Using Scientific Teaching Principles to Teach Genetic Modification

Orion D. Brock, Jennifer R. Larson, Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences, Capital University, Columbus, OH 43209

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are frequently used in genetics-based research projects and are now a major part of the food we eat. Despite their importance, there are many misunderstandings related to what a GMO is and how it is made. To help students fully understand the mechanisms of genetic alteration, a GMO lab section of Genetics was modified where students will be responsible for generating their own theoretical GM crop. The lab was also integrated with the relevant lecture material. With IRB exemption, approximately 60 students registered into the fall Genetics lab course participated in the experiments. The learning outcomes were that the students would understand 1) the genetic mechanisms of constructing a GMO, 2) the lab techniques required for making GMOs, and 3) the bioethical concerns pertaining to GMOs. The Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) is a broad set of principles that employ evidence-based learning through research in pedagogy. To assess the effectiveness of the altered lab, this project used SoTL methodology through a pre- and post-assessment. The backwards design method was used to design the assessments and lab methods around the predetermined learning objectives. To measure student learning, the pre- and post-assessments were given at the beginning and at the end of the semester. In addition, half of the lab sections did not have their curriculum modified. Results will be quantified based on the difference in scores between the assessments. These data will provide feedback in the success of the modified lab in hopes of creating an effective way of teaching about GMOs.

Additional Abstract Information

Presenter: Orion Brock

Institution: Capital University

Type: Poster

Subject: Education

Status: Approved

Time and Location

Session: Poster 6
Date/Time: Tue 2:00pm-3:00pm
Session Number: 4514