ASM events
This conference is managed by the American Society for Microbiology
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Teaching responsibilities

Salisbury University: Biology 210 Concepts and Methods, a one-semester studio-style intro course for majors, only 20 students per lab/discussion section (no lecture).

Co-author of a text book for biology majors: Freeman, Quillin, Allison, Biological Science 5e (published by Pearson)

 

Student learning challenge

My greatest overall challenge is to help students learn to think like biologists rather than just memorize content. I conceptualize this overall challenge as having three subchallenges:

Thinking like a biologist = process of science skills + higher-level thinking + metacognition

Process of science: How can my students best learn to ask questions, design experiments, analyze data, evaluate evidence, and communicate orally, in writing, and in images?

Higher-level thinking: How can my students engage their minds at higher Blooms levels?

Metacognition: How can my students grow from novice to expert learners so that they can pick out important information, build a conceptual framework, and assess their own understanding?

The visualization of biology by students (via drawings, graphs, animations etc.) can play an important role in addressing all three subchallenges, yet student visualization activities can be either helpful or detrimental to learning depending on the background of the student, the nature of the activity, and the learning context. Under what circumstances in the classrooom and online do visualization activities provide the greatest learning gains with the least time investment and risk?

 

Professional development goals

On a local level (as an adjunct faculty at  Salisbury University) I strive to serve as a liason between the SoTL community and my department so that I can: (1) help the department to achieve the desired learning outcomes for the introductory biology course for majors, (2) promote more student-centered teaching in the department in general, and (3) use our data to advance progress in SoTL.

On a national level (as a textbook author), I strive to understand and experience the cutting edge of SoTL so that I may best contribute to the improvement of text "books" as learning tools for students (and teaching tools for professors), especially as learning materials increasingly move online.

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