Nina Parker, Shenandoah University
Copyright Year: 2016
ISBN 13: 9781938168147
Publisher: OpenStax CNX
Conditions of Use
This covers the basics of microbiology, starting with a brief history of microbiology and the impact microbes have had on humans. The text covers the application of genetics in Microbiology research, microbial metabolism to provide a background on... read more
This covers the basics of microbiology, starting with a brief history of microbiology and the impact microbes have had on humans. The text covers the application of genetics in Microbiology research, microbial metabolism to provide a background on the function of microbes before delving into their role in diseases and human health. This text is ideal for students planning to pursue a health related field. The book is missing several key words in the metabolism section, like lithotroph, chemotroph, and autotroph. There is no mention of reverse electron flow in the section on phototrophs. The glyoxylate pathway is missing and there is no mention of Gibbs free energy. From a public health perspective, this book is missing a section on indicator organisms and how they are used for water quality monitoring. However, it does do an excellent job covering early epidemiologists John Snow and Florence Nightingale. The immunology section was much easier to read and understand than my current textbook.
The content is presented in an unbiased manner. The content provided is accurate, but their are errors of omission and errors of over simplification. For example, the nitrogen cycle is described as having only three steps: denitrification, nitrification, and nitrogen fixation. These aren't really steps, they are multistep processes. There are many other steps in the nitrogen cycle that are not included here.
The content will not become outdated quickly. It is easy to build on the content that is provided. This is both a strength and a weakness. With commercial text books, each chapter provides too much information and I can delete the excess info. With this text book it would be necessary to spend time providing additional content to increase the depth. The content provided will not become obsolete because it is cursory information that is unlikely to change. It is easier to delete excess information than it is to produce new content to supplement the text. The latter option is probably a better education experience for students, but it is a substantial time commitment for faculty.
This book is very easy to read, but I worry that it does not meet the academic standard necessary for an upper-level biology course at a 4-year college.
The textbook is highly consistent and easy to follow. One of it's advantages is how easy it is to read and the clarity of the diagrams and figures.
The book is highly modular and it is easy to embed sections into the LMS for students to read. The review questions at the end of each unit are also very thorough.
The book follows the standard set up of other text books, beginning with a short history of microbiology, moving into the structure of a cell, how prokaryotes are different than eukaryotes, moves on to discuss genetics, biochemistry and metabolism, and finishes with microbes and human health. It is logical and well organized.
I really liked the interface. The online rendering produced detailed images that were in line with the text. I thought the text was broken up into digestible pieces with clear and easy to read diagrams interspersed. The layout was well thought out.
I did not discern any grammatical errors in the text.
The book is culturally sensitive and presents discussions of disease spread and nomenclature using correct and unbiased terminology.
I was impressed with the chapters at the beginning of the book and at the end of the book. The middle chapters that are not focused on what makes a microbe or on human health are the chapters I would like to see increase in detail and depth.
The breadth of topics covered would be good for a range of at least undergraduate-level micro courses. This is definitely a strength of the text. read more
The breadth of topics covered would be good for a range of at least undergraduate-level micro courses. This is definitely a strength of the text.
I did not see any content errors during my review.
I really like the later sections dealing with newer methods being used to study microbes, as well as the organ system specific infection chapters. Though the book is clearly written for students interested in the health professions, I think that the text is also applicable to those interested in other applications of microbiology. Some of these non-medical applications may also be added in later iterations as well.
The book was clear in the writing style and easy to understand.
The language and terminology throughout the book was clear and consistent.
It would be fairly easy to customize teaching from different sections of the text to meet the specific needs of my students.
I think that the overall organization of the text was great. There are some sections that require updating however as newer technologies are now being used in medical and academic research that are not included in the current iteration.
The interface is clean and straight-forward. I do also really like the links that are available to access additional information resources for selected topics. This is a really neat feature.
I did not see any grammatical errors.
As with many STEM texts, the best described history of the beginning of this field only includes white men. A suggestion would be to layer in examples from more contemporary science as new discoveries are made to more evenly distribute the representation within the book. Additionally, there are some historical references from at least the early 1900's that could be added in so that contributions from women and scientists of color are recognized among science students.
I would be interested in using this book for future microbiology classes. I think that as a reference for some basic concepts it is a great tool for students. As an instructor, I also appreciate the instructor tools that are available, given the format of the book (OER). Some updating would improve the text, both for content and representation of scientists, but overall, it is a great text.
The comprehensiveness of the text is in line with a commercial publisher's Microbiology text. The approach is different, and this text spends the initial several chapters introducing the topic of Microbiology in a survey type fashion. Instructors... read more
The comprehensiveness of the text is in line with a commercial publisher's Microbiology text. The approach is different, and this text spends the initial several chapters introducing the topic of Microbiology in a survey type fashion. Instructors will need to take care not to lose the students interest as they introduce the material in the first 6 chapters followed immediately by 3 chapters covering Biochemistry, Metabolism and Growth. Students find the content of these 3 chapters drastically different than the first 6, and instructors should consider reordering the 3 chapters and the remaining content to provide a smoother transition from microbial phenotypic traits to genotypic traits.
I have used the text in a 3000 level introductory Microbiology course for one semester, and found it to be free of errors, accurate and unbiased. The authors have done a great job of editing the text.
Commercial textbooks in the field of Microbiology are updated every 3 to 5 years, this text is currently in the fourth edition and is mostly up to date. An example, the section on recent viral outbreaks such and Zika and Ebola. One area that required some updating was the section on horizontal gene transfer, which was easily updated. The figures included with the text are not of the same quality one finds in commercial texts and are more sparingly present throughout the text. Both of these issues can be addressed by the instructor, possibly by supplementing the text with both additional and higher quality figures.
I used a commercial Microbiology text in the spring semester and this text in the fall semester. Both classes had approximately 130 students with similar backgrounds and preparation. Although the students appreciated free access to the text book, the quality and frequency of the figures was an issue for some students. "The pictures from the textbook did not go in depth to understand the material well enough.". "The figures supplied were not the best, please revise them.".
The text flowed well from chapter to chapter and it was not apparent that multiple authors had been used. The chapter quizzes were well liked by the students as well as the online interactive quizzes.
I found the chapters and sections self-contained and free standing. This made it very easy to rearrange the order and delete sections to fit the needs of the course and the students.
The flow to this text is well organized. It follows a logical approach. I personally prefer presenting the "Genes and Genomes" topics before microbial metabolism, and it was easy to rearrange the order of presentation for the students. Additionally, my course is a semester course and time is always a factor, some chapters contain information that I believe is covered in other required courses and I was able to easily create a "customized" course/textbook for our students.
I had no issues with the interface and it loaded easily into Canvas.
I did not find any grammatical errors in the text book.
I did not find anything that I believe could be interpreted as offensive or culturally insensitive during my use of this textbook.
In summary, this text was a reasonable replacement for the commercial text that I normally use. I have mixed feelings about continuing with it in the future. The free access for the students is a major plus and makes the decision a difficult one. As this text exists, the commercial Microbiology texts have a clear advantage in the quality and frequency of the figures as well as the PowerPoint outlines that are provided to instructors. This text would be much better if the instructor had the time to modify and add, probably double, the number of figures that accompany the text. The issue with this is finding a source for better quality and additional figures? Using figures from commercial texts is not a possibility and free-source figures are rare or not available for each topic and again the quality can be an issue. The text would benefit from a major effort from all the open users to contribute their individually generated figures to a data base that all users to access.
This textbook authored by Nina Parker et al. is a phenomenal OER with extensive coverage of fundamental microbiological topics for an audience of majors and/or allied health undergraduate students in alignment with curriculum guidelines of the... read more
This textbook authored by Nina Parker et al. is a phenomenal OER with extensive coverage of fundamental microbiological topics for an audience of majors and/or allied health undergraduate students in alignment with curriculum guidelines of the American Society of Microbiology (ASM). Each chapter provides a sufficient historical background regarding pioneers of scientific discoveries, advancements in scientific technologies, and global health impacts. The subject matter includes basic science, empirical and clinical reasonings, thus an impeccable textbook for aforementioned student demographics. This is evidenced in each chapter with Micro Connections, Clinical Focus/Case in Point, Eye on Ethics, and Link to Learning that provides contextualization of material, real-world applications, enhances critical thinking, and interactive/supplemental activities. Additionally, the authors elegantly provided fundamental supplements to physics, chemistry, mathematic basics, metabolic pathways, and taxonomy relevant to microbiology within the Appendix. It includes a thorough glossary of terminology and an index of symbols and terms with associated internal link to respective section (web-based) or page number (.pdf version). Lastly, as some previous reviewers and/or my colleagues have stated the textbook could be significantly enhanced with a chapter on Microbial Ecology and Applied Microbiology (included within Canadian Edition: Chapter 10) and comprehensive section/chapter on the Human Microbiome and associated health implications.
The content is presented accurately, inclusive of proper citing and footnotes at the end of each section. There were no evident errors in content nor chapter review answers (Answer Key), Glossary/Index. The textbook is written in an unbiased manner with appropriate attention to inclusiveness and cultural sensitivities. One particular example is highlighted in the background of Henrietta Lacks (Section 6.3) and the controversial/nonconsensual acquisition of her tumor cells, later immortalized and commercialized as HeLa cells. The text further proceeds to Eye on Ethics and promotes an unbiased approach to ethical and critical reasoning regarding current research standards, informed consent, or compensatory actions.
Overall the material presented is relevant and exhibits longevity. Several graphical depictions would be enhanced with current statistics, for instance epidemiological data can be updated to at least 2016 (instead of 2009/2010). Due to the textual arrangement necessary updates can be readily implemented, I’d suggest at minimum every two to three years for aforementioned examples.
The text is written in an adequately lucid manner with concise definitions and appropriate contextualization of all scientific/medical jargon. Subsections provide auxiliary explanations and background (e.g. summary/terminology tables, Micro Connections and Link to Learning). Figures and illustrations significantly enhance and supplement written text.
The text has an internally consistent framework, in which the reader can rapidly gain comfort in layout and presentation of material. Each chapter includes a brief introduction, learning objectives, subsections (e.g. Clinical Focus/Case in Point, Micro Connections, Eye on Ethics, or Link to Learning), Check Your Understanding, Summary, and Review Questions (multi-formatted). Terminology is consistent and discipline-appropriate with frequent repetition that aids effective learning.
The text is constructed in a readily divisible manner, if instructor desires to reorganize the material flow within the chapter or holistically. Subheadings are judiciously utilized to overwhelm the reader, thus allowing reorganization and realignment without disruption of logical flow.
The topics are presented in a logical style holistically and within chapters. It encapsulates foundational/historical elements, basic science fundamentals, and characterization of microbial categories (prokaryotes, eukaryotes, and acellular organisms), and associated pathogenesis/infection and immune responses. Due to the modularity of the text, it can be easily reorganized to fit the design and pace of course. As aforementioned in the Consistency section, the structure and flow of each chapter provides the reader a sense of navigational ease.
The text is void of significant interface issues, navigational problems or distortion of illustrations. I did encounter one broken link in Section 2.3 in Link to Learning (St. John’s University: Microscope Tutorials), but overall tremendous effort in attention to details. The Table of Contents interface on both web-based and .pdf versions is seamless and simple to navigate.
I did not encounter any grammatical errors, it was lucidly written and edited.
In the age of diversity and inclusivity, representation matters, most importantly, appropriate and non-stereotypical/unbiased and inoffensive representation matters. The authors succeeded at this mission, through the inclusion of diverse depictions of cultural backgrounds/ethnicities, genders, ages, geographies within illustrations, example names, historical pioneers/research figures, textual examples, and presented diversity of viewpoints of controversial topics. I would however admit there was a particular preponderance upon Africa and/or poorer countries in global health impact examples, thus would suggest the inclusion of a more varied coverage in regards to socioeconomic representation in global examples to not negatively frame a particular geographical region. Nevertheless, an overall substantial effort of representation and inclusivity was exhibited.
Our microbiology lecture committee is in the process of adopting an OER textbook for our newly designed combination course of Biology and Allied Health majors in Fall 2020. I’d highly recommend the adoption of this textbook and highly anticipate its utilization in my upcoming instruction. I also appreciate the instructor resources (PowerPoints, Test Bank, and Chapter Review Question Answer Guide, and Canvas Course integration) to allow for seamless implementation for a traditional, online or hybrid course.
This OER is simply amazing! Every topic, and issues within that topic, is covered. For a health sciences course this book has all that is needed including "Clinical Focus" scenarios in every chapter. read more
This OER is simply amazing! Every topic, and issues within that topic, is covered. For a health sciences course this book has all that is needed including "Clinical Focus" scenarios in every chapter.
I have read the entire text and have yet to find a factual error. Also, the answers to chapter review questions are accurate - again, I have yet to find a mistake.
Relevance is a strong point of Parker's text. The "Eye on Ethics" sections cover current issues and are a wonderful starting point for both in class and online discussions.
This book provides in depth explanations of complex issues. There are "Micro Connections" discussions that offer even more clarification and extension of in text concepts. Well written for any student population.
Each chapter is presented in the same format which makes for a quick adjustment to new material.
Each section of the text is summarized with "Check Your Understanding" questions. These focus the student on the material presented and also allow the instructor to quickly appreciate the topics in the preceding section.
The organization of this text is quite well done. The introductory concepts prepare for the final chapters on microbial disease of the organ systems. I do feel that the chapters on the immune system should have been moved a bit earlier in the text, certainly before the "Microbial Mechanisms of Pathogenicity" and "Disease and Epidemiology." My reasoning is that several concepts of the body's defenses are used throughout these two chapters.
Parker's interface is well done, and is free of navigational issues and display feature distractions.
A few typos - certainly a MINOR issue for a book of this length - 1307 pages.
This text uses examples, case studies, and presentation of ethical concerns, that are relevant to nearly every race, culture, and even continent!
I highly recommend this OpenStax textbook and use it for my own microbiology for health sciences course. There is absolutely no sacrifice in quality for this free book!!
This book is a well described source for general microbiology.Most of the terminology is well described. Its largest limitayion is the lack of industrial specifically in biofuels and ecological microbiology applications. read more
This book is a well described source for general microbiology.Most of the terminology is well described. Its largest limitayion is the lack of industrial specifically in biofuels and ecological microbiology applications.
In my review no significant inaccuracies where found in this textbook. The descriptions of processes and structures in the microbial world are written better than in the some of the traditional textbook that I have read in the past. All information are correct.
The text is reasonably comprehensive. It covers most important up-to-date areas of Microbiology. Better to update more on biofuels technology and on cancer.
The textbook is written is a very clear, and easy to understand text. The technical language used is well-explained and a glossary is provided. The structure of each module and the summary tables provides a clear picture for students to understand the information presented Only the Immunology chapter is not so clear .
Each unit within the text is consistent. It has the same flow and expression for each unit making the text an easy and interesting read with applicable review and summaries. Relevant terms are highlighted in the summary. With the structure of the text students will know how to follow the information in the book
Each module is small enough to load quickly and contains relevant "breaks" in content to give the students the opportunity to apply the content through case studies, links to learning and disease profiles. Pictures are all very clear. All modules cover the topics thoroughly, can be read quickly and could be reorganized easily for use in an online course or blended or hybrid class.
The flow to this text is well organized. It follows a logical approach from the history, through cell structure and functions, genetics, control mechanisms, immune function and finally the specific pathogens by body system. This flows allows the text to be clear to understand
No problems with the interface.
I couldn't find any grammatical error in this text book.
Although there did not appear to be anything that could be construed as offensive or culturally insensitive in my review of this textbook. The text could benefit from including more cultural diversity and awareness.
As a microbiologist I found this to be a good text to introduce students to the field of microbiology with ease.
I've used this text for two sections of microbiology in the past year and felt that only three topics are missing from this text: up to date information on genetic transfer mechanisms, the glycolytic alternative pathways (which I use to discuss... read more
I've used this text for two sections of microbiology in the past year and felt that only three topics are missing from this text: up to date information on genetic transfer mechanisms, the glycolytic alternative pathways (which I use to discuss diversity at a metabolic level), and applied topics in microbial ecology (basics of symbiosis are included). The index and glossary were adequate for the subjects covered in the text. I teach a general microbiology course at a 4 year liberal arts college taken by junior and senior biology, biochemistry, or pre-med majors and this text seemed more suited for pre-health professions students (given the ten chapters on the immune system and diseases of various body systems as well as clinical case studies in each chapter) than for students going on into graduate research programs.
I didn't notice any glaring errors in the text, but a few of the images were less clear than desired, so I supplemented from other online sources. I was not able to attend a workshop this past year for developing ancillaries for OpenStax texts, but would like to help continue developing this text by providing feedback and sharing instructor tips/suggestions.
I felt the text was up to date on the topics that were covered -- but I had to use another source for the most recent information on mechanisms of horizontal gene transfers (e.g., the function of relaxosomes during conjugation; the formation of a transformasome complex due to quorum sensing among bacteria). I was very happy to see the use of the eucaryote supergroup taxonomy in this text vs the older 5 Kingdom system still popular in many classrooms. This text is subdivided enough that editing should be a very straightforward process.
I asked my students about this text compared to other textbooks they've used in biology and chemistry courses for majors and they overwhelmingly felt it was the easiest to read book compared to physiology, genetics, organic, and biochemistry. However, students often want to just study "what's important" and are so busy with jobs and activities that they seldom read a text before class even if they find it very readable. They still asked me to pare it down and give them a discrete list of "what they really need to know" before exams.
I was pleasantly surprised about the consistency because the text is an open source, free option. I feared it wouldn't have continuity -- that it might read like a patchwork written by a variety of authors, but it is organized in the same way for each chapter which provides clarity and structure. The end of chapter quizzes are excellent and students liked the online interactive quizzes.
The chapter structure made assignment of readings very manageable. The only issue I found was that pagination online vs in the pdf vs in the printed text (which I purchased as a desk copy) did not always match.
I always cover microbial diversity until about half-way through my general microbiology course, so Chapter 4: Prokaryotic Diversity is covered out of order, but the modularity of the text makes it easy to assign chapters and/or sections in whatever order best fits an instructor's specific course.
We had two major issues with the online interface: 1) as noted above, the page numbers are not always the same among the different formats (online vs pdf vs hardcopy); 2) students liked the interactive end of chapter quizzes, but didn't like having to complete an entire quiz before submitting answers and finding out which concepts they needed to review. Maybe chapter-length quizzes could be broken into shorter quizzes based on sections?
I noted no issues with the grammar used in this text.
I had not really considered cultural relevance in a biology textbook before completing my first Open Textbook Library review last year -- I always focused on accuracy and breadth of content. Now I look over the images to see if diverse peoples are represented and if case studies seem to use a variety of names, ages, genders to give an inclusive feel to the text. If you glance through the images (photos and sketches) and the case studies, you'll see that this text does include a variety of folks...but as I learn more about the spectrum of gender, I'm wondering how we might tweak things to be even more inclusive in future editions.
I'm grateful that the ASM stepped up early to promote this text -- I've heard from colleagues across campus that most professional academic societies have not taken this step and often rely on book publishers to help defray costs of their society's annual meetings. This text is a solid foundation for microbiology educators to continue to revise and develop so that all students, regardless of their financial means, will have free access to accurate, up to date, information.
This book is a well written and good source for a general microbiology course. The information is easy to follow and covers the most important topics in microbiology. The glossary is clear and concise read more
This book is a well written and good source for a general microbiology course. The information is easy to follow and covers the most important topics in microbiology. The glossary is clear and concise
In my review no significant inaccuracies where found in this textbook. The descriptions of processes and structures in the microbial world are written better than in the some of the traditional textbook that I have read in the past
The book seems to be up to date and covers topics that are of interest today.
The textbook is written is a very clear, and easy to understand text. The technical language used is well-explained and a glossary is provided. The structure of each module and the summary tables provides a clear picture for students to understand the information presented.
Each unit within the text is consistent. It has the same flow for each unit making the text an easy and interesting read with applicable review and summaries. Relevant terms are highlighted in the summary. With the structure of the text students will know how to follow the information in the book.
Each module is small enough to load quickly and contains relevant "breaks" in content to give the students the opportunity to apply the content through case studies, links to learning and disease profiles. All modules cover the topics thoroughly, can be read quickly and could be reorganized easily for use in an online course or blended class.
The flow to this text is well organized. It follows a logical approach from the history, through cell structure and functions, genetics, control mechanisms, immune function and finally the specific pathogens by body system. This flows allows the text to be clear to understand.
There was no issues encounter during my review of this text.
There were no grammatical errors found in this textbook.
Although there did not appear to be anything that could be construed as offensive or culturally insensitive in my review of this textbook. The text could benefit from including more cultural diversity and awareness.
As a microbiologist I found this to be a good text to introduce students to the field of microbiology with ease.
This book is a well rounded source for general microbiology. Its largest shortcoming is the lack of industrial and ecological microbiology applications. There is some but it would benefit from having an entire chapter specifically devoted to these... read more
This book is a well rounded source for general microbiology. Its largest shortcoming is the lack of industrial and ecological microbiology applications. There is some but it would benefit from having an entire chapter specifically devoted to these topics.
I have not run into any wrong information.
Seems very up to date.
Most of the terminology is explained well. The worst chapters for students getting lost in jargon are those covering immunology. There is a lot of information crammed into these chapters that they are not explained as thoroughly as they could be.
Being a microbiology textbook it does build off of the previous sections to help guide students through microbiology.
organization is logical.
I have noticed no problems with the interface.
No errors apparent.
This text could benefit from more cultural diversity and awareness added to the text.
I have been using this textbook to teach a 300 level microbiology course for biology majors for the past year. We have not run into any significant problems. The students enjoy it and the instructor supplemental material has made implementing the use of this textbook easy for me.
The text was comprehensive in its approach to all of the fundamental topics of Microbiology. I did not see a section that was missing for my course, and the detail and connection that each section made to disease processes, even in the units... read more
The text was comprehensive in its approach to all of the fundamental topics of Microbiology. I did not see a section that was missing for my course, and the detail and connection that each section made to disease processes, even in the units regarding more "dry" topics, such as microscopy, will make this relevant to students, particularly those going into healthcare fields. Perhaps too much detail was given to the historical context of some discoveries, but that is a matter of style/taste.
I did not find significant inaccuracies in my review of the book. I actually feel that the descriptions of processes and structures in the microbial world are better described here than in the traditional textbook that I have used in the past. I did not find significant biases within the text.
The book will continuously need to be updated to reflect emerging diseases, but the current iteration is satisfactory for today's issues. As mentioned in other reviews, a more comprehensive approach to the microbiome of the human, and even the viable, but non-culturable soil microbes and others could be explored in more detail in the future. The structure of the text lends itself well to updates. I also feel that relevance in topic choices for the case studies and review questions in each unit is important, and the text represented itself well here.
It is a very clear, easy to understand text. The technical jargon is well-explained and a glossary is provided. Examples and tables are given for illustration of complex ideas and topics.
The work is fairly consistent; each unit has the same structural components, which follow major topics after a short introduction of the chapter. Learning outcomes are consistently listed, and the framework follows major microbiological topics organized around common themes (ie: immune system functions, respiratory diseases, biochemistry of microbes, etc.).
This text, particularly within the web version, does not overwhelm the reader with major blocks of text. Even larger sections are well-thought out with strategic placement of images and Clinical Focus boxes. Additional resource links do not disrupt the reader, rather, they present themselves at the end of a paragraph or chapter section as a logical next step for continued learning.
The topics are organized clearly, and I would perhaps rearrange topics to better suit my courses. I would like to see biochemistry earlier in the text, and perhaps immune system functions last. I also would like to have learning outcomes at the beginning of the chapter, in addition to within in each section. Although there is a glossary, a mini-glossary at the end of each chapter would increase ease of access to students.
The images and charts in this text were fantastic. The use of images within tables was also helpful (ie: within bacterial morphologies (3.3).
I did not find significant grammatical issues within the text. It is clearly written and understandable.
I did not see major instances of cultural insensitivity, though it would be nice to see more diverse gender pronouns in the future. I do appreciate the inclusion of female scientists within some of the historical context of microbial discovery (ie: Lynn Margulis in 3.2).
I am adopting this text- I far prefer it to my traditional text!
The text is reasonably comprehensive. It covers most important areas of Microbiology. read more
The text is reasonably comprehensive. It covers most important areas of Microbiology.
I did not spot any inaccuracies in the text.
Would be beneficial to have more on microbiome and emerging infectious diseases.
There are no ambiguities in the text. It can be used by undergraduates and graduate students alike.
The terminology is generally consistent. At certain instances, there is some back-and-forth usage of technical terms and more generic expressions.
Modularity is one of the areas of strength of the book. Modules are of reasonable sizes.
The book is well-organized. The text flows well.
I did not encounter any issues with interface.
I have not seen any typos.
This book is generally good read. Can be useful for both graduate and undergraduate students. More emphasis on cellular Microbiology and responses of the immune system to microbial threats could have added more value to the book. Newer editions would need to cover emerging infectious diseases and the human microbiome in a more comprehensive manner .
The textbook is comprehensive an covers all concepts of microbiology clearly. Information is easy to follow. The glossary is clear and concise. This is book is very suitable for non Microbiology majors like Nursing program . read more
The textbook is comprehensive an covers all concepts of microbiology clearly. Information is easy to follow. The glossary is clear and concise. This is book is very suitable for non Microbiology majors like Nursing program .
The book is well written and the information presented is accurate and up-to-date. Materials are frequently cited.
The information is up-to-date. There are new emerging disease like Ebola that needs to be updated regularly. I would expect the the treatment and prevention information will need to be updated frequently, but those areas change so rapidly that updating is only to be expected.
The writing is very good. It reads easily, and the glossary provides well-written definitions of terms. Some language of this book is too technical for an introductory microbiology student. The structure of each module and the summary tables provides a clear picture for students. I love the artwork of this book.
The book follows a consistent among all the chapters.. Students will know how to follow the information in the book.
Each module load quickly and be read quickly. All modules cover the topics thoroughly and could be reorganized an easily used for an online course or even blended class.
The sections of the book follows a logical order from the history, through cell structure and functions, genetics, control mechanisms, immune function and finally the specific pathogens by body system.
The book can be read well whether online or in the PDF version. Everything loaded quickly.
I did not find any grammatical errors in this book.
This book is not culturally insensitive or offensive.
As microbiologist, I find this book is very impressive and can be used in my elementary microbiology class for nursing students. The authors did a great job writing this book.
The text covers all the standard, indispensable topics of microbiology, plus others that are often found in Allied Health Micro texts, such as infections of the skin & eye, respiratory system, etc. It is very comparable to the text I... read more
The text covers all the standard, indispensable topics of microbiology, plus others that are often found in Allied Health Micro texts, such as infections of the skin & eye, respiratory system, etc. It is very comparable to the text I currently use (Talaro and Talaro).
The material appears to be very accurate.
The text is relatively up to date, as these general texts go. I would have liked to have seen more on the human microbiome.
The writing is very clear and concise. I find it very readable.
From what I can see, the consistency across the book is fine.
I think the chapters and sections are quite self-contained. I did have a problem figuring out the "Clinical Focus Boxes", which aren't clearly labeled and do extend across sections within a chapter.
I think the organization is very logical, probably more so than my current textbook.
The interface is excellent.
I found no grammatical errors in the book.
I found no problems with this, but I am a white male so wouldn't be as sensitized to it as some.
I was very pleasantly surprised by the quality of this text. I think it's got nearly every bit the quality of my current text from McGraw-Hill. I am seriously considering adopting it for my course in the future.
This is a six-chapter, comprehensive textbook that would be easily covered in a 10-week quarter term, but may have less material to sustain a 15-week semester term. The six chapters are appropriate for an introductory course in microbiology, but... read more
This is a six-chapter, comprehensive textbook that would be easily covered in a 10-week quarter term, but may have less material to sustain a 15-week semester term. The six chapters are appropriate for an introductory course in microbiology, but unlike other texts that include a clinical side to microbiology, like one or more chapters on natural and medical (eg. vaccines) defenses, and anti-microbials, this textbook, except for the clinical focuses in each chapter, sticks to the basics of microorganisms (and worms - due to microscopic eggs and larvae) - except for comprehensive coverage of viral infections in Chapter 6. For such a comprehensive text, a lot was devoted to the history of microbiology, and details about historical figures. There also was more than enough light-physics in Chapter 2. There was no glossary at the end of any chapter or a the end of the text. In place of the glossary, the author(s) bolded words in the chapters, and then gave an explanation of each word. There were summaries at the end of each chapter that also partially-substituted for glossaries. The index at the end of the text appeared to list just about all of the important terms and where to locate them.
Overall, very good. There are some areas that should be re-written. Figures 3.22-3.24 are confusing and inaccurate. Figure 3.22 shows 6-sided green molecules diffusing through a plasma membrane. Six-sided molecules in these cases are usually reserved for glucose, and it does NOT simply diffuse through a lipid bilayer (it uses facilitated diffusion). Figure 3.23 also uses 6-sided green molecules for facilitated diffusion, which be okay for glucose, except that in Figure 3.24, the 6-sided green molecules are labeled as sodium (Na+) - this would be very confusing to students. On top of that, the active transport of Na+ and potassium (K+) in Figure 3.24 is wrong. Three Na+ are exported (not two) and two K+ are imported (not one). Table 6.3 states that the mechanism of transmission for Kuru is eating infected meat, but the disease appears to be associated with the consumption of brain tissue from the dead relative (which makes sense of for a TSE).
I believe the content is up-to-date, particularly on the topic of Archaea in Chapter 4. It looks like updates would be easy to implement. With refinement, this text could be useful in an introductory microbiology for a long time.
The text is well-written, and should hold most students' interest. It also helps to have the "Clinical Focus" broken into parts in each chapter, and the "eye on Ethics" topics throughout the text. The links throughout the text to other resources and to YouTube video-clips also makes the text more "accessible" to the modern student. As mentioned above, bolding terms followed by explanations provides context for technical terms, and also would do the same for microbiology jargon.
I agree with the statement. Each chapter is organized the same, from an introductory images and comments, a clinical focus and other "boxed" topics, appropriate figures and tables, access to online resources, to the "Check Your Understanding" questions in each chapter, and summaries and review questions at the end of each.
The chapters are divided into three (Chapter 1) to six (Chapter 4) subheadings. Each subheading is appropriate for the chapter and makes the subheading (and chapter) very readable and accessible.
Chapters 1 (history and overview) and 2 (techniques to view microorganisms and certain characteristics) are an excellent introduction to microbiology. Following these with the cell (Chapter 3) and then prokaryotes followed by eukaryotes is a logical progression. Ending with acellular pathogens (Chapter 6) also is a logical place for these.
Except for the problem I wrote about for Figues 3.22-3.24 and Tabl3 6.3, the images and charts are very good and helpful. I did not experience any navigation problems in the clinical focus topics, where one could "jump" ahead or back, or any problems accessing other online resources or videos when I clicked on the appropriate orange-colored terms.
The only grammatical error I discovered was on page 167, under the heading Lactobacillales. In the last line at the end of paragraph three you'll see: "life threatening (eg. necrotizing...)" and then "life threatening" again at the very end.
I did not see anything in the text (outside of the explanation of how Guatemalans were infected in the 1940s in the "Eye on Ethics" in Chapter 1) that could be construed as offensive or culturally insensitive.
This is a good text to introduce students to the field of microbiology, and I have adopted it for my 10-week microbiology course. However, the microbiology course at my institution is geared towards students interested in health fields, so other resources are necessary for my course. I suggest expanding the text by a couple of chapters, adding the topics of natural and medical defenses against infections and how the body responds to infections, and how medicine (particularly anti-microbials and vaccines) helps.
The textbook covers all concepts of microbiology appropriately and clearly. Information is easy to locate. The glossary is clear and concise. read more
The textbook covers all concepts of microbiology appropriately and clearly. Information is easy to locate. The glossary is clear and concise.
The content is accurate and is presented from an unbiased viewpoint.
The content is relevant and up to date. The text is organized in such a way that future revisions will be easy to implement so that it should not ever be out of date.
The book is written clearly using appropriate terminology.
The text seems consistent in terminology throughout.
The text is easy to divide into modules that can be reorganized and assigned to suit the curriculum.
The topics in this textbook are presented in a clear and logical fashion. It is very "readable."
The text is easy to navigate and the images and charts are relevant.
The text seems free of grammatical errors.
The text is unbiased with respect to races, ethnicities, and backgrounds of the students.
I had been eagerly awaiting completion of this textbook! I love the way that it is tied to ASM objectives. I love that OpenStax is leveling the playing field for students -- making knowledge accessible for all, regardless of economic status.
This microbiology textbook is well suited for the non-major microbiology majors though it would an excellent foundation for any science career. There are twenty-six chapters or units with five appendices. It is comprehensive in that it contains... read more
This microbiology textbook is well suited for the non-major microbiology majors though it would an excellent foundation for any science career. There are twenty-six chapters or units with five appendices. It is comprehensive in that it contains microorganism content including topics on fungi, viruses, parasites, and bacteria. It also contains an organization of micro organisms that would typically body organ systems such as the skin, respiratory, digestive, circulatory, and nervous systems. The text covers every subject appropriately and provides an effective index and a comprehensive glossary. It may be a challenge to adequately cover all the units or chapters in a semester course.
Content appears to be accurate, error-free and unbiased.
The references used are up-to-date and the references are viable references. The text is written and arranged in such a way that necessary updates could be easily implemented. Because the units are fairly short but relevant, it appears that it would be fairly easy to add or change content to reflect current practices.
The first observance of this text book was that it is an easy read. Students should not have a problem understanding the content and content is reinforced several times with tables, diagrams, review questions, chapter summaries, and links to learning. It has several other opportunities for students to connect with the content through applicable "micro connections", "disease profile", "Eye on Ethics", "Links to Learning", and case studies throughout the text and included in most units. These "breaks" in connect are well placed and are a welcomed. These should increase student understanding and provide critical thinking.
Each unit is consistent. It has the same flow for each unit making the text an easy and interesting read with applicable review and summaries. Relevant terms are highlighted in the summary.
The text is easily and readily divisible into appropriately sized reading sections. Each unit contain relevant "breaks" in content to give the student to apply the content through case studies, links to learning and disease profiles. It was put together very well for the instructor and student.
The flow to this text is very well done. It is logical and clear to understand. It is pleasing to the eye and holds the readers interest in the subject. It provides plenty of ideas that one could use to demonstrate in a lab the concepts and would work well even without a lab portion of the class.
There did not appear to be any problems with any of the content including the diagrams, tables, etc. The tables and diagrams enforced the clarity of the content.
There did not appear to be any grammatical errors.
There did not appear to be any insensitive or offensive content in any way.
This would be an ideal text to use in a microbiology non-major course.
I greatly appreciate that this text aligns with the curriculum guidelines of the American Society of Microbiology. Frankly that was what made me comfortable even looking at the text. The text is designed for a one semester course and I can't... read more
I greatly appreciate that this text aligns with the curriculum guidelines of the American Society of Microbiology. Frankly that was what made me comfortable even looking at the text. The text is designed for a one semester course and I can't think of a topic I would/do cover in a 1 semester microbiology course that isn't in this text. I particularly like endosymbiotic theory so I cover it in a bit more detail than the book does but the text does introduce the topic and it is probably at an appropriate level for most people. No text is going to be exactly what you would cover unless you write it yourself. I think the glossary and appendix of this text are amazing and find the linking of the index to the text, even in the pdf, very helpful. The content included might be a bit more than my nursing students need but the clinical focus sections are sure to keep them engaged.
No errors were found in the accuracy of this text. The text remains unbiased even in the Eye on Ethics sections where it would be easy to push the scientific perspective over the non-scientific beliefs about issues such as vaccination. These sections do a great job of explaining the science and asking critical questions to help students evaluate the situation using scientific knowledge.
This text provides all of the basic foundational knowledge an introductory microbiology student should know. Examples are up to date and relevant but are not examples that will quickly fade away. New examples will always come up but those can be added in by an instructor therefore the basic text will not become obsolete or irrelevant. Information has even been included on the 2016 outbreak of Zika virus. It is yet to be seen how long this will remain relevant.
Information is clear. Jargon/technical terminology is used appropriately and terms are adequately defined. I specifically focused on the information about genetics and metabolism when looking for clarity as these are areas traditionally more difficult for students. These sections were clear.
Consistency exists within the text itself however I found inconsistencies between the online version and the pdf version. The pdf of the text has a more consistent layout and sections are more clearly labeled. Labels found in the pdf are often missing from the online version (examples include the Chapter title page and the Clinical focus heading on those sections)
Again, these sections are more clearly labeled in the pdf than in the online version of the text. Within the pdf document, the text is divided well and it would be easy to assign specific sections. The chapters are even written in such a way that they could be rearranged if you wanted to discuss a certain topic sooner in a course.
I understand the ordering of the text and it flows well. I personally teach a course where Chemistry is a prerequisite so I prefer reviewing the Microbial Biochemistry a little bit earlier than Chapter 7 and I have a lab component to the course so I discuss Microbial growth (Chapter 9) sooner as well. I think these are simply personal preferences and the text seems to be written in a manner than those chapters could be covered in any order without difficulty for the student.
The pdf version was great and easy to read. The images were clear. The online version, however, was much more difficult to navigate. The tables had no reference numbers and if students were viewing text online there were no page numbers so this will make it more difficult to refer students to a particular table. Also the second two clinical focus boxes in Chapter 1 just say “note” and so it takes a moment to realize they are the second and third part of the Clinical focus. This is not an issue in the pdf. Also online the multiple choice questions at the end of a section are unclear. At first glance, it appears as if the answer for the previous question is in a box with the next question. Solutions come up with just the letter so it could be easy to mix up. Again, not an issue in the pdf. Some sections were quite narrowly define and quite short (2.2 Peering into the Invisible world) while others were much more broad and contain a significant amount of material on the page (3.3 unique characteristics of prokaryotic cells). This made the pages much different lengths which felt awkward.
FYI to the editors p. 433 is missing a beginning parenthesis before the abbreviation HGT but for the most part no grammatical errors were discovered.
The text takes a global perspective especially on infectious diseases but does so in a manner than is not offensive or derogatory. Images include men and woman and people of various races. Contributions by female scientists are highlighted.
I like the electronic links between the chapters and their relevant content. This helps reinforce to students why they are learning certain introductory content /foundational knowledge. I mentioned earlier in the review how I appreciated the collaboration with the ASM curriculum guidelines. Those guidelines are listed in the beginning of the text but as a resource for faculty it would be nice to see a cross-walk or alignment specifically pointing out where those are found in the text. We can obviously do that for ourselves but I think it would be a logical thing to point out in the text or instructor resources.
Microbiology covers the majority of topics found in a first-year microbiology text with a distinct leaning toward medical microbiology. While one section covers the role of microbes in biogeochemical cycles, the majority deals with human... read more
Microbiology covers the majority of topics found in a first-year microbiology text with a distinct leaning toward medical microbiology. While one section covers the role of microbes in biogeochemical cycles, the majority deals with human pathogens and methods to control them. The genetics, pathogenicity, and immunity are well covered. Each of the body systems are briefly described before microbial infections of the body system are addressed. This provides context for those students who have not had an anatomy class yet. The sections on biochemistry, cell structure and function, and the fundamentals of physics and chemistry provide the basics for those who haven't had a prior biology course. The use of the clinical focus boxes gives students the opportunity to apply information.
The information presented appears accurate and up-to-date. Materials are frequently referenced. CDC and WHO, both excellent sources of accurate and unbiased information, are frequently cited.
As noted earlier, the information is up-to-date. There are sections on Ebola and Zika, both diseases currently in the news. I would expect the genetics and pharmacological information will need to be updated frequently, but those areas change so rapidly that updating is only to be expected. Those chapters are distinct which would make updating easier.
The writing is collegiate without being convoluted. It reads easily, and the glossary provides well-written definitions of terms. Some sections are more technical than what I would normally consider appropriate for an introductory microbiology student, but this may be a reflection of the prerequisites for the course. The layout of each module and the use of summary tables provides a clear picture for students. The vector images are especially nice because they actually show a student what to be on the lookout for.
The book follows a consistent pattern with each section. Students will know what to expect and where to find it. One inconsistency is the shifting between common language and technical language. Some fairly basic terms are defined in the text. In other places, very technical jargon is used and not defined. The images, also, shift between fairly simple (pictures of historically-significant scientists or organ systems) and detailed (biochemical structures, photosynthesis reactions)
Each module is small enough to load quickly and be read through quickly. The modules cover the topics well and could be reorganized an easily embedded within an online course.
The majority of the book follows a logical pattern. It builds from the history, through cell structure and functions, genetics, control mechanisms, immune function and finally the specific pathogens by body system. The exception is Chapter 19 Diseases of the Immune System. It is separated from the other diseases of body systems chapters Chapter 20 Laboratory Analysis of the Immune Response. Going at the pathogens from a systemic method does not show students how a microbe can move from system to system. Staphylococcus aureus can be normal flora on the skin surface or in the sinuses, but, if it enters the skin via a cut, it produces necrosis and, if untreated, can progress to fatal septicemia. Using a taxonomic organization helps to make those connections for students.
The book worked well whether I read it online or downloaded the PDF version. I worked from home and have a fairly slow internet connection, but everything loaded quickly. I found the embedded links to figures and other sections of the book worked well and without issue. The drop down table of contents made navigation easy.
I did not see any grammatical errors.
Nothing stood out as being culturally insensitive, but there is a decided Western medicine flavor throughout the book.
As mentioned earlier, the book is a good introduction to medical microbiology.
Table of Contents
- 1 An Invisible World
- 2 How We See the Invisible World
- 3 The Cell
- 4 Prokaryotic Diversity
- 5 The Eukaryotes of Microbiology
- 6 Acellular Pathogens
- 7 Microbial Biochemistry
- 8 Microbial Metabolism
- 9 Microbial Growth
- 10 Biochemistry of the Genome
- 11 Mechanisms of Microbial Genetics
- 12 Modern Applications of Microbial Genetics
- 13 Control of Microbial Growth
- 14 Antimicrobial Drugs
- 15 Microbial Mechanisms of Pathogenicity
- 16 Disease and Epidemiology
- 17 Innate Nonspecific Host Defenses
- 18 Adaptive Specific Host Defenses
- 19 Diseases of the Immune System
- 20 Laboratory Analysis of the Immune Response
- 21 Skin and Eye Infections
- 22 Respiratory System Infections
- 23 Urogenital System Infections
- 24 Digestive System Infections
- 25 Circulatory and Lymphatic System Infections
- 26 Nervous System Infections
Fundamentals of Physics and Chemistry Important to Microbiology
Taxonomy of Clinically Relevant Microorganisms
About the Book
Microbiology covers the scope and sequence requirements for a single-semester microbiology course for non-majors. The book presents the core concepts of microbiology with a focus on applications for careers in allied health. The pedagogical features of the text make the material interesting and accessible while maintaining the career-application focus and scientific rigor inherent in the subject matter. Microbiology's art program enhances students' understanding of concepts through clear and effective illustrations, diagrams, and photographs.
About the Contributors
Dr. N. Parker is dedicated to work in a collegiate academic environment to provide a foundation of knowledge for a lifetime of learning to undergraduate and graduate students primarily in the areas of Health Care Professions, Microbiology and Immunology. Incorporates problem based learning in classes to assist students to develop critical decision and analytical problem solving skills. Trains students in the laboratory to become competent and proficient in skills routinely used in Microbiology and Immunology. Includes training students in professional and ethical behavior in the workplace in both the classroom and laboratory.