What can faculty do to improve student learning? And how would one know if students were learning and retaining more? Anecdotal evidence suggested that changes in pedagogy in the introductory biology 1001 course was improving student learning. But would this hold up to scientific testing? Drs. Mynlieff, Manogaran, St. Maurice, and Eddinger decided to try to find out. They designed and tested the possible benefits of exam corrections, active learning, and peer reviewed writing assignments with a metacognitive component using control and experimental variables across and between the three sections of Biology 1001. Assessments following these activities, and at the end of the semester, showed that students scored higher when they participated in these activities relative to students that did not. The results are published in CBE – Life Sciences education (vol. 13, 311-321, Summer 2014). There is a long history of teaching excellence in the Biology department, with numerous teaching award winners, and it is hoped that studies like this will continue to guide faculty to enhance student learning.
Help support the Department of Biological Sciences at Marquette.