The College of Biological Sciences is a national leader in implementing active learning strategies in biology education. To help new faculty members develop skills in this area, they will be given the opportunity to participate in one of the National Academies Summer Institutes for Undergraduate Biology Education. This experience will lay the scientific foundation for teaching, including themes of active learning, assessment and diversity. New faculty will also be encouraged to observe an active learning class in action throughout a semester or two, interacting with students informally and providing suggestions for the instructors of that class. Watch the video below to get a flavor of this teaching approach.
CBS has also created an innovative program to improve undergraduate biology education for all undergraduates who take biology courses in hands-on research, using a $1.5 million grant awarded by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.
Active learning classrooms
The college led efforts to introduce active learning classrooms at the University of Minnesota beginning with the Foundations of Biology course sequence.