Science Without Borders: PEER Gets International Attention With Histology Videos
Posted September 27, 2017
The CVM PEER program reached more than 101,000 students last
year through its online resources and presentations to youth all
over the state.
Knowledge of histology is important in understanding cell
biological structure and function, disease states, and therapeutic
Digital histologic images, online lessons, and YouTube videos
provide a mechanism to bring high-quality histology to the world
with visualizations available anywhere and anytime without the need
for a microscope.
To increase education on histology, the Texas A&M College of
Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences’ (CVM) PEER program
created YouTube videos and PowerPoint lessons that were placed
online so that the information would be available worldwide, and at
no cost to users.
As a result of that project, the YouTube channel devoted to
histology has received 598,714 views, 72 percent of which have
come from international guests.
“Students interest in animals crosses all borders and cultures,”
said Torri Whitaker, PEER Program STEM content
specialist. “PEER has effectively harnessed this interest and
is, thereby, able to inspire young people to pursue veterinary
science and STEM education and careers.”
The lessons, both videos and PowerPoints, were made for three
groups of students—freshmen undergraduate, upper-class
undergraduate and medical students—and cover most of the body. In
addition, PEER has created PowerPoint lessons for most of the
animal body, which are available for veterinary students.
The PowerPoint slides also have hyperlinks to access the
corresponding digital histologic images, which allow students to
visualize—via a computer, tablet, or phone—the digital images as if
they were looking through a microscope themselves, according to
Larry Johnson, professor in the CVM’s department of Veterinary
Integrative Biosciences and PEER principal investigator.
The PEER YouTube channel has more than 7,718 subscribers since
its inception in January 2013.
“The videos have received several comments from all over the
world,” Johnson said. “One medical student from South Africa
commented that she needed a histology instructor and now she has a
Over the last year, teachers and others who are interested in
science have downloaded more than 50,200 times the curricular
materials available from the PEER website, while videos have
received almost 12,000 views during the same time period.
In addition, more than 101,000 students have participated in
veterinary-related STEM webcasts offered by PEER, representing 40
states across the U.S.
“The large continued impact of PEER resources demonstrates the
high demand of teachers and students for materials that provide
real-world application of science standards,” Whitaker said.
“Educators have many standards- and information-based resources
available to them, but few of these resources make direct
application of that information to actual careers.
“Further, the careers and professionals PEER showcases are those
in which students have an innate interest, as they relate to
themselves or another living creature with which they have a
relationship,” she said.
The videos are available at http://www.youtube.com/vibshistology
and the PowerPoint resources are available at http://peer.tamu.edu/histology.asp.
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