Lin, C. C., Zhang, M., Beck, B., & Olsen, G. (2009). Embedding computer science concepts in K-12 science curricula. In ACM SIGCSE Bulletin (Vol. 41, No. 1, pp. 539-543). New York: ACM.


Type: Other

Purpose: "With help from regional K-12 science teachers, we have successfully identified some computer science concepts and embedded them in the existing subjects of K-12 science. Developmental workshops were organized for the teachers to help them better develop their curricula. We chose bioinformatics as a vehicle to do it, as bioinformatics is an interdisciplinary field and uses computer technologies and computational tools to model, analyze, present, visualize, and manage biological data" (p. 539).

Findings: "It has been three years since we started this project in late 2005. We have followed up with our workshop participants and collected feedback from them for assessing the curriculum units we have developed. Among the fifteen participants, thirteen of them have adapted what they have learned and developed in our workshops into their teaching. The following is a brief summary. 1. Eleven teach biology primarily, one teaches earth science, and the other teaches math/computer science. 2. Eleven teach either 9 to 12 grades at high school, two teach 7 or 8 grade at middle school, and one also works with elementary schools. 3. Bioinformatics has been used in teaching DNA/RNA, evolution, genetic engineering, genetics, taxonomy, and human migration in various levels of biology, earth science, AP CS project, and independent study. 4. On-line databases, BLAST, phylogenetic trees, sequence alignment algorithms are adapted" (p. 542, 543).