What Is a Colony-Forming Unit? - Definition & Purpose


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What is a colony in microbiology?

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1. What information does a colony-forming unit provide?

2. When counting bacteria, why is a serial dilution performed?

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About This Quiz & Worksheet

Go through these helpful resources to test your understanding of a colony-forming unit. You will be quizzed on the type of information that these units provide.

Quiz & Worksheet Goals

The goals of these resources are to help you gauge your knowledge of:

  • The abbreviation CFU
  • Why a serial dilution is performed when counting bacteria
  • Information provided by a colony-forming unit
  • Why this type of unit is used instead of the total number of bacteria in a sample

Skills Practiced

  • Reading comprehension - ensure that you draw the most important details from the lesson on colony-forming units
  • Information recall - access the knowledge you have gained regarding why colony-forming units are used
  • Interpreting information - verify that you can read information regarding the information provided by CFUs and interpret it correctly

Additional Learning

Using the lesson called What Is a Colony-Forming Unit? - Definition & Purpose, you can expand on your knowledge of using these types of units. The lesson is effective at helping you quickly cover these objectives:

  • State what bacteria can be used for
  • Define a colony
  • Identify the benefits of using a CFU
  • Determine how CFUs are used