Work with an introductory Biology course at Edgewood College

Description: Work with a faculty partner at Edgewood College and experience teaching at a primarily undergraduate institution. Prof Kuhn is open to projects that address a breadth of challenges, and various teaching strategies of interest. Please see specifics below.

Semester(s): Fall or Spring
Institution: Edgewood College
Department(s): Biology
Intern background needed: Small scale biology (cells, molecular interactions, metabolic pathways)

Course: Intro Cell Biology: Cells and Molecules (Bio 152) in fall OR Cells and Molecules honors section (Bio 182) in the spring
Course info: 10 – 30 students, lecture and lab
Recent course time/day (may have changed prior to this posting): Bio152 – MWF 1-2pm, Labs Tues or Thurs; Bio182 (honors version) MWF 9-10am Lab Tues 1-4

Challenges a project might address include: Guest teaching would be welcome. One challenge in Intro Cell Biology is understanding abstract ideas and systems thinking. In Cells and Molecules,  some topics are still lecture heavy and could use retooling to a problem based approach. Some labs haven’t been evaluated or retooled yet. Learning objectives for content and competencies are well defined, but alignment with actual activities needs reviewing. It would be great to develop better ways to practice and scaffold science writing skills.

Potential Guest Teaching Topics/Units: Flexible.

Intro Cell Biology: Exam Prep Process, Membranes/Transport/Diffusion,Respiration, Gene Expression/Lac Operon

Cells and Molecules: Weeks 6-9 are Transcription, translation, cell signaling, Txn regulation. Molecular interactions are earlier, photosynthesis and respiration are later.

Teaching strategies of interest: More active learning methods, assess effect of exam retake policy, or redevelop approach to helping students prep for exams. Also: Connecting my course to real-world student experiences, Problem- or project based learning, Incorporating case studies, Active learning techniques, Technology supported learning (online homework, blended learning, flipped classroom), Adding peer-mentoring or peer-led study groups, ‘Performance’ assessments (e.g. presentations, mock grant proposals), Collaborative learning/small group assignments or projects, Inquiry-based labs, Inclusive teaching strategies, Community-based or service learning

Teaching strategies currently used:

Intro Cell Biology:

  • Incorporating case studies — Case Studies on Respiration and Transcription
  • Active learning techniques — Concept Mapping, real life modeling of molecular systems,
  • Technology supported learning (online homework, blended learning, flipped classroom, videos, cellphones as clickers, etc.) — cellphones as clickers, some online homework
  • ‘Performance’ assessments (e.g. presentations, mock grant proposals) — Research Proposal Presentation
  • Collaborative learning/small group assignments or projects — group work in lab and some in lecture
  • Inclusive teaching strategies — Classroom culture, exam retakes
  • Frequent formative assessment to monitor and provide feedback on learning — in-class clickers (socrative), in-class worksheets
  • Read and discuss “Big Chicken” online and in person to get at public policy issues.

Please Contact: Peter Kuhn <pkuhn@edgewood.edu>