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William D. Rogers
Department of Biology
Ball State University
I Can Quit Anytime I Want: The Biological Basis of Euphoria and Addiction

This “clicker case” explores the biological basis for the temporary euphoria that accompanies drug use as well as certain aspects of the biological basis of drug dependency. The case is called a clicker case because it is designed for use with personal response systems (aka clickers). The case itself is a PowerPoint presentation (~2.7 MB) punctuated by multiple-choice questions that students answer in class using clickers. It could be adapted for use without these technologies. The case was developed for use in a large introductory biology course for both majors and non-majors.

I Don't Need a Flu Shot! 

In this “clicker case,” Ryan, a college student, receives an email from the campus health education office urging students to get a flu shot. Ryan thinks it is too late since he just had the stomach flu, and besides, even if he did catch it, he would just take antibiotics. Fortunately, his girlfriend Ashley is able to correct these and other commonly held misconceptions. In learning about the dangers of flu and how to prevent becoming sick, students also learn about viral mutations (antigenic drift) and viral recombination (genetic shift). The case was written for a large introductory biology course for both science majors and non-majors that makes use of personal response systems (“clickers”). In class, the instructor presents the case using a PowerPoint presentation (~1.6 MB) punctuated by multiple choice questions that students answer with their clickers. The case could be adapted for use without these technologies.

Life, The Final Frontier: A Case Study on the Characteristics of Life

Designed for high school and college-level introductory biology courses, the goal of this "clicker case" is to get students to think about what it means for something to be alive by defining the characteristics of living organisms and applying these to living, nonliving, and previously living objects. The case does this within the framework of a fictional scenario in which the President of the United States must decide whether to announce that NASA has discovered extraterrestrial life. However, NASA is not sure how to define their discovery. The case combines the use of student personal response systems (clickers) with case teaching methods and formats. It is presented in class using a series of PowerPoint slides (~1MB) punctuated by questions (called "clicker questions") that students respond to before moving on to the next slide. The case could be adapted and used without these technologies.

Stem Cells: Promises to Keep? Clicker Case Version 

This clicker case is based upon the case "Stem Cells: Promises to Keep" written by Lauren E. Yaich and published by the National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science. The case is formatted as a PowerPoint presentation (1.5 MB) punctuated by questions that students answer in class using personal response systems (commonly known as "clickers"). Students learn about a fictional couple, Samantha and Brad, who became parents by the process of in vitro fertilization. They still have frozen embryos, and a television program on stem cells leads them to a discussion of the uses they might be put these to and the ethical dilemmas this would present. The case provides an introduction to stem cells and is designed for use in introductory biology courses for both science majors and non-majors.