education

About mid-morning, my 16yr old daughter called me from school and asked me to help her get an interview transcript that was on her computer.

Four years ago, when my older daughter was in high school, I would have printed that document and driven to the school to deliver it.

Not today.

Today, I found the document on YD's computer, opened a browser, logged in to Google Docs, uploaded her file to my Google Docs account, and set the sharing settings so that YD could log in from school and get the document, which she did.

No one had to drive to the high school. No ... Read more

If you're a high school or college student with an interest in biomedical sciences, or healthcare careers, the NIH has set up an electronic mentoring program to help you find a guide.

The mentoring happens via email and students must be 16 yrs or older.

The site claims the mentors are carefully screened. I'm not sure what screening means to the NIH. At our local high school, they used to require that mentors get fingerprinted and have a background check. Maybe NIH screening means you have to have ... Read more

A few weeks ago I heard a story from a friend in Oklahoma. She works with high school science teachers, helping them learn how to add biotechnology to their courses.

One teacher, in particular, has taken the new science activities to heart. Her students did so well, they won a science competition and were asked to fly somewhere to accept the prize.

For many of those students, this would be their first trip on an airplane and their first trip outside of rural Oklahoma. It was pretty exciting!

But there were some unexpected problems.

Some of these ... Read more

Cofactor Genomics is offering to sequence a genome for a few classes for free using Next Generation DNA Sequencing technology (either Illumina GA or via AB SOLiD).

Quoting from their site:

Cofactor will ask course organizers for a 1 page description of how their ~700Mb sequencing project could be used as an effective teaching aid in their class. We will review and choose the best entries during the month of May. Those entries will be awarded a free

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One of the newfangled ideas that's popped up in education in the past few years has been notion that more interactive methods of teaching will lead to better results.

There's an appealing logic to this notion.


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Teachertube looks and works much like YouTube, but you're much less likely to run across videos that Not Safe For the Classroom.

All of these videos are made by students and teachers. According to the Dallas News, there are 54,000 videos on the site already and 800,00 visitors every day.

I especially enjoyed watching Abbot and Costello doing math problems.
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i-4c321d94fa65e353376faee19743c322-bestresource.pngLast fall, this blog got nominated for the 2008 Edublog awards, in the Best resource sharing category.

I was a bit distracted in December so this information came and passed without any acknowledgement. Now, I would like to thank whoever nominated Discovering Biology in a Digital World. ... Read more

I just love this title! It's nerdy and cute, all at the same time.

I read about this in www.researchblogging.org and had to check out the paper and blog write up from The Beagle Project (BTW: some of you may be interested in knowing that The Beagle Project is not a blog about dogs.)

The paper describes a class where students from Marseilles University investigate the function of unidentified ... Read more

It's funny but even though I work with data on a regular basis, I can't always predict the best way to manage data until I have my own data to manage.

My classroom wiki site is no exception.

Now, that I've been seriously using a wiki with my class, I've found that I should have set a few things up a bit differently.

The biggest challenge has been making sure that the right people can do the right things - or who gets to see what and upload what where.

Not knowing what methods would turn out to be useful, I originally set up my class wiki with a ... Read more

This quarter, I'm using a wiki with my bioinformatics class and posting sometimes about the things that I learn.

Two things I've been experimenting with are:

  1. Setting up pages for individual students so they can take notes while they're working.
  2. Embedding a Google form into one of my wiki pages for student assessment.

Here's a diagram showing some of the pages in my bioinformatics class wiki site.