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Welcome to the Life DiscoveryEd Digital Library (LDDL), an online resource portal for biology education in ecology, plant biology and evolution. This project is a partnership of the Ecological Society of America, the Botanical Society of America and the Society for the Study of Evolution, collectively, the Life Discovery Partners. Launched in March 2013, this project was made possible by a major grant from the National Science Foundation. Currently, you will find that most resources are appropriate for undergraduate audiences.

The Life Discovery Partners are committed to bringing quality resources to educators free of charge based on the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) license. Teaching activities, data sets and figure sets on the site are peer-reviewed and accepted for educational use by one of the partners. Other resources such as images and syllabi have been reviewed by a Resource Editor.

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Contribute your Ideas!

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We welcome contributions to our growing number of resources for middle and high school audiences that align with the Next Generation Science Standards.

You will be able to share images, syllabi, labs, lectures, figures, videos, classroom activities and data sets in LifeDiscoveryEdDL. We're here to assist you to submit your resource.

To submit a resource. You will need to select one of the three participating portals to initiate the review process:

EcoEd Digital Library

PlantEd Digital Library

EvoEd Digital Library

 
New Resources
View Resource Testing hypotheses about behavioral interactions between cats, coyotes, and birds at carcasses

In this activity, students will play the role of a field biologist quantifying and explaining animal behavior using the scientific method (observation – hypothesis – prediction – test). Powerpoint slides contain a series of photos of scavengers at deer carcasses. Students will form hypotheses about the behavioral interactions in the photos, then make predictions that could be used to test their...

View Resource Case Study on Mark and Recapture

Estimating the population size of animals is an important task for wildlife biologists, who can use the data to assess the health of a population. It requires diligent observation skills coupled with the ability to use empirical models that effectively determine the number of animals based on field surveys. The most common method for estimating the population size of animals is mark and recapture....

View Resource Life Cycle Analysis and Assessment of Crop Production Methods

Students use their ecological knowledge of soil processes, energy, water systems, and human interactions to compare the environmental impact of food production. Each group of 3-4 students develop life cycle analyses (LCA) for a single crop grown under different scenarios. As individuals, students are responsible for developing two LCA for that crop, and then together in their groups, they compile...

View Resource Simulating Sampling Communities and Calculating Diversity Indices with Scrabble Game Tiles

Using tiles from a Scrabble game, we present methods to create simulations of sampling exercises and to develop diversity indices. The tiles represent species, and so a known sampling universe (100 tiles) allows comparing a sample with the known distribution of species. We then offer several variations to simulate different kinds of sampling (larger sample size, more samples), alter the rarity...

View Resource Measuring Soil Microbial Activity

This activity examines how soil microbes, such as bacteria and fungi, are involved in carbon cycling. Students design experiments to explore the relationship between microbial respiration rates and soil variables such as temperature, habitat, soil type, and agricultural management choices. Four methods for measuring CO2 released from soil are provided, one in the field (CO2 probe), and three in...