WormClassroom.org: An Inquiry-Rich Educational Web Portal for Research Resources of "Caenorhabditis elegans"
CBE - Life Sciences Education Volume 6, Number 2, ISSN 1931-7913
The utilization of biology research resources, coupled with a "learning by inquiry" approach, has great potential to aid students in gaining an understanding of fundamental biological principles. To help realize this potential, we have developed a Web portal for undergraduate biology education, WormClassroom.org, based on current research resources of a model research organism, "Caenorhabditis elegans." This portal is intended to serve as a resource gateway for students to learn biological concepts using "C. elegans" research material. The driving forces behind the WormClassroom website were the strengths of "C. elegans" as a teaching organism, getting researchers and educators to work together to develop instructional materials, and the 3 P's (problem posing, problem solving, and peer persuasion) approach for inquiry learning. Iterative assessment is an important aspect of the WormClassroom site development because it not only ensures that content is up-to-date and accurate, but also verifies that it does, in fact, aid student learning. A primary assessment was performed to refine the WormClassroom website utilizing undergraduate biology students and nonstudent experts such as "C. elegans" researchers; results and comments were used for site improvement. We are actively encouraging continued resource contributions from the "C. elegans" research and education community for the further development of WormClassroom. (Contains 6 tables and 9 figures.)
Lu, F.M., Eliceiri, K.W., Stewart, J. & White, J.G. (2007). WormClassroom.org: An Inquiry-Rich Educational Web Portal for Research Resources of "Caenorhabditis elegans". CBE - Life Sciences Education, 6(2), 98-108.