This resource is a collection of free resources for students and teachers, including animations, teacher guides, short films, articles, interview transcripts, digital lectures, virtual labs, games, short courses, and more. The collection is maintained by HHMI (Howard Hughes Medical Institute). Content is easily searchable by both topic and resource type.
Type of Material:
In class (via multiple videos, activities, and other classroom resources).
As homework (especially for virtual labs and other interactive simulations).
During lecture or in place of lecture (in the case of digital lectures that are available to be played during class).
Individually or as a team, depending on the specific resource; many have the flexibility of being individual assignments or group work.
Online as primary or ancillary content.
I viewed the website in Google Chrome Version 59.0.3071.115. Web browser needed. Flash required for videos. Individual materials within the collection, like virtual labs, give specific recommendations for browsers and other technical requirements where they exist.
Identify Major Learning Goals:
To explore a plethora of biology-related content, based on student interest or course objectives.
To gain a richer understanding of evolution, ecology, chemistry of life, diversity of organisms, genetics, the earth and its environment, organismal biology, cell biology, and the scientific process.
To explore scientific skills and concepts in a variety of virtual labs.
To learn about various scientific careers through videos, interviews with science professionals, and digital lectures.
(For teachers) To improve classroom engagement and student learning through the implementation of teacher guides, classroom activities, discussion articles, and other classroom resources.
To support quality science education by providing educators with free resources focused on current research, to clarify important scientific concepts, and instill in students a passion for and an understanding of the scientific process.
Target Student Population:
High school through college, lower division, and some upper division.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
Students will need basic computer navigational skills (enter URL, click and drag bar). General facility for technology use. Otherwise, the interface is very user-friendly. Some biology background is useful. Individual resources within the collection do a good job of listing where prerequisite knowledge is required, though the materials are designed in such a way that the prerequisite knowledge required is built into the introduction.
All materials are exceedingly high quality
The use of exceptional images (still and video) enhances the concepts
Topics are explained clearly and in a diverse array of formats
The content presented in this material is often presented so that it includes audio, visual, and written components, making it excellent for students with different learning types
The content is excellent to be assigned by teachers in a formal assignment, but is also engaging and compelling for students who just want to click around and learn about things that interested them
It is self-contained as the content modules include introductory information before delving into a concept and, many times, worksheets or follow-up questions in addition
The collection includes truly large amounts of content in evolution, ecology, chemistry of life, diversity of organisms, genetics, the earth and its environment, organismal biology, cell biology, and the scientific process
No particular concept area appears to be undervalued compared to another in terms of the quality and quantity of materials available
Frequent updating of the materials and inclusion of cutting-edge concepts (such as virtual labs on modern biotechnology advances and interviews with current researchers), this content is current, relevant, and supported by appropriate research
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
The variety of topics in a huge variety of formats makes this site an outstanding resource
Biology instructors will find something for nearly every major topic covered in general biology courses
The materials are easy to integrate into lecture presentations, online classes, or as stand alone assignments
There is a You May Also Like list for each material
Credits and Links are provided for each material
Learning objectives are identified where appropriate, including at the beginning of virtual labs (in the form of “key concepts”) and especially in the classroom activities, where the educator materials include a list of key concepts and student learning targets, as well as detailed information is also provided to show how the activity fulfills multiple curriculum requirements (like AP Biology, IB Biology, NGSS, and Common Core)
These educator materials also list what prerequisite knowledge is required. Individual resources within the collection do a good job of listing where prerequisite knowledge is required, though the materials are usually designed in such a way that the prerequisite knowledge required is built into the introduction
Many materials in the collection, including some virtual labs, include “Tips for Teachers” which are videos where an experienced teacher discusses how to best integrate this particular material into a larger curriculum in a way that builds on past concepts and demonstrates relationships between the concepts within that material and other related concepts
Many materials include worksheets that can be used to both progressively reinforce concepts and force students to critically think about questions and extrapolate what they know to be able to answer tough questions
Worksheets can also be used by the teacher to measure student learning outcomes as a formative assessment
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
The website had no issues with access using several browsers (Safari, Chrome)
There is an effective search function
The materials can be searched by topic or resource type and are organized into hierarchical groups
Some materials are included in extensive collections of materials on a few big topics
Download functions all worked as they should
Site is available in both English and Spanish and contains a helpful page for technical tips and troubleshooting
Each material within the collection has excellent instructions, is easy to navigate, and has an excellent user interface
They are engaging and visually appealing, especially the animations, simulations, virtual labs, and images of the week
The majority of materials are HIGHLY interactive and of impressive design quality
Other Issues and Comments:
HHMI’s Biointeractive is an excellent resource for students and teachers alike. It is a resource that can make clear and measurable differences in student engagement, student learning, and teacher effectiveness. It is impressive to find an online learning collection that exceeds expectations in so many content areas, making this a truly versatile and flexible resource.
Search by ISBN?
It looks like you have entered an ISBN number. Would you like to search using what you have
entered as an ISBN number?
Searching for Members?
You entered an email address. Would you like to search for members? Click Yes to continue. If no, materials will be displayed first. You can refine your search with the options on the left of the results page.