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Prop Demonstrations in Biology Lectures Facilitate Student Learning and Performance

    Authors: Farshad Tamari1,*, Kevin M. Bonney1, Kristin Polizzotto1
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    Affiliations: 1: Department of Biological Sciences, Kingsborough Community College, Brooklyn, NY 11235
    AUTHOR AND ARTICLE INFORMATION AUTHOR AND ARTICLE INFORMATION
    • Published 01 May 2015
    • Supplemental materials available at http://jmbe.asm.org
    • *Corresponding author. Mailing address: Department of Biological Sciences, Kingsborough Community College, 2001 Oriental Boulevard, Brooklyn, New York 11235. Phone: 718-368-5726. Fax: 718-368-4873. E-mail: farshad.tamari@kbcc.cuny.edu.
    • ©2015 Author(s). Published by the American Society for Microbiology.
    Source: J. Microbiol. Biol. Educ. May 2015 vol. 16 no. 1 6-12. doi:10.1128/jmbe.v16i1.756
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    Abstract:

    Science students can benefit from visual aids. In biology lectures, visual aids are usually limited to tables, figures, and PowerPoint presentations. In this IRB-approved study, we examined the effectiveness of the use of five prop demonstrations, three of which are at the intersection of biology and chemistry, in three community college biology courses. We hypothesized that students’ performance on test questions is enhanced by the use of prop demonstrations. Consistent with our hypothesis, we showed that students learn more effectively and perform better on questions that relate to demonstrations than on questions related to lessons that do not have a demonstration component.

Key Concept Ranking

DNA Replication
0.82745713
Lagging Strand
0.5882353
Replication Fork
0.58453786
Leading Strand
0.5735294
DNA Polymerase
0.49490634
Translation
0.41676328
0.82745713

References & Citations

1. Bean JC1996Engaging ideas The professor’s guide to integrating writing, critical thinking, and active learning in the classroomJossey-Bass PublishersSan Francisco, CA264265114118
2. Bonney KM2013An argument and plan for promoting the teaching and learning of neglected tropical diseasesJ Microbiol Biol Educ14218318810.1128/jmbe.v14i2.631243583813867755 http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/jmbe.v14i2.631
3. Carlin JL2010An investigative alternative to single-species dissection in the introductory biology laboratoryBioscene3622833
4. Deese WC, Walczyk J, Eddy D2000Using demonstration assessments to improve learningJ. Chem. Educ.77111511151610.1021/ed077p1511 http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/ed077p1511
5. Green JH, Koza A, Moshynets O, Pajor R, Ritchie MR, Spiers AJ2011Evolution in a test tube. Rise of the wrinkly spreadersJ. Biol. Educ.451545910.1080/00219266.2011.537842 http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00219266.2011.537842
6. Lakrim M2009Using MS PowerPoint presentation as a pedagogical tool to improve student learning at the community collegeJ. Sci. Educ., Proceedings of the International Congress of Science Education240242
7. Polizzotto K, Ortiz MT2008Design projects in human anatomy and physiologyAm. Biol. Teach.70423023410.1662/0002-7685(2008)70[230:DPIHAP]2.0.CO;2 http://dx.doi.org/10.1662/0002-7685(2008)70[230:DPIHAP]2.0.CO;2
8. Tamari F, Lakrim M, Brancaccio-Taras L2012Facilitating learning in a human anatomy and physiology course through microtheme writing assignmentsMountainRise73112
9. Wattanakasiwich P, Khamcharean C, Taleab P, Sharma M2012Interactive lecture demonstration in thermodynamicsLat. Am. J. Phys. Educ.64508514
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/content/journal/jmbe/10.1128/jmbe.v16i1.756
2015-05-01
2017-09-24

Abstract:

Science students can benefit from visual aids. In biology lectures, visual aids are usually limited to tables, figures, and PowerPoint presentations. In this IRB-approved study, we examined the effectiveness of the use of five prop demonstrations, three of which are at the intersection of biology and chemistry, in three community college biology courses. We hypothesized that students’ performance on test questions is enhanced by the use of prop demonstrations. Consistent with our hypothesis, we showed that students learn more effectively and perform better on questions that relate to demonstrations than on questions related to lessons that do not have a demonstration component.

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Figures

Image of FIGURE 1.

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FIGURE 1.

Comparison of student performance on prop and non-prop test questions. * Indicates a statistically significant difference. P = prop questions; NP = non-prop questions.

Source: J. Microbiol. Biol. Educ. May 2015 vol. 16 no. 1 6-12. doi:10.1128/jmbe.v16i1.756
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Image of FIGURE 2.

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FIGURE 2.

Comparisons of prop and non-prop questions in BIO 13, BIO 59, and BIO 37. Mean scores for each demonstration and its control are shown (treatment gray bars, control white bars). (A) Data for BIO 13 are shown. values for each comparison are as follows: monomers ( = 0.98), DNA replication ( < 0.001), translation ( = 0.45), protein structure ( = 0.96), gene linkage ( = 0.56). (B) Data for BIO 59 are shown. values for each comparison are as follows: monomers ( < 0.0001), DNA replication ( < 0.0001), translation ( < 0.0001), protein structure ( < 0.0001), gene linkage ( = 0.238). (C) Data for BIO 37 are shown. values for each comparison are as follows: DNA replication ( < 0.05), translation ( = 0.26), protein structure ( < 0.001). * Indicates a statistically significant difference.

Source: J. Microbiol. Biol. Educ. May 2015 vol. 16 no. 1 6-12. doi:10.1128/jmbe.v16i1.756
Download as Powerpoint
Image of FIGURE 3.

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FIGURE 3.

Students’ sentiments about whether prop demonstrations did or did not help them learn the material (concept) and remember the material (memory) that had a prop demonstration component. Data compiled for BIO 13, BIO 59, and BIO 37.

Source: J. Microbiol. Biol. Educ. May 2015 vol. 16 no. 1 6-12. doi:10.1128/jmbe.v16i1.756
Download as Powerpoint

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