The NIBLSE Learning Resource Collection and YOU!
Dear NIBLSE members,
Are you – or a colleague – still searching for online activities for your fall courses? Or would you like to contribute to our efforts to increase and publicize our growing collection of bioinformatics learning activities? The NIBSLE Resource Review Committee invites you to check out the NIBLSE Learning Resource Collection. Organized around the NIBLSE Core Competencies, the collection currently has about two dozen learning resources for integrating bioinformatics instruction into undergraduate life science courses – many of which can be taught online!
How the NIBLSE Collection can support YOU
Not familiar with the Collection? Or wish to recommend it to a fellow instructor? A good place to start is with one of the most popular and frequently adapted resources, “Sequence Similarity: An inquiry based and "under the hood" approach for incorporating molecular sequence alignment in introductory undergraduate biology courses” (Kleinschmit et al., 2019; doi:10.25334/Q4G45Z). Refined in a NIBLSE Incubator and further adapted in a QUBES Faculty Mentoring Network, this resource “integrates an introduction to web-based sequence alignment algorithms with models to facilitate student reflection and appreciation for how computational tools provide similarity output data.” The modular format of this resource and its multiple adaptations allow it to be used in whole or in part in a wide variety of life science classes.
Interested in how this and other resources in the NIBLSE Collection could be used in your introductory biology course? Recently, the Resource Review Committee has been identifying links between NIBLSE resources and OpenStax Biology 2e, a representative, open-source introductory biology textbook. As a starting point, RRC members have begun annotating the Biology 2e Table of Contents to highlight how NIBLSE learning resources can be used in an introductory biology setting. As this initiative moves forward, we encourage you to peruse this annotated contents page and give us your feedback.
How YOU can support the NIBLSE Collection
The NIBLSE collection is the product of ongoing efforts by RRC and other NIBSLE members to curate and develop bioinformatics educational resources for life science classes. You can support these efforts by recommending a resource for inclusion, providing feedback on your use of a resource, or joining an Incubator or the RRC. Please read below and complete our brief survey here to indicate how you can help strengthen the Collection.
1. Help us further link the Resource Collection to the OpenStax Biology 2e textbook
RRC members have linked and annotated a handful of resources in the collection to OpenStax Biology 2e to serve as examples, but this work isn’t complete. We’re asking each NIBSLE member to contribute an annotation or tell us how you have used a NIBLSE learning resource. Interested? Please complete our brief survey here.
2. Participate in a NIBLSE Incubator to refine a learning resource
As detailed in our recent Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education article (available here), NIBLSE incubators have demonstrated consistent success in fostering a collaborative community for the refinement of bioinformatics learning resources. Much of this success is due to the relatively small time demanded of each incubator participant, typically a couple hours per week for about six weeks. If you have developed a bioinformatics resource for use in a life science classroom that you wish to refine and disseminate – or if you are willing to help others with this refinement, as a “novice” or “expert” user, please volunteer to participate in a NIBLSE Incubator by completing our brief survey here.
3. Join the Resource Review Committee!
Want to have an even larger impact on the development and dissemination of NIBLSE learning resources? The Resource Review Committee (RRC) is looking to add new committee members. Committee members meet online monthly, help manage NIBLSE Incubators, and make additional contributions to the development and promotion of the NIBLSE learning resource collection. If you want to learn more about the committee’s efforts, please email the RRC chair, Bill Morgan (email@example.com). If you’re ready to volunteer as a RRC member, please complete our brief survey here.
Thanks for considering each of these valuable opportunities to assist in promoting the NIBLSE mission to integrate bioinformatics into life sciences education – and please share this information with interested colleagues!
The Resource Review Committee
Bill Morgan, chair
Bill Tapprich, NIBLSE PI