June 15, 2007 (Vol. 27, No. 12)


Strong Points: Good interactive exercises
Weak Points: Options very limited for biologists

Looking for interactive, online simulations for the life sciences? Have I got a URL for you. Enter the sciencecourseware address above into your browser and then sit back and peruse the offerings at this education-based site. Serving interests from the geological and environmental sciences to biology, Sciencecourseware provides interactive simulations, tutorials, and inquiry-based activities. All good, to be sure, but there is also a big ‘Gotcha.’ The actual offerings online that are freely available, at least for the biological sciences, are pretty limited. They consist of an exercise in Drosophila inheritance and several things listed as ‘in development’ or coming soon. If you click on the Biology Labs Online, you discover a group of 12 different lab activities, but access to the full content requires a paid subscription to Benjamin Cummings’ website. Hmm. The geologists and environmental scientists have it better off with several apparently free offerings. Let’s hope biologists get equality here and soon.

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