Integrating Mathematical Concepts Across the Biology Curriculum— Remediation Efforts, Introductory Biology Sequence, Biostatistics, and Bioinformatics.
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Presentation on theme: "Integrating Mathematical Concepts Across the Biology Curriculum— Remediation Efforts, Introductory Biology Sequence, Biostatistics, and Bioinformatics."— Presentation transcript:
Integrating Mathematical Concepts Across the Biology Curriculum— Remediation Efforts, Introductory Biology Sequence, Biostatistics, and Bioinformatics Initiatives A.M. Findley, J. Bhattacharjee, S. Saydam and D. Magoun University of Louisiana at Monroe Departments of Biology and Mathematics & Physics Abstract Faculty members at ULM have formed a working group to devise a concerted plan to integrate mathematics into a variety of biology curricular offerings. To date our efforts have centered on: 1- Redesign of the college algebra/trigonometry sequence and the life sciences calculus courses to include modular content and hybrid delivery methods to facilitate the remediation of the quantitative skills of ill-prepared beginning students; 2- The introduction of a team-taught module on probability and statistics as an integral part of the discussion of genetics in the introductory biology sequence; 3- Upper-division courses in biostatistics 4- Incorporation of these statistical methods into ecology-based courses 5- A new course in genome annotation and bioinformatics. REMEDIATION EFFORTS Restructuring of College Algebra/Algebra with Review and College Trigonometry according to the Roadmap to Redesign guidelines of the National Center for Academic Transformation (NCAT). Preliminary assessment data indicate that modular content and hybrid delivery (online and instructor-monitored MathLab tutorials have led to increasing numbers of students progressing more rapidly through the curricular units. Modular content and hybrid delivery of the life sciences calculus course has been limited to a small pilot program with full implementation scheduled for fall 2007. FUTURE DEVELOPMENT EFFORTS Initiation of a quantitative biology seminar series New faculty hires with mathematical biology expertise Development of an interdisciplinary mathematical biology concentration within the Department of Mathematics & Physics Joint departmental sponsorship of HHMI-supported undergraduate research projects in biomathematics Interdisciplinary, team-taught capstone course in mathematical biology is under development BIOINFORMATICS COURSE DEVELOPMENT Producing & analyzing sequence alignments Recovering evolutionary theory & building phylogenetic trees Gene annotation Proteome & gene expression analyses Probability & Bayesian analyses; molecular energy functions; function optimization STATISTICAL METHODS IN ECOLOGY COURSES Quantitative treatment of species- Modeling of ecosystem area relationships productivity & restoration models Lotka-Volterra Model - herbivore (--) & carnivore (--) Response surface model of interspecific cycles of abundance competition between cottonwood (CW) and saltcedar (SC) trees Math/Science Boot Camp Deficient quantitative skills seriously impair the ability of marginally-prepared students to succeed in the introductory biology & chemistry course sequences. Beginning with the summer II 2008 semester, entering freshman will be encouraged/required (?) to attend 2-4 week preparatory sessions to facilitate their transition to the university-level study of mathematics and the sciences. BIOSTATISTICS COURSE DEVELOPMENT Two-semester course sequence for life science majors; topical exposition of the following areas: - goodness of fit - Bayesian inferences - principle component analysis - hypothesis testing - linear & multiple regressions - analysis of variance - longitudinal data analysis - nonparametric methods ULM-HHMI undergraduate research program participants will be encouraged to take this course sequence in conjunction with their participation in the program. CHANGES TO THE FRESHMAN BIOLOGY SEQUENCE Incorporation of a team-taught module on probability and statistics as an integral part of the discussion of genetics in the introductory biology sequence Instructor-monitored computer tutorial sessions for genetics problem sets generate database organize biological data Information Sciences analyze data generate models test predictions Biological and Information Sciences design experiments formulate hypothesis Biological Sciences