Students will be able to analyze data quantitatively and develop testable models of that data.
Here at Longwood there is a big emphasis on analyzing data quantitatively and conducting testable models of data starting from your first Biology course. I have had the chance to run multiple experiments where I had to analyze data and come up with valid results to share my findings on the issue. Specifically, I had the chance to do this in my Biology 250: Introduction to cell and Molecular Biology, Biology 251: Introduction to ecology and evolution, and Biology 301: Comprehensive human anatomy and physiology.
In Biology 250, we conducted a semester long project on the isolation of yeast in green apples. This project was a great learning experience because I had to run multiple tests from the data to get the conclusions I needed. I had to run PCR tests for this project and look at the PCR results and see my findings. I also had to run a BLAST analysis and read those results as well as create a phylogenetic tree from the cluster analysis. This course by itself was a lot of work and I was still learning and just starting my undergraduate career but coming out of this class I was prepared to learn and conduct more research in higher level courses.
In my Biology 251 course I also had to conduct a semester long project. This project was on the effects of water quality on species diversity in lancer parks big pond. This experiment was very exciting for me and I learned so much through analyzing the data. I had to make a lot of graphs in excel and run the data through R to put the information in excel. It was a great learning experience for me and really has helped me in my upper level courses.
In Biology 301, I conducted another semester long project where we studied the heart health and stress in college students. Through this project we had to conduct data analysis through excel. We had to create graphs with the data we collected from the experiment. This class taught me more about data analysis and how to make graphs.
Throughout my time at Longwood I have had the chance to conduct so many experiments where I had to analyze data at the end. I am still to this day utilizing my skills in analyzing data quantitatively and developing testable models of data through my courses. I will be able to take this skill and apply it in my graduate courses and my future career.