Photo: Dr. McCleery
For students studying ecology and evolution, it's important to experience the processes and concepts they are learning about nature in nature. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, however, field-based courses rapidly transitioned to online-only delivery. An article published in Ecology and Evolution discusses the potential advantages of pairing an intensive lab experience with otherwise online delivery.
The authors note that a short but intensive time period in the field may be better than the traditional low-intensity weekly lab structure because it allows a group to be tested and isolated, offers more flexibility for students with competing interests for their time, and enhances student interpersonal skills.
"With our rapid pivot to online instruction, it is more important than ever to ensure our students have the meaningful field-based experience," said co-author Robert McCleery, Ph.D., of the University of Florida.