Professor authors Anatomy and Physiology textbook

Dr. Patrick Brown POGIL

JOHNSON CITY (Sept. 9, 2015) – Dr. Patrick Brown, assistant professor in the Department of Health Sciences for the College of Public Health at East Tennessee State University, has authored an anatomy and physiology textbook that utilizes a teaching method known as Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning, or POGIL.

The textbook, titled Anatomy and Physiology: A Guided Inquiry, was published by Wiley and includes 37 activities that introduce students to the concepts of anatomy and physiology and reinforce the concepts through guided critical thinking and application questions. 

POGIL originated in college chemistry departments in 1994; there are now well over 1,000 implementers in a wide range of disciplines in high schools and colleges around the country. It is a student-centered instructional approach that simultaneously develops content mastery and key process skills like critical thinking, effective communication and teamwork. The method uses guided inquiry – a learning cycle of exploration, concept invention and application – as the basis for many of the carefully designed materials that students use to guide them to construct new knowledge. 

“I want these students to start thinking like scientists,” Brown said. “I want them to think about, ‘How do we solve problems through experimentation?’”

Brown was the first person to develop POGIL materials for teaching anatomy and physiology. In addition to the recent textbook, he has published articles on teaching both parasitology and anatomy and physiology with the POGIL method. For over five years he has been providing his counterparts with online access to POGIL materials for use in health science education.

In a POGIL classroom, students work in small groups on specially designed materials. Those materials supply students with data or information for interpretation followed by guiding questions to lead them toward the formulation of their own valid conclusions. The professor serves as a facilitator, observing and periodically addressing individual and classroom-wide needs.

Brown, who was recently highlighted in Spring 2015 edition of “The POGIL Inquirer,” focuses his research on teaching and learning in undergraduate science classrooms. 

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