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Hot Topics

Hot Topics

To help you introduce newsworthy biology topics into your classroom, BioEd Online periodically produces short topical summaries and annotated slide sets on science “Hot Topics” that are receiving national attention. Each digital slide set contains slides, speaker’s notes, and keywords. Slides can be viewed in sets or accessed individually to create customized presentations, and all slides can be downloaded to, and viewed on computers or mobile devices.

To access the slides, click on a title below or choose a title from the “Hot Topics” menu to the right. (Delete the word, “Slides” from the header in the right-hand column.) If you have questions about how to use the slide sets, visit the Help/FAQ link below or contact us directly.

  • Information for Educators on COVID-19

    Coronavirus: What You Need to KnowSlide Set

    In late 2019, a new respiratory illness appeared in Wuhan, China, caused by SARS-CoV-2, a betacoronavirus like MERS and SARS, both of which originated in bats. The respiratory illness coronavirus-19 (COVID-19) spread rapidly and now represents an evolving public health emergency, with new information published daily. Use these slides to help students learn about this public health crisis.

    Grades: K-2
  • California Drought: Impacts and Outlook

    California Drought: Impacts and OutlookSlide Set

    California has been in extreme drought for several years, causing a statewide emergency with wide-ranging impacts. Learn how climate change is affecting California and other parts of the United States, and what it could mean in the long-term.

  • Polio Risk On the Rise

    Polio Risk On the RiseSlide Set Recent outbreaks of poliovirus in Asia, Africa and the Middle East are a powerful reminder that polio still poses a serious threat to human health worldwide. Learn more about the ongoing battle with this Hot Topic.
  • Adult Neurogenesis

    Adult NeurogenesisSlide Set

    The last decade of the 20th century, proclaimed the "Decade of the Brain," yielded tremendous advances in the field of neuroscience. Insights into the biology of drug addiction, as well as the neuronal mechanisms that underlie learning and memory, provided exciting revelations about some of the brain's primary functions. Perhaps the decade's most surprising finding was the discovery that the human brain is capable of generating new neurons throughout life.

  • Polar Vortex

    Polar VortexSlide Set

    The severe cold snap of January 2014 was caused by a polar vortex—an ominous-sounding weather phenomenon that actually is part of the normal accumulation of cold air over the poles. A polar vortex is a spinning, large area of low pressure, found over both the North and South poles.