Euglena is one of the most famous unicellular organisms in the water. This organism has characteristics of both plant and animal, and can be utilized effectively as teaching materials in understanding the mechanism of moving and the process of asexual reproduction. Euglena sanguinea Ehrenberg is the typical species making the water red on the water surface of ponds or paddy fields. Using video-recorded pictures of this species, we developed a video program as a teaching material entitled “The Life and Reproduction of Euglena”. This is a 7-minute video program showing the various stages of the life cycle in this species. The video program was tried out at biology classes in the senior high school to assess the effectiveness in teaching the reproduction. The results were as follows: (1) The Students could make progress with their motivation for the learning and observation of living things. (2) The students were able to obtain some important information on the life and reproduction on this organism. (3) The students were greatly moved hy the scene of the excystment process of the cells.
“SimRiver” is a type of simulation software. It was developed for students to increase their understanding of the relationship among human activities, river water quality, and diatom communities. We applied “SimRiver” in four classes, namely, two high-school classes, one junior high-school class, and one extramural class for junior- and high-school students, and analyzed the reactions of students via a questionnaire survey. The results indicated that many students preferred to study with the simulator. Although the students were unfamiliar with diatoms and beginners in micro-organism classification usually find it difficult to identify diatoms, the built-in identification support system of “SimRiver” simplified the identification process and the students accomplished it in a short time. The use of this interactive educational tool motivated the students and increased their understanding of the purpose of learning, regardless of their age and academic performance. However, TWINSPAN analysis indicated that nearly 40% of the students did not demonstrate an interest in the learning content, because they were interested only in the simulator. It is necessary to direct their attention to the original aim of learning with the simulator. Further strategy for improving the class is discussed with the use of information technology.
The self-evaluation of their understanding by students does not match their final grade (teacher evaluation) well. In the present paper, the author investigated the relationship between the self-evaluation of engineering major students who had almost no experience of biology education in high school, and their examination results over the three years of a biology course. No significant correlation was found between the scores, suggesting that student self-evaluation was unreliable. On the other hand, both the evaluation of the teacher by the students and their examination results increased year by year. This suggests that the capability of the teacher is an important factor in boosting self-confidence and understanding of the subject.