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MERLOT II


    

Peer Review


Microbiology Education Resources

 

Ratings

Overall Rating:

5 stars
Content Quality: 5 stars
Effectiveness: 5 stars
Ease of Use: 5 stars
Reviewed: Aug 12, 2009 by Biology Editorial Board
Overview: The MicrobeLibrary is searchable portal providing a peer reviewed, web-based collection of resources about the microbial world. The Library builds upon the scientific expertise, intellectual creativity, and private collections of the 42,000 members of the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) and other microbial researchers from around the world.

Its contents include Visual images and animations; Curriculum activities for both classroom and laboratory; an Articles section containing the tri-annual educational newsletter and annual Microbiology Education journal, as well as feature articles from ASM News; and educational Reviews and resources. Many of the resources do require a subscription to access full content.
Learning Goals: The materials on this site are designed to be incorporated in the classroom, the learning goals are various but mainly focused on primary microbiology educational standards.
Target Student Population: Undergraduate microbiology students
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: Most activities on this site assume a basic knowledge of biology. Most activities however describe the essential skills required by the students.
Type of Material: Images, animations, videos, lecture and lab materials, articles.
Recommended Uses: The images found on this site could be used in a laboratory or lecture course. The in class learning activities are geared toward both laboratory and lecture settings. The educational resources are also applicable to both laboratory and lecture settings.
Technical Requirements: html, shockwave, video, chime.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths:

  • One stop shopping for all of your microbiology educational needs.
  • Compelete and comprehensive source of a large variety of educational materials for lecture, lab and independent learning.
  • Materials are peer-reviewed, ensuring high quality.
  • The materials on this website are peer reviewed by members of the American Society of Microbiology. They cover a variety of topics from basic microbiology concepts to more advanced microbiology techniques and topics. There are a large number of resources that are available to incorporate into the lecture and laboratory. The content is up to date and is continually revised to ensure accuracy.
Concerns:

  • Articles are made available on an archived basis, one year after publication. This is understandable, but does restrict access somewhat.

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths:

  • This site has high potential in improving microbiology education given its breadth, depth and peer-reviewed nature. A teacher will be able to find the best microbiology educational materials at this site.
  • As this is more of a library of materials, it is difficult to assess the potential of individual units in teaching effectiveness.
  • The in class activities follow a standard format that explains target audience, prerequisite knowledge, detailed instructions as well as suggested assessment techniques. The content follows guidelines set forth by the American Society for Microbiology for undergraduate Microbiology education.
  • The resources available for pedagogy are also excellent and are focused on improving the undergraduate microbiology classroom.
Concerns: None

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 5 stars
Strengths:

  • Well-organized, can browse or search.
  • Search can be done by topic, keyword, type of material and other identifiers.
  • Curricular Materials are all in a similar format, making it easy to use them, once you are familiar with the format.
  • The material is easily accessible and attachments are found within each material as pdf files. The materials on this website are geared toward faculty use and come with clear instructions and limitations.
Concerns: None