What is the BIOME?
The BIOME (Biology and Mathematics Educators) Institute offers a unique opportunity to engage with a community of peers to address an educational challenge with the ultimate goal of improving student outcomes. The challenge, in this case, is implementation practices and resources that support students from all backgrounds and engage them in communities to enhance their learning. The community will be supported in this endeavor with access to experts in areas relevant to the challenge, information about useful resources, and community facilitators to guide the development process. The BIOME Institute is offered by BioQUEST, with over 35 years of experience in science education reform.
Research on professional development has demonstrated that it is difficult for even the most committed faculty to change pedagogical approaches working independently for a variety of reasons including time constraints, institutional resistance, and lack of resources. Challenges to meaningful pedagogical change are most often identified during planning or implementation. The BIOME Institute reduces barriers to change by providing faculty with information, resources, community, and guidance as they plan and implement new ideas. The Summer Session provides a focused, information-rich opportunity to develop ideas, identify collaborators, and begin collecting resources. The Fall Working Groups provide ongoing support, additional resources, and information, and peer feedback to increase faculty success in achieving their goals.
Disciplinary and interdisciplinary institutional teams are encouraged to apply. Individuals from all biological disciplines, as well as quantitative, physical, and social sciences, are welcome to apply. Future faculty are welcome to apply and are encouraged to partner with a faculty member at their institution. Upon completion of the BIOME Institute, participants will become BIOME Fellows, and receive a certificate of completion appropriate for tenure and promotion portfolios, teaching portfolios, and CVs.
Creating equitable and inclusive learning environments for all of our students empowers them as thinkers, scientists, and citizens. Furthermore, inclusive learning spaces increase the diversity of STEM fields in general, which advances scientific discovery and innovation. How do we foster a sense of belonging and community for our students while engaging all perspectives? What strategies cultivate inclusivity and equity in classrooms, and how do we extend those practices to inform our education projects and professional networks? How can we overcome isolation and become more effective by establishing new norms for collaboration among our projects?
The 2023 BIOME Institute will create bridges connecting existing and newly created communities of practice and ignite new collaborations. The BioQUEST Community will share knowledge of the creation of learning environments where educators and learners don’t just survive, but thrive. BioQUEST has been leading STEM education reform for almost 40 years, and this year we will work to connect diverse communities of change-makers, STEM reformers, and all those interested in this mission to extend the excellent work already being done. Participants will gain a deeper understanding of the work that has been done by others and how they can accelerate a change in STEM education with IDEAS (Inclusivity, Diversity, Equitability, and Accessibility).
BIOQUEST: Evolution and Revolution in STEM Education
You should participate if you are interested in:
- Using evidence based pedagogical approaches and resources to help build Inclusive, Diverse, Equitable, and Accessible Communities in STEM communities.
- Supporting diverse learners through exploration of inclusive teaching practices, Universal Design for Learning, and resources designed to engage students in social justice as a part of scientific practice.
- Actively participating in a community of like minded peers.
- Learn from others and work to accelerate change in STEM education with IDEAS.
- Building bridges between groups from different disciplines that are implementing inclusive and accessible pedagogical practices, including Open Education Resources (OER)
- Build new norms for collaboration and connection across BioQUEST Partner Projects.
- Prioritize areas of action to be taken together to help to bend the arc towards justice in STEM communities.
- Strengthening our community of committed, enthusiastic educators at all levels.
What to Expect
The BIOME Institute offers a community based professional development experience where participants will learn about resources and practices relevant to their teaching. The BIOME Institute is entirely virtual, beginning with a summer experience that sets participants up for fall working groups. New this year is an optional in-person component held at the University of New Hampshire from July 24-27. Check out the schedule for more information about each session.
You will have the option in how you want to attend the summer sessions. The first week will be synchronous virtual sessions where participants will be placed in small, facilitated discussion groups, which will meet throughout the synchronous workshop week to discuss the keynotes, workshops, and other ideas and events at the BIOME. The optional second week is being held at the Univ of New Hampshire for group discussions and activities. This will be a time for participants and groups to meet, have time to work on their own projects and participate in activities that will develop ones own work and skills to share in group projects. Attendance at both is encouraged, but attending the virtual only is acceptable.
Share your work
There will be several opportunities to share what you have been working on and learn more about your colleagues' projects in virtual sharing sessions. We invite you to share about educational resources, projects, and programs that demonstrate ways to support students by building inclusive, diverse, equitable, and accessible communities in STEM classrooms.
For more information and to apply to share your work, please click here!
Fall Working Groups
The fall working groups provide an opportunity to engage with like-minded colleagues and work through the challenges of implementing new ideas in the classroom based on participants’ interests. Working groups will form at the conclusion of the Summer Session and be facilitated by members of the BioQUEST communities. Working groups should plan to attend synchronous bi-weekly meetings, while working asynchronously on projects between meetings.
It is important that all participants are able to commit to the full professional development experience which includes:
- Summer Session:
- BIOME - Virtual Week 1: July 10-14
- Community Camp! - Optional In-Person Week 2: July 24-27 @ UNH
- Fall Working Groups:
- September 4 - November 17
This is a supportive community of people sharing similar goals and challenges. Colleagues share resources, ideas, and advice based on their own experiences, and provide each other with feedback on materials or plans. Your contributions are critical to the success of this experience. We recognize that unexpected circumstances may change schedules and that participants may not be able to attend synchronous events. The summer session is designed to provide maximum flexibility by providing recordings of synchronous events and access to resources. However, there is no substitute for time spent with your working group and we ask all participants to commit to full participation for the entire program.
- Teachers interested in inclusivity, diversity, equity, accessibility, and building communities to enhance your students' engagement and belonging in STEM classrooms.
- All levels of educators in STEM are welcome and encouraged to apply: faculty from secondary education, two- and four-year faculty, graduate students, post-docs and outreach specialists.
- We encourage teams from a single institution or partner institutions to apply, especially interdisciplinary teams and teams combining part-time and full-time faculty. Each team member must complete an application.
- Team participation is just as flexible as individual participation; teams have the option of joining the same Fall Working Groups and collaborating on institutional projects, but are not required to. We do encourage teams to branch out during the Summer Session and connect with new colleagues.
- The meeting sponsors strive to increase the inclusivity and accessibility of this event, and to that end, we encourage persons requiring accommodations to apply and let us know how we can support their participation.
Subscribe to the BioQUEST mailing list to receive summer workshop updates: Subscribe
If you have any questions, please contact Rhianna Kozinski (rkozinski "at" bioquest "dot" org) or Deborah Rook (deb "dot" rook "at" bioquest "dot" org).