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ERIC Number: EJ822995
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 36
ISSN: ISSN-1931-7913
Information Fluency for Undergraduate Biology Majors: Applications of Inquiry-based Learning in a Developmental Biology Course
Gehring, Kathleen M.; Eastman, Deborah A.
CBE - Life Sciences Education, v7 p54?63 Spr 2008
Many initiatives for the improvement of undergraduate science education call for inquiry-based learning that emphasizes investigative projects and reading of the primary literature. These approaches give students an understanding of science as a process and help them integrate content presented in courses. At the same time, general initiatives to promote information fluency are being promoted on many college and university campuses. Information fluency refers to discipline-specific processing of information, and it involves integration of gathered information with specific ideas to form logical conclusions. We have implemented the use of inquiry-based learning to enhance and study discipline-specific information fluency skills in an upper-level undergraduate Developmental Biology course. In this study, an information literacy tutorial and a set of linked assignments using primary literature analysis were integrated with two inquiry-based laboratory research projects. Quantitaitve analysis of student responses suggests that the abilities of students to identify and apply valid sources of information were enhanced. Qualitative assessment revealed a set of patterns by which students gather and apply information. Self-assessment responses indicated that students recognized the impact of the assignments on their abilities to gather and apply information and that they were more confident about these abilities for future biology courses and beyond. (Contains 4 tables and 2 figures.)
American Society for Cell Biology. 8120 Woodmont Avenue Suite 750, Bethesda, MD 20814-2762. Tel: 301-347-9300; Fax: 301-347-9310; E-mail:; Website:
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A