Data activities

HHMI BioInteractive | Skin Color Interactive Video: Embedded quiz modules test students’ understanding as they watch a short film that explores the evidence for the evolution of the variation in skin color among human populations. A shorter version of this video that can serve as an engagement piece can be found here

HHMI BioInteractive | The Biology of Skin Color: Penn State University anthropologist Dr. Nina Jablonski walks us through the evidence that the different shades of skin color among human populations arose as adaptations to the intensity of ultraviolet radiation in different parts of the world. (see for Spanish language version).

HHMI BioInteractive | Understanding Variation: A lesson that complements the film The Biology of Skin Color and discusses variation in human skin color and polygenic inheritance. Also available in Spanish.

HHMI BioInteractive | Human Skin Color: Evidence for Selection: A case study based on the short film The Biology of Skin Color. Students use real data to propose hypotheses, make predictions, and justify claims with evidence. Also available in Spanish.

HHMI BioInteractive | Zebrafish and Skin Color: A lesson that complements the film The Biology of Skin Color and explores how experimental work in zebrafish led to a better understanding of the role of the gene SLC24A5 in human skin color.

The Case of Desiree's Baby: The Genetics and Evolution of Skin Color: From the National center for Case Study Teaching in Science, this case is based on Kate Chopin’s short story “Desiree’s Baby,” a tragic tale of race and gender in antebellum Louisiana first published in 1893. Students read the story and then answer a series of questions about the genetics and evolution of skin color. Students can explore polygenic inheritance, the inheritance of skin color, and the "sunscreen" and "vitamin" hypotheses of skin color evolution.