Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Furlong and McFarlane Win MicrobeLibrary Curriculum Resource Editor’s Choice Award

The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) has honored Clayton State University’s Dr. Michelle Furlong and Renee McFarlane with the 2008 MicrobeLibrary Curriculum Resource Editor’s Choice Award for their article, “Immunity and the Spread of Influenza Within a Population Department of Natural Sciences.”

The MicrobeLibrary Editor’s Choice Awards were created by ASM to spotlight excellence and raise the status and visibility of research into teaching and learning in microbiology education and allied disciplines. Selected by ASM’s Curriculum Resources Editorial Committee, the Curriculum Resource Award is given to one curriculum resource published in the past year that exemplifies the criteria for publication in MicrobeLibrary. Furlong and McFarlane’s article was selected above all of those published in the MicrobeLibrary Curriculum Collection in 2007.

Furlong is interim department head of Natural Sciences and an associate professor of Biology in the Clayton State College of Arts & Sciences. McFarlane is an instructor of Biology. Together, they created a classroom activity that teaches about the influenza virus – a particularly timely subject given the still-relevant issues of a possible Avian Flu epidemic.

“Renee and I created a new activity for the microbiology classroom that teaches students about the influenza virus, immunity and the spread of influenza in a population,” explains Furlong about their award-winning activity. “In our publication we explained how to conduct the activity in the classroom and we presented data that showed that the activity enhanced our students’ understanding of immunity, spread of disease and the influenza vaccine.”

MicrobeLibrary is a founding partner of the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s BiosciEdNet Collaborative (, a portal sponsored by the National Science Foundation’s National Science Digital Library ( MicrobeLibrary, which has won many citations and media accolades, is the first service of its kind and continues to be recognized as one of the best resources for science information.

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