Puzzled about a topic in biology? Need a biologist to answer your question? Ask A Biologist can help.
Ask A Biologist is a free web-based biology learning resource created by staff at the Arizona State University primarily for use by K–12 students and teachers. The website functions as an online intermediary between learners seeking an answer to a biology-related question and professionals in the field of biology who volunteer to answer the questions in a timely manner.
Ask A Biologist has answered more than 34,000 biology questions. The questions submitted vary widely and include queries about biology, and a large number of questions about careers in biology.
Ask A Biologist is housed in a robust biology learning website that opens to a home page highlighting one the sites many learning resources. The top menus also invite the visitor to explore the world of biology with activities that include games and simulations, stories, and images. For the educator, there is a handy teacher toolbox.
In the top of the page navigation link area is “Ask a Question.” Clicking here takes the user directly to the question entry form. Questions are easily entered here and answers are offered by email or regular mail (in the event the user does not have email). The page includes many guidelines to help users submitting a question.
Ask A Biologist only answers questions for school age children grades K-12 and K-12 teachers. Parents are welcome to help formulate question submissions for their children. The website does not answer homework or school assignment questions or help with science fair ideas. Links to other sites are offered here to help with these types of inquiries.
Interactions with working scientists and researchers are not always easy or convenient for K-12 teachers and learners. Ask A Biologist offers a free tool that can link the student, or the class, with a biologist to explore a question in more detail. As is indicated by the questions submitted to the website, these questions can be about a deep interest students may have in a career in biology as well as a perplexing issue in biology: “Is a Macadamia nut really a seed, or a nut?” “How does eye color get passed from parents to children?” “Does brain size relate to intelligence?” These questions have all been asked and answered by Ask A Biologist volunteers and are posted on the site.
Also of value, as a professionally trained biology teacher you may also apply to volunteer at Ask A Biologist via the website.
About the Creators:
Ask A Biologist began in 1997 in the Arizona State University School of Life Sciences as a biology learning resource tool for students, teachers, parents, and life-long learners. The site continues to be developed, and maintained by a dedicated group of volunteers. Funding support for the project has been received over the years from many sources including the National Science Foundation, Arizona State University, the National STEM Distributed Learning program, the National Center for Research Resources (NCRR) and others.