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Briju, Betsy J.; Wyatt, Sarah E. – American Biology Teacher, 2015
Instructors often present Mendelian genetics and molecular biology separately. As a result, students often fail to connect the two topics in a tangible manner. We have adopted a simple experiment to help link these two important topics in a basic biology course, using red and white onions bought from a local grocery store. A lack of red coloration…
Descriptors: Genetics, Molecular Biology, Science Laboratories, Science Experiments
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Allchin, Douglas – American Biology Teacher, 2015
Playing the sounds of whales during a class period can initiate the awareness of the role of wonder in education. Students are inspired to avidly collect fascinating facts to pique their interest and open the door to learning science. Indeed, when asked, teachers typically identify their foremost practical challenge as trying to motivate…
Descriptors: Science Instruction, Animals, Auditory Stimuli, Student Interests
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Bramschreiber, Terry; Westmoreland, David – American Biology Teacher, 2015
Science educators often teach topics that are largely resolved in the scientific community yet remain controversial in broader society. In such cases, students may perceive the teacher as biased. We present two exercises that foster more objective learning about the scientific underpinnings of socially controversial topics. The first exercise…
Descriptors: Science Instruction, Controversial Issues (Course Content), Social Attitudes, Sciences
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Hopkins, Robert, II; Alberts, Halley – American Biology Teacher, 2015
This activity is designed as a primer to teaching population dispersion analysis. The aim is to help improve students' spatial thinking and their understanding of how spatial statistic equations work. Students use simulated data to develop their own statistic and apply that equation to experimental behavioral data for Gambusia affinis (western…
Descriptors: Science Instruction, Spatial Ability, Thinking Skills, Equations (Mathematics)
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Davenport, K. D.; Milks, Kirstin Jane; Van Tassell, Rebecca – American Biology Teacher, 2015
Analyzing evolutionary relationships requires that students have a thorough understanding of evidence and of how scientists use evidence to develop these relationships. In this lesson sequence, students work in groups to process many different lines of evidence of evolutionary relationships between ungulates, then construct a scientific argument…
Descriptors: Science Instruction, Evaluation, Misconceptions, Scientific Concepts
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Baumgartner, Erin; Biga, Lindsay; Bledsoe, Karen; Dawson, James; Grammer, Julie; Howard, Ava; Snyder, Jeffrey – American Biology Teacher, 2015
Quantitative literacy is essential to biological literacy (and is one of the core concepts in "Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education: A Call to Action"; AAAS 2009). Building quantitative literacy is a challenging endeavor for biology instructors. Integrating mathematical skills into biological investigations can help build…
Descriptors: Numeracy, Biology, College Science, Science Instruction
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Kelley, Amanda L.; Hanson, Paul R.; Kelley, Stephanie A. – American Biology Teacher, 2015
Ocean acidification, a product of CO[subscript 2] absorption by the world's oceans, is largely driven by the anthropogenic combustion of fossil fuels and has already lowered the pH of marine ecosystems. Organisms with calcium carbonate shells and skeletons are especially susceptible to increasing environmental acidity due to reduction in the…
Descriptors: Science Instruction, Climate, Oceanography, Animals
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Nguyen, Phuong D.; Siegel, Marcelle A. – American Biology Teacher, 2015
Project-based learning and action research are powerful pedagogies in improving science education. We implemented a semester-long course using project-based action research to help students apply biotechnology knowledge learned in the classroom to the real world. Students had several choices to make in the project: working individually or as a…
Descriptors: Science Instruction, Biotechnology, Student Projects, Action Research
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Parker, Joyce M.; de los Santos, Elizabeth X.; Anderson, Charles W. – American Biology Teacher, 2015
Our society is currently having serious debates about sources of energy and global climate change. But do students (and the public) have the requisite knowledge to engage these issues as informed citizenry? The learning-progression research summarized here indicates that only 10% of high school students typically have a level of understanding…
Descriptors: Science Instruction, Climate, High School Students, Secondary School Science
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Dorner, Meredith – American Biology Teacher, 2015
Research shows the importance of active learning, especially within science classes. One way to achieve this goal is to incorporate student-driven projects into the course (e.g., posters). Traditionally, science-poster assignments follow the spirit of the science fair in which a student conducts an experiment and analyzes the results. This article…
Descriptors: Student Projects, Science Activities, Scientific Concepts, Scientific Methodology
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Lampert, Evan – American Biology Teacher, 2015
Invasive species, defined as exotic species that reach pest status, are major threats to global biodiversity. Although invasive species can belong to any taxonomic group, general characteristics such as rapid growth and reproduction are shared by many invasive species. "Invented Invaders" is a collaborative activity in which students…
Descriptors: Science Activities, Teaching Methods, Educational Practices, Environmental Influences
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Hubler, Tina; Adams, Patti; Scammell, Jonathan – American Biology Teacher, 2015
The molecular basis of evolution is an important concept to understand but one that students and teachers often find challenging. This article provides training and guidance for teachers on how to present molecular evolution concepts so that students will associate molecular changes with the evolution of form and function in organisms. Included…
Descriptors: Molecular Biology, Science Education, Evolution, Scientific Concepts
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Puttick, Gillian; Drayton, Brian; Cohen, Eliza – American Biology Teacher, 2015
We analyzed the practitioner literature on lab-based instruction in biology in "The American Biology Teacher" between 2007 and 2012. We investigated what laboratory learning looks like in biology classrooms, what topics are addressed, what instructional methods and activities are described, and what is being learned about student…
Descriptors: Biology, Laboratories, Laboratory Training, Literature Reviews
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Schultheis, Elizabeth H.; Kjelvik, Melissa K. – American Biology Teacher, 2015
Current educational reform calls for increased integration between science and mathematics to overcome the shortcomings in students' quantitative skills. Data Nuggets (free online resource, http://datanuggets.org) are worksheets that bring data into the classroom, repeatedly guiding students through the scientific method and making claims…
Descriptors: Inquiry, Science Process Skills, Educational Change, Statistical Analysis
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Cooper, Robert A. – American Biology Teacher, 2015
This paper presents an activity that engages students in model-based reasoning, requiring them to predict the behavior of the trp and lac operons under different environmental conditions. Students are presented six scenarios for the "trp" operon and five for the "lac" operon. In most of the scenarios, specific mutations have…
Descriptors: Biology, Models, Prediction, Vignettes
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