Using digital technology to count fish and sponges and assess their differences was the topic of a recent “MTSU On the Record” radio program.
Host Gina Logue’s interview with Dr. Anna Grinath, an assistant professor in MTSU’s Department of Biology, first aired July 17 on WMOT-FM Roots Radio 89.5 and online at www.wmot.org. You can listen to their conversation above.
Grinath is one of two recipients of the 2018-19 James E. Walker Library Digital Seed Grants. The university library allots stipends each year to faculty members who have imaginative ways to use technology to improve teaching methods.
For her project, Grinath will employ three-dimensional models of coral reef sponges and freshwater fish created on 3D printers in the library’s Makerspace area to explain population sampling and variation within populations.
“Oftentimes, we’re not going to be able to measure every single individual in a population,” Grinath said. “What we need to do is to collect a sample of individuals from a population, measure those and, then, we’ve got tools that allow us to make inferences about the entire population based on a sample.”
Variation within a population of creatures can be created by mutation of chromosomes, random mating and random fertilization, among other factors.
To hear previous “MTSU On the Record” programs, visit the searchable “Audio Clips” archives at www.mtsunews.com.
For more information about “MTSU On the Record,” contact Logue at 615-898-5081 or WMOT-FM at 615-898-2800.