Link to the University of Pittsburgh Homepage
Link to the University Library System Homepage Link to the Contact Us Form

Design-based learning for biology: Genetic engineering experience improves understanding of gene expression

Ellefson, MR and Brinker, RA and Vernacchio, VJ and Schunn, CD (2008) Design-based learning for biology: Genetic engineering experience improves understanding of gene expression. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education, 36 (4). 292 - 298. ISSN 1470-8175

[img] Plain Text (licence)
Available under License : See the attached license file.

Download (1kB)


Gene expression is a difficult topic for students to learn and comprehend, at least partially because it involves various biochemical structures and processes occurring at the microscopic level. Designer Bacteria, a design-based learning (DBL) unit for high-school students, applies principles of DBL to the teaching of gene expression. Throughout the 8-week unit, students genetically engineer bacteria to meet a need in their own lives. Through a series of investigations, discussions, and design modifications, students learn about the molecular processes and structures involved in gene expression, and how these processes and structures are dependent upon various environmental variables. This article is intended to describe the Designer Bacteria unit and report preliminary results of student progress and performance on pre-unit and post-unit assessments. Teacher experiences and student progress indicate that Designer Bacteria successfully taught core aspects of gene expression through DBL. © 2008 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.


Social Networking:
Share |


Item Type: Article
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Ellefson, MR
Brinker, RA
Vernacchio, VJ
Schunn, CDschunn@pitt.eduSCHUNN0000-0003-3589-297X
Centers: Other Centers, Institutes, Offices, or Units > Learning Research & Development Center
Date: 1 July 2008
Date Type: Publication
Journal or Publication Title: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education
Volume: 36
Number: 4
Page Range: 292 - 298
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1002/bmb.20203
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Psychology
School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences > Rehabilitation Science and Technology
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 1470-8175
Article Type: Review
Date Deposited: 19 Aug 2014 14:50
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2019 15:56


Monthly Views for the past 3 years

Plum Analytics

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item