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Virtual Microscopy is a very handy online tool to learn how to use a microscope. The creator developed this tool in response to student frustration in learning how to use microscopes. The virtual scope has all the same controls found on the real unit and the user can learn the parts of the microscope as well as how to adjust the different objectives, course and fine focus, and make light adjustments with the iris diaphragm. Of particular interest is the fact that the simulation shows actual microscope specimens, like onion root tip, so students can see what mitotic figures look like under the microscope without having to be expert users. Of course, a simulation does not take the place of using the actual microscope but can certainly shorten the time that it takes to learn how to use one, and lessen the amount of frustration for both student and teacher.
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