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    Teaching Tools and Strategies
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    SCIENCE/Fiction: Modular Template for Class Design
    We present a modular scaffold for designing an introductory seminar using speculative fiction and science papers to welcome university undergraduates to the biology major. A list of twelve possible topics is included, such as Memory, Parasites,...
    geneticscell biologyneurosciencesystems biologyScience Fiction
    Teaching Tools and Strategies
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    Science “Fails”: A Bank of Historical Examples for Learning From Failure in Science
    Learning from failure is critically important to the processes of scientific inquiry, discovery, and invention. However, students are not routinely taught how to reflect on, learn from, and ultimately embrace failure, and relatively few curricular...
    metacognitionScience process skillsLearning from failurepower and privilegestudent wellbeing
    Lesson
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    305

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    Drawing “Octo-Pines”: Ice-Breaker Active-Learning Activities to Introduce Drawing-to-Learn in Biology
    Drawing has been advocated as a technique to develop visual literacy and observational skills in biology students. To increase student motivation and confidence to draw in our course, we developed an introductory active-learning lesson with a...

    Courses: EcologyEcology EvolutionEvolution

    Zoologydrawingdrawing-to-learnice breaker
    Lesson
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    Helping Students to Metacognitively Read Scientific Literature With Talking to the Text
    Reading primary scientific literature enhances students’ understanding of material, increases their self-efficacy, and critical thinking skills. However, scientific articles often present multiple challenges to the students, the first among...
    scientific literaturereading comprehensionmetacognitionScience process skillsTalking to the TextDense Scientific Texts
    Lesson
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    305

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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...
    lab notebookresponsible conduct of researchdata acquisition/ management
    Teaching Tools and Strategies
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    The Flight Physics Concept Inventory: Reliably Evaluating Aerodynamic Lift, Drag and Associated (Naïve) Concepts of Flight in Class and In-Game
    Students often struggle to transfer conceptual understanding from isolated instruction to a coherent mental model. This is especially true for the context of flight physics, fluid dynamics, or the concepts of aerodynamic lift, drag, stall, center...
    active learninggamificationmisconceptionsaerodynamicsfluid dynamicsResearch-based assessment instrumentConceptual SurveyPRE-/POST-test
    Lesson
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    Central Dogma, Dictionaries, and Functions: Using Programming Concepts to Simulate Biological Processes
    Technologies like next-generation sequencing, proteomics, and high-throughput phenotyping have transformed the way we do biology. There is a continued need for scientists with computational skills to analyze biological data while understanding the...

    Courses: BioinformaticsBioinformatics

    computationpythonJupyter notebookFunctionscentral dogmaDictionaries
    Lesson
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    Simulating Cortical Rotation, Axis Induction, and Experimental Embryology in Amphibian Embryos Using Clay Models
    The study of development requires learners to understand spatially complex concepts like embryo anatomy. Embryo anatomy is dynamic over time, and it is often manipulated by researchers in experiments that are fundamental to the field. This spatial...
    developmentXenopusfertilizationEmbryologyinductionSymmetry breakingOrganizerCortical rotationPatterning
    Lesson
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    136

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    Advancing Global Learning Through a Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) Module on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs)
    An increasingly interconnected world presents opportunities for globally relevant curricula in the classroom. Implementing collaborative online international learning (COIL) modules within medium-sized courses can take advantage of this...
    Collaborative Online International LearningGlobal LearningPlants and SocietyUnited Nations Sustainable Development GoalsMedicinal PlantsPhytochemicalsPlant Natural Products
    Lesson
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    SEAS CURE: Exploring Coral Biology Across Scales
    Complex biological concepts (like symbiosis and coral biology) that span multiple scales and cross disciplinary boundaries are often difficult for students to understand. This complexity is compounded by the challenges inherent to teaching and...
    microscopyAnatomySymbiosisMetabolismbleachinginvertebratedinoflagellate
    Teaching Tools and Strategies
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    A Pandemic Pivot: Podcast as an Active Engagement Tool in the Classroom and Beyond
    Higher education in STEM undoubtedly integrates the use of technology as a primary mode for content delivery to undergraduate students. This became especially salient throughout the shift to online education during the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite...
    VaccinesReplication of virusesCOVID-19 transmission
    Lesson
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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”...
    disease transmissionmicrobiologymicrobiomeliterature reviewPeer reviewPathogensHealth and WellnessThe Scientific Method
    Lesson
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    Diversifying and Humanizing Scientist Role Models Through Interviews and Constructing Slide Decks on Researchers’ Research and Life Experiences
    To maintain recruitment and retention, biology teachers face the challenge of finding relatable role models for their students. Our ever-increasing scientific knowledge has been facilitated by people from many different backgrounds, identities,...
    researchdiversityinclusionScientific ProcessRepresentationScientistRole Models
    Teaching Tools and Strategies
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    A How to Guide and Template for Designing a Puzzle Based Escape Room Game
    Educational games are one active and effective way of engaging students with material while also providing additional motivation to tackle challenging concepts. A particularly popular game concept is the escape room, where students need to work in...
    Problem SolvingCollaborative WorkCorrect Misconceptions
    Lesson
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    Teaching Advanced Concepts in Regulation of the Lac Operon With Modeling and Simulation
    Success in biochemistry and other life science courses requires that students understand important biological concepts. One of these concepts is how gene regulation ensures that homeostasis is maintained in an organism. The lac operon is a...
    gene regulationinducible operonProkaryotic cellPhosphoenolpyruvate transferase system (PTS)
    Teaching Tools and Strategies
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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...
    geneticsImmunologyBiochemistrybioinformaticsmolecular evolutionpublic healthvirusCOVID19
    Lesson
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    An Active Learning Workshop to Teach Active Learning Strategies
    College instructors who learn how to teach actively at the beginning of their careers do not have to modify deeply set habits that rely on lectures. Instead, they develop their teaching while they learn evidence-based practices. We developed a...
    professional developmentActive-learning strategiesjigsawthink-pair-sharePedagogical approachesGallery WalkSmall group discussionInclusive practices
    Lesson
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    Developing Decolonial Consciousness in Biology Students Through Critical Reflection Assignments
    There is a growing call to decolonize curricula in academia, including in scientific disciplines. In the biology classroom, this includes highlighting a diverse array of scientists and illuminating injustice and exploitation carried out by...
    primatessocietyZoologyantiracismdecolonizingstudent activismmuseum science
    Lesson
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    Teaching Cancer Biology Through a Lens of Social Justice
    The biology classroom is not separate from the greater context of society; social issues can and should be presented in connection with the content. Here we present an example of antiracist teaching using the molecular/cellular biology of cancer...

    Courses: Cell BiologyCell Biology

    assessmentcancersocial justicePOGILAlignmentPublic ExamPublic
    Lesson
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    Student-Driven Design-and-Improve Modules to Explore the Effect of Plant Bioactive Compounds in Three Model Organisms
    Engaging and supporting introductory level students in authentic research experiences during required coursework is challenging. Plant bioactive compounds attract students' natural curiosity as they are found in many familiar items such as...
    statisticsLabCUREInquiryresearch skillscaterpillardaphniadrugsscience process