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Peer Review

Electron Transport Chain

by Phil McClean , Alan White , Brian M. Slator , Kellie Martindale , Roxanne Rogers , Christina Johnson


Overall Rating:

4.75 stars
Content Quality: 5 stars
Effectiveness: 4.25 stars
Ease of Use: 4.75 stars
Reviewed: Feb 10, 2014 by Biology Editorial Board
Overview: This animation demonstrates two full cycles of electron donation. It also illustrates the various components involved in the electron transport chain including NADH dehydrogenase, cytochrome b-c1, cytochrome oxidase, ATP synthase, ubiquinone, cytochrome c, NADH, electrons, hydrogen ions, molecular oxygen, water, ADP and Pi. The site is one animation form a larger archive of cellular processes from the Virtual Cell Animation Collection, Molecular & Cellular Biology Education Project at North Dakota State University.
Learning Goals: No specific learning outcomes are listed
Target Student Population: Advanced High school, lower level undergraduate.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: Overall knowledge of aerobic cellular respiration process.
Type of Material: Flash movie animation.
Recommended Uses: This object could be used to augment a class presentation as a pre-class assignment, or as a review.
Technical Requirements: Web Browser with Flash plugin.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 5 stars
  • Animation is clear and easy to follow.
  • Narration is appropriate for the information presented and matches the action in the animation.
  • Information is accurate.
  • There are a couple of pauses in the dialogue that may make the listener think there is a problem with the audio.

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 4.25 stars
  • Would work well as as an adjunct to classroom presentation.
  • Could be used as an assignment prior to class.
  • Will make a good review.
  • Students can play animation multiple times until they are comfortable that they can explain the process.
  • Introduces the main concepts without getting lost in too much detail.
  • Short enough to keep listeners attention, but long enough to introduce important components and concepts.
  • Some simplification done to make presentation clear
  • Student needs to know place of process in overall aerobic respiration
  • Animation stops before explaining ATP Synthase--that is a separate animation.
  • Cartoon molecules with colored in spheres is a little ambiguous.
  • Providing a little more detail on the molecular structure would be helpful for students in Sophomore level course and above.

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 4.75 stars
  • Very easy to use.
  • Transcript of narration provided.
  • Video size is good, even for students with visual impairments.
  • Animation is short and would be better with ATP Synthase included.
  • Flash player required.
  • The size of the video (18 MB) could be an issue for users with poor internet bandwidth.

Other Issues and Comments: The purpose is to break the various process into small chunks of information and explain each with a short animation. There are advantages to that approach. The disadvantage is that the student may have difficulty seeing the process as a whole.