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Interactive Web-Based Tool for Nutritional Microbiology in Applied Agriculture Outreach

    Authors: Jennie L. Zambito Ivey1, Phillip R. Myer1,*
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    Affiliations: 1: Animal Science Department, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996
    AUTHOR AND ARTICLE INFORMATION AUTHOR AND ARTICLE INFORMATION
    • Received 12 December 2017 Accepted 24 February 2018 Published 25 May 2018
    • ©2018 Author(s). Published by the American Society for Microbiology.
    • [open-access] This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/legalcode), which grants the public the nonexclusive right to copy, distribute, or display the published work.

    • *Corresponding author. Mailing address: The University of Tennessee, Department of Animal Science, 2506 River Drive, 355 Brehm Animal Science Building, Knoxville, TN 37996. Phone: 865-974-3184. E-mail: [email protected].
    Source: J. Microbiol. Biol. Educ. May 2018 vol. 19 no. 2 doi:10.1128/jmbe.v19i2.1557
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    Abstract:

    The interconnection of microbiology, biology, and agriculture poses unique challenges for dissemination of basic science research data in an applied format. Further, audiences including the general public, stakeholders, agricultural commodity producers, and students to which information is directed often possess various backgrounds and educational training. In response to technological advances, and the benefits of web-based learning tools to deliver complex information, an integrative approach to deliver microbial content information was developed. Through the constructed web-based interface, an interactive format to highlight the microbe of interest consisted of a main image with strategically placed hotspots to illuminate the location/environment/organ where the microbe can be found. As each hotspot is accessed, an additional image and description of the role and function of the microbe at the location is presented. To encourage regular user access with the learning tool, monthly features were created to focus on various concepts in nutritional microbiology. Monthly themes were selected by the educator to cover a specific microbe, environment, and physiological or nutritional function. Facilitation of educator operation of the interface was achieved through development of an easy-to-use dashboard, allowing for uploading of main, monthly, and hotspot images, along with information on the overview of microbe function and with details contained within the hotspot descriptions. Additionally, an archive feature was created to allow access to information that was previously covered within the learning tool. Application of this web-based interface can span across classroom settings, outreach educational events, adult and youth learning within Extension, student recruitment, and many other non-traditional learning settings to impact production agriculture with research-driven microbiological and biological concepts.

References & Citations

1. Storey MA, Phillips B, Maczewski M, Wang M2002Evaluating the usability of Web-based learning toolsEduc Technol Soc5391100
2. Chen PSD, Lambert AD, Guidry KR2010Engaging online learners: the impact of Web-based learning technology on college student engagementComput Educ5441222123210.1016/j.compedu.2009.11.008 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2009.11.008
3. Bayrak T, Bahadir A2017Understanding student perceptions of a Web-based blended learning environmentJ Appl Res Higher Educ9257759710.1108/JARHE-12-2016-0090 http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/JARHE-12-2016-0090
4. Patel C, Lei Y, Liu L, Vernica R, Fan J, Short B, Liu J, Simske SJ2017Learning in the 21st century cyber-physical ageAPSIA Trans Signal Inform Processing6e1210.1017/ATSIP.2017.10 http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/ATSIP.2017.10
5. Howard JM, Scott A2017Any time, any place, flexible pace: technology-enhanced language learning in a teacher education programmeAustral J Teach Educ (Online)4265110.14221/ajte.2017v42n6.4 http://dx.doi.org/10.14221/ajte.2017v42n6.4

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/content/journal/jmbe/10.1128/jmbe.v19i2.1557
2018-05-25
2018-10-18

Abstract:

The interconnection of microbiology, biology, and agriculture poses unique challenges for dissemination of basic science research data in an applied format. Further, audiences including the general public, stakeholders, agricultural commodity producers, and students to which information is directed often possess various backgrounds and educational training. In response to technological advances, and the benefits of web-based learning tools to deliver complex information, an integrative approach to deliver microbial content information was developed. Through the constructed web-based interface, an interactive format to highlight the microbe of interest consisted of a main image with strategically placed hotspots to illuminate the location/environment/organ where the microbe can be found. As each hotspot is accessed, an additional image and description of the role and function of the microbe at the location is presented. To encourage regular user access with the learning tool, monthly features were created to focus on various concepts in nutritional microbiology. Monthly themes were selected by the educator to cover a specific microbe, environment, and physiological or nutritional function. Facilitation of educator operation of the interface was achieved through development of an easy-to-use dashboard, allowing for uploading of main, monthly, and hotspot images, along with information on the overview of microbe function and with details contained within the hotspot descriptions. Additionally, an archive feature was created to allow access to information that was previously covered within the learning tool. Application of this web-based interface can span across classroom settings, outreach educational events, adult and youth learning within Extension, student recruitment, and many other non-traditional learning settings to impact production agriculture with research-driven microbiological and biological concepts.

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Figures

Image of FIGURE 1

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FIGURE 1

A sample webpage from the Web-based, interactive educational tool pertaining to beef cattle nutritional microbiology. Depending on the device used, additional information can be viewed by hovering over, touching, or clicking on the hotspots (orange circles).

Source: J. Microbiol. Biol. Educ. May 2018 vol. 19 no. 2 doi:10.1128/jmbe.v19i2.1557
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Image of FIGURE 2

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FIGURE 2

An example of the educator dashboard for data management. (A) Page for uploading main monthly images (left) and hotspot images (right). (B) Data entry fields for the individual hotspot images.

Source: J. Microbiol. Biol. Educ. May 2018 vol. 19 no. 2 doi:10.1128/jmbe.v19i2.1557
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Image of FIGURE 3

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FIGURE 3

An example of the pop-up informational boxes in the web-based, interactive educational tool pertaining to equine nutritional microbiology.

Source: J. Microbiol. Biol. Educ. May 2018 vol. 19 no. 2 doi:10.1128/jmbe.v19i2.1557
Download as Powerpoint

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