Features five activities (The Faces of Cancer, Cancer and the Cell Cycle, Cancer
as a Multi-step Process, Evaluating Claims About Cancer, and Acting on
Information About Cancer) for helping students understand key concepts about cancer -- that "cancer" is a group of more than 100 diseases, that it develops due to loss of control of cell growth, that it is a multi-step process, & more. The relationship between biomedical research & improvements in health are examined, as are the advances in cancer research made in the last 30 years. Students work independently, in small-groups, and as a class with the teacher acting as facilitator for hands-on work. Images, streaming video, case studies, and links to resources are some of the Web-based instruction offered. A Teacher's Guide with background information, student activities manual, and
handout masters is provided.
Type of Material:
Cell Biology & Cancer is a comprehensive lesson plan; material is designed to be
used in the classroom setting with Web enhancements for individual and group
The five activities in this module are designed to be taught either in sequence, as a supplement to the standard curriculum, or as individual activities that support or enhance the treatment of specific concepts in biology. Many of the activities can be used individually to replace or enhance a more traditional approach to the same or related content.
- Pentium class IBM Compatible w/ Windows 95 or higher, with 64 MB RAM (96 or 128 MB recommended) - Power PC Macintosh w/ Mac OS 8.6 or newer, with 64 MB RAM (96 or 128 MB recommended) - Netscape Communicator or Microsoft Internet Explorer Web browser, version 4 or better - Apple QuickTime Plug-In, version 4 or better installed for your Web browser - Macromedia Flash Plug-In, version 5 or better installed for your Web browser
Identify Major Learning Goals:
Cell Biology and Cancer is designed to help students develop the following major goals associated with biological literacy: 1. to understand a set of basic scientific principles related to cancer as a cellular phenomenon,
2. to experience the process of inquiry and develop an enhanced understanding of the nature and methods of science, and 3. to recognize the role of science in society and the relationship between basic science and personal and public health. Ancillary purposes are to: 1. deepen students' awareness of the importance of basic research to advances in medicine and health, 2. foster students' abilities to think critically, 3. help students understand the effects of scientific discoveries on their own lives, and 4. encourage students to take more responsibility for their own health.
Target Student Population:
High school grades 9-12 are the target student population, however, college students in fundamental biology/anatomy/physiology and related courses would be a target population as well.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
Content quality is excellent; information is well-documented and current;
instructional design is top-level. Organized modules and lesson plans, clear instructions, additional resources are available on the NIH website
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
Emphasis is placed on active learning: identifies learning objectives, identifies prerequisite knowledge, reinforces concepts progressively, builds on prior concepts, demonstrates relationships between concepts, is easy to integrate into curriculum assignments, is very efficient (could learn a lot in short time), and can be used to measure student learning outcomes. The Teachers Guide offers excellent
scholarly support and strategies for use. It isn't necessary to strictly follow
the lesson in order for the learning object to be useful or meaningful.
Materials are available online as well as through print/CD-ROM free from NIH.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
The site map provides a diagram of all parts of this learning object making navigation very easy. Technical requirements and links to plug-ins are provided in the setup. All paths for working the the lessons are obvious.
Other Issues and Comments:
Cell Biology and Cancer is one of many curriculum supplements provided by the Office of Science Education, National Institutes of Health, http://science.education.nih.gov/supplements/
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