What disciplines other than engineering have departmental accreditation at the undergraduate level?
Jane On Sun, May 27, 2012 at 2:47 PM, malcolm McCallum <malcolm.mccal...@herpconbio.org> wrote: > The problem with biology education today is that there are: > 1) no standards for what the major is > 2) no accreditation governing what a department should comprise > > Europe now has accreditation for the discipline and if the US does not > follow suit you can watch rapidly as we not only fall behind in > biology, but basically fall like a rock in stature. > > Too many departments just wing it at the whim of the administrations' folly. > Accreditation provides the departments with significant support and > legitimacy in the face of those administrations that generally care a > lot about money and little about quality or students. > > There are more of those than we care to admit. > > Look, we can't even agree whether biodiversity concepts belong in an > intro to bio class. > I find this not only disheartening but also frightening. Where else > they going to learn it, English? > Most schools don't have an EVS course, and many never will. > > Malcolm > > On Sun, May 27, 2012 at 12:09 PM, Bill Hilton Jr. (RESEARCH) > <resea...@hiltonpond.org> wrote: >> With sincere respect to all of you in the fields of microbiology, genetics, >> and other laboratory-based disciplines of the life sciences, I contend the >> "Campbell Essential Biology" approach is exactly what is wrong with biology >> education today. >> >> Nearly all undergraduate and high school introductory biology courses are >> written as if EVERY student is going on to med school, nursing, or a career >> in a lab-based science. I agree it's important for an undergrad course to >> make mention of cytology, DNA, photosynthesis, etc., but I question the real >> value to students of any non-major textbook in which 12 chapters deal with >> cell-DNA and ecology, ecosystems, and the biosphere are relegated to the >> last three chapters. >> >> My guess is that 95% or more of non-majors will never have any really >> practical use for information about cell-DNA. It's complicated stuff that >> their physicians and pharmacists need to know, but what would be of >> infinitely greater value is for everyone to be familiar with basic >> principles of ecology, plant-animal interactions, pollination biology, and >> the like. Knowing about these things will enable students in general to >> understand how humans fit into and affect the world around them, and such >> understanding will help them make informed decisions about such things as >> overfishing, watersheds and wetlands, use of household pesticides and >> fertilizers--to say nothing of current controversial topics like global >> climate change, fracking, etc. >> >> We all teach what we know, of course, and the vast majority of high school >> biology teachers know what they learned in an undergrad biology courses >> taught from the "pre-med" perspective. I know from 25-plus years in the >> classroom and lab that for kids not going off to med-school the "pre-med" >> approach is often a turn-off to science, while a course that emphasizes >> ecology, the environment, field work, etc., is a turn-on. I also taught >> undergrad biology and know such is the case with many college students. >> >> Cheers, >> >> BILL >> >> >> On May 27, 2012, at 10:48 AM, Helena Puche wrote: >> >>> David, >>> >>> I used "Campbell Essential Biology" by E.J. Simon, J.B.Reece and J.L. >>> Dickey. It is a book for non-biology majors that has 20 chapters, all of >>> them with a focus on evolution and examples, and nice drawings and >>> pictures. Twelve of the 20 chapters are geared toward cell-DNA, then three >>> chapters on taxonomy and systematics. The last three include populations & >>> ecology, communities & ecosystems, and the biosphere. Therefore, you will >>> have to add extra material to recreate those last topics. >>> >>> I created several evolution labs using beans or the web pages below, >>> designed a ppt to introduce Darwin's liand thoughts, and added many lab >>> activities to learn about mark-recapture techniques, estimating population >>> growth rate & size, population growth models, climate change, and >>> identifying biomes. >>> >>> Evolution links to check are: >>> http://video.pbs.org/video/1300397304/ >>> http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/article/0_0_0/devitt_02 >>> >>> I used those as base for the lab activities. >>> >>> Hope this helps. >>> >>> Helena >>> >>> >>> >>> Helena Puche, Ph. D. >>> >>> Adjunct Assistant Professor >>> >>> University of Illinois at Chicago >>> >>> >>> Biological Sciences, 3464 SES, MC >>> 066 >>> >>> 845 West Taylor Street >>> >>> Chicago, IL 60607hpu...@uic.edu >>> >>> >>> >>> --- On Fri, 5/25/12, Johnson, David R <drjohns...@utep.edu> wrote: >>> >>> From: Johnson, David R <drjohns...@utep.edu> >>> Subject: [ECOLOG-L] Non-Majors Biology >>> To: ECOLOG-L@LISTSERV.UMD.EDU >>> Date: Friday, May 25, 2012, 2:49 PM >>> >>> Greetings, >>> >>> I am teaching a "contemporary biology" course for non-science majors in the >>> fall and for the first time I am fortunate to be able to organize the >>> course at my discretion. Effectively, I can present any material I wish as >>> long as I hit broad themes such as Cell Theory and Evolution. While this is >>> certainly doable, I am struggling deciding exactly what content to present. >>> The course is meant to present the science of contemporary issues that may >>> be important and/or interesting to the non-science student rather than a >>> broad survey course encompassing all of biology. There is another such >>> survey course with a set syllabus that I am not teaching, and there are two >>> other sections of contemporary biology that are focusing on genetics. I >>> would like to focus on the many ecological issues that both affect and are >>> affected by humans. My struggle involves the fact that this may be the only >>> (or last) biology these students get before we cast them out into the world. >>> So I want to be sure and cover all my bases. >>> >>> I am writing Ecolog with two questions. First, what is the relative merit >>> of including as much biology as possible as opposed to focusing on fewer >>> but perhaps more directly relevant ecological topics? These students will >>> most likely not become scientists, and certainly won't need to memorize the >>> structure of all the amino acids, for example. On the other hand, would I >>> be cheating them somehow by not providing enough information to them for >>> making informed decisions on topics outside of my direct area of expertise, >>> such as developmental biology and stem cells? >>> >>> The other question I have involves textbooks. Is anyone aware of a text (or >>> perhaps pop-science books) designed for the non-science major that focuses >>> on ecology, in particular the involvement of humans in ecological systems? >>> I haven't been able to find something I like and am looking for >>> recommendations. >>> >>> Thanks and I'll circulate a summary response if/when the discussion runs >>> its course. >>> >>> Cheers, >>> >>> David >>> >>> David R. Johnson PhD. >>> Postdoctoral Research Associate >>> Systems Ecology Lab >>> University of Texas at El Paso >>> drjohns...@utep.edu >> >> P.S. Please "Like" our new Facebook page at >> http://www.facebook.com/HiltonPond for timely updates on nature topics. >> >> ========= >> >> RESEARCH PROGRAM >> c/o BILL HILTON JR. Executive Director >> Hilton Pond Center for Piedmont Natural History >> 1432 DeVinney Road, York, South Carolina 29745 USA >> office & cell (803) 684-5852 >> fax (803) 684-0255 >> >> Please visit our web sites (courtesy of Comporium.net): >> Hilton Pond Center for Piedmont Natural History at http://www.hiltonpond.org >> "Operation RubyThroat: The Hummingbird Project" at http://www.rubythroat.org >> >> ================== > > > > -- > Malcolm L. McCallum > Department of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry > School of Biological Sciences > University of Missouri at Kansas City > > Managing Editor, > Herpetological Conservation and Biology > > "Peer pressure is designed to contain anyone with a sense of drive" - > Allan Nation > > 1880's: "There's lots of good fish in the sea" W.S. Gilbert > 1990's: Many fish stocks depleted due to overfishing, habitat loss, > and pollution. > 2000: Marine reserves, ecosystem restoration, and pollution reduction > MAY help restore populations. > 2022: Soylent Green is People! > > The Seven Blunders of the World (Mohandas Gandhi) > Wealth w/o work > Pleasure w/o conscience > Knowledge w/o character > Commerce w/o morality > Science w/o humanity > Worship w/o sacrifice > Politics w/o principle > > Confidentiality Notice: This e-mail message, including any > attachments, is for the sole use of the intended recipient(s) and may > contain confidential and privileged information. Any unauthorized > review, use, disclosure or distribution is prohibited. If you are not > the intended recipient, please contact the sender by reply e-mail and > destroy all copies of the original message. -- ------------- Jane Shevtsov, Ph.D. Mathematical Biology Curriculum Writer, UCLA co-founder, www.worldbeyondborders.org "In the long run, education intended to produce a molecular geneticist, a systems ecologist, or an immunologist is inferior, both for the individual and for society, than that intended to produce a broadly educated person who has also written a dissertation." --John Janovy, Jr., "On Becoming a Biologist"