A well-accepted form of educational training offered in molecular biology is participation in active research laboratories. However, this approach to learning severely restricts access. Addressing this need, the University of Hawaii launched a project to expand this model to include newly developed online training materials in addition to a hands-on laboratory experience. This paper explores the process of material development and assessment plans. A pilot case study of a science teacher who embarks on learning molecular biology over a four-month period through online training materials and working side-by-side with medical researchers in a laboratory is described. Feedback suggested that the initial online materials over-emphasized abstract concepts and laboratory techniques and did not adequately connect to the active research problems and local context of most interest to teachers and students. The implications for improving blended learning experiences from this specific case are suggested.
Boulay, R., Anderson, C., Parisky, A., & Campbell, C. (2009). Developing online training materials in molecular biology: Enhancing hands-on lab skills, Paper presented at the 26th ASCILITE Conference. Auckland City, Aotearoa, NZ, 6-9 December, 2009.