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Genetic concepts around DNA replication, transcription and translation are widely mentioned through the media and in everyday language, however, high school students consider them abstract, complex and difficult to understand why they try to formulate explanations based on information that they have acquired outside of school. In this sense, their participation in the scientific field is very limited to zero, largely due to the traditional teaching model which does not allow students move beyond declarative knowledge without comprehension.

The present work is based on the approach of situated teaching, whose purpose is to change the dynamics prevailing in classrooms and achieve a true education for life. For this, the teaching-learning strategy was used based on the case study which was designed with the aim of promoting both the learning of the afore mentioned subjects, as well as of procedural and attitudinal contents that together give the student knowledge that you can transfer and use in your daily life.

Our results shown:
a) the cases of study proposed generated interest, dilemmas and controversies, which favored individual work, in team and group;
b) the multiple choice test shows that the students achieved to be appropriate in a statistically significant way of the genetic concepts studied;
c) the open-ended questionnaire gives evidence that the strategy promotes incorporation of the fundamental concepts of the subject, so that the students achieve formulate high-level responses to complex issues;
d) students were able to explain the processes of DNA replication, transcription and translation through the elaboration and collaborative work, also highlighted the importance of processes and understood that DNA has the ability to replicate its information and translate it to translate into protein; and
e) the analysis and discussion of cases allowed the application of genetic concepts for the understanding of problem situations and favored the establishment of arguments and conclusions based on knowledge decision-making in the face of a problem, developing critical thinking, the expression of emotions and values. In conclusion, the teaching-learning based on the case study is a viable didactic tool which promotes meaningful learning of the conceptual, procedural and attitudinal significant learning.