The field of biomaterials, while still rapidly growing, is rooted in foundational materials science and immunology. Here, we require a 3 credit, introductory biomaterials course (~115 students) called “Biological Interactions with Materials” and employ Ratner’s “Biomaterials Science: An Introduction to Materials in Medicine” textbook. Over the last 20 years, the text itself has grown from 484 pages in the first edition to 864 pages in the second edition and to now 1573 pages in the latest, third edition. Covering this volume of material and detail in a one semester introductory course has become increasing challenging. To accommodate this growing body of knowledge, as well as growth in our student population, we went from a completely lecture-based course to a blended model using well documented active learning strategies [1-4]. The format we employed utilizes online lectures covering the foundational materials science, immunology, and traditional application of biomaterials. The in-class time was then repurposed for three activities: 1. lectures on the latest research and applications in the field, 2. group discussions around case-studies, and 3. hands-on laboratories. While the online material received mixed reviews, the repurposed activities were appreciated and improvements were seen in final exam scores.
Are you a researcher? Would you like to cite this paper?
Visit the ASEE document repository at
for more tools and easy citations.