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A Summary of Recommendations From the National Conference C. Brewer, U MT, 2/2010.

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Presentation on theme: "A Summary of Recommendations From the National Conference C. Brewer, U MT, 2/2010."— Presentation transcript:

1 A Summary of Recommendations From the National Conference C. Brewer, U MT, 2/2010

2 Understanding Key Concepts and Competencies C. Brewer, U MT, 2/2010

3 Student-Centered Classrooms and Learning Outcomes Introduce scientific process early and integrate it throughout all undergraduate biology courses Research experiences should be an integral component of biology education for all students, regardless of major (inquiry-rich labs and case investigations) Active, outcome-oriented, inquiry-driven and relevant courses. Curriculum should not rely on textbooks as the sole source of info. Define learning goals and align assessments to focus on conceptual understanding - use data to improve and enhance learning Structure curriculum to address student needs

4 Open ended questions Small groups & chances for discussion & troubleshooting PPT plus, demonstrations, media (You Tube), case studies & use of real data Quizzes during and after lectures More essay questions on exams Teach students how to learn so they can gain depth on their own & provide research and outside learning & community-based opportunities More topic-based or concept-oriented courses, especially for non-majors More avenues for student feedback And Most Importantly: What Students Said… … Tie what we’re learning into the Big Picture. Why is this important? Where did this come from (i.e., original literature)? Where does it fit in real life? And how does this relate to what we’re learning in other classes? …. C. Brewer, U MT, 2/2010

5 Strategies for Change Departments must regularly examine their teaching practices & leverage resources to actively build a culture that support the scholarship of teaching and learning. (Moving beyond the lone faculty & including cross department planning) Course evaluation and assessment data must be used to demonstrate to both faculty and administrators that improved teaching and learning using active learning strategies contribute to student outcomes and departmental and institutional goals. Students must be active, engaged partners in the educational mission of their campus, including conversations about how to improve biology education C. Brewer, U MT, 2/2010

6 Professional societies can increase awareness of the critical nature of undergraduate biology education, and contribute to the professional development of their members in this arena. Education Committees Websites or digital libraries with teaching resources Travel awards for undergraduate students to attend professional society meeting Undergraduate poster or essay competitions Biology Scholars Professional Development Opportunities & Undergraduate Education Conferences Education Journals or Education Articles in Research Journals Mentoring Awards

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16 Elements of Vision and Change Initiative  Engaged and mobilized life science community  Conference Summary Report  Conference Proceedings (due Summer 2010)  Website and Facebook Page - see  Exploratory grants program*  Vision and Change Conference II to explore what we have changed (proposed) *To be described by NSF representatives C. Brewer, U MT, 2/2010

17 For More Information VISION AND CHANGE WEBSITE: View videos, PowerPoint presentations, and poster abstracts at the conference website: Join the “Transforming Undergraduate Biology Education” FACEBOOK group to share ideas, post information on successful projects and teaching tools, and announce upcoming meetings: 54551 C. Brewer, U MT, 2/2010


19 In a great irony, the academy itself may be the last obstacle to improving the quality of biology education for all students. Thus, raising the profile of science education within biology departments and ensuring that the academic culture values both faculty teaching and student learning should be everyone’s highest priorities, truly a cultural change on many campuses. C. Brewer, U MT, 2/2010

20 An Agenda for Change If not now, when? If not us, then who? C. Brewer, U MT, 2/2010

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