Biology Education Scholarship & Research
Interdisciplinary research aimed to improve student learning outcomes at all levels within biology
What is Biology Education Research?
Biology Education Research is a subtype of Discipline-Based Education Research. It is a growing interdisciplinary field which utilizes practices from psychology, sociology, cognitive science, education, and mathematics to improve classroom instruction and student outcomes.
At UC San Diego, our biology education research is largely led by teaching professors. We’re part of a larger network of UC-wide teaching professors.
Melinda Owens uncovers what biology students know about vaccine mechanisms
Vaccines are an important and societally relevant biology topic, but it is unclear how much college biology students know about how vaccines work and what inaccurate ideas they have about that process. Therefore, we asked more than 600 college students taking biology...
Ella Tour investigates how students analyze figures and propose follow-up experiments
When experts analyze figures from scientific papers, they spontaneously offer criticisms and follow up experiments. Can students do the same, if the assignment prompts them to do so? The answer is yes: upper division students critique and offer follow-up experiments,...
Ashley Juavinett writes about the need for coding in neuroscience education
Neuroscience education is at an impasse—we need to teach students coding, but many institutions do not have the resources to do so. Here, I outline three major barriers, as well as solutions, to bringing programming education into our undergraduate and graduate...