypothesis testing, continually develops new and improved tools for searching and analysis, and partners with the scientific community to assure research data needs are met. Here we describe one slice of MGI relating to the development of community-wide large-scale mutagenesis and phenotyping projects and introduce ways to access and use these MGI data. References and links to additional MGI aspects are provided. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press.

  11. First annual report on the Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Loar, J.M.; Amano, H.; Jimenez, B.D.; Kitchings, J.T.; Meyers-Schoene, L.; Mohrbacher, D.A.; Olsen, C.R.

    1992-08-01

    As a condition of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit issued to Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) on April 1, 1986, a Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program (BMAP) was developed for White Oak Creek (WOC); selected tributaries of WOC, including Fifth Creek, First Creek, Melton Branch, and Northwest Tributary; and the Clinch River. BMAP consists of seven major tasks that address both radiological and nonradiological contaminants in the aquatic and terrestrial environs on-site and the aquatic environs off-site. These tasks are (1) toxicity monitoring; (2) bioaccumulation monitoring of nonradiological contaminants in aquatic biota; (3) biological indicator studies; (4) instream ecological monitoring; (5) assessment of contaminants in the terrestrial environment; (6) radioecology of WOC and White Oak Lake (WOL); and (7) contaminant transport, distribution, and fate in the WOC embayment-Clinch River-Watts Bar Reservoir system. This document, the first of a series of annual reports presenting the results of BMAP, describes studies that were conducted from March through December 1986

  12. First annual report on the Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Loar, J. M. [ed.; Adams, S. M.; Blaylock, B. G.; Boston, H. L.; Frank, M. L.; Garten, C. T.; Houston, M. A.; Kimmel, B. L.; Ryon, M. G.; Smith, J. G.; Southworth, G. R.; Stewart, A. J.; Walton, B. T.; Berry, J. B.; Talmage, S. S. [Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (United States); Amano, H. [JAERI, Tokai Res., Establishment, Ibari-Ken (Japan); Jimenez, B. D. [School of Pharmacy, Univ. of Puerto Rico (San Juan); Kitchings, J. T. [ERCE, Denver, CO (United States); Meyers-Schoene, L. [Advanced Sciences, Inc., Fernald, OH (United States); Mohrbacher, D. A. [Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States); Olsen, C. R. [USDOE Office of Energy Research, Washington, DC (United States). Office of Health and Environmental Research

    1992-08-01

    As a condition of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit issued to Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) on April 1, 1986, a Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program (BMAP) was developed for White Oak Creek (WOC); selected tributaries of WOC, including Fifth Creek, First Creek, Melton Branch, and Northwest Tributary; and the Clinch River. BMAP consists of seven major tasks that address both radiological and nonradiological contaminants in the aquatic and terrestrial environs on-site and the aquatic environs off-site. These tasks are (1) toxicity monitoring; (2) bioaccumulation monitoring of nonradiological contaminants in aquatic biota; (3) biological indicator studies; (4) instream ecological monitoring; (5) assessment of contaminants in the terrestrial environment; (6) radioecology of WOC and White Oak Lake (WOL); and (7) contaminant transport, distribution, and fate in the WOC embayment-Clinch River-Watts Bar Reservoir system. This document, the first of a series of annual reports presenting the results of BMAP, describes studies that were conducted from March through December 1986.

  13. Experience of an inter-laboratory exercise for the determination of Carbon-14 in biological samples

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Baburajan, A.; Rajaram, S.; D'Souza, Renita Shiny; Nayak, Rasmi; Karunakara, N.; Ravi, P.M.; Tripathi, R.M.

    2018-01-01

    Carbon-14 is one of the naturally occurring cosmogenic nuclide with long half life of 5730 y and beta energy, E max : 156 keV produced continuously in the outer atmosphere. It is also produced by the anthropogenic activities like nuclear weapon test, nuclear power plant etc. contributing to the atmospheric inventory. The 14 CO 2 gets incorporated with the plant species during photosynthesis and ultimately reaches to man through food chain. It is important to accurately quantify the level of 14 C in different biological matrices for the computation of radiation dose due to ingestion. There are different methods available for the determination of 14 C in biological samples. The oxidation of the dried sample is one of the methods used for liberating the 14 CO 2 and which in turn re-absorbed using Carbo Sorb and subjected to Liquid scintillation analyses with Permaflour scintillator solution. The paper deals with the quality assurance programme initiated by ESL, Tarapur along with ESL, Kalpakkam and CARER, Mangalore University and share the experience of the inter-laboratory comparison exercise

  14. Preparation of (+)-{alpha}-terpineol from (+)-limonene: monoterpenes with pleasant odor in a project for undergraduate organic chemistry laboratory; Preparacao do (+)-{alpha}-terpineola a partir do (+)-limoneno: monoterpenos de odor agradavel em um projeto para quimica organica experimental

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baptistella, Lucia Helena Brito; Imamura, Paulo Mitsuo; Melo, Leandro Vilela de; Castello, Claudio [Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP), SP (Brazil). Inst. de Quimica], e-mail: lhbb@iqm.unicamp.br

    2009-07-01

    A synthesis of (+)-{alpha}-terpineol from (+)-limonene was proposed as a project for undergraduate organic laboratory course. Terpineol is a useful flavor and fragrance compound, and several aspects of this preparation are suited for experimental organic classes, including basic techniques for extraction and analyses of essential oils, different reaction types and the possibility of a high degree of student interest. (author)

  15. Biological investigations of the Sandia National Laboratories Sol se Mete Aerial Cable Facility

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sullivan, R.M.

    1994-10-01

    This report provides results of a comprehensive biological field survey performed on the Sandia National Laboratories Aerial Cable Facility, at the east end of Kirtland Air Force Base (KAFB), Bernalillo County, New Mexico. This survey was conducted late September through October, 1991. ACF occupies a 440-acre tract of land withdrawn by the US Forest Service (USFS) for use by KAFB, and in turn placed under operational control of SNL by the Department of Energy (DOE). All land used by SNL for ACF is part of a 15,851-acre tract of land withdrawn by the US Forest Service. In addition, a number of different organizations use the 15,851-acre area. The project area used by SNL encompasses portions of approximately six sections (3,840 acres) of US Forest Service land located within the foothills of the west side of the Manzano Mountains (East Mesa). The biological study area is used by the KAFB, the US Department of Interior, and SNL. This area includes: (1) Sol se Mete Springs and Canyon, (2) East Anchor Access Road, (3) East Anchor Site, (4) Rocket Sled Track, (5) North Arena, (6) East Instrumentation Site and Access Road, (7) West Anchor Access Road, (8) West Anchor Site, (9) South Arena, (10) Winch Sites, (11) West Instrumentation Sites, (12) Explosive Assembly Building, (13) Control Building, (14) Lurance Canyon Road and vicinity. Although portions of approximately 960 acres of withdrawn US Forest Service land have been altered, only 700 acres have been disturbed by activities associated with ACF; approximately 2,880 acres consist of natural habitat. Absence of grazing by livestock and possibly native ungulates, and relative lack of human disturbance have allowed this area to remain in a more natural vegetative state relative to the condition of private range lands throughout New Mexico. This report evaluates threatened and endangered species found on ACF, as well as a comprehensive assessment of biological habitats.

  16. Laboratory measurements of immersion freezing abilities of non-proteinaceous and proteinaceous biological particulate proxies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cory, K.; Tobo, Y.; Murata, K.; Whiteside, C. L.; McCauley, B.; Bouma, C.; Hiranuma, N.

    2017-12-01

    Non-proteinaceous and proteinaceous biological aerosols are abundant within the atmosphere and have the potential to impact the climate through cloud and precipitation formation. In this study, we present the differences in the laboratory-measured freezing capabilities of the non-proteinaceous and proteinaceous biological materials to determine which has more potential to impact the ice nucleation in the clouds. As non-proteinaceous surrogates, we examined multiple cellulose materials (e.g., microcrystalline and nanocrystalline cellulose) whose sizes range from 100 nm to >100 μm (according to manufacturer report). For proteinaceous proxies, we looked at different gram-negative bacteria, such as Pseudamonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli, Serratia marcescens, Citrobacter freundii, and Snomax, (which contains P. syringae) that can be found around the proximity of the Texas Panhandle. By using the Cryogenic Refrigeration Applied Freezing Test (CRAFT) system, we estimated immersion freezing efficiency (i.e., ice nucleation activity scaled to a unit of mass) of each sample at the temperatures greater than -30°C. We have observed that not all gram-negative bacteria has high immersion freezing activity, but the few do have a warmer temperature onset (>-20 °C) than the cellulose used. For those that did not exhibit substantial freezing efficiencies, they had similar freezing properties as the broth, in which the bacteria were incubated, as well as the cellulose materials examined. These observations suggest the presence and potential importance of bacterial cellulose in the atmospheric ice nucleation. From here, we need to conduct more in-depth investigation in the effects of a wider variety of atmospherically relevant biological aerosols to get a better understanding of the effects of said aerosols on overall aerosol-cloud interactions. Acknowledgments: K. Cory would like to acknowledge NSF-EAPSI and JSPS Summer Program for the travel fellowship support. N. Hiranuma

  17. Using student-generated UV-induced Escherichia coli mutants in a directed inquiry undergraduate genetics laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Healy, Frank G; Livingstone, Kevin D

    2010-09-01

    We report a thematic sequence of directed inquiry-based labs taking students from bacterial mutagenesis and phenotypic identification of their own self-created mutant, through identification of mutated genes by biochemical testing, to verification of mutant alleles by complementation, and finally to mutant allele characterization by DNA sequence analysis. The lab utilizes UV mutagenesis with wild-type Escherichia coli and a UV-sensitive isogenic derivative optimized for undergraduate use. The labs take advantage of the simplicity of E. coli in a realistic genetic investigation using safe UV irradiation methods for creation and characterization of novel mutants. Assessment data collected over three offerings of the course suggest that the labs, which combine original investigation in a scientifically realistic intellectual environment with learned techniques and concepts, were instrumental in improving students' learning in a number of areas. These include the development of critical thinking skills and understanding of concepts and methods. Student responses also suggest the labs were helpful in improving students' understanding of the scientific process as a rational series of experimental investigations and awareness of the interdisciplinary nature of scientific inquiry.

  18. Hands-On Experiences of Undergraduate Students in Automatics and Robotics Using a Virtual and Remote Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jara, Carlos A.; Candelas, Francisco A.; Puente, Santiago T.; Torres, Fernando

    2011-01-01

    Automatics and Robotics subjects are always greatly improved when classroom teaching is supported by adequate laboratory courses and experiments following the "learning by doing" paradigm, which provides students a deep understanding of theoretical lessons. However, expensive equipment and limited time prevent teachers having sufficient…

  19. Drug Synthesis and Analysis on a Dime: A Capstone Medicinal Chemistry Experience for the Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Streu, Craig N.; Reif, Randall D.; Neiles, Kelly Y.; Schech, Amanda J.; Mertz, Pamela S.

    2016-01-01

    Integrative, research-based experiences have shown tremendous potential as effective pedagogical approaches. Pharmaceutical development is an exciting field that draws heavily on organic chemistry and biochemistry techniques. A capstone drug synthesis/analysis laboratory is described where biochemistry students synthesize azo-stilbenoid compounds…

  20. Cross-Course Collaboration in the Undergraduate Chemistry Curriculum: Isotopic Labeling with Sodium Borodeuteride in the Introductory Organic Chemistry Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kjonaas, Richard A.; Fitch, Richard W.; Noll, Robert J.

    2017-01-01

    A microscale isotopic labeling experiment is described for the introductory organic chemistry laboratory course wherein half of the students use sodium borohydride (NaBH[subscript 4]) and the other half use sodium borodeuteride (NaBD[subscript 4]) to reduce acetophenone to 1-phenylethanol and then compare spectral data. The cost is reasonable, and…

  1. A Simple LIBS (Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy) Laboratory Experiment to Introduce Undergraduates to Calibration Functions and Atomic Spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chinni, Rosemarie C.

    2012-01-01

    This laboratory experiment introduces students to a different type of atomic spectroscopy: laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS). LIBS uses a laser-generated spark to excite the sample; once excited, the elemental emission is spectrally resolved and detected. The students use LIBS to analyze a series of standard synthetic silicate samples…

  2. Undergraduate Student Attitudes and Perceptions toward Low- and High-Level Inquiry Exercise Physiology Teaching Laboratory Experiences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henige, Kim

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this investigation was to compare student attitudes toward two different science laboratory learning experiences, specifically, traditional, cookbook-style, low-inquiry level (LL) activities and a high-inquiry level (HL) investigative project. In addition, we sought to measure and compare students' science-related attitudes and…

  3. Context matters: volunteer bias, small sample size, and the value of comparison groups in the assessment of research-based undergraduate introductory biology lab courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brownell, Sara E; Kloser, Matthew J; Fukami, Tadashi; Shavelson, Richard J

    2013-01-01

    The shift from cookbook to authentic research-based lab courses in undergraduate biology necessitates the need for evaluation and assessment of these novel courses. Although the biology education community has made progress in this area, it is important that we interpret the effectiveness of these courses with caution and remain mindful of inherent limitations to our study designs that may impact internal and external validity. The specific context of a research study can have a dramatic impact on the conclusions. We present a case study of our own three-year investigation of the impact of a research-based introductory lab course, highlighting how volunteer students, a lack of a comparison group, and small sample sizes can be limitations of a study design that can affect the interpretation of the effectiveness of a course.

  4. Validation and Application of the Survey of Teaching Beliefs and Practices for Undergraduates (STEP-U): Identifying Factors Associated with Valuing Important Workplace Skills among Biology Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marbach-Ad, Gili; Rietschel, Carly; Thompson, Katerina V.

    2016-01-01

    We present a novel assessment tool for measuring biology students’ values and experiences across their undergraduate degree program. Our Survey of Teaching Beliefs and Practices for Undergraduates (STEP-U) assesses the extent to which students value skills needed for the workplace (e.g., ability to work in groups) and their experiences with teaching practices purported to promote such skills (e.g., group work). The survey was validated through factor analyses in a large sample of biology seniors (n = 1389) and through response process analyses (five interviewees). The STEP-U skills items were characterized by two underlying factors: retention (e.g., memorization) and transfer (e.g., knowledge application). Multiple linear regression models were used to examine relationships between classroom experiences, values, and student characteristics (e.g., gender, cumulative grade point average [GPA], and research experience). Student demographic and experiential factors predicted the extent to which students valued particular skills. Students with lower GPAs valued retention skills more than those with higher GPAs. Students with research experience placed greater value on scientific writing and interdisciplinary understanding. Greater experience with specific teaching practices was associated with valuing the corresponding skills more highly. The STEP-U can provide feedback vital for designing curricula that better prepare students for their intended postgraduate careers. PMID:27856547

  5. Validation and Application of the Survey of Teaching Beliefs and Practices for Undergraduates (STEP-U): Identifying Factors Associated with Valuing Important Workplace Skills among Biology Students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marbach-Ad, Gili; Rietschel, Carly; Thompson, Katerina V

    2016-01-01

    We present a novel assessment tool for measuring biology students' values and experiences across their undergraduate degree program. Our Survey of Teaching Beliefs and Practices for Undergraduates (STEP-U) assesses the extent to which students value skills needed for the workplace (e.g., ability to work in groups) and their experiences with teaching practices purported to promote such skills (e.g., group work). The survey was validated through factor analyses in a large sample of biology seniors (n = 1389) and through response process analyses (five interviewees). The STEP-U skills items were characterized by two underlying factors: retention (e.g., memorization) and transfer (e.g., knowledge application). Multiple linear regression models were used to examine relationships between classroom experiences, values, and student characteristics (e.g., gender, cumulative grade point average [GPA], and research experience). Student demographic and experiential factors predicted the extent to which students valued particular skills. Students with lower GPAs valued retention skills more than those with higher GPAs. Students with research experience placed greater value on scientific writing and interdisciplinary understanding. Greater experience with specific teaching practices was associated with valuing the corresponding skills more highly. The STEP-U can provide feedback vital for designing curricula that better prepare students for their intended postgraduate careers. © 2016 G. Marbach-Ad et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  6. Animal laboratory, interactive and computer based learning, in enhancing basic concepts in physiology: an outlook of 481 undergraduate medical students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shore, Najla; Khawar, Shireen; Qutab, Miraa; Ayub, Muhammad

    2013-01-01

    Laboratory exercises are intended to illustrate concepts and add an active learning component to courses. Since 1980s, there has been a decline in animal laboratories in medical physiology courses. Other cost-effective non-aninmal alternatives are being sought. The present study was designed to find out the students' opinion regarding the animal versus computer lab and whether innovative teaching methodologies helped students achieve their goals. Opinions of 481 female in medical students of 2nd and 3rd year MBBS were included in the study. A questionnaire based on animal/computer based experiments and new teaching methodologies in physiology was voluntarily filled in by the students. Majority of students immensely benefited from both the animal lab and other teaching methodologies. Although computer based learning is considered effective in helping students acquire basic concepts, there is evidence that some students acquire a more thorough understanding of the material through more advanced and challenging experience of an animal laboratory. The fact that such labs as well various teaching methods offer distinct educational advantages should be taken into account when courses are designed.

  7. Biological effects of high strength electric fields on small laboratory animals. Interim progress report, March 9, 1976--September 8, 1976

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Phillips, R.D.; Kaune, W.T.; Decker, J.R.; Hjeresen, D.L.

    1976-09-01

    Progress is reported on a broad and comprehensive series of biological experiments made under strictly controlled laboratory conditions to screen for possible effects of exposure to 60-Hz electric fields on small laboratory animals. Electric field strengths comparable to and exceeding those under existing and anticipated transmission line designs will be used. Dosimetry studies will complement the animal studies to establish the relationship between tissue dose and any observed biological effects. Information derived from this project will provide a better basis for evaluating potential hazards of exposure to 60-Hz electric fields and help define parameters to be studied in clinical evaluations on humans.

  8. Biological in situ treatment of soil contaminated with petroleum - Laboratory scale simulations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Palvall, B.

    1997-06-01

    Laboratory scale simulations of biological in situ treatment of soil contaminated with petroleum compounds have been made in order to get a practical concept in the general case. The work was divided into seven distinct parts. Characterisation, leaching tests and introductory microbiological investigations were followed by experiments in suspended phases and in situ simulations of solid phase reactors. For the suspensions, ratios L/S 3/1 and shaking for a couple of hours were enough to detach organic compounds in colloid or dissolved form. When testing for a time of one month anaerobic environment and cold temperatures of 4 centigrade as well gave acceptable reductions of the actual pollution levels. The range of variation in the soil tests performed showed that at least triple samples are needed to get satisfactory statistical reliability. It was shown that adequate experimental controls demand very high concentrations of e.g. sodium azide when dealing with soil samples. For triple samples in suspended phase without inoculation the weight ratios of oxygen consumption/biological degradation of aliphatic compounds were 2.41 to 2.96. For the complex overall reduction no exact rate constants could be found. The reduction of hydrocarbons were in the interval 27 to 95 % in suspension tests. Solid phase simulations with maximum water saturation showed the highest degree of reduction of hydrocarbons when using dissolved peroxide of hydrogen as electron acceptor while the effect of an active sludge reactor in series was little - reductions of aliphatic compounds were between 21 and 33 % and of aromatic compounds between 32 and 65 %. The influence of different contents of water was greater than adding inoculum or shaking the soil at different intervals in the unsaturated cylinders. The starting level of hydrocarbons was 2400 mg/kg dry weight soil and the end analyses were made after 100 days. The reduction was between 32 and 80 %. 82 refs

  9. Biology of the mealybug, Phenacoccus solenopsis on cotton in the laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vennila, S; Deshmukh, A J; Pinjarkar, D; Agarwal, M; Ramamurthy, V V; Joshi, S; Kranthi, K R; Bambawale, O M

    2010-01-01

    Phenacoccus solenopsis Tinsley (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) has been the current topic of research for insect taxonomists and applied entomologists in India due to its invasiveness, rapid spread, morphological and biological variations and the need for establishing an effective control strategy. The biology of the mealybug P. solenopsis was studied on cotton under laboratory conditions between August and October of 2009 with mean temperature and relative humidity of 23.3–30.2° C and 40.5–92.5% RH, respectively, in central India. Neonate crawlers that emerged from a field population were collected and constituted the study population. The developmental period from immature crawler to adult stage was greater for males (18.7 ± 0.9 days) compared to females (13.2 ± 1.8 days), probably due to the additional molt to the pupal stage in males. Survival of second instars was lower (45.5%) than first and third instars (71.4%). Females showed dynamic patterns of fecundity with the number of crawlers produced per female ranging between 128 and 812, with a mean of 344 ± 82. The reproductive period lasted 30.2 ± 8.2 days. Parthenogenesis with ovoviviparity (96.5%) was dominant over the oviparous (3.5%) mode of reproduction. Adult females lived 42.4 ± 5.7 days. Males accounted for less than 5% of the population, and lived 1.5 ± 0.1 days. The life history parameters of P. solenopsis adult females are discussed relative to the appearance of symptoms on the cotton crop, and the importance of making management interventions during the effective reproductive period of the insect.

  10. "Mini-Array" Transcriptional Analysis of the "Listeria Monocytogenes" Lecithinase Operon as a Class Project: A Student Investigative Molecular Biology Laboratory Experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christensen, Douglas; Jovic, Marko

    2006-01-01

    This report describes a molecular biotechnology-based laboratory curriculum developed to accompany an undergraduate genetics course. During the course of a semester, students researched the pathogen, developed a research question, designed experiments, and performed transcriptional analysis of a set of genes that confer virulence to the food-borne…

  11. Use of the "gl1" Mutant and the "CA-rop2" Transgenic Plants of "Arabidopsis thaliana" in the Biology Laboratory Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Zhi-Liang

    2006-01-01

    This article describes the use of the "glabrous1 (g11)" mutant and constitutively active "(CA)-rop2" transgenic plants of "Arabidopsis thaliana" in teaching genetics laboratory for both high school and undergraduate students. The experiments provide students with F[subscript 1] and F[subscript 2] generations within a semester for genetic and…

  12. The Protein Information Management System (PiMS): a generic tool for any structural biology research laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Chris; Pajon, Anne; Griffiths, Susanne L; Daniel, Ed; Savitsky, Marc; Lin, Bill; Diprose, Jonathan M; da Silva, Alan Wilter; Pilicheva, Katya; Troshin, Peter; van Niekerk, Johannes; Isaacs, Neil; Naismith, James; Nave, Colin; Blake, Richard; Wilson, Keith S; Stuart, David I; Henrick, Kim; Esnouf, Robert M

    2011-04-01

    The techniques used in protein production and structural biology have been developing rapidly, but techniques for recording the laboratory information produced have not kept pace. One approach is the development of laboratory information-management systems (LIMS), which typically use a relational database schema to model and store results from a laboratory workflow. The underlying philosophy and implementation of the Protein Information Management System (PiMS), a LIMS development specifically targeted at the flexible and unpredictable workflows of protein-production research laboratories of all scales, is described. PiMS is a web-based Java application that uses either Postgres or Oracle as the underlying relational database-management system. PiMS is available under a free licence to all academic laboratories either for local installation or for use as a managed service.

  13. Using a PyMOL activity to reinforce the connection between genotype and phenotype in an undergraduate genetics laboratory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandra D Simmons

    Full Text Available With the purpose of developing an activity that would help clarify genetic concepts related to the connection between genotype and phenotype and the nature of mutations, we designed a three hour teaching module using the PyMol software. The activity starts with two pre-laboratory assignments, one to learn how to use PyMol and the other to read about a specific protein or protein family. During the laboratory students are given instructions where and how to find additional information on a specific disease and its causal mutations in order to prepare a 10-minute, in-class presentation. Using a post activity, anonymous quiz, we found a statistically significant different grade distribution in students that participated in the PyMol activity relative to a control group. We also found a significant improvement in the student's comprehension when answering questions regarding the nature of mutations and protein structure. This demonstrates the utility of this simulation activity as a vehicle to improve student's understanding of specific key genetic concepts.

  14. Preliminary report of biological intrusion studies at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory subsurface disposal area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reynolds, T.D.; Arthur, W.J.

    1983-01-01

    As part of a larger study on the effects of biological intrusion of plants and animals into the soil cover placed over low-level radioactive wastes stored at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory Subsurface Disposal Area (SDA), research was initiated in the summer of 1982 to determine the burrow characteristics and movement patterns of several small mammal species, and the rooting depths of various plants. The depth, length, and volume of burrows were determined for four small mammal species: deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus), Ord's kangaroo rat (Dipodomys ordii), montane vole (Microtus montanus), and Townsend's ground squirrel (Spermophilis townsendii). The latter species excavated the greatest mean burrow depth (39 cm), length (404 cm), and volume (14.8 1). Movement patterns of three species were determined by radiotelemetry. The mean area of use for P. maniculatus, D. ordii, and M. montanus was 2.3, 1.5, and 1.2 ha respectively. Limited data on rooting depths of various native and introduced plant species at the SDA were obtained by literature review and excavation. During FY-83, experiments will be conducted, using the information obtained from the first year of this study, to evaluate the impact of burrowing mammals and root intrusion on the integrity of the soil cover currently existing at the SDA. Details of these experimental studies are presented

  15. Biological and Environmental Research Program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, FY 1992--1994

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1992-01-01

    This report is the 1992--1994 Program Director's Overview Report for Oak Ridge National Laboratory's (ORNL's) Biological and Environmental Research (BER) Program, and as such it addresses KP-funded work at ORNL conducted during FY 1991 and in progress during FY 1992; it also serves as a planning document for the remainder of FY 1992 through FY 1994. Non-BER funded work at ORNL relevant to the mission of OHER is also discussed. The second section of the report describes ORNL facilities and resources used by the BER program. The third section addresses research management practices at ORNL. The fourth, fifth, and sixth sections address BER-funded research in progress, program accomplishments and research highlights, and program orientation for the remainder of FY 1992 through FY 1994, respectively. Work for non-BER sponsors is described in the seventh section, followed by a discussion of significant near and long-term issues facing BER work at ORNL in the eighth section. The last section provides a statistical summary of BER research at ORNL. Appendices supplement the above topics with additional detail

  16. Biological and Environmental Research Program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, FY 1992--1994

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1992-01-01

    This report is the 1992--1994 Program Director's Overview Report for Oak Ridge National Laboratory's (ORNL's) Biological and Environmental Research (BER) Program, and as such it addresses KP-funded work at ORNL conducted during FY 1991 and in progress during FY 1992; it also serves as a planning document for the remainder of FY 1992 through FY 1994. Non-BER funded work at ORNL relevant to the mission of OHER is also discussed. The second section of the report describes ORNL facilities and resources used by the BER program. The third section addresses research management practices at ORNL. The fourth, fifth, and sixth sections address BER-funded research in progress, program accomplishments and research highlights, and program orientation for the remainder of FY 1992 through FY 1994, respectively. Work for non-BER sponsors is described in the seventh section, followed by a discussion of significant near and long-term issues facing BER work at ORNL in the eighth section. The last section provides a statistical summary of BER research at ORNL. Appendices supplement the above topics with additional detail.

  17. Laboratory Study on Biological Control of Ticks (Acari: Ixodidae by Entomopathogenic Indigenous Fungi (Beauveria bassiana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M Abdigoudarzi

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Background: Chemical control method using different acaricides as spray, dipping solution or pour-on is routinely used for controlling ticks. Biological control agents are favorable due to their safety for animals and environment. Entomopathogenic fungi such as Beauveria bassiana are well known for controlling ticks. In this study, two Iranian indigenous strains of B. bassiana (B. bassiana 5197 and B. bassiana Evin were selected and grown on specific me­dia. The pathogenic effects of these strains were evaluated on adult stages of two Iranian Ixodidae members (H. anatolicum anatolicum Koch 1844, and H. marginatum Koch 1844 by dipping method.Methods: Two Iranian strains of Beauveria bassiana (Beauveria bassiana 5197 and Beauveria bassiana Evin were selected and were grown successfully on specific media. The pathogenic effects of these strains were evaluated on adult stages of Iranian Ixodidae members such as, Hyalomma anatolicum anatolicum and H. marginatum by dipping method (these ticks were grown up at laboratory conditions during 2002 up to 2003 and still it is continued .Results: There was no effect of strain 5197 on mortality or fecundity rates for ticks. There was acute phase sign of paralysis in test group after dipping ticks in suspension made from Evin strain of B. bassiana. In addition, the test groups were totally died after four months, but the control groups survived for six months.Conclusion: High concentration of fungal spores is needed for inducing fungal infection. Additional study using different strains and fungi on Iranian ticks is proposed. 

  18. Conceptual design of a biological specimen holding facility. [Life Science Laboratory for Space Shuttle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, J. K.; Yakut, M. M.

    1976-01-01

    An all-important first step in the development of the Spacelab Life Science Laboratory is the design of the Biological Specimen Holding Facility (BSHF) which will provide accommodation for living specimens for life science research in orbit. As a useful tool in the understanding of physiological and biomedical changes produced in the weightless environment, the BSHF will enable biomedical researchers to conduct in-orbit investigations utilizing techniques that may be impossible to perform on human subjects. The results of a comprehensive study for defining the BSHF, description of its experiment support capabilities, and the planning required for its development are presented. Conceptual designs of the facility, its subsystems and interfaces with the Orbiter and Spacelab are included. Environmental control, life support and data management systems are provided. Interface and support equipment required for specimen transfer, surgical research, and food, water and waste storage is defined. New and optimized concepts are presented for waste collection, feces and urine separation and sampling, environmental control, feeding and watering, lighting, data management and other support subsystems.

  19. Ethical and methodological standards for laboratory and medical biological rhythm research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portaluppi, Francesco; Touitou, Yvan; Smolensky, Michael H

    2008-11-01

    The main objectives of this article are to update the ethical standards for the conduct of human and animal biological rhythm research and recommend essential elements for quality chronobiological research information, which should be especially useful for new investigators of the rhythms of life. A secondary objective is to provide for those with an interest in the results of chronobiology investigations, but who might be unfamiliar with the field, an introduction to the basic methods and standards of biological rhythm research and time series data analysis. The journal and its editors endorse compliance of all investigators to the principles of the Declaration of Helsinki of the World Medical Association, which relate to the conduct of ethical research on human beings, and the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals of the Institute for Laboratory Animal Research of the National Research Council, which relate to the conduct of ethical research on laboratory and other animals. The editors and the readers of the journal expect the authors of submitted manuscripts to have adhered to the ethical standards dictated by local, national, and international laws and regulations in the conduct of investigations and to be unbiased and accurate in reporting never-before-published research findings. Authors of scientific papers are required to disclose all potential conflicts of interest, particularly when the research is funded in part or in full by the medical and pharmaceutical industry, when the authors are stock-holders of the company that manufactures or markets the products under study, or when the authors are a recent or current paid consultant to the involved company. It is the responsibility of the authors of submitted manuscripts to clearly present sufficient detail about the synchronizer schedule of the studied subjects (i.e., the sleep-wake schedule, ambient light-dark cycle, intensity and spectrum of ambient light exposure, seasons when the research was

  20. Biological effects of high-strength electric fields on small laboratory animals. Interim report, March 1, 1978-September 30, 1979

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Phillips, R.D.; Anderson, L.E.; Kaune, W.T.

    1979-12-01

    Progress is described on a project assessing the biological effects of 60-Hz electric fields on small laboratory animals (rats and mice). The report includes sections on hematology and seram chemistry, immunology, pathology, metabolism, bone growth, endocrinology, cardiovascular function, neurophysiology, growth and development, and animal behavior. (ACR)

  1. Deaf, Hard-of-Hearing, and Hearing Signing Undergraduates’ Attitudes toward Science in Inquiry-Based Biology Laboratory Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gormally, Cara

    2017-01-01

    For science learning to be successful, students must develop attitudes toward support future engagement with challenging social issues related to science. This is especially important for increasing participation of students from underrepresented populations. This study investigated how participation in inquiry-based biology laboratory classes affected students’ attitudes toward science, focusing on deaf, hard-of-hearing, and hearing signing students in bilingual learning environments (i.e., taught in American Sign Language and English). Analysis of reflection assignments and interviews revealed that the majority of students developed positive attitudes toward science and scientific attitudes after participating in inquiry-based biology laboratory classes. Attitudinal growth appears to be driven by student value of laboratory activities, repeated direct engagement with scientific inquiry, and peer collaboration. Students perceived that hands-on experimentation involving peer collaboration and a positive, welcoming learning environment were key features of inquiry-based laboratories, affording attitudinal growth. Students who did not perceive biology as useful for their majors, careers, or lives did not develop positive attitudes. Students highlighted the importance of the climate of the learning environment for encouraging student contribution and noted both the benefits and pitfalls of teamwork. Informed by students’ characterizations of their learning experiences, recommendations are made for inquiry-based learning in college biology. PMID:28188279

  2. Development of a Semester-Long, Inquiry-Based Laboratory Course in Upper-Level Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murthy, Pushpalatha P. N.; Thompson, Martin; Hungwe, Kedmon

    2014-01-01

    A semester-long laboratory course was designed and implemented to familiarize students with modern biochemistry and molecular biology techniques. The designed format involved active student participation, evaluation of data, and critical thinking, and guided students to become independent researchers. The first part of the course focused on…

  3. Biological cycle and preliminary data on vectorial competence of Triatoma boliviana in laboratory conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durán, Pamela; Siñani, Edda; Depickère, Stéphanie

    2014-12-01

    With more than 140 potential vectors of Chagas disease, it is important to better know the biology and especially the vectorial capacity of the triatomine species which live in the surroundings of human dwellings. In Bolivia where 17 triatomine species are reported, the principal vector is Triatoma infestans. In some valleys of the department of La Paz where T. infestans is not present, a new species (Triatoma boliviana) was described in 2007. This species lives in a sylvatic environment not far away from the dwellings, and occasionally some individuals are found inside the houses. This study was carried out to describe the biological cycle of T. boliviana and to determine its vectorial competence. The development of a cohort of 95 nymphs of first instar (N1) was followed through nymphal instars and adult stage until death in laboratory (22°C). They were fed twice a week on an immobilized mouse. The median egg-to-adult development time was 8.4 months. The mortality by nymphal instar was lower than 7% except for N1 (67%) and N5 (18%). All nymph instars needed at least two feedings to molt (until six feedings for N5). The differentiation of a nymph into a female or a male could not be detected until the fifth instar for which the food intake was greater for a nymph developing into a female. Adults fed about once a week. The adult life span was around 400 days. The fecundity was 4.2 eggs/female/week, with a hatching rate of 50% and a hatching time of 39 days. In the same conditions, T. infestans showed a similar fecundity but a greater hatching rate and hatching time. A trial for rearing the adults at a higher temperature (26°C) showed a drastic fall in the fecundity and in the hatching rate. The vectorial competence was analyzed for fifth instars and adults by three parameters: the ability to feed on human beings, the capacity to be infected by T. cruzi and the postfeeding defecation delay. Results showed a relatively high vectorial competence: (1) insects fed

  4. MDI Biological Laboratory Arsenic Summit: Approaches to Limiting Human Exposure to Arsenic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanton, Bruce A; Caldwell, Kathleen; Congdon, Clare Bates; Disney, Jane; Donahue, Maria; Ferguson, Elizabeth; Flemings, Elsie; Golden, Meredith; Guerinot, Mary Lou; Highman, Jay; James, Karen; Kim, Carol; Lantz, R Clark; Marvinney, Robert G; Mayer, Greg; Miller, David; Navas-Acien, Ana; Nordstrom, D Kirk; Postema, Sonia; Rardin, Laurie; Rosen, Barry; SenGupta, Arup; Shaw, Joseph; Stanton, Elizabeth; Susca, Paul

    2015-09-01

    This report is the outcome of the meeting "Environmental and Human Health Consequences of Arsenic" held at the MDI Biological Laboratory in Salisbury Cove, Maine, August 13-15, 2014. Human exposure to arsenic represents a significant health problem worldwide that requires immediate attention according to the World Health Organization (WHO). One billion people are exposed to arsenic in food, and more than 200 million people ingest arsenic via drinking water at concentrations greater than international standards. Although the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has set a limit of 10 μg/L in public water supplies and the WHO has recommended an upper limit of 10 μg/L, recent studies indicate that these limits are not protective enough. In addition, there are currently few standards for arsenic in food. Those who participated in the Summit support citizens, scientists, policymakers, industry, and educators at the local, state, national, and international levels to (1) establish science-based evidence for setting standards at the local, state, national, and global levels for arsenic in water and food; (2) work with government agencies to set regulations for arsenic in water and food, to establish and strengthen non-regulatory programs, and to strengthen collaboration among government agencies, NGOs, academia, the private sector, industry, and others; (3) develop novel and cost-effective technologies for identification and reduction of exposure to arsenic in water; (4) develop novel and cost-effective approaches to reduce arsenic exposure in juice, rice, and other relevant foods; and (5) develop an Arsenic Education Plan to guide the development of science curricula as well as community outreach and education programs that serve to inform students and consumers about arsenic exposure and engage them in well water testing and development of remediation strategies.

  5. Biological responses of the marine diatom Chaetoceros socialis to changing environmental conditions: A laboratory experiment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xuefeng Li

    Full Text Available Diatoms constitute a major group of phytoplankton, accounting for ~20% of the world's primary production. It has been shown that iron (Fe can be the limiting factor for phytoplankton growth, in particular, in the HNLC (High Nutrient Low Chlorophyll regions. Iron plays thus an essential role in governing the marine primary productivity and the efficiency of biological carbon pump. Oceanic systems are undergoing continuous modifications at varying rates and magnitudes as a result of changing climate. The objective of our research is to evaluate how changing environmental conditions (dust deposition, ocean warming and acidification can affect marine Fe biogeochemistry and diatom growth. Laboratory culture experiments using a marine diatom Chaetoceros socialis were conducted at two temperatures (13°C and 18°C and under two pCO2 (carbon dioxide partial pressure (400 μatm and 800 μatm conditions. The present study clearly highlights the effect of ocean acidification on enhancing the release of Fe upon dust deposition. Our results also confirm that being a potential source of Fe, dust provides in addition a readily utilizable source of macronutrients such as dissolved phosphate (PO4 and silicate (DSi. However, elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations may also have an adverse impact on diatom growth, causing a decrease in cell size and possible further changes in phytoplankton composition. Meanwhile, ocean warming may lead to the reduction of diatom production and cell size, inducing poleward shifts in the biogeographic distribution of diatoms. The changing climate has thus a significant implication for ocean phytoplankton growth, cell size and primary productivity, phytoplankton distribution and community composition, and carbon (C, nitrogen (N, phosphorus (P, silicon (Si and Fe biogeochemical cycles in various ways.

  6. Biological responses of the marine diatom Chaetoceros socialis to changing environmental conditions: A laboratory experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xuefeng; Roevros, Nathalie; Dehairs, Frank; Chou, Lei

    2017-01-01

    Diatoms constitute a major group of phytoplankton, accounting for ~20% of the world's primary production. It has been shown that iron (Fe) can be the limiting factor for phytoplankton growth, in particular, in the HNLC (High Nutrient Low Chlorophyll) regions. Iron plays thus an essential role in governing the marine primary productivity and the efficiency of biological carbon pump. Oceanic systems are undergoing continuous modifications at varying rates and magnitudes as a result of changing climate. The objective of our research is to evaluate how changing environmental conditions (dust deposition, ocean warming and acidification) can affect marine Fe biogeochemistry and diatom growth. Laboratory culture experiments using a marine diatom Chaetoceros socialis were conducted at two temperatures (13°C and 18°C) and under two pCO2 (carbon dioxide partial pressure) (400 μatm and 800 μatm) conditions. The present study clearly highlights the effect of ocean acidification on enhancing the release of Fe upon dust deposition. Our results also confirm that being a potential source of Fe, dust provides in addition a readily utilizable source of macronutrients such as dissolved phosphate (PO4) and silicate (DSi). However, elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations may also have an adverse impact on diatom growth, causing a decrease in cell size and possible further changes in phytoplankton composition. Meanwhile, ocean warming may lead to the reduction of diatom production and cell size, inducing poleward shifts in the biogeographic distribution of diatoms. The changing climate has thus a significant implication for ocean phytoplankton growth, cell size and primary productivity, phytoplankton distribution and community composition, and carbon (C), nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), silicon (Si) and Fe biogeochemical cycles in various ways.

  7. Doing that thing that scientists do: A discovery-driven module on protein purification and characterization for the undergraduate biochemistry laboratory classroom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrett, Teresa A; Osmundson, Joseph; Isaacson, Marisa; Herrera, Jennifer

    2015-01-01

    In traditional introductory biochemistry laboratory classes students learn techniques for protein purification and analysis by following provided, established, step-by-step procedures. Students are exposed to a variety of biochemical techniques but are often not developing procedures or collecting new, original data. In this laboratory module, students develop research skills through work on an original research project and gain confidence in their ability to design and execute an experiment while faculty can enhance their scholarly pursuits through the acquisition of original data in the classroom laboratory. Students are prepared for a 6-8 week discovery-driven project on the purification of the Escherichia coli cytidylate kinase (CMP kinase) through in class problems and other laboratory exercises on bioinformatics and protein structure analysis. After a minimal amount of guidance on how to perform the CMP kinase in vitro enzyme assay, SDS-PAGE, and the basics of protein purification, students, working in groups of three to four, develop a protein purification protocol based on the scientific literature and investigate some aspect of CMP kinase that interests them. Through this process, students learn how to implement a new but perhaps previously worked out procedure to answer their research question. In addition, they learn the importance of keeping a clear and thorough laboratory notebook and how to interpret their data and use that data to inform the next set of experiments. Following this module, students had increased confidence in their ability to do basic biochemistry techniques and reported that the "self-directed" nature of this lab increased their engagement in the project. © 2015 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  8. Implementing the Science Assessment Standards: Developing and validating a set of laboratory assessment tasks in high school biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saha, Gouranga Chandra

    Very often a number of factors, especially time, space and money, deter many science educators from using inquiry-based, hands-on, laboratory practical tasks as alternative assessment instruments in science. A shortage of valid inquiry-based laboratory tasks for high school biology has been cited. Driven by this need, this study addressed the following three research questions: (1) How can laboratory-based performance tasks be designed and developed that are doable by students for whom they are designed/written? (2) Do student responses to the laboratory-based performance tasks validly represent at least some of the intended process skills that new biology learning goals want students to acquire? (3) Are the laboratory-based performance tasks psychometrically consistent as individual tasks and as a set? To answer these questions, three tasks were used from the six biology tasks initially designed and developed by an iterative process of trial testing. Analyses of data from 224 students showed that performance-based laboratory tasks that are doable by all students require careful and iterative process of development. Although the students demonstrated more skill in performing than planning and reasoning, their performances at the item level were very poor for some items. Possible reasons for the poor performances have been discussed and suggestions on how to remediate the deficiencies have been made. Empirical evidences for validity and reliability of the instrument have been presented both from the classical and the modern validity criteria point of view. Limitations of the study have been identified. Finally implications of the study and directions for further research have been discussed.

  9. Prepare, Do, Review: A skills-based approach for laboratory practical classes in biochemistry and molecular biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arthur, Peter; Ludwig, Martha; Castelli, Joane; Kirkwood, Paul; Attwood, Paul

    2016-05-06

    A new laboratory practical system is described which is comprised of a number of laboratory practical modules, each based around a particular technique or set of techniques, related to the theory part of the course but not designed to be dependent on it. Each module comprises an online recorded pre-lab lecture, the laboratory practical itself and a post-lab session in which students make oral presentations on different aspects of the practical. Each part of the module is assessed with the aim of providing rapid feedback to staff and students. Each laboratory practical is the responsibility of a single staff member and through this "ownership," continual review and updating is promoted. Examples of changes made by staff to modules as a result of student feedback are detailed. A survey of students who had experienced both the old-style laboratory course and the new one provided evidence of increased satisfaction with the new program. The assessment of acquired shills in the new program showed that it was much more effective than the old course. © 2016 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 44:276-287, 2016. © 2016 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  10. Affordable Hands-On DNA Sequencing and Genotyping: An Exercise for Teaching DNA Analysis to Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shah, Kushani; Thomas, Shelby; Stein, Arnold

    2013-01-01

    In this report, we describe a 5-week laboratory exercise for undergraduate biology and biochemistry students in which students learn to sequence DNA and to genotype their DNA for selected single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). Students use miniaturized DNA sequencing gels that require approximately 8 min to run. The students perform G, A, T, C…

  11. Using "Pseudomonas Putida xylE" Gene to Teach Molecular Cloning Techniques for Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Xu; Xin, Yi; Ye, Li; Ma, Yufang

    2009-01-01

    We have developed and implemented a serial experiment in molecular cloning laboratory course for undergraduate students majored in biotechnology. "Pseudomonas putida xylE" gene, encoding catechol 2, 3-dioxygenase, was manipulated to learn molecular biology techniques. The integration of cloning, expression, and enzyme assay gave students…

  12. Results and Recommendations from the First NATO International Training Exercise on Laboratory Identification of Biological Agents

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Hancock, J.R

    2001-01-01

    ...)-inactivated biological material and one blank containing phosphate buffered saline (PBS). The United States, as the host nation, distributed PBS, Bacillus anthracis, Coxiella burnetii, Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis (VEE...

  13. How does undergraduate college biology students' level of understanding, in regard to the role of the seed plant root system, relate to their level of understanding of photosynthesis?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Njeng'ere, James Gicheha

    This research study investigated how undergraduate college biology students' level of understanding of the role of the seed plant root system relates to their level of understanding of photosynthesis. This research was conducted with 65 undergraduate non-majors biology who had completed 1 year of biology at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge and Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond. A root probe instrument was developed from some scientifically acceptable propositional statements about the root system, the process of photosynthesis, as well as the holistic nature of the tree. These were derived from research reviews of the science education and the arboriculture literature. This was administered to 65 students selected randomly from class lists of the two institutions. Most of the root probe's items were based on the Live Oak tree. An in-depth, clinical interview-based analysis was conducted with 12 of those tested students. A team of root experts participated by designing, validating and answering the same questions that the students were asked. A "systems" lens as defined by a team of college instructors, root experts (Shigo, 1991), and this researcher was used to interpret the results. A correlational coefficient determining students' level of understanding of the root system and their level of understanding of the process of photosynthesis was established by means of Pearson's r correlation (r = 0.328) using the SAS statistical analysis (SAS, 1987). From this a coefficient of determination (r2 = 0.104) was determined. Students' level of understanding of the Live Oak root system (mean score 5.94) was not statistically different from their level of understanding of the process of photosynthesis (mean score 5.54) as assessed by the root probe, t (129) = 0.137, p > 0.05 one tailed-test. This suggests that, to some degree, level of the root system limits level of understanding of photosynthesis and vice versa. Analysis of quantitative and qualitative

  14. Using Affinity Chromatography to Investigate Novel Protein-Protein Interactions in an Undergraduate Cell and Molecular Biology Lab Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belanger, Kenneth D.

    2009-01-01

    Inquiry-driven lab exercises require students to think carefully about a question, carry out an investigation of that question, and critically analyze the results of their investigation. Here, we describe the implementation and assessment of an inquiry-based laboratory exercise in which students obtain and analyze novel data that contribute to our…

  15. The Protein Information Management System (PiMS): a generic tool for any structural biology research laboratory

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Morris, Chris [STFC Daresbury Laboratory, Warrington WA4 4AD (United Kingdom); Pajon, Anne [Wellcome Trust Genome Campus, Hinxton CB10 1SD (United Kingdom); Griffiths, Susanne L. [University of York, Heslington, York YO10 5DD (United Kingdom); Daniel, Ed [STFC Daresbury Laboratory, Warrington WA4 4AD (United Kingdom); Savitsky, Marc [University of Oxford, Roosevelt Drive, Oxford OX3 7BN (United Kingdom); Lin, Bill [STFC Daresbury Laboratory, Warrington WA4 4AD (United Kingdom); Diprose, Jonathan M. [University of Oxford, Roosevelt Drive, Oxford OX3 7BN (United Kingdom); Wilter da Silva, Alan [Wellcome Trust Genome Campus, Hinxton CB10 1SD (United Kingdom); Pilicheva, Katya [University of Oxford, Roosevelt Drive, Oxford OX3 7BN (United Kingdom); Troshin, Peter [STFC Daresbury Laboratory, Warrington WA4 4AD (United Kingdom); Niekerk, Johannes van [University of Dundee, Dundee DD1 5EH, Scotland (United Kingdom); Isaacs, Neil [University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland (United Kingdom); Naismith, James [University of St Andrews, St Andrews, Fife KY16 9ST, Scotland (United Kingdom); Nave, Colin; Blake, Richard [STFC Daresbury Laboratory, Warrington WA4 4AD (United Kingdom); Wilson, Keith S. [University of York, Heslington, York YO10 5DD (United Kingdom); Stuart, David I. [University of Oxford, Roosevelt Drive, Oxford OX3 7BN (United Kingdom); Henrick, Kim [Wellcome Trust Genome Campus, Hinxton CB10 1SD (United Kingdom); Esnouf, Robert M., E-mail: robert@strubi.ox.ac.uk [University of Oxford, Roosevelt Drive, Oxford OX3 7BN (United Kingdom); STFC Daresbury Laboratory, Warrington WA4 4AD (United Kingdom)

    2011-04-01

    The Protein Information Management System (PiMS) is described together with a discussion of how its features make it well suited to laboratories of all sizes. The techniques used in protein production and structural biology have been developing rapidly, but techniques for recording the laboratory information produced have not kept pace. One approach is the development of laboratory information-management systems (LIMS), which typically use a relational database schema to model and store results from a laboratory workflow. The underlying philosophy and implementation of the Protein Information Management System (PiMS), a LIMS development specifically targeted at the flexible and unpredictable workflows of protein-production research laboratories of all scales, is described. PiMS is a web-based Java application that uses either Postgres or Oracle as the underlying relational database-management system. PiMS is available under a free licence to all academic laboratories either for local installation or for use as a managed service.

  16. A Novel Tool to Facilitate the Learning of Thermodynamic Principles by Undergraduate Students of the Biological Area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho, Eduardo O.; Araki, Marcelo K.; Freitas, Sergio F.; de Godoy, Carlos M. G.; Faljoni-Alario, Adelaide; Frare-Junior, Pedro L.; Nantes, Iseli L.

    2009-01-01

    This study describes the application and evaluation of a novel didactic tool (thermodynamic device) developed for students in the area of biology who have conceptual deficiencies that render the learning of thermodynamic principles difficult. Systems of communicant vessels with equal and different compartments were constructed to correlate the…

  17. Integrative Assessment of Evolutionary Theory Acceptance and Knowledge Levels of Biology Undergraduate Students from a Brazilian University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tavares, Gustavo Medina; Bobrowski, Vera Lucia

    2018-01-01

    The integrative role that Evolutionary theory plays within Biology is recognised by most scientific authors, as well as in governmental education policies, including Brazilian policies. However, teaching and learning evolution seems problematic in many countries, and Brazil is among those. Many factors may affect teachers' and students'…

  18. Impact of Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Research in Mathematics and Biology on the Development of a New Course Integrating Five STEM Disciplines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caudill, Lester; Hill, April; Hoke, Kathy; Lipan, Ovidiu

    2010-01-01

    Funded by innovative programs at the National Science Foundation and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of Richmond faculty in biology, chemistry, mathematics, physics, and computer science teamed up to offer first- and second-year students the opportunity to contribute to vibrant, interdisciplinary research projects. The result was…

  19. A Simple Approach to Collecting Useful Wildlife Data Using Remote Camera-Traps in Undergraduate Biology Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christensen, David R.

    2016-01-01

    Remote camera-traps are commonly used to estimate the abundance, diversity, behavior and habitat use of wildlife in an inexpensive and nonintrusive manner. Because of the increasing use of remote-cameras in wildlife studies, students interested in wildlife biology should be exposed to the use of remote-cameras early in their academic careers.…

  20. Molecular Biology at the Cutting Edge: A Review on CRISPR/CAS9 Gene Editing for Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thurtle-Schmidt, Deborah M.; Lo, Te-Wen

    2018-01-01

    Disrupting a gene to determine its effect on an organism's phenotype is an indispensable tool in molecular biology. Such techniques are critical for understanding how a gene product contributes to the development and cellular identity of organisms. The explosion of genomic sequencing technologies combined with recent advances in genome-editing…