We use research to help design our virtual laboratories. Some studies we do on our own, but for many we need help from faculty willing to try a lab in their classes, and a new study on our latest genetics lab is one of those. If you are teaching a class this fall (2010) where you discuss basic genetics, I’d like to invite you to help us test our newest lab, Mendelian Pigs.
The Mendelian Pigs lab came about from a survey we did of students understanding of population genetics. We found that as students tried to learn the rules of how allele frequencies change over generations, they were often getting stuck on basic concepts in Mendelian genetics such as what dominant and recessive meant. So as part of our CytoBeaker project to build a set of cell, molecular biology, and genetics teaching modules, we are designing a new lab that starts with some basic Mendelian genetics, and then shows the connection to population genetics.
Do you have a genetics, introductory biology, or evolutionary biology classes where you would be willing to use Mendelian Pigs, along with 15 – 20 minute pre- and post-tests? We’ll give you more details on the study protocol and goals, and get you set up to participate. The data from you and your students will contribute to making the lab better, and we’ll also publish the results so other authors can learn from our approach to this material. Thanks in advance.