Hazelwood, Donna .
A laboratory exercise to introduce students to the scientific method and production of adventitious roots.
Integrating undergraduate student participation into an ongoing research project increased student involvement in a general education/ majors botany course. Students examined the results from previous studies, and then applied the scientific method to design and implement experiments to examine three species of green house grown plants for production of adventitious roots. Working in groups, students observed plants, recorded observations, maintained accurate records, incorporated digital imaging, entered data into spreadsheets, created graphs, analyzed results, and gave oral presentations accompanied by PowerPoint. At the end of the course, students rated this exercise highly, and stated that they enjoyed participating in an experiment where the outcome was not predetermined. In addition, they respected the importance of doing careful work and recording results accurately because their findings would become part of an ongoing research project and in turn would be used for further studies by students in the next class. The outcomes for student learning and involvement were greater than those observed for cookbook type exercises, as evidenced by an increased understanding of the scientific method and participation in the process of the experiment. Additionally, student absences in lab were reduced and student satisfaction with botany increased. In conclusion, students reported they were amazed at how fun it was to do experiments with plants and they would view plants with increased interest in the future.
1 - Dakota State University, College of Arts and Sciences, Science Center, Madison, South Dakota, 57042
teaching of botany.
Presentation Type: Paper
Location: Superior A (Cliff Lodge)
Date: Monday, August 2nd, 2004
Time: 8:45 AM