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ERIC Number: EJ1186049
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018-May
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 16
ISSN: ISSN-1539-2422
Improving Scientific Literacy through a Structured Primary Literature Project
Eslinger, Melissa; Kent, Elizabeth
Bioscene: Journal of College Biology Teaching, v44 n1 p13-27 May 2018
Emphasizing scientific literacy in the core science curriculum promotes informed students within a liberal arts education. In our Introduction to Biology course, which enrolls predominantly humanities majors in their final science course of their academic careers, we designed a project to advance these analytical processes through the deliberate dissection of primary literature. This project, completed over the course of one semester, includes both a written analysis and an oral presentation of a primary scientific article of the students' choosing. The students are guided through this iterative process from article selection to the completion of products. Within this work we detailed the objectives and created complementary tools to stimulate the progression of higher order cognitive skills and assist faculty in assessing the interpretations of applied biological concepts. Surveys from faculty and students suggest that this project and its supporting materials are useful to improve scientific literacy and improve critical thinking skills. Whether the audience is non-STEM majors or scientific minded persons, this project can be utilized to enhance critical analysis skills. Overall, we found this student-led group activity allowed for exploration of the scientific process outside of the classroom environment, which facilitated a more hands-on approach to developing increased scientific literacy in undergraduate students.
Association of College and Biology Educators. Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: U.S. Military Academy (USMA), Department of Chemistry and Life Science
Authoring Institution: N/A