Volume 16 | Issue 13 | 11 | Jun. 24, 2002

On the Disappearance of Biology Labs

On the Disappearance of Biology Labs, 1 ...
After reading this article on the potential disappearance of laboratory-based biology courses across the United States,1 I would like to cite one tangible effect of the loss of these courses in California that we have witnessed. During the last couple of decades, the number of universities in California offering basic laboratory courses including work with infectious agents (e.g., microbiology, medical microbiology) has dropped precipitously in favor of molecular-based venues. Key reasons for these changes include student interest in new wave molecular technology and fiscal limitations. The end result, however, has been a dwindling pool of qualified college graduates with appropriate upper and lower division courses that make them eligible for training and certification as public health microbiologists in California. Currently we...

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