Converting Advanced Lab Courses to Research Collaborations

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Title of Abstract: Converting Advanced Lab Courses to Research Collaborations

Name of Author: Douglas Chalker
Author Company or Institution: Washington University
Author Title: Associate Professor
PULSE Fellow: No
Applicable Courses: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Bioinformatics, Cell Biology, Genetics, Microbiology, Plant Biology & Botany, Virology
Course Levels: Upper Division Course(s)
Approaches: Changes in Classroom Approach (flipped classroom, clickers, POGIL, etc.), Mixed Approach
Keywords: Classroom Research CURE Survey Advanced Laboratory Faculty development active inquiry

Name, Title, and Institution of Author(s): Sarah Elgin, Washington University in St Louis

Goals and intended outcomes of the project or effort, in the context of the Vision and Change report and recommendations: Engaging students in authentic research experiences improves persistence and success in STEM majors and careers. Participation in research is also correlated with improved critical thinking and deeper conceptual understanding of science. To provide as many research opportunities as possible, most biology laboratory courses are now structured as investigative experiences in which students undertake original, collaborative research projects.

Describe the methods and strategies that you are using: Biology Department Faculty are encouraged to incorporate research projects based on their own research interests into the lab courses that they teach. The success of this approach by a few has encouraged other faculty to develop new courses or redesign previously existing ones in this manner. Almost all current Biology laboratory offerings have investigative components. Class-based, original research experiences encompassing a broad range of subjects (e.g. bioinformatics, molecular and cell biology, biochemistry, immunology and ecology) are now available to a large percentage of our biology majors. Some inquiry-based modules were designed by graduate or post-doctoral teaching assistants, which provided important professional development for this next generation of educators. In Prof. S.C.R. Elgin’s bioinformatics lab (Biology 4342), students are provided a ~40kbp segment of DNA sequence from an ongoing genome project and are asked to suggest needed finishing sequencing and then annotate the region. In Prof. D.L. Chalker’s cell biology lab (Biology 3492), students functionally characterize their own unstudied gene predicted from the genome sequence of the model ciliate Tetrahymena. Students clone their chosen gene, make and describe the localization of a fluorescent protein fusion to the gene’s coding region among other studies.

Describe the evaluation methods that you used (or intended to use) to determine whether the project or effort achieved the desired goals and outcomes: In these courses, student data are used to update scientific databases and have been distributed through research publications, with enrolled students acknowledged or recognized as authors, demonstrating that students in class investigative labs can contribute novel research findings (2-5). With professors teaching closely aligned with areas of research interest, they are intellectually engaged, benefit in a tangible manner from the time investment, and are better able to communicate their passion for science. As judged by teaching evaluations and exit surveys, these courses are among students’ favorites from among our offerings. Assessment data collected over four years (n=37) using the Classroom Undergraduate Research Experience (CURE) survey in one course (Biology 3492) revealed clear gains in students’ understanding of the research process, readiness for more demanding research, understanding how scientists approach real world problems, and the ability to analyze data. Gains in this course compared favorably to the gains noted in a parallel survey of independent undergraduate research experiences (SURE). In addition, course-based research experiences provide other student growth opportunities in areas that are complementary to those that result from independent mentored research, such as science writing and oral presentation.

Impacts of project or effort on students, fellow faculty, department or institution. If no time to have an impact, anticipated impacts: Overall, our experiences indicate that encouraging integration of faculty research with teaching can promote the adoption of innovative curriculum, help transform teaching practice throughout a department or other community, and motivate faculty members to promote the most effective pedagogy beyond their own institution.

Describe any unexpected challenges you encountered and your methods for dealing with them: One of the biggest challenges is encountered in assessing the effectiveness of this pedagogy. Discipline faculty are not trained in educational assessment and have limited time to develop these skills. Similar challenges are found in dissemination as encouraging faculty at other institutions to adopt this strategy can be difficult without administrative by-in. Seeking outside funding for dissemination can help meet this need as it removes budgetary concerns from the administration.

Describe your completed dissemination activities and your plans for continuing dissemination: In addition to wide adoption of this strategy in the Biology department, several faculty members are engaged in efforts to disseminate their curricula to other institutions. The most successful initiative has been the Genomics Education Partnership (https://gep.wustl.edu) (1), based on Biology 4342, which has been disseminated widely. A second model for dissemination is the Ciliate Genomics Consortium, based on Biology 3492 curriculum, which brings together members of an existing research community to form a professional learning community to implement effective teaching strategies.

Acknowledgements: References: 1. Lopatto, D., et al. 2008. Undergraduate research. Science 322:684-5. 2. Malone, C. D., et al. 2005. Mol Cell Biol 25:9151-64. 3. Malone, C. D., et al. 2008. Eukaryot Cell 7:1487-99. 4. Shaffer, Cet al.. 2010. CBE Life Sci Educ 9:55-69. 5. Leung et al 2010, Genetics 185:1519-1534. Acknowledgements: This abstract reports the efforts of many colleagues: Drs. J Jez, R. Kranz, E, Herzog, B. Carlson,and L. Strader, D. Mendez, and S. Horrell. Funding was provided by HHMI and NSF grants to Washington University or the listed professors.

Inquiry-Based Genomics Lab Module Collection

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Title of Abstract: Inquiry-Based Genomics Lab Module Collection

Name of Author: Lois Banta
Author Company or Institution: Williams College
Author Title: Associate Professor
PULSE Fellow: No
Applicable Courses: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Bioinformatics, Cell Biology, Ecology and Environmental Biology, Evolutionary Biology, General Biology, Genetics, Integrative Biology, Microbiology, Neuroscience, Organismal Biology, Physiology & Anatomy, Plant Biology & Botany, Virology
Course Levels: Across the Curriculum, Faculty Development, Introductory Course(s), Upper Division Course(s)
Approaches: Material Development
Keywords: inquiry-based integrative genomics bioinformatics faculty-development

Name, Title, and Institution of Author(s): Erica J. Crespi, Vassar College Ross H. Nehm, Ohio State University Jodi A. Schwarz, Vassar College Susan Singer, Carleton College Cathryn A. Manduca, Carleton College Eliot C. Bush, Harvey Mudd College Elizabeth Collins, Vassar College Cara M. Constance, Hiram College Derek Dean, Williams College David Esteban, Vassar College Sean Fox, Carleton College John McDaris, Carleton College Carol Ann Paul, Wellesley College Ginny Quinan, Wellesley College Kathleen M. Raley-Susman, Vassar College Marc L. Smith, Vassar College Christopher S. Wallace, Whitman College Ginger S. Withers, Whitman College Lynn Caporale, Consultant

Goals and intended outcomes of the project or effort, in the context of the Vision and Change report and recommendations: The integration of genomic and bioinformatic approaches into undergraduate curricula represents one response to the national calls for biology teaching that is more quantitative and that promotes deeper understanding of biological systems through interdisciplinary analyses. Yet relatively few of the faculty members who teach undergraduate biology have expertise in the fields of genomics or bioinformatics. For these instructors, designing new teaching labs in a field that is developing so rapidly can feel particularly daunting. Our genomics education initiative was designed to address the challenges of helping faculty members integrate genome-scale science into the undergraduate classroom.

Describe the methods and strategies that you are using: The project utilized a grassroots model for faculty development, by supporting a national consortium of faculty members from eight liberal arts colleges in 1) learning about genomics and bioinformatics; 2) developing curriculum and laboratory teaching materials that stem from their own research and/or teaching interests, and that are informed by research in the learning sciences; and 3) devising tools to evaluate the efficacy of their genomics curricular innovations. Three workshops over three years supported these goals through a combination of learning from expertise within the participating group and from outside expertise on specific topics. The workshops brought together a total of 34 faculty participants from 19 institutions to develop a set of lab modules containing a substantial genomics component. Building on a proven faculty development model formulated by the geoscience education community, we complemented the multi-workshop program with a web-based interactive information portal. The initiative was structured such that the iterative interactions resulting from our three-workshop series would allow participants to share the experience of curriculum development, from the inception of an idea for a curricular module to the assessment of the implementation of that module, thereby generating a community of genomics educators among undergraduate institutions in the process. In addition, by bringing together educators from different institutions and scientific backgrounds, we aimed to stimulate discussion of interdisciplinary approaches to teaching genomics and facilitate the establishment of collaborations with other colleges and universities.

Describe the evaluation methods that you used (or intended to use) to determine whether the project or effort achieved the desired goals and outcomes: Products include peer-reviewed, guided inquiry-based, integrated instructional units (I3Us) adaptable to a range of teaching settings, with a focus on both model and non-model systems. Each curricular module is built on vetted design principles: (1) they have clear pedagogical objectives; (2) they are integrated with lessons taught in the lecture; (3) they are designed to integrate the learning of science content with learning about the process of science; and (4) they require student reflection and discussion (National Research Council, America’s Lab Report, Committee on High School Science Laboratories: Role and Vision; 2005). Each I3U was peer reviewed by fellow participants, as well as by a professional project consultant who has extensive experience with web-based description of teaching materials using this format to ensure that the I3U met the design criteria articulated above, and to evaluate whether the Activity Sheet provided both an easily accessible overview of the content and enough detailed information for other instructors to adapt and implement the material and its associated assessment strategies.

Impacts of project or effort on students, fellow faculty, department or institution. If no time to have an impact, anticipated impacts: Eleven I3Us were designed and implemented as multi-week modules within the context of an existing biology course (e.g., Microbiology, Comparative Anatomy, Introduction to Neurobiology); an additional three I3Us were incorporated into interdisciplinary Biology/Computer Science classes. Although these I3Us were designed for courses currently taught by the project participant within the specific institution’s curriculum, we propose that they can be inserted into other courses that encompass similar content and/or learning goals. We have received numerous communications from colleagues at other institutions who have adapted our I3Us for their courses.

Describe any unexpected challenges you encountered and your methods for dealing with them: Many participants lacked expertise needed to analyze sequence data or design wet labs and were overwhelmed by the array of possible tools, deciding which tools were useful in which scientific contexts, and the challenges of mastering their user interfaces. Some were concerned about teaching material with which they had little previous scientific experience. Most were isolated from colleagues who shared their interest or had the needed expertise to support their initial learning in this area. We provided hands-on training in three intensive days of short workshops, enabling participants to become familiar with bioinformatic tools for finding sequences, predicting the structure of proteins, visualizing and comparing genomes, and constructing phylogenetic trees. Participants who needed significantly more time to explore the tools and develop self-sufficiency maintained communication with at least one of the presenters over the course of the year, to obtain more training and to get ideas. For many, adapting bioinformatics tools into their modules was more easily accomplished by asking phylogenetic questions rather than adapting tools that could be used to explore genome-level questions of gene function or structure. The greatest challenge was that no robust assessment system, characterized by valid and reliable instruments evaluated by experts in education and psychometrics, existed to assess the efficacy of newly developed genomics and bioinformatics curricula. To help faculty build assessment tools, we provided: (1) A professional development session for faculty participants that reviewed the basics of educational assessment and the types of tools that could be employed in assessment efforts; (2) Individualized consultations to help participants build their assessments; and (3) Individualized consultations with faculty to assist in the interpretation of assessment data derived from point (2) above.

Describe your completed dissemination activities and your plans for continuing dissemination: All modules, together with extensive supporting material, are accessible on a dedicated website (https://serc.carleton.edu/genomics/activities.html) that also provides links to bioinformatics tools and on-line assessment and pedagogical resources, as well as all presentations from all three workshops, pre- and post-workshop content, and suggested readings provided by workshop leaders. The project website serves as a portal to Activity Sheets describing each I3U; these Activity Sheets include learning goals, teaching tips, and links to teaching materials, as well as downloadable assessment tools, that can be customized by any interested educator. Information about the collection of I3Us has been disseminated via publication.

Acknowledgements: This information has been published previously (Cell Biology Education-Life Science Education 11:203-208; 2012). The project was funded by the Teagle Foundation, with supplemental support from Williams College, Vassar College, and Schering-Plough.

Expanding a Research-Infused Botanical Curriculum

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Title of Abstract: Expanding a Research-Infused Botanical Curriculum

Name of Author: Jennifer Ward
Author Company or Institution: University of North Carolina at Asheville
Author Title: Assistant Professor
PULSE Fellow: No
Applicable Courses: Agricultural Sciences, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Ecology and Environmental Biology, General Biology, Plant Biology & Botany
Course Levels: Across the Curriculum, Introductory Course(s), Upper Division Course(s)
Approaches: Adding to the literature on how people learn, Assessment, Changes in Classroom Approach (flipped classroom, clickers, POGIL, etc.), Material Development
Keywords: assessment, consortium, inquiry, plant biology, undergraduate research,

Name, Title, and Institution of Author(s): H. David Clarke, University of North Carolina at Asheville Jonathan L. Horton, University of North Carolina at Asheville

Goals and intended outcomes of the project or effort, in the context of the Vision and Change report and recommendations: Our goals were to incorporate inquiry-based research experiences into undergraduate plant biology courses , including lower-division botany (required of all majors), so that all students had an authentic undergraduate research experience. We hoped to improve student learning of course content and familiarize them with the scientific process. Finally, we worked to overcome barriers of faculty time, student time/preparation, and funding.

Describe the methods and strategies that you are using: Undergraduate students developed and tested curricular modules based on their own independent research projects. These modules were tested by other research students before being used in a classroom setting. Then, undergraduate classroom students used modules in their plant biology lab courses, generating hypotheses and data related to the larger research project. In the past three years, we have involved over 300 classroom students and 12 undergraduate research mentors in this project.

Describe the evaluation methods that you used (or intended to use) to determine whether the project or effort achieved the desired goals and outcomes: To determine if exposure to the research-infused botanical curriculum increased students' content knowledge, we administered a quiz in Moodle courseware. To assess the effects of our new curriculum on students' scientific process, we used rubric scores on two journal-style papers; the rubric was tested for intergrader reliability. All data were analyzed with SAS 9.2 with PROC GLM and PROC PAIREDT.

Impacts of project or effort on students, fellow faculty, department or institution. If no time to have an impact, anticipated impacts: Student scores on journal-style papers rose after use of our curricular modules (P = 0.001), and sophomores improved their abilities to state hypotheses (P = 0.001), identify types of variables (P = 0.001), and choose appropriate statistical analyses (P = 0.017). Comparing pre- and post-test results demonstrated that students perceived significant gains in field experience, experimental design and analysis ability, writing experience, comfort with citing primary scientific literature, and recognizing the importance of plant science (P < 0.05 for all). In addition, they gained content knowledge in some botanical subdisciplines (P < 0.05). Research students also showed positive shifts in attitudes towards teaching and their own research. Our approach has now been adopted by other courses, departments, and regional universities.

Describe any unexpected challenges you encountered and your methods for dealing with them: In response to students' ongoing challenges in data interpretation, we have changed the way in which we teach these subjects.

Describe your completed dissemination activities and your plans for continuing dissemination: Results have been presented at 4 disciplinary conferences and 2 education conferences, and we are preparing them for publication. In late 2012, we created a coordinated undergraduate research network to investigate Southern Appalachian ecosystems’ resilience to environmental change. This research focus will serve as a platform for imparting botanical knowledge while advancing quantitative literacy, improving student attitudes towards STEM and NOS (Nature of Science), teaching creative STEM thinking, and encouraging higher-order cognitive processes. The place-based curricular modules that we are creating will be partially developed and administered by undergraduate and graduate research students (3 graduate T.A.s per year) and will have a direct impact on the learning of over 1000 undergraduates per year, including B.S.Ed. students.

Acknowledgements: Undergraduate research students included Scott Arico, Katherine Culatta, Jacob Francis, David Greene, Jennafer Hamlin, Ashley Hanes, Karissa Keen, Aaron Maser, Joseph McKenna, Megan Rayfield, Matt Searels, Katherine Selm, and Emmalie von Kuilenberg. This work was funded by the National Science Foundation (DUE 0942776) and the North Carolina Biotechnology Center.

Enhancing Science Learning through the Arts

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Title of Abstract: Enhancing Science Learning through the Arts

Name of Author: Wendy Silk
Author Company or Institution: University of California at Davis
PULSE Fellow: No
Applicable Courses: All Biological Sciences Courses, Ecology and Environmental Biology, Plant Biology & Botany
Course Levels: General Education, Introductory Course(s), Science and Society
Approaches: Adding to the literature on how people learn, Assessment, Changes in Classroom Approach (flipped classroom, clickers, POGIL, etc.), Enhancing understanding and improving communication through art projects, Material Development
Keywords: Science literacy, creativity, arts-based learning, science appreciation, environmental science

Name, Title, and Institution of Author(s): Merryl Goldberg, California State University

Goals and intended outcomes of the project or effort, in the context of the Vision and Change report and recommendations: More than ever in human history, global environmental problems inspire us to seek better public access to scientific knowledge and new paradigms for collaboration. For instance, one in five plant species are estimated to be under threat of extinction; sickness of pollinators is threatening food production; and pollution is threatening human health. This paper will review two programs to enhance science learning via the arts: the Art/Science fusion program at the University of California at Davis (UCD), and a networking project to explore incorporating music into biology curricula. Our goals are enhanced scientific literacy and better communication skills for undergraduates and increased appreciation of science and scientists.

Describe the methods and strategies that you are using: In the hope that artists will better acquire scientific literacy, while scientists will better access art as a means of expression and communication , entomologist Diane Ullman, ceramic artist Donna Billick, meteorologist Terrence Nathan and botanist Wendy Silk have established an Art/Science fusion program at the University of California, Davis. Ullman and Billick teach “Art, Science and the World of Insects” in which students create visual art projects. Silk teaches “Earth Water Science Song” with student songwriting and performance, and Nathan teaches “Photography: Bridging Art and Science.” In each course the students hear lectures on biology or environmental science and then create art projects to communicate their understanding of the science. In our classes students are active participants, not passive recipients, as they translate science concepts into works of art. We use multiple modes of instruction. Moreover, the students become teachers to the community as they create performances and public works of art. Our classes involve cooperative learning, known to increase understanding. By blending science and art in the classroom students learn first-hand how interdisciplinarity can integrate science and enhance creativity. Our curricula include case studies to show the relevance of biology to the world outside academia. Inspired by positive student reaction to her course Earth, Water, Science, Song, Silk sought and led an NSF-sponsored incubator project. The focus of this project was the use of music to expand student access to biology and to magnify collaborative and innovative thinking. We created a consortium across several educational institutions whereby biology and arts faculty engaged in dialogue, practice, and reflection to improve the teaching of undergraduate biology through arts-based methods.

Describe the evaluation methods that you used (or intended to use) to determine whether the project or effort achieved the desired goals and outcomes: We followed the number of offerings of Art/Science classes and the numbers of student enrolled. Student appreciation was monitored with written evaluation forms. Learning was assessed with pre-and post- tests. Merryl Goldberg communicated the results of a large study assessing the educational impact of including art on the learning of other subjects in elementary school. Silk, Goldberg, and statistician Marie Thomas collaborated to assess and improve student learning outcomes in undergraduate Art/Science classes.

Impacts of project or effort on students, fellow faculty, department or institution. If no time to have an impact, anticipated impacts: Participants came from several organizational settings: large public research universities, a public teaching university, a private music college, and industry. Notably, our UC Davis faculty teamed with Merryl Goldberg and her colleagues at CSUSM, an institution known for leadership in arts-based learning and recognized as an Asian American-, Pacific Islander- and Hispanic- serving institution. Goldberg found good evidence that arts can play a role in kinesthetic learning and thus improve general education (https://www.ed.gov/oii-news/dream-integrating-arts-increase-reading-proficiency). We also found that undergraduate students react enthusiastically and work hard to learn science when it is coupled to musical creativity and performance. In the past three years the environmental science class taught with ArtScience fusion has received student evaluations of 4.4-4.9 (out of 5.0) while a class taught by the same instructor with similar class size and subject matter (without music projects) received 3.3-4.1. Monitoring websites with science music videos confirms that these are attracting increasing attention from people of all ages. Pre- and post-tests have confirmed that undergraduate students learn a great deal of science in the ArtScience courses. We had many young participants including 460 students over three years at UC Davis alone. Also, our undergraduate students became teachers to the larger communities who saw student performances and art installations. Teaching assistants (funded by the campus administrations) became network participants and contributed substantially to the project. Our mentoring of graduate students yielded strong outcomes; recently one of our teaching assistants received the campus’ highest honor for graduate student teaching. We have been approached by faculty from science departments in other universities interested in Art/Science fusion and faculty from music and art departments interested in improving their science teaching.

Describe any unexpected challenges you encountered and your methods for dealing with them: The effectiveness of arts education in improving learning is well documented at the K-12 level. James Catterall and colleagues have found that youthful involvement in the arts associates with higher levels of achievement and college attainment, higher paying and more professional jobs, and deeper community involvement (e.g. https://www.nea.gov/research/arts-at-risk-youth.pdf ). Furthermore, Merryl Goldberg’s research has found that arts-based methods are powerful tools in the education of English language learners, many of whom are also underrepresented students. For older students evidence abounds that singing works as a memory aid, and neurobiologists are documenting and explaining the positive affect of music. But arts are rarely incorporated into science classes at the university. While informal testing in our classes supports our hypothesis that learning is enhanced when art projects are added to the curriculum, we have not yet been successful in obtaining funding to conduct a large scale study. And without such studies it is difficult to convince administrators and policy makers to encourage these unconventional curricula.

Describe your completed dissemination activities and your plans for continuing dissemination: We produced expansion of course offerings in Art/Science, training of teaching assistants, dissemination of some teaching materials via a networking website, Greg Crowther’s updated database of science songs for teaching, reports to professional societies, outreach publicizing and educating about nature preserves, and web-based dissemination of some student videos. Network participants published three scholarly articles in journals. Silk contributed to a white paper sent to the NSF and published on the XSEAD website. Two meetings facilitated exchange of ideas and learning about experiences in teaching biology with music and visual art. The ArtScience program at UC Davis has recently formed an expanded faculty consortium. We are seeking funding for educational testing and program enhancement.

Acknowledgements: NSF RCN-UBE Incubator # 0956196: Trial network to bring music to the study of biology Prof. Diane Ullman UCD Donna Billick ceramic artist Prof. Terrance Nathan UCD Dr. Gregory Crowther UW Prof. Marie Thomas CSUSM Prof. Betsy Read CSUSM Dr. Anthony Dumas SUNY

Learning to Learn

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Title of Abstract: Learning to Learn

Name of Author: John Moore
Author Company or Institution: Taylor University
Author Title: Professor of Biology& NABT Past President
PULSE Fellow: No
Applicable Courses: Cell Biology, Genetics, Plant Biology & Botany
Course Levels: Across the Curriculum
Approaches: Adding to the literature on how people learn, Changes in Classroom Approach (flipped classroom, clickers, POGIL, etc.), Material Development, Mixed Approach
Keywords: Cell, Plant, Genetics Flipped Metacognition

Name, Title, and Institution of Author(s): Jeffrey Regier, Taylor University

Goals and intended outcomes of the project or effort, in the context of the Vision and Change report and recommendations: The Department of Biology has selected three introductory courses for implementation of the recommendations from the Vision & Change report. Principles of Cell Biology & Introductory Plant Biology classes, and Principles of Genetics were selected because of the eagerness of the faculty to participate and the foundation that these courses have in the students’ future success at the university. The department has set for our main goals to provide the student with a learning environment that truly mimics the reality of the nature of science in biology. The establishment of a student-focused learning environment accomplishes the goal. Both the traditional classroom and course laboratory are designed to focus on (1) the thinking/analytical processes in both learning and biology, on (2) the skills and cognitive tools required in the science, and (3) the foundational knowledge that is used to address the biological concepts, methodologies and research of the science of biology.

Describe the methods and strategies that you are using: First, students are introduced to learning in biology. Learning that is research based, or more specifically how research supports the understanding of learning in science. This introduction lays a foundation on both metacognitive knowledge and the metacognitive tools that assist them in the process of learning science. Secondly, two major design changes have occurred that help move the program to a student-learning model. The first design change occurs in the ‘classroom setting’ where students are placed in flipped class formats. Students are exposed to the need to read and identify what is being addressed in class prior to the class meeting. The second design change occurs in the laboratory. Lab activities are now project oriented focused on collaboration, information processing, analysis and reflection, and question development. Thirdly, students will be expected to identify, understand, critique and propose research questions to both currently understood ideas in biology and ideas that are much less understood.

Describe the evaluation methods that you used (or intended to use) to determine whether the project or effort achieved the desired goals and outcomes: Documentation of those outcomes will come in the form of collaborative presentations; analytical questions with research based answers, and validation of understanding by organizing the learning. The outcomes of the learning are assessed in forms of communicating, elaborating, extending, exemplify or inferring and making of predictions. Additionally the development of models or metaphors may also utilize as well as standard testing and questioning.

Impacts of project or effort on students, fellow faculty, department or institution. If no time to have an impact, anticipated impacts: Taylor University is in complete support of the changes we are requesting. The faculty in all the science has been influenced highly by our institutions Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence (CTLE). The university has focused our approach in teaching and learning based on its mission that is preparation of students. This focus and approach has included the construction of our new science building. The building was designed to be one that is student learning directed. Providing interactive and collegial space that moves the teaching and interacting of students to a collaborative process where both formal and informal interfaces where students have the opportunity to live their learning of biological science and to explore biology in a non-traditional ‘cookbook’ format.

Describe any unexpected challenges you encountered and your methods for dealing with them: Resistant faculty to move away from a traditional approach of if it is covered it is taught and if it is taught then it is learned.

Describe your completed dissemination activities and your plans for continuing dissemination: Bring assessed data to the provost and dean of the center for teaching and learning excellence for analysis. Provide modules for other faculty to observe and participate

Acknowledgements: Dr. Jeffrey Moshier Provost of Taylor University Dr. William Toll Dean of the School of Natural and Applied Sciences

How a Scientific Society Promotes and Supports Change

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Title of Abstract: How a Scientific Society Promotes and Supports Change

Name of Author: Sarah Wyatt
Author Company or Institution: Ohio University
PULSE Fellow: No
Applicable Courses: General Biology, Plant Biology & Botany
Course Levels: Across the Curriculum, Faculty Development
Approaches: Building faculty capacity, Defining core concepts and competencies, Mixed Approach
Keywords: Core concepts Plant Biology Professional society Faculty development

Name, Title, and Institution of Author(s): Katie Engen, American Society of Plant Biologists Erin Dolan, University of Georgia

Goals and intended outcomes of the project or effort, in the context of the Vision and Change report and recommendations: This project comprised three core activities. First, a workshop was held at the Plant Biology 2011 meeting to gather feedback from ASPB members on how to put the recommendations of the Vision & Change (V&C) report into practice. Based on the results of this workshop, a plan of action was generated to guide the development of activities and resources that ASPB could offer its members as they put V&C recommendations into practice with diverse students in a wide range of institutional contexts. Second, a small working group to generate a set of core concepts that: - outlined what undergraduate biology majors should learn about plants; were consistent with themes from V&C and the new K-12 science education framework; - were the enduring, big ideas that explained what makes plants distinct from other lineages of organisms and described the essential attributes and life strategies of plants; and - were broad and foundational in nature, and could be divided further into multiple subconcepts or units of knowledge (e.g., learning objectives) that were measurable. The final set of core concepts served as a framework for developing sample learning objectives. The final activity was to initiate the ASPB Master Educator Program in order to support selected individuals in participating in evidence-based professional development with the aim of adapting or developing educational materials.

Describe the methods and strategies that you are using: ASPB is promoting a culture that values evidence-based teaching in higher education by: - Ensuring education has ‘equal billing’ at the annual meeting. An education mini-symposium is scheduled alongside scientific mini symposia. Efforts are made to select speakers based on education data that will be presented or the published evidence base (i.e., is the work consistent with what is known about how people learn?). An education workshop engages conferees in learning actively about evidence-based instruction. An education and outreach booth is given a place of priority and high visibility in the exhibit hall, and is populated with innovative instructional resources and a ‘science education research’ library. - Promoting and supporting faculty in changing their teaching. ASPB established and funded a Master Educator Program with the aim of developing instructional materials that align with V&C recommendations. - Supporting and rewarding excellence in undergraduate science education. The ASPB runs a Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship program. ASPB sponsors the Education Foundation Grants Program and the Education Booth Competition for Innovative Instruction, which encourage and support ASPB members in creating, evaluating, and disseminating innovative, evidence-based education resources. ASPB selects an annual recipient of the Excellence in Education Award, which is presented alongside science achievement awards at the annual meeting. - Facilitating communication and discussion about change in higher education. ASPB posts weekly updates about the Partnership for Undergraduate Life Science Education (PULSE). PULSE Leadership Fellows will present at two education events during Plant Biology 2013. Three members are PULSE fellows and two members are advisors to the fellows. ASPB also hosts a higher education interest group on its website and provides instructional materials to align with the core concepts and learning objectives.

Describe the evaluation methods that you used (or intended to use) to determine whether the project or effort achieved the desired goals and outcomes: The executive committees of ASPB and the Botanical Society of America (BSA) as well as the entire membership of both societies were engaged in the review of the draft of the core concepts through online surveys and presentations at annual meetings in summer 2012. This helped ensure that the concepts were thoroughly vetted and that the ASPB and BSA communities were broadly invested in the effort. Plans are being developed to document the extent to which the core concepts and learning objectives are being used and the extent to which the Master Educator program addresses concerns about the lack of instructional materials in plant biology that align with V&C recommendations.

Impacts of project or effort on students, fellow faculty, department or institution. If no time to have an impact, anticipated impacts: The Society is interested in documenting the impacts of its efforts at the student, faculty, and college / university level, and would welcome feedback about how to accomplish this given limited resources. In addition, ASPB would welcome opportunities to collaborate to measure the impact of a professional society on teaching and learning.

Describe any unexpected challenges you encountered and your methods for dealing with them: The main challenges from our perspective are (1) defining realistic expectations about the impacts a scientific society can have on undergraduate education, and (2) determining how to measure outcomes and impacts from the society perspective.

Describe your completed dissemination activities and your plans for continuing dissemination: Results of this work have been disseminated in the following venues: - Annual meetings - Invited presentations at other meetings (e.g., meeting of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities) - Society website and higher education interest group discussion board (https://my.aspb.org/blogpost/722549/152613/CoreConceptsandLearningObjectivesinUndergraduatePlantBiology) - Society newsletter and electronic communications - Press releases ASPB will continue to use these strategies and venues for dissemination. Feedback would be welcomed regarding how a scientific society can disseminate materials and programming in ways that are most likely to promote and encourage instruction that is aligned with V&C.

Acknowledgements: This project was supported by the National Science Foundation (Grant # 1125988) and the ASPB Education Foundation and Education Committee.

New Tools for Learning about Biological Energy Transfer

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Title of Abstract: New Tools for Learning about Biological Energy Transfer

Name of Author: Ann Batiza
Author Company or Institution: Milwaukee School of Engineering
Author Title: Director, The SUN Project
PULSE Fellow: No
Applicable Courses: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Biotechnology, Ecology and Environmental Biology, General Biology, Plant Biology & Botany, Teacher In-service
Course Levels: Across the Curriculum, Introductory Course(s), Teacher In-service, Upper Division Course(s)
Approaches: Assessment, Changes in Classroom Approach (flipped classroom, clickers, POGIL, etc.), Material Development, Mixed Approach
Keywords: cellular respiration photosynthesis models analogy energy

Goals and intended outcomes of the project or effort, in the context of the Vision and Change report and recommendations: All of our work is motivated by the desire to increase understanding of 'what powers life.' Our previous work, funded by the Institute of Education Sciences and called The SUN (Students Understanding eNergy) Project, was recently published in CBE-Life Sciences Education (Batiza et al., 2013). It provides causal evidence through a randomized, controlled trial of immediate and long-lasting (year later) effects of a new way to teach biological energy transfer. Large, significant effects on knowledge and self-efficacy were reported for 19 regular biology teachers (vs. 20 controls) who attended a two-week workshop about cellular respiration (CR) and photosynthesis (PS). The workshop introduced a series of physics and biology-based mental-model-building experiences to help the teachers understand both the 'why' and the 'how' of biological energy transfer. Our approach uses a hydrogen fuel cell and physical and digital manipulatives to emphasize the flow of electrons as the basis for biological energy transfer. A mechanical ATP synthase demonstrates how the concentration of protons originally stimulated by electron movement allows for the production of ATP. Now, with NSF funding we are adapting those materials for the undergraduate level and we have created additional materials including the SUN Chloroplast eBook, which can be accessed at https://www.msoe.edu/academics/research_centers/sun/about.shtml. We are currently pilot-testing adaptation in a variety of undergraduate institutional settings and in a variety of courses that range from an introductory cell biology course for ~115 honors biology students at the University of Wisconsin-Madison to a small bioengineering course at Milwaukee School of Engineering for 14 participants. This year we will follow up regarding long term effects on UW-Madison students and also test the adapted materials in an intimate Energy and the Environment Physics class for non-majors at UW-Milwaukee and in a large biochemistry class.

Describe the methods and strategies that you are using: Our original work on these materials, as stated above, used a randomized, controlled trial to study effects upon high school regular biology teachers (Batiza et al., 2013) and a cluster, randomized controlled trial for effects on their students (paper in preparation). Importantly, we found moderate to large, significant effects in both populations. Teacher-level data in terms of a drawing with written explanation, a multiple choice test, and an established survey of self-efficacy modified for biological energy transfer were gathered not only before and immediately after the workshop, but also one year later. In addition, teachers deposited implementation data online every two months. Student data in terms of a drawing with written explanation and a multiple choice test was also collected. At the undergraduate level we have continued use of the drawing with written explanation as a pre and post test and at the various institutions we have included some appropriate multiple choice and/or short answer pre/post content questions. Pre and post surveys provide for ethnographic and self-efficacy data as well as evaluation of the various instructional materials used. We are also developing a script to videotape a subset of students whom we will follow up for long term effects of these materials.

Describe the evaluation methods that you used (or intended to use) to determine whether the project or effort achieved the desired goals and outcomes: For the original biology teacher effects, the pre/post gains of teachers who took the workshop were tested for significance using the paired-samples t-test. In addition, scores between groups were tested for significant differences using analysis of variance (ANOVA). Similarly, the multiple-choice and likert-scale survey responses of the UW-Madison Treatment and Control groups were analyzed using a paired samples t-test and ANOVA. The achievement and self-efficacy of the small bioengineering group was tested for significance using the paired samples t-test. Overall ratings of materials and ratings of materials by students for learning particular concepts are reported as response frequencies. In addition, student comments will be noted. We have not yet graded the undergraduate drawings with explanation assessments administered in common to each group. Besides testing for significant growth and comparing Treatment and Control groups within each setting where appropriate, we will analyze the responses in terms of conceptual achievement according to the 35-item rubric with a .90 inter-rator reliability (Batiza et al., CBE-Life Sciences Education, 2013) used earlier to analyze the teacher responses.

Impacts of project or effort on students, fellow faculty, department or institution. If no time to have an impact, anticipated impacts: As described above, our previous work provides causal evidence through a randomized, controlled trial of large, significant, immediate and long-lasting (year later) effects of a new way to learn about biological energy transfer. These effects on knowledge and self-efficacy were reported for 19 regular biology Treatment Group teachers who attended a two-week workshop about CR and PS vs. 20 Control teachers (Batiza et al., 2013). A paper regarding significant effects on their students is in preparation. Preliminary analysis of the UW-Madison honors biology trial shows no significant difference in achievement by the Treatment and Control groups, but it must be noted that ALL STUDENTS used SUN study guides and therefore were exposed to SUN concepts. The major difference was the use of SUN manipulatives by the Treatment group for half of each of two 50-minute discussion sections. Nonetheless, the Treatment group scored significantly higher that the Controls in terms of confidence in their knowledge (T 27.65 +/- 4.26 vs. C 25.00 +/- 5.26 out of a possible 32). The small MSOE trial, which had only 14 students in a Treatment Group, showed a significant gain in self-efficacy pre-to-post. Preliminary analysis of the evaluations of the SUN materials by students indicated that students valued the materials for learning concepts predicted by their expected affordances. For example 70% of students indicated that the nested trays with movable components were useful for understanding the path of electrons in photosynthesis. 75% of the MSOE students rated the hydrogen fuel cell and animations as 'Extremely' or 'Very' useful. 54-62% of the MSOE students and UW-Madison students put the mechanical ATP synthase into these categories. The majority of students in Treatment groups at both schools also found that the SUN mitochondrial and chloroplast eBooks and the nested trays configured as these organelles to be more useful than not.

Describe any unexpected challenges you encountered and your methods for dealing with them: Once the TAs in the UW-Madison trial were trained in use of the SUN materials, we felt that it would be impossible for them to provide a ‘business as usual’ condition for the controls. Therefore we decided to test only the manipulatives in this trial; however, that is not a fair test of the entire SUN Project. In the upcoming large biochemistry trial, only half of the teaching assistants will be trained with the SUN materials. One of the PIs who found herself overcommitted resigned; although we will miss her participation, we were able to replace her with a distinguished professor at her institution. We aborted one trial because we felt that exposure to the pre-test would unfairly advantage study participants when they encountered these same questions on the final. When we implement that trial with a comparable group this year, we will administer the pretest to all students in the course. Another trial suggested that the post assessment needs to be a high stakes test and so in future trials all post tests will be either part of a quiz, unit test or final exam.

Describe your completed dissemination activities and your plans for continuing dissemination: Professor Carol Hirschmugl of the UW-Milwaukee physics department and Dr. Ann Batiza, the PI of this project, gave a 'Science Bag' presentation on 'Fuel Cells, Cellular Fuels: What Powers Life?' at UW-Milwaukee for ~1000 members of the public. The presentation included the SUN materials and the SUN Mitochondrial and Chloroplast eBooks as well as a 6-foot mechanical ATP synthase into which kids from 5-15 threw tennis-ball 'proton' fuel. The alpha/beta subunits were opened and closed by a rotating central shaft to simulate ATP production. At the NSF-PI meeting, Dr. Ann Batiza of MSOE and Professor Bo Zhang from the Educational Psychology Department at UW-Milwaukee gave a workshop on materials development and also presented a poster from the entire research group. At the 2013 National Association for Science Teachers, Ann Batiza co-presented a workshop for 28 teachers with Pat Deibert of MSOE on use of the SUN materials and eBooks at the high school level. In addition, Professor David Goodsell of Scripps Research Institute has presented the SUN Chloroplast eBook at three national or international meetings.

Acknowledgements: Acknowledgements: We thank then MSOE undergraduate Heather Bobrowitz for earlier development of the microbial fuel cell. Other undergraduate and graduate research assistants who have provided technical and clerical support for this project include Elise Pinkerton and Lindsey White. This material is based upon work supported by the Institute of Education Sciences under award number R305B070443 and by the National Science Foundation under award number DUE-1044898. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Institute for Education Sciences nor the National Science Foundation.

Creating a Coherent Gateway for STEM Teaching and Learning

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Title of Abstract: Creating a Coherent Gateway for STEM Teaching and Learning

Name of Author: Diane Ebert-May
Author Company or Institution: Michigan State University
Author Title: Professor
PULSE Fellow: No
Applicable Courses: 1468, 1487, Cell Biology, Ecology and Environmental Biology, Evolutionary Biology, General Biology, Genetics, Math, Organismal Biology, Plant Biology & Botany
Course Levels: Across the Curriculum, Introductory Course(s)
Approaches: Mixed Approach, Research driven
Keywords: assessment, learning communities, introductory science and math courses, change models, retention

Name, Title, and Institution of Author(s): Tammy Long, Michigan State University Robert Pennock, Michigan State University Mark Voit, Michigan State University

Goals and intended outcomes of the project or effort, in the context of the Vision and Change report and recommendations: At Michigan State University, we are focusing on the reform of gateway courses in not only in biology but also in chemistry, physics and mathematics involving over 4000 students in a typical semester. Using a model of change that depends upon a shared vision, teams of faculty from the disciplinary departments will come together to identify the disciplinary and cross-disciplinary core ideas and scientific and mathematical practices that, together, we will blend to develop performance expectations. We are developing assessments that emphasize both these core ideas and scientific or mathematical practices, which in turn will require that faculty change their classroom practices. In this way, we focus on the important ideas and practices of the STEM disciplines, and emphasize the interdisciplinary nature of modern science and mathematics. Learning communities composed of faculty, postdoctoral fellows and graduate students will be supported as they contribute to the shared vision of the reformed gateway courses. This project is complementary to an existing project funded by AAU and was proposed to the recent NSF-WIDER competition, intended to lead to reform of gateway courses and changing the culture of research universities to emphasize the importance of teaching and learning.

Describe the methods and strategies that you are using: The reform of these courses is based both on current theories of teaching and learning, and on a change model that emerges from the shared vision of all the stakeholders and that evolves based on feedback from assessments about how we are meeting our goals.

Describe the evaluation methods that you used (or intended to use) to determine whether the project or effort achieved the desired goals and outcomes: Our reform efforts are driven by the following research questions: 1. In what ways do faculty transform their practices across the STEM gateway courses as new common outcomes and expectations are developed based upon core disciplinary ideas blended with scientific practices? 2. How does student understanding of core disciplinary ideas and science practices change, over time and across disciplines? 3. Are student changes in understanding and use of knowledge correlated with faculty practices, assessments and learning materials? 4. How does student retention, both in courses and majors, change as courses are redesigned?

Impacts of project or effort on students, fellow faculty, department or institution. If no time to have an impact, anticipated impacts: As we answer these four research questions, we will develop a model for sustainable change in targeted gateway courses based on collective faculty engagement. This model will be transferable to other institutions.

Describe any unexpected challenges you encountered and your methods for dealing with them: Although it is not unexpected, faculty commitment and willingness to change is always a challenge.

Describe your completed dissemination activities and your plans for continuing dissemination: The AAU project began in June. The reform of Organismal and Population Biology (see T. Long abstract) is complete (but always a work in progress) and disseminated to a number of faculty across colleges.

Acknowledgements: To all the faculty and administrators who are involved in the reform of the STEM gateway courses.

Ethnobiology Educational Network: A societal perspective

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Title of Abstract: Ethnobiology Educational Network: A societal perspective

Name of Author: Sunshine Brosi
Author Company or Institution: Frostburg State University
Author Title: Assistant Professor
PULSE Fellow: No
Applicable Courses: Ecology and Environmental Biology, Evolutionary Biology, General Biology, Plant Biology & Botany
Course Levels: Across the Curriculum, Faculty Development
Approaches: Material Development
Keywords: societies, cultures, ethnobiology, network, resources

Name, Title, and Institution of Author(s): Patricia Harrison, Botanical Research Institute of Texas Will McClatchey, Botanical Research Institute of Texas

Goals and intended outcomes of the project or effort, in the context of the Vision and Change report and recommendations: Ethnobiology is a developing science of the dynamic interactions between humans, biota, and environments. Ethnobiology expands upon ethnobotany to include interactions with the entire natural world including the subfields of ethnoecology and ethnozoology. Ethnobiology expands from a historic focus on traditional cultures to include modern cultural interactions such as research on how cultures learn about the natural world. The strengths of the ethnobiological perspective include being rooted in culture and being interdisciplinary by linking social and natural sciences. The Open Science Network (OSN: www.opensciencenetwork.net) was established in order to develop and promote ethnobiology education and in turn enhance STEM education through the lens of ethnobiology. OSN has been supported since 2009 by a NSF RCN-UBE grant to create an open forum for the exchange of innovative curricula and ideas, as well as a community that supports professional growth. Although primarily based within the Society for Economic Botany (SEB), OSN also includes educators from the International Society of Ethnobiology, the Society of Ethnobiology, and the International Society for Ethnopharmacology. The goal of OSN was to empower instructors to implement Vision and Change (V&C) in Undergraduate Biology Education recommendations for improving scientific literacy. Ethnobiology education particularly aligns within the V&C core competencies of: (4) Tap into the interdisciplinary nature of science; (5) Ability to communicate and collaborate with other disciplines; and (6) Relationships between science and society. Ethnobiologists study knowledge transfer within societies with many opportunities to expand into pedagogical research. Ethnobiologists are extensively trained in ethics, human subject research, and qualitative analysis which broaden opportunities for faculty to engage in the scholarship of teaching and learning.

Describe the methods and strategies that you are using: The Open Science Network in Ethnobiology was formed to enable sharing of peer-reviewed education materials and practices though an open source, open access web portal. After several years of building a network of educators and empowering them to contribute educational materials to the site, the greatest challenge to the project was peer review of the curriculum. With no defined standards for ethnobiology literacy, it was difficult to evaluate shared materials. The project looked to a landmark project in the field of biology education to pattern its own standards that would not only define core concepts and competencies for this emerging field, but also provide consistency in courses and degree programs across universities and community colleges. Adapting the Vision and Change for Undergraduate Biology initiative to the field of ethnobiology became the focus of the grant work, with the goals of (1) consensus on core concepts specific for the field, in addition to the Vision and Change biology concepts, (2) consistent learning outcomes for ethnobiology courses, (3) course alignment in ethnobiology degree programs, and (4) professional development for educators that models innovative teaching and assessment practices. In 2011 and 2012 biology and anthropology educators from 33 universities and institutions across the U.S. and Europe came together to work towards consensus on essential elements of ethnobiology curricula. From those meetings came recommendations for standards specific to ethnobiology, and a draft of a document, Vision and Change in Undergraduate Ethnobiology Education in the U.S.A.: Recommended Curriculum Assessment Guidelines, was compiled and presented to all three ethnobiology professional societies in 2012, along with an invitation for members to comment and make further recommendations. In addition, workshops and presentations at the three meetings modeled teaching practices and assessment strategies recommended by Vision and Change.

Describe the evaluation methods that you used (or intended to use) to determine whether the project or effort achieved the desired goals and outcomes: Evaluation of the network to determine growth and to measure successful outcomes of objectives was done through surveys at the professional meetings and through an on-line survey to all members. An evaluator traveled across the U.S. visiting universities with ethnobiology courses for personal interviews with ethnobiology educators to survey their work and to identify strong hub points in the network.

Impacts of project or effort on students, fellow faculty, department or institution. If no time to have an impact, anticipated impacts: OSN has changed the culture of ethnobiology education through developing dynamic mentorships between seasoned educators and young professionals. A key success of OSN has been the formation of cohesive groups of interacting ethnobiologists. Through regular OSN meetings, core team members have developed lasting relationships which have resulted in collaboration on education and research projects. Educators within the field of ethnobiology are part of an active, engaging community and feel less isolated within instructional and departmental boundaries. Members have submitted curriculum modules aligned to the recommended ethnobiology standards for posting on the OSN web site as examples. Additionally, programs such as the Field School by the University of Hawaii adapted its curriculum to align with the Vision and Change recommendations and experienced a greater student engagement in the program. OSN has resulted in curricular modification, extensive assessment, and benchmarks for evaluation integrated into the Ethnobotany Program at Frostburg State University in Maryland. As programs in ethnobiology develop, OSN is positioned to provide essential structure and support.

Describe any unexpected challenges you encountered and your methods for dealing with them: The greatest challenge within OSN has been the process of peer-review of educational materials. The transition to peer-reviewing from research to teaching materials was extremely challenging. Ethnobiologists value the great diversity of cultures and were resistant to potential hominization. Hesitation to share or peer-review was exacerbated by lack of familiarity with educational literature. Another obstacle to participation came in the form of perception of ownership and uniqueness, as many modules developed and refined in evolving teams. Publication of materials could be enhanced through discussions of authorship at the onset of collaborations and opportunities during workshops to develop publications. The peer-review process was improved by the development of defined standards for ethnobiology literacy. Ethnobiology struggles with an identity of a less-rigorous science, similar to the field of ecology in its early development. V&C offers structured guidelines to counter this perception by developing educational materials that cover all core competencies to better train students. Ethnobiology is developing at a time of educational reform with unique opportunities to create proactive learning materials to circumvent disciplinary snags. Development of educational modules that address these competencies will need to occur in conjunction with professional development opportunities.

Describe your completed dissemination activities and your plans for continuing dissemination: Vision and Change in Undergraduate Ethnobiology Education in the U.S.A.: Recommended Curriculum Assessment Guidelines will be presented to various ethnobiology organizations in the fall. Discipline specific criteria for material development and evaluation will be used in peer-review. OSN elected to have materials submitted through an already established portal LifeDiscoveryEd Digital Library. The LifeDiscoveryEd Digital Library is an online resource with various portals for biology education in ecology (EcoEd), plant biology (PlantEd), evolution (EvoEd), and ethnobiology (EconBotEd). The project is a partnership of the Ecological Society of America, the Society for Economic Botany, the Botanical Society of America and the Society for the Study of Evolution. Ethnobiology provides fertile soil for growth in students’ interest in the biological sciences. The nature of ethnobiology is attracting an unprecedented number of university students exploring careers in this emerging interdisciplinary field. The Vision and Change process has made significant contributions to the development of this field and will continue to guide its growth as a more rigorous, credited science discipline.

Acknowledgements: This project is supported by a National Science Foundation Research Coordination Network in Undergraduate Biology Education (RCN-UBE).

Ciliate Genomics Consortium: Teaching-Research Integration

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Title of Abstract: Ciliate Genomics Consortium: Teaching-Research Integration

Name of Author: Emily Wiley
Author Company or Institution: Claremont McKenna, Pitzer, and Scripps Colleges
Author Title: Associate Professor
PULSE Fellow: No
Applicable Courses: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Bioinformatics, Cell Biology, General Biology, Plant Biology & Botany
Course Levels: Faculty Development, Introductory Course(s), Upper Division Course(s)
Approaches: Changes in Classroom Approach (flipped classroom, clickers, POGIL, etc.), Material Development
Keywords: class-based research learning community collaborative research molecular biology functional genomics

Goals and intended outcomes of the project or effort, in the context of the Vision and Change report and recommendations: To improve biological literacy and student-centered education, V&C action items include integrating science process, and introducing research experiences, into all undergraduate biology courses. Developing a model for integrating undergraduate research, with a particular eye to making class-based authentic experiences more sustainable for faculty, was a central goal. The Ciliate Genomics Consortium (CGC) was aimed to 1) improve feasibility/sustainability of undergraduate research in the classroom through melding faculty research goals with student research efforts in a professional learning community model; 2) increase student (early) participation in authentic research by integrating opportunities into a variety of commonly-taught biology courses at different levels and types of institutions; 3) enrich classroom undergraduate research experiences through immediate web publication of students' original findings to an appropriate 'user' group; and 4) expand science leadership opportunities for students.

Describe the methods and strategies that you are using: A learning consortium of faculty and students based on functional annotation of Tetrahymena genes was developed. Scalable research modules for integration into existing courses serve to engage students in making new and highly valued contributions to the larger community of ciliate biologists. Student discoveries are directly disseminated to this community through a database for unpublished results that is hyperlinked to the official genome database, a highly visible and well-utilized community resource. Faculty at any institution can engage their students, in class, in explorations of genes in families related to the faculty member's research program, and results are used to progress their research agenda. Opportunities for collaboration between consortium faculty across institutions and disciplines that create new research possibilities, are provided through workshops run as part of, or separate from, regular scientific meetings. Resulting collaborations allow students to feed into larger projects of interest to multiple faculty members.

Describe the evaluation methods that you used (or intended to use) to determine whether the project or effort achieved the desired goals and outcomes: Changes in student attitudes and motivation to engage science that correlate with using consortium research modules and other consortium activities, such as dissemination of student discoveries and inclusion in a broader learning community, were assessed. Pre/post attitudinal and confidence surveys were administered; voluntary student time spent on the project outside of class was tracked, as were student efforts to seek additional research opportunities in the following year. Comparisons were made with control groups that did not participate in the consortium. Student learning gains from engaging research in class guided by the modules was assessed using the CURE and SALG instruments. To assess sustainability for faculty, the number of course repeats using the research modules was tracked, and the number of faculty publications using student-generated data, and the number of new collaborations between consortium faculty were used as measures of impact to faculty research programs. Impact on the larger ciliate research community was measured by tracking numbers of new gene function annotation entries resulting from the class-based research made on the Tetrahymena Genome Database (TGD) Wiki, or through the database for unpublished results linked to TGD.

Impacts of project or effort on students, fellow faculty, department or institution. If no time to have an impact, anticipated impacts: Nine faculty at 11 different schools (private colleges, universities, and state universities) have integrated the research modules into 12 courses (cell bio, molecular, and intro) taught multiple times, plus bridge programs - over 500 students have contributed toward understanding function of ~300 Tetrahymena genes. Repeated use of modules in courses was 95%. Some courses were designed around this experience (a research course for sophomores, and others) and modules were successfully established in intro biology courses at Claremont and Missouri State U. Through CGC, 10 faculty and 6 students have received technical cross-training through workshops; 52 students have presented their research at conferences (including intro bio students); 23 are authors on peer-reviewed publications. Learning and behavioral outcomes from the research modules include significant gains in students' understanding of research process, how scientists approach real world problems, data analysis, readiness for more demanding research, and gains in student confidence in experimental design and execution, data presentation, scientific writing, oral presentation of results, and scientific record-keeping. Tracking and self-reports showed 25% increase in upper division students, and 6-fold increase in first year students, who pursued additional research within one year after module experience. Adding web publication opportunity produced large gains in motivation to 'do science', measured by tracking voluntary student hours spent on the research project outside of class time, and beyond the end of the course. Faculty research programs benefitted from the class-based research, shown by number of publications (6) with student authors from classes (20) and 5 new multi-year faculty collaborations.

Describe any unexpected challenges you encountered and your methods for dealing with them: Challenge #1: Time/effort to adopt and implement the research modules in a given classroom. Faculty can bring UG students to workshop training sessions - students serve as TAs at the home institution, aiding module implementation and reducing faculty time/effort required. Challenge #2: Faculty reluctance to adopt modules using unfamiliar experimental systems. Instead of only recruiting faculty into work with Tetrahymena, we are also disseminating our UG research model - one that is highly transferable to teacher-researchers in other model system communities with genome annotation needs. Our student results database now has a highly adaptable interface for use by any community. Disseminating the model reduces need for specific training workshops for work with Tetrahymena.

Describe your completed dissemination activities and your plans for continuing dissemination: The Ciliate Genomics Consortium opportunities and outcomes were disseminated through multiple presentations at both scientific and education conferences, through workshops during a primary biannual conference for ciliate biologists, and independent consortium workshops. A CGC website provides one avenue for new people to join the consortium (https://tet.jsd.claremont.edu). At least three publications on consortium activities and outcomes are in preparation. Enhanced efforts to disseminate the consortium model to other model system communities are being planned, and a proposal to NSF to support these and future faculty/student training workshops was submitted.

Acknowledgements: This project was supported by an NSF CAREER award to E. Wiley (MCB-0545560) and HHMI funding to Washington University. The project was developed through the combined efforts of the The Ciliate Genomics Consortium Steering Committee members: Douglas Chalker, Washington University; Joshua Smith, Missouri State University; Nicholas Stover, Bradley University; and Emily Wiley, Claremont McKenna, Pitzer, and Scripps Colleges.