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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Impact of a targeted laboratory and laboratory instructor intervention on student understanding of evolution in a majors general biology course
by Grace, Jill K., M.S., California State University, Long Beach, 2011, 162; 1504466
Abstract (Summary)

Students learning biological evolution are challenged by conceptual understanding of the theory and by overcoming personal perceptions. This study evaluates the factors affecting understanding in a new introductory majors biology course (Biology 211) at California State University, Long Beach. The study includes 425 BIOL 211 students in the Fall of 2010 and Spring of 2011. Data were collected through a content test given during the first two weeks of the semester and again at the end of the semester. Training on evolution misconceptions was provided to the graduate assistant laboratory instructors of the course in the Spring semester. In addition, all of the laboratory sections in the Spring experienced one laboratory that was rewritten to target the observed conceptual difficulties observed in the Fall semester. The findings of the study shed light on the specific roadblocks this student population faces with respect to understanding evolution and reflect the effectiveness of the course interventions on improving student understanding of evolution.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Colburn, Alan, Henriques, Laura
School: California State University, Long Beach
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 50/03M, Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Evolution and Development, Science education
Publication Number: 1504466
ISBN: 978-1-124-99408-6
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