Christopher Blanar & Mylene Levesque (blanlev at CAM.ORG) wrote:
: I am looking for videos for a university-level parasitology course. If
: anyone has any ideas they would be greatly appreciated.
: I am also interested in how various professors run their lab sessions,
: what is taught, what dissections performed, innovative ideas, evaluation
: methods... what works, what doesn't, etc.
Hi, I'm not actually a lab instructor or a prof, but I have recently
completed a parasitology course with a lab and lecture components. The
lab consisted of looking at slides of various parasites working from
protazoa up to arthropod parasites. We had occasional dissections done
for us, consisting of cutting open a termite to see its intestinal
parasites, and I think we had a snail cut open but that was about all for
dissections. We also had living or fairly close to living ie. was on the
verge of dying sticklebacks which had ectoparasites living on them.
Evaluation for the lab was something like 65% lab exam, 30% lab book and
5% for enthusiasm for the course ie. showing up for the labs and taking
an interest. The lab book was simply drawings of the various parasites we
looked at on the slide and some comments made on the importance or what
was special about the parasite or its group. The lab exam was look at the
slide tell us what it is and then a second question for the slide was
what disease does the parasite cause, what symptoms does it cause, or in
one case should we worry about having this parasite or is it harmless.
Additional questions included what stage is the parasite in and what is
I would suggest avoiding the look at the slide and draw it option as it
is incredibly boring and as our prof admitted 95% of what we saw would be
forgotten within half an hour of the test. Furthermore, what we
remembered was quite limited as the tests appear to have been quite
heavily scaled as lab marks were generally much higher than the students
I personally would have preferred doing something where we look at one
sample from each major grouping to get the idea of hey this is what X
looks like. Then from there go out into the local area and see if you can
map out the life cycle of some local parasite. For example find some
snail discover it has a parasite in it. Figure out who gets the next
stage and try and find the parasite in the next host. I was supposed to
do something like that in my Ecological Parasitology course but
unfortunatly the class was short on students and so funding for a lab
instructor was not provided and we did not get to do the project and are
instead writing a review paper.