Microbiology Online: Free resources for teachers

The Society for General Microbiology (SGM) has launched Microbiology Online – a new web site for biology teachers and technicians in schools and colleges. The site is packed with information and resources to support microbiology teaching at all key stages and post-16 level.

In return for completing an on-line feedback form the SGM are offering schools the chance to win either a World of Microbes teaching pack for KS2 or a bioreactor kit worth £105, which is suitable for KS3/4 and post-16. The closing date for entries is 19 July 2002.

Many free resources can be downloaded or ordered on-line including fact sheets on how to run safe microbiology practicals; sets of posters on food safety and microbes in the environment; and competitions for schools from the SGM and our sister body MISAC (Microbiology in Schools Advisory Committee).

The website offers an instruction manual, which covers setting up a lab to the disposal of contaminated waste. A booklet containing 22 tried and tested practical investigations that have been matched to the curriculum for KS3/4 will be available soon. Details are also available on SGM’s new subsidised basic practical microbiology training courses for secondary teachers and technicians, and the microbiology summer school for post-16 teachers.

Fact files are available on an expanding number of topics, which include Rhizobium root nodules and nitrogen fixation; and biofilms. Articles from Microbiology Today magazine provide background reading on topical news items such as BSE: the big issues; new drugs for superbugs; and genetically modified crops. There is also an opportunity to ‘ask the expert’ by e-mailing questions, the answers to which will be displayed on the web site.

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Tracey Duncombe alphagalileo

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