Filters

# Introductory Biology

• ### A first lesson in mathematical modeling for biologists: Rocs

Learning Objectives
• Systematically develop a functioning, discrete, single-species model of an exponentially-growing or -declining population.
• Use the model to recommend appropriate action for population management.
• Communicate model output and recommendations to non-expert audiences.
• Generate a collaborative work product that most individuals could not generate on their own, given time and resource constraints.
• ### Promoting Climate Change Literacy for Non-majors: Implementation of an atmospheric carbon dioxide modeling activity as...

Learning Objectives
• Students will be able to manipulate and produce data and graphs.
• Students will be able to design a simple mathematical model of atmospheric CO2 that can be used to make predictions.
• Students will be able to conduct simulations, analyze, interpret, and draw conclusions about atmospheric CO2 levels from their own computer generated simulated data.

• ### Sequence Similarity: An inquiry based and "under the hood" approach for incorporating molecular sequence...

Learning Objectives
At the end of this lesson, students will be able to:
• Define similarity in a non-biological and biological sense when provided with two strings of letters.
• Quantify the similarity between two gene/protein sequences.
• Explain how a substitution matrix is used to quantify similarity.
• Calculate amino acid similarity scores using a scoring matrix.
• Demonstrate how to access genomic data (e.g., from NCBI nucleotide and protein databases).
• Demonstrate how to use bioinformatics tools to analyze genomic data (e.g., BLASTP), explain a simplified BLAST search algorithm including how similarity is used to perform a BLAST search, and how to evaluate the results of a BLAST search.
• Create a nearest-neighbor distance matrix.
• Create a multiple sequence alignment using a nearest-neighbor distance matrix and a phylogram based on similarity of amino acid sequences.
• Use appropriate bioinformatics sequence alignment tools to investigate a biological question.
• ### CURE-all: Large Scale Implementation of Authentic DNA Barcoding Research into First-Year Biology Curriculum

Learning Objectives
Students will be able to: Week 1-4: Fundamentals of Science and Biology
• List the major processes involved in scientific discovery
• List the different types of scientific studies and which types can establish causation
• Design experiments with appropriate controls
• Create and evaluate phylogenetic trees
• Define taxonomy and phylogeny and explain their relationship to each other
• Explain DNA sequence divergence and how it applies to evolutionary relationships and DNA barcoding
Week 5-6: Ecology
• Define and measure biodiversity and explain its importance
• Catalog organisms using the morphospecies concept
• Geographically map organisms using smartphones and an online mapping program
• Calculate metrics of species diversity using spreadsheet software
• Use spreadsheet software to quantify and graph biodiversity at forest edges vs. interiors
• Write a formal lab report
Week 7-11: Cellular and Molecular Biology
• Extract, amplify, visualize and sequence DNA using standard molecular techniques (PCR, gel electrophoresis, Sanger sequencing)
• Explain how DNA extraction, PCR, gel electrophoresis, and Sanger sequencing work at the molecular level
Week 12-13: Bioinformatics
• Trim and assemble raw DNA sequence data
• Taxonomically identify DNA sequences isolated from unknown organisms using BLAST
• Visualize sequence data relationships using sequence alignments and gene-based phylogenetic trees
• Map and report data in a publicly available online database
• Share data in a formal scientific poster
• ### Using Place-Based Economically Relevant Organisms to Improve Student Understanding of the Roles of Carbon Dioxide,...

Learning Objectives
At the end of this lesson, students will be able to:
• Describe the roles of light energy and carbon dioxide in photosynthetic organisms.
• Identify the effect of nutrients on the growth of photosynthetic organisms.
• Describe global cycles in atmospheric carbon dioxide levels and how they relate to photosynthetic organisms.