ASM events
This conference is managed by the American Society for Microbiology

Curriculum Activity Idea

Curriculum activity: basic micrbiology protocols taught in context of a case study

The over arching idea is to help students understand the context of and the value of basic microbiology protocols

Learning outcomes

at the completion of this curriculum activity students will be able to:

Describe  a context where completing a gram stain will be useful

Articulate the value of the streak plate technique in isolating bacteria from an environmental sample

Indicate the value of special culture media in characterizing bacteria from an environmental sample

Identify positive and negative results from the following basic microbiology protocols: Gram Stain, Endospore Stain, Streak Plate, Simmons Citrate, Fermentation tubes, Growth in anaerobe chamber, Blood Plate, MacConkey plate



This curriculum activity will overlay the case study "Elvis meltdown" on to the first 5 labs in a general microbiology course. These labs had previously been dedicated to discrete exercises where students learned the basic protocols of staining, streak plate, use of special media, analysis of growth conditions and biochemical tests such as Simmons citrate and fermentation tubes. For this curriculum activity students will receive a mock environmental sample... From a putative future mission to mars. This sample will be a mixture of four organisms. Students will work in teams of four to isolate each organism and characterize each with the goal of determining if these are similar to "earth organisms" and thus a contaminate of the mission or a new organism not similar to one seen on earth.  Students will learn basic protocols that will be useful in this endeavor. They will learn the protocols with known control organisms and then have the opportunity to use the protocols to learn about their ELVIS samples. At the completion of their work students will present their findings in a poster session that occurs in an online format. 

Assessment: pre and post survey, end of session practical exam

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