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Peer Review

Molecular Biology Laboratory Manual

by Denny R. Randall


Overall Numeric Rating:

4.75 stars
Content Quality: 4.5 stars
Effectiveness: 4.75 stars
Ease of Use: 4.75 stars
Reviewed: Feb 08, 2014 by Biology Editorial Board
Overview: This is a free laboratory manual that is suitable for use in courses that cover molecular biology laboratory techniques. The manual contains a number very useful protocols and procedures that are commonly used in a molecular biology lab. It also contains safety information, as well as instructions for keeping a scientific journal and using microscops. A number of recipies for common stocks is also included. The information can be read online, in pdf format, and is also available for some other types of readers such as Kindle.
Type of Material: Open textbook.
Recommended Uses: Lab manual.
Technical Requirements: None.
Identify Major Learning Goals: No specific learning goals are included. The manual does not contain specific learning exercises. However, is a reference to answer lab technique questions from the simple to the complex.
Target Student Population: College or advanced high school molecular biology laboratories.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: Some basic molecular biology knowledge is needed to understand the manual.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 4.5 stars
  • A fairly complete on-line molecular biology lab procedures book
  • Covers many common lab techniques, safety protocols and recipes for reagents
  • No index which makes it difficult to navigate
  • Not much background on the science behind the procedures
  • Manual does not contain specific exercises (and probably was never intended to), which means that an instructor using it will need to supply their own specific experiments/exercises

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 4.75 stars
  • Good safety and lab notebook keeping information
  • Clear descriptions of many commonly used methods in molecular biology labs
  • No index which makes it difficult to navigate

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 4.75 stars
  • Clearly written and easy to follow instructions
  • Can be viewed in multiple formats
  • Searchable
  • No index

Other Issues and Comments: No additional comments.