Date of this Version
Ditty JL, Kvaal CA, Goodner B, Freyermuth SK, Bailey C, et al. (2010) Incorporating Genomics and Bioinformatics across the Life Sciences Curriculum. PLoS Biol 8(8): e1000448. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.1000448
Undergraduate life sciences education needs an overhaul, as clearly described in the National Research Council of the National Academies’ publication BIO 2010: Transforming Undergraduate Education for Future Research Biologists. Among BIO 2010’s top recommendations is the need to involve students in working with real data and tools that reflect the nature of life sciences research in the 21st century . Education research studies support the importance of utilizing primary literature, designing and implementing experiments, and analyzing results in the context of a bona fide scientific question [1–12] in cultivating the analytical skills necessary to become a scientist. Incorporating these basic scientific methodologies in undergraduate education leads to increased undergraduate and post-graduate retention in the sciences [13–16]. Toward this end, many undergraduate teaching organizations offer training and suggestions for faculty to update and improve their teaching approaches to help students learn as scientists, through design and discovery (e.g., Council of Undergraduate Research [www.cur.org] and Project Kaleidoscope [ www.pkal.org]).