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Plant IT: Careers, Cases, and Collaborations Getting Started with Investigative Cases July 7 th , 2008 Margaret Waterman Southeast Missouri State University Ethel Stanley Beloit College. The Rumor. Author: Stacey Kiser, Lane CC

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Plant IT: Careers, Cases, and CollaborationsGetting Started with Investigative CasesJuly 7th, 2008Margaret WatermanSoutheast Missouri State UniversityEthel Stanley Beloit College


The Rumor


Stacey Kiser, Lane CC

"I read on the Internet that you can get Mad Cow Disease from Altoids."


What do you think this case is about?

What do you already know that relates to this case?

What do you need to know to understand the case?

How might this case be used in your classroom?

national science education standards nrc 1996
National Science Education Standards (NRC, 1996)

“Inquiry into authentic questions generated from student experiences is the central strategy for teaching science.”

Plant IT: Careers, Cases and Collaborations

  • Root your classroom science investigations in real world activities and collaboration
  • Explore data, visualization tools, analysis tools and other resources for structured, yet open-ended investigations
  • Learn and share strategies for supporting and assessing student investigations
  • Access e-science resources to prepare your students with 21st Century skills
national science education standards nrc 19966
National Science Education Standards (NRC, 1996)

“Science often is a collaborative endeavor, and all science depends on the ultimate sharing and debating of ideas.”

Plant IT: Careers, Cases and Collaborations

  • Develop case materials tailored for your classroom
  • Root your classroom science investigations in real world activities and collaboration
  • Develop case materials tailored for your classroom
  • Discovercareer connections to biology content
  • Investigative case based learning (ICBL)
  • Using cases to meet diverse objectives
  • The case experience: A Day at the Bay
case methods elements in common
Case Methods: Elements in Common
  • All use realistically complex problems
  • All are multidisciplinary
  • All ask learners to consider the events, decisions, facts
investigative case based learning
Investigative Case Based Learning
  • ICBL blends two established methods: cases and scientific inquiry
    • The cases provide a context for learning.
    • Students engage in investigations related to the case. This includes lab, field, and computer activities.
  • Instruction is organized around the BioQUEST 3Ps.
features of icbl
Features of ICBL
  • Problems are real and meaningful contexts

for learners.

  • Cases are complex and multidisciplinary.
  • The problem comes first.
  • Learners collaborate and identify what they need to learn.
  • Learners identify and use resources.
  • Cases require decision making, use of concepts and skills.

ICBL Case Module

Lana McNeil Northwest Campus College of Rural Alaska

  • Investigative case based learning (ICBL)
  • Using cases to meet diverse objectives
  • The case experience: A Day at the Bay
meet diverse objectives
Meet Diverse Objectives
  • To assess knowledge and skills
  • To develop global and multicultural perspectives
  • To initiate investigations
  • To introduce new technologies
  • To use multidisciplinary approaches


Teruko sat with her friend Sean at lunch and enthusiastically described her brother’s wedding and reception in Japan. “The family hired special chefs who prepared some amazing dishes. My favorite was the kujira.”“What’s kujira?” Sean asked.“It’s whale meat,” Teruko replied. When Sean made a face, she continued, “It’s delicious really. Better than this pepperoni pizza.”


Isn’t whale meat illegal? I read there’s a huge black market and people pay up to $400 a pound for what they think is whale meat,” Sean said.

Now it was Teruko who made a face. “How do they know it’s not whale meat?” she asked.Some biotech test,” Sean replied with a shrug.


Whale Meat

Acknowledgment: Peter Lockhart

BioQUEST Summer 2002 Workshop

different assessment strategies
Different Assessment Strategies
  • Design play of Japanese wedding
  • Propose new law on harvesting whales or labeling whale meat
  • Design a pamphlet for whale meat consumer
  • Analysis of dimensions of whale bodies, perhaps of different ages (mathematics, surface to volume ratios)
  • Analysis of force required to harpoon a whale with and without modern propellants
  • Decide and debate on the pros and cons of deciding who should be allowed to harvest whales
  • Panel of "experts" predicting populations of whales with limited harvest.

The following take home exam was based on a mini case in which a 14 week-old puppy that “chews on everything” was found ill in the back yard.

Resources for each student:

  • prepared slide of suspect plant material
  • list of back yard plants by gardener
Submit a memo reporting your findings as a forensics specialist:

Provide an identification of the plant material with evidence to support choices:

  • root, stem, or leaf
  • dicot or monocot
  • herbaceous or woody
  • Write a short letter to the pet owner advising the family to remove the poisonous plant from their back yard:
  • Provide a description of the plant as it would look during flowering and be sure to include:
      • common and scientific name
      • habitat preference
      • danger to humans
In the 1840’s, Late Blight devastated the potato crop which resulted in mass starvation and forced migration of the human population.

Simulation Results: IRELAND 1840’s

Cool, wet conditions, no pest management

Sporangia from cull pile

Infections from volunteers

Crop lost before harvest

% blight




Modern Management: Blight Cast

Using 1840 conditions.

Result of spraying every 5 days = $278 profit, no tuber loss, 3% foliage loss.




“I’m glad I don’t live on a 200 acre farm like you, Sam!” teased Sue as the two friends hurried into their Biology class.

“Why?” asked Sam, “Weren’t you just complaining about living in your parent’s downtown condo?”

“Well, that’s true,” Sue admitted, “But I was thinking about today’s class assignment on sustainability. I bet you have the biggest footprint in the whole class.”

Much to Sue’s surprise, Sam didn’t look all that concerned. He held out his hand and replied confidently, “I’ll take that bet!”

questions from footprint quiz
Questions from Footprint Quiz
  • Food: amount of meat, how much food is local
  • Goods: how much waste is produced
  • Shelter: size of home, number of people, availability of water and electricity
  • Mobility: kinds of transportation, car pooling, air time, fuel efficiency
  • Investigative case based learning (ICBL)
  • Using cases to meet diverse objectives
  • The case experience: A Day at the Bay

A Day at the Bay

Liam and his cousin Solana were enjoying their family reunion at Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay. His Mom explained how the family was descended from oystermen and crabbers, which made both of them curious about how to harvest oysters and crabs from the bay.

While waiting in line to purchase tickets for a

boat tour of the bay, Solana asked, “Can we

go crabbing?”

“Can we, Mom?” Liam echoed.

“Sorry, kids…” his Mom said with a

shrug, “this part of the Bay doesn’t

support commercial shell fishing anymore.”


The man selling tickets overheard their conversation. “There’s a good bayside sea grass project and blue crab life cycle display at the nature center,” he offered. “If you’d like to know more about the Bay, it’s a great place to learn.”

“I’d like to go,” Liam said, ”after we go boating?”

“… and flying,” Solana added, watching a seaplane slowly zigzag back and forth across the bay. “Do you think people are sightseeing up there?”


Workshop website:

objective remote sensing http mddnr chesapeakebay net eyesonthebay index cfm
Objective: Remote sensing