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  • Created 03 Dec 2014

The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog (Raleway).

The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog (PT Serif).

The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog (Crimson Text).

The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog (Alegreya Sans).

July 23-28, 2017
Michigan State University, East Lansing

michigan state

We all use models in the the classroom - visual, physical, mathematical, and symbolic representations abound in the curriculum. But are we making the best use of them as teaching tools? Scientists use models to explore new ideas, delve more deeply into complex phenomena, predict outcomes, explain events, structures and processes, and push past boundaries into the unknown (Odenbaugh, 2005). In a similar manner, students actively engaging with models use scientific concepts to explore complex systems and develop valuable skills in critical thinking, collaboration and communication. Models are an important component of science, however all models are only representations of reality. Effective and appropriate use of a model requires acknowledgement of the model's assumptions and limitations. Using models to teach requires making students aware of both what a model can tell us and what it cannot tell us.

Model building provides an intimate awareness of a model's boundaries and explanatory power. The process of building a model includes deciding which variables and components to include or exclude, testing, tweaking and refining the model and the scientific hypothesis based on information from within and beyond the model itself. The very process of modeling increases our understanding of scientific ideas. Students who experience model building are thrust into the very heart of the scientific process, and are exposed to the trade-offs, lack of information, complexity and uncertainty that are inseparable from authentic scientific practice.

At this summer’s workshop we will explore how to engage our students more productively with models and the process of modeling. Join us as we consider how to enhance the skills students need to understand and build models, how to expand upon models already in our curriculum, and ultimately how to enhance student understanding of the nature and process of science with modeling. The summer workshop is appropriate for faculty teaching all levels of undergraduate biology, quantitative biology, and life science-oriented mathematics. We will discuss effective pedagogical approaches, share excellent resources, and build community around effective use of models. The intensive week-long workshop is followed by the opportunity to continue to work with colleagues on the QUBESHub through the fall semester to develop and implement new approaches or materials.

BioQUEST has been offering the summer workshop experience for over 30 years. The experience is simultaneously invigorating and exhausting and creates a strong, supportive community of innovative educators. We invite you to participate in this transformative experience and get new and exciting ideas about teaching!

Mathematical Model

Visual Model

3D Model

Symbolic Model

Verbal Model


This website will be updated as information becomes available, please check back often! To be added to our mailing list, contact the workshop organizers.

Take a look at what's happened at previous Summer Workshops!

Summer 2016, North Carolina State University
Summer 2015, Harvey Mudd College
Summer 2014, University of Delaware

The Data Nugget- City Parks module was used in a sophomore-junior level undergraduate wildlife management techniques course (with lab) in Fall 2017. Modifications were made to the original Data Nugget and a local camera trapping survey was added.
species richness, species diversity, camera trap, introductory, Lab, Teaching material, Lecture, Reference material, Report, Undergraduate, Dataset, Publication, Homework, Cleaned, Majors, Non-majors, More than 1 hour, Extended Project
570
552
0
03.19.2018
Minor modifications were made to this Data Nugget in order to use it in a fully online version of the introductory, non-majors botany course, Plants and People.
introductory, Online course, Teaching material, Undergraduate, Non-majors, 1 Hour
582
99
1
03.04.2018
This publication contains the adaptations I made to the Data Nuggets module in order to use it with an online, introductory, non-majors botany class. I used this with a unit on natural and artificial selection in plants.
introductory, Online course, Teaching material, Undergraduate, Non-majors
991
569
0
03.04.2018

What Do Trees Know About Rain?

Paulette S Reneau

Version: 1.0

The data nugget was introduced to a freshman General Biology lecture class as a culminating activity for the chapter entitled "Photosynthesis". Students worked independently and collaboratively to interpret the graph and answer questions.
General Biology, Teaching material, Lecture, Undergraduate
444
44
0
03.01.2018

Gene Expression in Stem Cells

Paulette S Reneau

Version: 1.0

The module served as in introduction to the Gene Expression unit. It was implemented in two phases, a pre-class activity and an in-class activity to introduce chapter concepts and reinforce quantitative skills.
small group activity, pre-class activity, General Biology, Teaching material, Undergraduate, Homework
727
92
0
03.01.2018
Teaching notes for implementing Data Nugget: Gene Expression in Stem Cells in a introductory biology lab.
Resources @ Data Nuggets, teaching notes, introductory, Lab, Teaching material, High School, Undergraduate, More than 1 hour
745
1555
3
01.20.2018
I use Team Based Learning in this course, students are in permanent groups and work together on Challenge Questions each class after I give a short lecture. This Nugget was used in place of regular Challenge Questions.
graphing, introductory, Teaching material, Lecture, Undergraduate, More than 1 hour
471
41
0
01.19.2018
Adaptation of Data Nuggets Module Winter is Coming! for an Elementary Education Science Methods Course
teacher education, science teacher preparation, Data Nugget, middle grades (4-9), Lab, Teaching material, Lecture, Undergraduate, Less than 1 hour
422
119
0
01.15.2018
Adaptation of Data Nuggets Module Deadly Windows for an Elementary Education Science Methods Course
teacher education, DataNuggets, science teacher preparation, middle grades (4-9), Lab, Teaching material, Lecture, High School, Less than 1 hour
752
248
0
01.15.2018
Teaching notes related to the use the of Data Nugget "Are You My Species?" to teach mechanisms of selection and quantitative skills in a 9th grade Biology classroom.
Evolution, biology, online, quantitative skills, sexual selection, Selection, Differentiated Instruction, Lab, Teaching material, Lecture, High School, More than 1 hour
666
115
0
01.15.2018

Winter Is Coming Data Nugget for AP Biology Big Ideas

Andrew Ising, Elizabeth H Schultheis

Version: 2.0

This Data Nugget is a differentiated classroom resource focusing on how a plant species fitness is affected by different climates.
Evolution, biology, online, quantitative skills, AP Biology, Dual Enrollment Science with High Schools, Lab, Teaching material, Lecture, High School, More than 1 hour
363
77
0
01.15.2018

Data Nugget Grading Rubrics

Brenda Witt

Version: 1.0

As a supplement to the rubric provided for Data Nugget modules, I created a rubric containing specific point values for individual portions of the module as well as specific guidelines for answering written questions.
Resources @ Data Nuggets, rubric, grading, introductory, Lab, Teaching material, Lecture, Undergraduate, Advanced
790
280
0
01.14.2018

Modification to City Parks

Kristen Kaczynski

Version: 1.0

Using a jigsaw approach, students calculated species richness, Shannon's diversity index and species evenness using the City Parks wildlife data.
Biodiversity, species diversity, introductory, Teaching material, Lecture, Undergraduate, Advanced, More than 1 hour
387
102
0
01.05.2018

Modification to What do Trees Know about the Rain

Kristen Kaczynski

Version: 1.0

Use of the tree ring data vs. precipitation to discuss how trees respond to drought
discussions, lecture slides, graphs, group-ldcfmn, introductory, Teaching material, Lecture, Undergraduate, Advanced, Less than 1 hour
382
110
0
12.17.2017