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      Learning through Teaching: A Microbiology Service-Learning Experience †

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      Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education
      American Society of Microbiology

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          Abstract

          Service learning is defined as a strategy in which students apply what they have learned in the classroom to a community service project. Many educators would agree that students often learn best through teaching others. This premise was the motivation for a new service-learning project in which undergraduate microbiology students developed and taught hands-on microbiology lessons to local elementary school children. The lessons included teaching basic information about microbes, disease transmission, antibiotics, vaccines, and methods of disease prevention. This service-learning project benefitted the college students by enforcing their knowledge of microbiology and provided them an opportunity to reach out to children within their community. This project also benefitted the local schools by teaching the younger students about microbes, infections, and handwashing. In this paper, I discuss the development and implementation of this new microbiology service-learning project, as well as the observed impact it had on everyone involved.

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          A Meta-analysis of the Impact of Service-Learning on Students

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            Inexpensive and time-efficient hand hygiene interventions increase elementary school children's hand hygiene rates.

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              Making Connections: Service-Learning in Introductory Cell and Molecular Biology †

              This report describes service-learning in a first-year majors biology course in which students serve throughout the semester with community partners for an average of 25 hours/student. All of the partnerships are based on providing engaging hands-on biology activities for youth in underserved urban areas surrounding the campus. Students in the course have designed new lessons and activities, supported biology labs, mentored younger students, and facilitated afterschool science clubs. Throughout the course, integration between the students’ service experience in the community and their learning in the course is emphasized. This is accomplished in multiple ways including class discussion, group activities, feedback from the instructor and teaching assistant, and weekly blogs. A three-year average of anonymous university-wide course evaluations suggested that students in this service-learning course considered their biology course to be highly rigorous. In both blogs and anonymous surveys students reported that their service and its integration with the course not only advanced their professional skills and sense of community engagement, but also enhanced their learning in biology.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                J Microbiol Biol Educ
                J Microbiol Biol Educ
                JMBE
                Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education
                American Society of Microbiology
                1935-7877
                1935-7885
                March 2016
                01 March 2016
                : 17
                : 1
                : 86-89
                Affiliations
                Division of Natural Sciences and Engineering, University of South Carolina Upstate, Spartanburg, SC 29303
                Author notes
                Corresponding author. Mailing address: University of South Carolina Upstate, 800 University Way, Spartanburg, SC 29303. Phone: 864-503-5976. E-mail: gwebb@ 123456uscupstate.edu .
                Article
                jmbe-17-83
                10.1128/jmbe.v17i1.997
                4798824
                27047598
                99696e97-bb50-428f-9b15-62fe140f4aee
                ©2016 Author(s). Published by the American Society for Microbiology.

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International license ( https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/legalcode), which grants the public the nonexclusive right to copy, distribute, or display the published work.

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