SPARCnet Teaching Resources

The SPARCnet educational vision seeks to enhance understanding and appreciation for hidden biological diversity, increase scientific process literacy, and promote quantitative skills through biological sciences. Toward these goals, we are producing open access educational materials ready for the classroom developed by scientists in the network. 

These resources are published under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, which means that you are free to use and adapt these materials in your classroom. As these resources are continuing to be further developed and expanded, we hope you will contact us and provide feedback on their implementation. We also work with QUBES to publish and further share new versions and adaptations of teaching resources related to terrestrial salamanders. Please contact Kristine Grayson (kgrayson@richmond.edu) if you are interested in publishing a new or updated teaching resource. 

Leaf litter and soil invertebrates

Tanya Matlaga, Emily Mausteller

Version: 1.0

The diversity of invertebrates occupying the leaf litter and organic layer of soil can be quantified to examine abiotic and biotic questions. This lab can be used as a starting point for a long-term study or short-term activity to study invertebrates.
Lab, Teaching material, Undergraduate, Advanced, Extended Project
293
18
0
12.05.2018

Salamander Mark-Recapture using SPARCnet plots with the Schnabel Method

Kristine Grayson, Raisa Hernández Pacheco

Version: 2.0

A salamander mark-recapture module where students field collect a third survey occasion to estimate population size
Lab, Field research, Teaching material, salamander, Capture mark-recapture, Audience level - Advanced UG
102
20
0
09.13.2018

Claymander Field Experiment

Alexa Warwick, Louise Mead, M. Caitlin Fisher-Reid, Evan Grant, Chris Sutherland, Arianna Wills, Emma Perry

Version: 1.0

This activity addresses how predation may affect the frequency of two color morphs in a population. Students collect and analyze data from clay salamander models ('claymanders') to determine whether there is a difference in predation rates.
Lab, Field research, Teaching material, Lecture, predation ecology, salamander, Audience level - Introductory UG - majors, Audience level - Advanced UG
219
34
0
03.01.2018

An Introduction to Red Backed Salamander Ecology

Tanya Matlaga, Fall 2015 Department of Biology Students

Version: 1.0

A summary of literature on red backed salamander ecology and life history compiled by Biology students at Susquehanna University
natural history, population ecology, salamander
191
35
0
02.27.2018
This lab introduces students to species concepts and basic computer-based tree-building methods using published nuclear and mitochondrial sequence data for Plethodon salamanders.
Lab, phylogenetic analysis, Teaching material, Lecture, Tree thinking, salamander, Audience level - Advanced UG
203
115
0
12.04.2017

How Many Salamanders are in the forest? Testing capture-recapture

Louise Mead, Kristine Grayson, Alexa Warwick, David Miller, Chris Sutherland, Evan Grant

Version: 1.0

Collecting data on how populations respond to environmental change requires accurate estimates of population sizes. This activity explores one method for estimating population sizes across three different localities.
Lab, Teaching material, Lecture, salamander, Capture mark-recapture, Audience level - Introductory UG - majors, Audience level - Introductory UG - non-majors
181
45
0
12.01.2017