This site, which originates from the The Exploratorium?s (San Francisco, CA, USA) exhibit on Memory in 1998, includes real photos of sheep and human brains and audio/video clips of dissection of the sheep brain. Important basic concepts regarding memory are presented in both the still life pictures and the short video clips. Schematic diagrams are also presented to help orient a person to the actual location of brain structures.
Target Student Population:
All ages for general knowledge, may be appropriate for an introductory neuroscience or brain psychology course
Type of Material:
Evaluation and Observation
Quality of Content: (3.0) (3.5) = 3.3
Quality of the materials and their organization are excellent.
Photos of the brains (human and sheep) were beautiful. Although they contained more aesthetic content than educational content.
Text with the photographs were a necessary component for telling the story of where in the brain memory occurs.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool: (4.0) (4.0) = 4.0
The video clips would really help a novice with initial dissections.
Some pictures contained wonderful text, other pictures were lacking the text.
Purpose of website and its content were not clear from the cover page nor the title. The title suggest that the student would learn how to conduct a sheep brain dissection rather than view a few slices to illustrate the locations of the parts of the brain involved in memory.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
Usability: (3.0) (3.0) = 3.0
A Help screen is included to guide users on how to use and download the required RealPlayer software needed to view/hear the video clips
Navigation of the site was not as easy as it could have been, one had to scroll through in order this is okay for a short series of pages such as this one.
The video clips did not work using Microsoft Explorer and RealPlayer version 6.0. I was able to hear the audio, but not see the video. It worked using Netscape Communicator, however it was very choppy and low graphics resolution