Reflection: Lesson Planning Significant Figures Are VIP (Very Imperative Precision) - Section 3: Explore


Science as it is routinely conducted now looks very different from the centralized, private and often isolated environments of the past. Collaborating scientists located around the world is now the norm and there is an emphasis on building virtual communities, sharing resources and utilizing a variety of tech-rich mediums? A diverse range of online tools such as desktop sharing, video and web conferencing, and course management systems support the work of the scientists of today. And so I have often asked my fellow teachers, colleagues and science educators:

1. Shouldn’t the teaching labs of today also embrace these online technologies and practices as the
reality of how science is conducted?

2. Shouldn’t we incorporate them into the teaching laboratories as essential for the development of science literacy and for educating new scientists?

I certainly believe that we should, however HOW do we successfully incorporate this medium into our curriculum. How do we identify and develop effective tools for use in both online and traditional teaching settings in a robust and authentic manner that does more than simply replicate the traditional laboratory experience online. Rather, the online environment should be used to create new, more authentic learning opportunities by exploiting the strengths of the available online tools to create new and more effective learning opportunities in the laboratory-based sciences. I love providing my students a low anxiety, low cost, and low "stakes" opportunity to practice skills and techniques while performing online and virtual labs BEFORE having to actually execute the hands-on lab.

There are many questions associated with moving lab skills training online such as: Which labs a most suited for an online form? What labs are we teaching? What online platform is best for adequately communicating lab training?

  Moving Lab Skills Training ONLINE!
  Lesson Planning: Moving Lab Skills Training ONLINE!
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Significant Figures Are VIP (Very Imperative Precision)

Unit 5: Basic Tools of the Biotechnology Workplace
Lesson 6 of 12

Objective: Students will be able to perform mathematical functions using significant figures in order to properly express values such as data and measurements in the biotechnology laboratory.

Big Idea: Biotechnologist must become mathematically confident by communicating and reasoning mathematically and applying mathematics in real-world settings.

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