This case study gives students the opportunity to apply their understanding of biomolecules, specifically the nucleic acids and their monomers, and the central dogma of biology.
Before class, students prepare using a handout that outlines the learning objectives, topics to review, and an introduction to the case study.
In this case scenario, students must work together to understand and create the molecular structure of DNA in response to news of a scientific discovery, which was based on stolen data.
In groups, for Part A, students identify the parts of a nucleotide and discuss questions about its components and links. For Part B, students create four nucleotides and discuss questions related to bonds and chemical groups. In Part C, referring to the stolen data printout, students work together to create a DNA strand and identify specific components. During the group work, the instructor pauses several times to review progress and answers before the class moves on to the next part.
Finally, students take the remaining 30-40 minutes to work together to complete the assessment, a continuation of Part C, where they apply their learning to answer questions regarding the case. These responses allow them to explain the discovery and analyze the structure of DNA further.
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