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The surface-to-volume ratio (S/V) is well suited for inquiry-based learning in high school and college biology courses. It has a huge catalogue of biological and physical applications concerning structure and junction. It is easy to learn, illustrates scientific methods, and can provide students with their favorite classroom moments, as many of its applications ring bells with their own world.
Microorganisms were first described by van Leeuwenhoek in the 17th century. Later, Pasteur and Koch related them to diseases. Since then, the scientific community has striven to extend awareness of the many junctions of microorganisms. Science museums provide an excellent setting in which to disseminate such knowledge, but the presentation of living microorganisms is a challenge. We describe an approach to the exhibition of living microorganisms pursued in a science museum in Barcelona (CosmoCaixa Barcelona). In two exhibits, the museum shows photosynthesis in cyanobacteria and Winogradsky columns, which provide an example of living microbial ecosystems.
Community college science majors were assigned a team-based research project in a course sequence of General Biology I and II and were followed over a two-semester sequence during three academic years. The project was intended to introduce key General Education principles such as global citizenship, scientific reasoning, communication skills, information literacy, and stewardship. Conducted in partnership with library faculty, the assignment used course-integrated workshops and one-on-one reference instruction to help students produce research papers, learn the mechanics of online library research, and practice public speaking. Assignments were designed to emphasize and refine skills such as information literacy, critical thinking, and writing, while supplementing course content with current global events. Pre- and post-surveys were conducted to analyze assimilation of skills during General Biology 1 and mastering of those skills the following semester.
Is the topic of endangered species an add-on or enrichment content for your delivery of curriculum? As every teacher knows, it is easier to engage students if there is an interest. With the news reporting of climate change and its impact on living things, conservation of endangered species has become a familiar topic that can easily fit into many topics within the biology curriculum. This article provides background information, suggested curriculum approaches, and a list of resources to enhance your biology instruction. Examples from high school and college educators provide tested approaches to use in your classroom.
A major goal of ecological research is to understand how ecological factors, such as food and predator abundance, interact to shape birth and death rates. Case studies describing this research can provide students with an understanding of how ecological conditions affect demographic rates, as well as an opportunity to explore and interpret real data. We have developed a Web-based teaching module based on a long-term study of a migratory songbird, the black-throated blue warbler (Dendroica caerulescens). The website describes this species and the ecological factors that affect its population growth and provides three exercises developed to span a range of student levels.
Collections of 50–100 postage stamps illustrating many organisms or biomedical topics are available widely and cheaply. They are valuable stimulus material for exercises as diverse as observing and describing, studying biological classification, substituting for collecting and preserving real specimens, describing health education campaigns, and introducing ethical topics such as scientific fraud.