1887

A Small Group Activity About Bacterial Regulation And Complementation

    Authors: Susan Merkel1,*, Buck Hanson1, Adam Parks2
    VIEW AFFILIATIONS HIDE AFFILIATIONS
    Affiliations: 1: Department of Microbiology, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY; 2: Shepherd University, Shepherdstown, WV 14853
    AUTHOR AND ARTICLE INFORMATION AUTHOR AND ARTICLE INFORMATION
    • Published 20 December 2010
    • Supplemental material available at http://jmbe.asm.org
    • *Corresponding author. Mailing address: Department of Microbiology, 111 Wing Hall, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853. Phone: (607) 254-2767. Fax: (607) 255-3904. E-mail: smm3@cornell.edu.
    • Copyright © 2010 American Society for Microbiology
    Source: J. Microbiol. Biol. Educ. December 2010 vol. 11 no. 2 152-155. doi:10.1128/jmbe.v11i2.196
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    Abstract:

    As teachers, we well understand the need for activities that help develop critical-thinking skills in microbiology. In our experience, one concept that students have difficulty understanding is transcriptional regulation of bacterial genes. To help with this, we developed and evaluated a paper-based activity to help students understand and apply the concepts of bacterial transcriptional regulation. While we don’t identify it as such, we use a complementation experiment to assess student understanding of how regulation changes when new DNA is introduced. In Part 1 of this activity, students complete an open-book, take-home assignment that asks them to define common terminology related to regulation, and draw the regulatory components of different scenarios involving positive and negative regulation. In Part 2, students work in small groups of 3–4 to depict the regulatory components for a different scenario. They are asked to explain the results of a complementation experiment based on this scenario. They then predict the results of a slightly different experiment. Students who completed the Regulation Activity did significantly better on post-test questions related to regulation, compared to pre-test questions.

Key Concept Ranking

Transcriptional Regulation
0.9788647
Gene Regulation
0.6286716
Repressor Proteins
0.49162167
DNA
0.40527126
0.9788647

References & Citations

1. Madigan MT, Martinko JM, Dunlap PV, Clark DP2009Brock biology of microorganisms12th edPearson Benjamin CummingsSections 9.1–9.4 and 11.14.
2. Slonzewski JL, Foster JW2009Microbiology, an evolving science1st edWW Norton & Company, IncSections 10.1–10.2.
3. Todar KTodar’s online textbook of microbiology [Internet]2008Available from: www.textbookofbacteriology.net/regulation.html.
1. Handelsman J, Miller S, Pfund C2006Scientific teachingFreeman and CoNew York, NY
2. National Research Council1999Transforming undergraduate education in science, mathematics, engineering, and technologyNational Academies PressWashington, DC
3. National Research Council2003Bio2010: transforming undergraduate biology education for future research biologistsNational Academies PressWashington, DC
4. Woodin T, Carter VC, Fletcher L2010Vision and change in biology undergraduate education, a call for action – initial responsesCBE Life Sci Educ97173
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/content/journal/jmbe/10.1128/jmbe.v11i2.196
2010-12-20
2017-04-28

Abstract:

As teachers, we well understand the need for activities that help develop critical-thinking skills in microbiology. In our experience, one concept that students have difficulty understanding is transcriptional regulation of bacterial genes. To help with this, we developed and evaluated a paper-based activity to help students understand and apply the concepts of bacterial transcriptional regulation. While we don’t identify it as such, we use a complementation experiment to assess student understanding of how regulation changes when new DNA is introduced. In Part 1 of this activity, students complete an open-book, take-home assignment that asks them to define common terminology related to regulation, and draw the regulatory components of different scenarios involving positive and negative regulation. In Part 2, students work in small groups of 3–4 to depict the regulatory components for a different scenario. They are asked to explain the results of a complementation experiment based on this scenario. They then predict the results of a slightly different experiment. Students who completed the Regulation Activity did significantly better on post-test questions related to regulation, compared to pre-test questions.

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FIGURE 1:

Pre-test Questions

Source: J. Microbiol. Biol. Educ. December 2010 vol. 11 no. 2 152-155. doi:10.1128/jmbe.v11i2.196
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FIGURE 2:

Post-test questions

Source: J. Microbiol. Biol. Educ. December 2010 vol. 11 no. 2 152-155. doi:10.1128/jmbe.v11i2.196
Download as Powerpoint

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