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Maureen Leonard (rr)
Mount Mary University
Antibiotic Resistance: Can We Ever Win?

Resistance to antibiotics arose very shortly after these "wonder drugs" were first introduced.  This case study examines resistance to the most commonly used antibiotics, penicillin and its derivatives.  In particular, it examines a recent study that shows potential for restoring susceptibility to these antibiotics in MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus).  The case provides students with opportunities to collect and analyze data as well as interpret data from the new study.  The case was designed for use in an introductory college level biology or microbiology course.  Measuring, calculating means and standard errors, and graphing techniques are included, and this case can be used to introduce them or serve as practice.  The case can also be used in upper-level courses for the purpose of practicing data collection and analysis.

Everyone Knows Girls Are Bad at Math, Right?! 

This case study explores the biology and culture of sex and gender, and focuses on the science and pseudoscience that surrounds this topic, especially focusing on math performance.  The case leads students to seek out and evaluate popular culture references to gender differences and gender norms in terms of their scientific validity.  Then students examine the concepts of biological sex, gender, and how these may not be the same.  The scientific evidence for differences in math performance are examined and evaluated and the statistical approach to meta-analysis is introduced, as well as the phenomenon of stereotype threat.  Discussion of what are "real" differences between the genders is also explored.  Portions of the case are presented in the flipped fashion. The case was originally written for an introductory biology course, but could also be used in any developmental biology or human biology course. It could also be used in psychology, gender studies, or even in a general education course.