Lesson Plans

Steroids and Athletes: Genes Work Overtime

Created by : 
Duke University Medical Center, The North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics

This interactive module discusses the use of steroids by athletes, including how they are able to promote muscle growth and their impact on gene transcription.  It also highlights why steroids can persist in the body long after the person stops using the drug.  This is one of six modules from the Pharmacology Education Partnership that helps high school students learn biology and chemistry concepts through the study of drugs.

What’s In the Lesson Plan: 

  • 1 interactive module
  • Teacher instructional guide and notes
  • Content background information
  • Student handout
  • Classroom activities
  • Additional resources

Grade Level(s): 


Student Skills Targeted: 

  • Knowledge of anabolic and androgenic steroids
  • Understanding how steroids act in the body
  • Understanding the impact of steroids on gene transcription

Time / Duration: 

  • 1-2 class periods


  • Computer with Internet access per 1 or 2 students
  • Printer/copier for printable module worksheet and answer guide

Alignment with National Standards: 

  • Next Generation High School Physical Science Standards
  • Common Core State Standards
  • Benchmarks for Science Literacy


  • English