ERIC Number: EJ1024739
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
Vision and Change in the Biology Community: Snapshots of Change
Vasaly, Helen L.; Feser, Jason; Lettrich, Matthew D.; Correa, Kevin; Denniston, Katherine J.
CBE - Life Sciences Education, v13 n1 p16-20 Mar 2014
When the authors were first invited to write these columns, the editors felt it would be an interesting way to give the readers of "CBE - Life Sciences Education" an agency's-eye view of its concerns, workings, and accomplishments. This column is written with that charge in mind. It is intended to inform the community about outreach efforts, some of the mechanisms used, and the effectiveness of these efforts. In 2007, the National Science Foundation (NSF), the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI), and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) launched an initiative called Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education (V&C), designed to enable the biology community to address the challenges of preparing undergraduates for 21st-century biology using 21st-century findings about effective teaching strategies. Over the next 2 years, with support from the partners listed above, the community engaged in "conversations" among faculty, administrators, students, and professional societies through a series of workshops. Those conversations culminated in a working conference in 2009, in which more than 500 faculty, administrators, and students pooled their collective wisdom. The tangible result from all this effort, "Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education: A Call to Action," is a document setting forth their vision of the approaches needed to ensure undergraduate biology education truly reflects the biology of the 21st century in both the content included and the competencies developed and the delivery reflects what is known about effective teaching practices. Since the release of the report, many organizations, including those listed above, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the National Research Council, and a number of professional societies have led efforts to disseminate the document and engage the biology community in efforts to implement the actions outlined in it. This article discusses how successful these efforts have been. Six years after those initial conversations, it is important to try to determine the extent of dissemination and implementation of V&C, not only to determine the challenges ahead and possible next steps, but also to begin to establish mechanisms for effective response when a science experiences the sort of rapid evolution in approach, resources, and focus that has occurred recently in biology.
Descriptors: Biology, College Science, Undergraduate Study, Science Education, Educational Change, Reports, Citations (References), Program Proposals, Web Sites, Program Effectiveness
American Society for Cell Biology. 8120 Woodmont Avenue Suite 750, Bethesda, MD 20814-2762. Tel: 301-347-9300; Fax: 301-347-9310; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Website: http://www.ascb.org
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A