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    Breaking It Down: What Factors Control Microbial Decomposition Rates?
    Demonstrating and modeling changes in ecosystem processes in the laboratory classroom can be logistically difficult and expensive. This complexity often leaves little time for students to generate and test hypotheses. Yet, we must foster student...
    Lesson
    2616

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    303

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    Bacteria to Brains in Backyard Coyotes: An Interdisciplinary Pedagogical Case Study
    Our interdisciplinary pedagogical case study explores the differences between rural and urban coyotes at the levels of organismal and community ecology. The focus is on how coyotes’ gut microbiomes could affect their behavior via...
    Lesson
    525

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    486

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    Cross-Course Public Health Project on Infectious Disease
    The need for collaborative, public health education has never been more important. Students increasingly require necessary skills in effectively communicating critical information to the general public and in working strategically in...

    Courses: MicrobiologyMicrobiology

    Lesson
    6019

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    193

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    Exploring the City of Biofilms: An Engaging Analogy-Based Activity for Students to Learn Biofilms
    Multicellular biofilms constructed by microbes are key aspects of microbiology with significant implications in various fields, including medicine, environmental science, and biotechnology. While bacteria spend nearly all their lives in biofilms,...

    Courses: MicrobiologyMicrobiology

    Lesson
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    91

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    My Fish Tank: An Active Learning Activity for Bacterial Nitrogen Metabolism
    This active learning activity introduces students to the second part of the nitrogen cycle, nitrification. In terrestrial and aquatic environments, bacteria from the Nitrosomonas and Nitrobacter genera oxidize ammonia first to nitrite (via a...
    Teaching Tools and Strategies
    3198

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    100

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    Enhancing the Microscopy Skills of Non-Science Majors and Nursing Microbiology Students: Promoting the Practice of Observing Multiple Fields of View Using Blood Smear Slides
    One of the challenges in teaching microscopy is having students scan multiple fields of view at high power magnification. Many times, students will feel this unnecessary, especially when presented with slides that show only one structure or a...
    Lesson
    883

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    354

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    Why Do I Need a Lab Notebook? Teaching Responsible Conduct of Research with CURE Lab Notebooks
    There are few instructional tools about data acquisition and management available for undergraduate students. I created this lesson as a Fellow of the Ethics Network for Course-Based Opportunities in Undergraduate Research (ENCOUR) to fill this...
    Lesson
    1227

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    138

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    Using Collaborative Projects to Promote Active Learning of Microbial Skin Diseases and Their Impact on Everyday Lives
    One of the most daunting aspects of introductory clinical microbiology is learning details about a vast number of different microbial diseases that can infect humans. Each of these diseases has different causative agents, diagnostic procedures,...

    Courses: MicrobiologyMicrobiology

    Lesson
    1351

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    145

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    Defining and Understanding Pathogenic Disease: An Engaging Activity that Connects Students' Lived Experiences with their Academic Studies
    Contagious diseases are unavoidable realities of life. Thus, understanding pathogens and their respective diseases is important in many biological subfields including evolution, ecology, health sciences, microbiology, and others. While all college...
    Lesson
    9143

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    490

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    Manuscript 101: A Data-Driven Writing Exercise for Beginning Scientists
    Learning to write a scientific manuscript is one of the most important and rewarding scientific training experiences, yet most young scientists only embark on this experience relatively late in graduate school after gathering sufficient data in...
    Lesson
    3260

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    218

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    Bringing Pasteur Back to Life: Studying the Biochemistry of Yeast Fermentation Through Discussion Groups and an At-Home Lab
    This hands-on, student-centered biochemistry lesson introduces beginner biochemistry students to the techniques of effectively reading and discussing primary literature, identifying fundamental biological concepts, and applying that knowledge to...
    Teaching Tools and Strategies
    2289

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    345

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    Video Making Tips for Laboratory Instructors
    Demonstration videos are an excellent way to introduce students to new laboratory techniques, but many available videos are of low quality, too long, lack human diversity, and the main narrator is someone other than the instructor of the course....
    Lesson
    4052

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    268

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    Analysis of Microbiomes Using Free Web-Based Tools in Online and In-Person Undergraduate Science Courses
    Our understanding of microbiomes, or the collection of microorganisms and their genes in a given environment, has been revolutionized by technological and computational advances. However, many undergraduate students do not get hands-on experiences...
    Lesson
    2889

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    172

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    The Three Sisters of Agriculture: An Active Learning Activity on Symbiotic Nitrogen Fixation
    This active learning exercise introduces students to the plant microbiome and the contributions that bacteria make to plant growth and food production. The Three Sisters are an ancient indigenous practice in which three plant crops and the...

    Courses: MicrobiologyMicrobiology

    Lesson
    2464

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    183

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    Small Organisms with Big Consequences: Understanding the Microbial World Around Us
    Creating a hands-on lab that conveys important information while simultaneously allowing for student autonomy can be difficult. This is particularly true for the field of microbiology, in which labs often rely on “recipe-style”...
    Lesson
    3095

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    249

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    Application of a Bacterial Experimental Evolution System to Visualize and Teach Evolution in Action: A Course-Based Undergraduate Research Experience
    Concepts of evolution are typically taught through examples of extremely long timescales, which do not always resonate broadly. Here, we describe a course-based undergraduate research experience tailored for junior and senior undergraduate biology...
    Lesson
    1115

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    135

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    Mock Drug Activity Enhances Student Learning About the Challenges of HIV/AIDS Therapy
    While traditional didactic coursework is important for learning about the scientific aspects of HIV/AIDS, it is difficult to convey social aspects of the epidemic. Due to effective drug therapies, an HIV diagnosis is now considered a chronic...

    Courses: MicrobiologyMicrobiology

    Teaching Tools and Strategies
    3464

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    1670

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    A 360˚ View of COVID-19
    In March 2020, institutions underwent a massive transition to distance learning as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. With so little time to devise new materials to maximize learning in the new virtual environment, instructors devised a variety of...
    Lesson
    2142

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    451

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    From Dirt to Streptomyces DNA
    The purpose of this semester-long Lesson is to give students an authentic, course-based undergraduate research experience during which they learn basic and advanced microbiological and molecular biology techniques. This project begins with the...

    Courses: MicrobiologyMicrobiology

    Lesson
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    1130

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    A CURE for Salmonella: A Laboratory Course in Pathogen Microbiology and Genomics
    Rapid advances in genomics and bioinformatics, the vast amount of data generated by next-generation sequencing, and the penetration of the ‘-omics’ into many areas of biology have created a need for students with hands-on experience with...