Department of Biology
Numerous national reports have called for reforming laboratory courses so that all students experience the research process. In response, many course-based research experiences (CREs) have been developed and implemented. Research on the impact of these CREs suggests that student benefits can be similar to those of traditional apprentice-model research experiences. However, most assessments of CREs have been in individual courses at individual institutions or across institutions using the same CRE model. Furthermore, which structures and components of CREs result in the greatest student gains is unknown. We explored the impact of different CRE models in different contexts on student self-reported gains in understanding, skills, and professional development using the Classroom Undergraduate Research Experience (CURE) survey. Our analysis included 49 courses developed and taught at seven diverse institutions. Overall, students reported greater gains for all benefits when compared with the reported national means for the Survey of Undergraduate Research Experiences (SURE). Two aspects of these CREs were associated with greater student gains: 1) CREs that were the focus of the entire course or that more fully integrated modules within a traditional laboratory and 2) CREs that had a higher degree of student input and results that were unknown to both students and faculty.
Blumer, Lawrence S. and al., et, "Multi-Institutional, Multidisciplinary Study of the Impact of Course-Based Research Experiences" (2017). Morehouse Faculty Publications. 26.
Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education, September 2017, vol. 18, no. 2
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