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Title: Bifocal Biology: Combining Physical and Virtual Labs to Support Inquiry in Biological Systems
Authors: Fuhrmann, Tamar
Greene, Daniel
Salehi, Shima
Blikstein, Paulo
Issue Date: Jul-2012
Publisher: International Society of the Learning Sciences (ISLS)
Citation: Fuhrmann, T., Greene, D., Salehi, S., & Blikstein, P. (2012). Bifocal Biology: Combining Physical and Virtual Labs to Support Inquiry in Biological Systems. In van Aalst, J., Thompson, K., Jacobson, M. J., & Reimann, P. (Eds.), The Future of Learning: Proceedings of the 10th International Conference of the Learning Sciences (ICLS 2012) – Volume 2, Short Papers, Symposia, and Abstracts (pp. 571-572). Sydney, NSW, AUSTRALIA: International Society of the Learning Sciences.
Abstract: In this paper we describe a pilot study of an approach to STEM inquiry learning called Bifocal Modeling (Blikstein, 2010) with a group of high school students studying bacterial growth. Students grew real bacteria, and then collaboratively designed a conceptual agent-based model of bacteria to mimic the observed growth. Observations and student notes suggest that the activity helped students demonstrate their knowledge of bacterial growth by formalizing it from a list of unorganized facts into an accurate pseudo-computational model. In completing their task, they also critically reflected on the assumptions built into the modeling activity itself, and demonstrated familiarity with some core principles of complex systems.
Appears in Collections:ICLS 2012

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