Education

Abstract

CS-2-5 - Facilitating Development of Science Competencies in Foundations Courses Through An Open Inquiry, Interdisciplinary Module

Sunday, July 15
2:23 PM - 2:43 PM

Course-based undergraduate research experiences (CUREs) have been engaging large populations of undergraduate students into authentic research (Rodenbusch et al (2016)). Furthermore, CUREs have positive effect on retention and graduation rates. Although CUREs vary in the format and type, most are linked to a research project carried by one of the practicing scientists. Here, we report on experiences in developing and implementing multi-week, open inquiry modules, Bonsai Biology, and The Transpiration Power of Plants.

The Bonsai Biology enables freshmen to explore Bonsai plants using microscopy. Students hone their observation and experimentation skills while studying leaf tissue to make inferences about growth and development of Bonsai plants. The project is a collaboration between Longwood Gardens and the University of Delaware.


The Transpiration Power of Plants is a modification of a classical method, the potometer, that enables indirect measurements of plant transpiration rates. The module starts with the practice that expands into an independent inquiry. Students develop knowledge of the authentic experimental design process, the iterative nature of research, and the power of appropriate data analysis.


The uniqueness of both modules is in the organization that resembles a miniature citizen science project. Each student is active researcher who contributes data to a team project. Furthermore, each student is engaged in the process of authentic inquiry through the use of reasoning and methods of scientific exploration. This also enables them to continue to develop core competencies, conceptual knowledge and comprehension by linking practical experimentation with theoretical knowledge. The modules also create opportunities for the integration of the concepts that are traditionally introduced in two distinct, foundations courses, Introductory Biology and General Chemistry. The challenges, observations, and future plans on this version of CURE will be discussed, as will the effort to promote their applicability in diverse settings.

Co-Authors

Jacqueline Fajardo, Dr – Assistant Professor of Chemistry, Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Delaware Seth Hunt – Preceptor, Interdisciplinary Science Learning Laboratories, University of Delaware

Alenka Hlousek-Radojcic, PhD

Associate Professor of Biology
University of Delaware

Alenka Hlousek-Radojcic is a member of the team who teaches foundations integrated Introductory Biology and Chemistry course sequence to freshmen, that is part of the Interdisciplinary Science Learning Laboratory program at University of Delaware. Alenka’s work focuses on a development and implementation of interdisciplinary and inquiry based learning modules that facilitate development of students’ analytical, communication and team working skills.

She structures the course by building on students’ laboratory work and uses multi-section format as a “citizen-science” project that generates meaningful pool of data. While working mostly with freshmen, Alenka is also interested in understanding how student mind-set affects their studying and overall course performance. She will present preliminary work on the implementation of two, multi-week course modules, the microscopic study of Bonsai-training on leaf development, and the plant transpiration and behavior.

Presentation(s):

Send Email for Alenka Hlousek-Radojcic


Assets

CS-2-5 - Facilitating Development of Science Competencies in Foundations Courses Through An Open Inquiry, Interdisciplinary Module



Attendees who have favorited this

Please enter your access key

The asset you are trying to access is locked. Please enter your access key to unlock.

Send Email for CS-2-5 - Facilitating Development of Science Competencies in Foundations Courses Through An Open Inquiry, Interdisciplinary Module