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Putting the Touch into Biology

If you think of the instruments used to study and explore the world of biology it is clear that most are visual.  So what if you cannot see? How would you understand the structure of – say a cell?   Dr. Biology discusses a new tool for learning about biology with newly graduated student and biologist Ashleigh Gonzales.

Content Info | Transcript


MP3 download | 15MB

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Topic Time
Introduction. 00:00
Many biologists pursue a graduate school degree. 01:16
What was the focus of your graduate research? 01:45
Describing these tactile images. 02:12
What have you learned from testing these out these images? 02:34
Exploring inner and outer space with tactile images. 03:22
Ashleigh's personal connection to the research. 04:12
Getting involved in this project. 05:06
Revolutionary idea. 05:47
Feeling the cell division tile. 06:23
What did you get from using the tile? 07:06
Public participation research with tactile tiles. 07:40
Improving performances of sighted students as well. 08:29
Improved performance in the classroom. 09:00
Future of these tools. 09:20
How many kinds of tactile tiles do you have? 10:18
Collaborating with NASA. 10:51
The cost of making the tiles. 11:21
Funding options and TactilEyes. 11:54
Figuring out a career path. 12:37
What were some of the challenges you faced in school? 13:24
What were the best and worse things about being a graduate student? 14:31
Has the campus design at ASU been good or bad for you? 15:15
Working with guide dogs or canes. 16:50
What is different for you in the classroom? 17:20
What other tools helped you through graduate school? 18:39
Do you really use your other senses more? 19:34
Can you describe what it's like to be visually impaired? 20:50
What are your future plans? 22:47
Who were your advisors for this project? 23:39
Tactile ultrasounds and other similar projects. 24:30
Three questions. 25:19
When did you first know you wanted to be a biologist? 25:30
If you couldn't teach or study biology, what would you do? 26:20
Favorite authors. 26:58
What advice do you have for young biologists, especially those who face adversity? 27:34
First generation graduate. 28:35
Sign-off 29:26

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Putting the Touch into Biology

Audio editor: CJ Kazilek

Student using TactilEey Board

New tactile surface boards are adding touch to the world of biology for visually impaired and sighted students.

Learn more about sight and vision in our story How Do We See?

Share to Google Classroom

Be part of Ask A Biologist

by volunteering, or simply sending us feedback on the site. Scientists, teachers, writers, illustrators, and translators are all important to the program. If you are interested in helping with the website we have a Volunteer page to get the process started.

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Student using TactilEey Board

New tactile surface boards are adding touch to the world of biology for visually impaired and sighted students.

Learn more about sight and vision in our story How Do We See?

Share to Google Classroom

Be part of Ask A Biologist

by volunteering, or simply sending us feedback on the site. Scientists, teachers, writers, illustrators, and translators are all important to the program. If you are interested in helping with the website we have a Volunteer page to get the process started.