Students' sound knowledge about osmosis can lead to their understanding of other related biological processes that require the movement of materials across cell membranes, such as photosynthesis, homeostasis, and cellular respiration. However, students have difficulties to understand osmosis. This challenge has been attributed to the abstract nature of the concept and the way it is presented to students. Thus, we present an engineering design, integrated biology unit in which students use the engineering design process to learn about osmosis and its related concepts. A dependent t-test revealed statistically significant differences in students' understanding of osmosis and related concepts, and the engineering design process before and after the unit. Overall, in this unit students developed the understanding of osmosis in a real-world context through an engineering design process.
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Vol. 84 • No. 5