Mobile Summer Institute on Scientific Teaching

May-June 2020

The Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI), the Yale Center for Teaching and Learning, and the Helmsley Charitable Trust are sponsoring a Summer Institute on Scientific Teaching on UM’s campus in May or June, 2020. The Summer Institute will expand and sharpen participants’ teaching skills through workshops facilitated by national science teaching experts. The institute will focus on evidence-based active learning strategies that have been shown to improve student understanding and success in STEM courses. Participants will develop an original, peer reviewed course module that incorporates backwards design and learning activities on the topic of their choice. They will be named Scientific Teaching Fellows by Yale's Center for Teaching and Learning at the end of the workshop. If you are interested in participating or nominating a faculty member, graduate student, or postdoc for the institute, please contact Amy Kinch (243-5897). Space is limited. 

Learn more about the Institute

MARK BAILLIE  is currently an Assistant Professor of Chemistry and Director of the STRIVE Program at University of Arkansas at Little Rock. Mark was an Assistant Professor of Chemistry at the University of Delaware from 2013-2017 and then serves as an independent educational consultant for institutions of higher education. After receiving his BS in Chemistry from Bucknell University in 2003, he worked as a biochemist for two years at the GE Global Research Center. He then earned his PhD in chemistry at Emory University, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship at the EPFL in Switzerland – both focused on medicinal applications of organic chemistry. During his PhD, he worked with Emory’s Center for Science Education to develop Problem Based Learning activities and implemented them in a local high school. After joining the faculty at the University of Delaware in 2013, he co-led a team of educators to develop a semi-integrated pair of freshmen biology and chemistry courses for life science majors. In these large enrollment classes, he designed active learning strategies to engage a diverse student body while creating an environment where problem solving skills were a top learning outcome. Outside of the classroom, Mark worked to improve retention of historically underrepresented groups by 1) building of a network of peer mentors that interacted with freshmen students weekly as both chemistry mentors and guides, 2) implementing ALEKS Jumpstart, an online pre-test followed by adaptive, targeted training to help students start college with more skills and confidence, and 3) worked to quantify the gains in critical thinking during a semester course with the Critical Thinking Assessment Test. Mark is committed to working with faculty and institutions to increase learning outcomes by sharing insight from current educational research literature in interactive workshops. With the National Academies of Science / HHMI Summer Institutes (SI) on Scientific Teaching, Mark has facilitated national workshops, and through the Mobile SI’s he leads workshops in the US and England.

WILLIAM (BILL) DAVIS is an Associate Professor of Biochemistry and the Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education in the College of Veterinary Medicine at Washington State University.  He received his BA from Drury University in 1994 and his Ph.D. in Chemistry at Northwestern University in 1999. After two years as an Alexander von Humboldt Postdoctoral Fellow at the Technical University of Munich, Bill joined the faculty of the School of Molecular Biosciences in 2001. Since 2007, he has been the Associate Director for Undergraduate Studies in the School and helped lead transformation of its curriculum through the implementation of ongoing programmatic assessment and a strong focus on undergraduate research using innovative fast-track BS to PhD programs and the introduction of project-based laboratories in large enrollment introductory Biology courses.   Since 2009, he has participated in the WSU Team Mentoring Program, a peer and faculty mentoring program for underrepresented students in STEM. In 2012 he became an Associate Dean and has since helped lead the development of new student programs designed to improve the retention of students in the applied life sciences. Bill’s current research interests focus on the impacts of classroom and laboratory pedagogy on student learning outcomes in large enrollment freshman classes, including the 500 student Introductory Cell Biology and Genetics course that he teaches each semester. He also is active in innovative programs that lead to the transformation of both individual faculty and departments/institutions engaged in life sciences education, work facilitated by his efforts as a PULSE Vision & Change Leadership Fellow, his role as a Mentor and Facilitator in the NAS/HHMI Mobile Summer Institutes on Scientific Teaching, and his service as a Lead Facilitator for the annual AAC&U/PKAL STEM Leadership Institute. 

"I very much found it [the Institute] useful! There were some great ideas on making my classroom more interactive and student focused, and I really got a lot out of thinking about how to reverse engineer my lectures so I am more focused on ensuring my students learn exactly what I want them to." - Summer 2019 participant

"The program is very well-refined and was an efficient way to learn about theory and practice of scientific teaching. The program did an excellent job of pairing learning with doing, and I feel I walked away with some concrete ways to improve my own courses." -Summer 2019 participant

"The seminar was a revelation.  It opened my eyes to a wide world of new and innovative ways to engage my students and enhance my teaching." - Summer 2019 participant

"I just wanted to reach out and thank you for the Scientific Teaching course you offered earlier in the summer. I am at the tail end of designing a new class we are piloting this fall...and have incorporated the ideas discussed in that seminar/course throughout the entirety of my curriculum. I am so super excited to see how it all goes, but know that the active learning strategies will help engage this student population in their learning of the material." - Summer 2019 participant

“My experience at a Summer Institute for Scientific Teaching changed the way I think about teaching. Scientists are trained to rely on evidence for research, yet somehow the notion of evidence-based teaching is not widely embraced. I worked with a group to develop a module (teaching tidbit) on the subject of the electrochemical gradient. This is a difficult concept for students, and indeed for some of the instructors in my group, but central for understanding the function of nerve cells, mitochondria, chloroplasts, and other topics in cell biology. Together we developed slides and activities to help students understand the underlying principles of the electrochemical gradient. I’ve used these lectures in my cell biology class for a number of years now, and consider them to be the best lectures I give.” -Mark Grimes, Associate Professor, DBS

  • Earle Adams, Chemistry
  • Sherrill Brown, Pharmacy Practice
  • Michael Cassens, Media Arts
  • Ginger Collins, Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences
  • Rick Darnell, Mathematics
  • Kim Davis, Ecosystem and Conservation Sciences
  • Audrey Elias, Physical Therapy
  • Lauren Fern, Mathematics
  • Amy Glaspey, Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences
  • Phil Higuera, Ecosystem and Conservation Sciences
  • Nancy Hinman, Geosciences
  • Jennifer Johnson, Bitterroot College
  • Rosalyn LaPier, Environmental Studies
  • Kimber McKay, Anthropology
  • Kelly McKinnie, Mathematics
  • Lori Mitchell, Nursing
  • Chris Palmer, Chemistry
  • Pamela Peterson, Bitterroot College
  • Patrick Secor, Division of Biological Sciences
  • Erin Semmens, Public and Community Health
  • Monica Serban, Biomedical and Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Meradeth Snow, Anthopology
  • Regina Souza, Mathematics
  • Katya Voronina, Division of Biological Sciences

Participants working together at June 2018 Scientific Teaching Institute