This resource is part of a larger website hosted by the National Earth Science Teachers Association. The material discusses the evidence for evolution in a series of web pages presented as a “tour.” Each page of the tour presents material and links to additional resources that define and describe the evidence for evolution. A discussion of what constitutes a “scientific theory” is also provided as well as examples of artificial and natural selection.
No specific goals are provided. However, from looking through the site, the major learning goal for the student is to learn about the “scientific theory that explains how and why living things change over many generations.”
Target Student Population:
Undergraduate, high school or the general public.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
Type of Material:
This material could be used as ancillary material for a class or as independent study material.
Evaluation and Observation
The depth and breadth of the material is excellent for an introductory treatment of evolutionary theory
Some excellent examples and historical material are presented
Includes a discussion on what constitutes a scientific theory
The information is primarily text-based, although it is well presented
Some of the links to external material were broken
it appears that a number of the pages have not been updated recently
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
This resource has a mix of text and graphics/images at an appropriate level for non-majors and is highly effective at explaining evolution to people who lack a strong biology background
The examples of evidence for evolution are detailed and well explained
The page is old (last modified in 2005) and lacks some of the sophistication web 2.0 users are used to--which may make the resource less attractive to some users
There are no problems, questions or exercises to promote critical thinking
While conceptual material is presented the format (10 separate web pages) does not lend itself to a treatment in which connections between evolution and other areas of biology are emphasized
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
The pages load quickly in Firefox, Safari and Chrome on both mac and pc
The navigation is straightforward and easy to use
The content is displayed on approximately half of the web page horizontally (in full screen mode), and the other half is taken up by advertisements, menus, login windows, etc.--these are distracting (Apparently, if you become a member, the ads will disappear)
There are moving banners at the top of the page, which are distracting
Little interactivity to engage the student
Other Issues and Comments:
This is a solid resource and the larger website of which it is a part has a lot of good quality information. Some upgrades could greatly benefit the Evolution Exlporatour.