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AIBS Education Report, Volume 1, Issue 3, November/December 2004

  • Teaching the Value of Gardens
  • American Association for Higher Education - Upcoming Conferences and Workshops
  • Scientists and Students with Disabilities in SACNAS News
  • NSF Program Solicitation and Job Opportunities
  • AIBS Expands Membership, Lowers Dues, Welcomes Societies, Institutions, Academic Departments, Corporations
  • PKAL 2005 Roundtable on the Future: Linking Learning Theory and Institutional Transformation

The AIBS Education Report is distributed broadly by email six times a year to AIBS membership leaders and contacts, including the President, President-Elect, Secretary, Treasurer, Executive Director, AIBS Council Representative, Journal Editor, Newsletter Editor, Public Policy Committee Chair, Public Policy Representative, and Education Committee Chair of all AIBS member societies and organizations (see the MEMBER SOCIETY AND ORGANIZATION DIRECTORY section of www.aibs.org for contact information).

All material from these reports may be reproduced or forwarded. Please mention AIBS as the source; office staff appreciates receiving copies of materials used. If you would like to share information about your organization's education initiatives with the AIBS community, please contact the AIBS Education and Outreach Program Manager, Susan Musante (smus...@aibs.org; 703-674-2500 x311).

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TEACHING THE VALUE OF GARDENS

A new education resource to engage students in critical thinking about the value of botanical, community, and other gardens in preserving biodiversity is now available through ActionBioscience.org. "The Value of a Garden" can be accessed at (www.actionbioscience.org/biodiversity/rinker2.html#educatorresources); it accompanies Bruce Rinker's article "The Weight of a Petal: The Value of Botanical Gardens." It introduces several concepts drawn from system dynamics, including feedback loops and behavior-over-time graphs. The education materials were written by Marianne Krasny and her colleagues at Cornell University, Paul Newton and Linda Tompkins. For other articles and education resources, visit ActionBioscience.org (www.actionbioscience.org).


AMERICAN ASSOCIATION FOR HIGHER EDUCATION (AAHE) - UPCOMING CONFERENCES AND WORKSHOPS

AAHE (www.aahe.org) convenes annual meetings, assessment conferences, and professional development workshops for college and university faculty. Here is a list of some of their upcoming relevant events:

  • January 21-23, 2005
    Applying the Science of Learning in Higher Education; Tampa, Florida
    www.aahe.org/convenings/convenings_folworkshops.htm

  • January 28-30, 2005
    Assuring Improvement in Student Learning; Tampa, Florida
    www.aahe.org/convenings/convenings_folworkshops.htm

  • March 17-20, 2005
    National Conference on Higher Education (NCHE)--Courage, Imagination, Action: Rallying the Trendsetters in Higher Education; Atlanta, Georgia
    www.aahe.org/National/2005.htm
  • June 12-14, 2005
    Assessment Conference--Charting New Territory; Toronto, Ontario
    www.aahe.org/assessment/2005/Assessment2005.htm


    SCIENTISTS AND STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES IN SACNAS NEWS

    The summer 2004 newsletter of the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) focuses on students and scientists with disabilities. It contains excellent advice, case studies, and information for both students and faculty and is available for free online in PDF format (www.sacnas.org/journal.htm). Look for additional information specific to teaching biology students with disabilities in the January issue of AIBS's BioScience.


    NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION OPPORTUNITIES

    The deadline for proposals to the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Talent Expansion Program (STEP), in the National Science Foundation's (NSF) Directorate for Education and Human Resources, Division of Undergraduate Education (DUE), is February 10, 2005. STEP "seeks to increase the number of students (U.S. citizens or permanent residents) receiving associate or baccalaureate degrees in established or emerging fields within science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Type 1 proposals are solicited that provide for full implementation efforts at academic institutions. Type 2 proposals are solicited that support educational research projects on associate or baccalaureate degree attainment in STEM." For more information, view the program solicitation at www.nsf.gov/pubs/2005/nsf05519/nsf05519.htm or visit the DUE program website (www.ehr.nsf.gov/due/programs/step).

    In addition to this program solicitation, two searches for NSF executive positions are currently underway: Assistant Director for Education and Human Resources and Assistant Director for Biological Sciences. These positions have often been filled with university presidents and/or deans. There are other scientific or professional rotational positions (Program Director for the Science Literacy Section) currently open. Biology faculty interested in affecting change from within the NSF are encouraged to view more information at www.nsf.gov/oirm/hrm/jobs/start.htm.


    AIBS EXPANDS MEMBERSHIP, LOWERS DUES, WELCOMES SOCIETIES, INSTITUTIONS, ACADEMIC DEPARTMENTS, CORPORATIONS

    AIBS has revised and expanded its membership categories and lowered its dues to facilitate the participation of the broader biological community in AIBS activities, and vice versa. AIBS's core membership of professional societies and institutions has been expanded to four comprehensive membership categories for scientific societies and organizations. The categories are as follows:

    Category 1. Professional scientific societies.
    Open to all nonprofit biological societies and associations that are membership governed.

    Category 2. Academic units at research and educational institutions of all levels.
    Open to all nonprofit biological educational associations or educational consortia, as well as academic departments, divisions, or research and teaching centers. Multiple academic units on campuses are welcome to join as members.

    The following new benefit is being developed for members in this category: The BioChairs Network. All Academic and Educational Members will be part of the AIBS's new BioChairs Network, an email and web-based portal for engaging in discussions and information sharing about educational matters as well as workplace and public policy issues affecting science and education.

    Category 3. Institutions engaged in biological research and public education.
    Open to all nonprofit biological collections institutions, research or teaching field stations, and consortia of such institutions.

    Category 4. Corporations that share AIBS's mission goals and aspirations.
    Open to all for-profit organizations and corporations interested in promoting biological science and education.

    The following new benefit is being developed for members in this category: The Science and the Corporate World meeting series. AIBS will convene special co-sponsored conferences and workshops on major issues (e.g., applied biological research, human resources in biology, and funding for applied and fundamental biological science) that are of interest to industries working in the biological sciences .

    Organizations in all four organization membership categories have equal status with respect to the appointment of their representative to the AIBS Council (the advisory body to the Board of Directors, AIBS's governing body). As members of the Council, all organizations have the right to elect up to four of their Council peers to the 13-seat Board of Directors, depending on the number of vacant board seats in a given year of the AIBS election cycle.

    Furthermore, effective January 2005, annual dues for all member organizations of AIBS--societies, institutions, academic units, and corporations--are $125. This new dues level applies to current and new members alike. As before, applications from organizations to join AIBS must be approved by vote of the Board of Directors, and while a member of AIBS, an organization is expected to engage in scientific activities that are consistent with the AIBS mission and ethics statements (online at www.aibs.org).

    AIBS individual membership dues and structure remain unchanged. For more information about AIBS's revised and expanded membership categories for organizations, including newly developing benefits packages, please see www.aibs.org/organization-membership
    or contact Richard O'Grady at rogr...@aibs.org.


    PKAL 2005 ROUNDTABLE ON THE FUTURE: LINKING LEARNING THEORY AND INSTITUTIONAL TRANSFORMATION

    Project Kaleidoscope (PKAL) would like to announce the PKAL 2005 Roundtable on the Future: Linking learning theory and institutional transformation. On the weekend of April 1- 3, 2005, PKAL will host its fifth Roundtable on the Future, an annual event at which experts will address a critical dimension of the future of undergraduate science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

    The theme for the 2005 Roundtable is: "How advances in the cognitive and learning sciences inform us about how people learn and how such information and data might guide the work of academic leadership responsible for shaping the undergraduate STEM learning environment."

    The Roundtable Planning Committee invites colleagues with interest in the Roundtable topic to apply to participate. Applicants are to submit an essay describing their relevant work and research. The essay should be no more than five pages, including a one-page bibliography. The essay should include information about the ideas and insights, based on your work, that could inform the Roundtable discussions. APPLICATION DEADLINE: January 5, 2005. For more information, visit the PKAL website at: <www.pkal.org/roundtable>.

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    The American Institute of Biological Sciences is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) scientific association dedicated to advancing biological research and education for the welfare of society. Founded in 1947 as a part of the National Academy of Sciences, AIBS became an independent, member-governed organization in the 1950s. Today, with headquarters in Washington, DC, and a staff of approximately 50, AIBS is sustained by a robust membership of some 5,000 biologists and 200 professional societies and scientific organizations; the combined individual membership of the latter exceeds 250,000. AIBS advances its mission through coalition activities in research, education, and public policy; publishing the peer-reviewed journal BioScience and the education website ActionBioscience.org; providing scientific peer review and advisory services to government agencies and other clients; convening meetings; and managing scientific programs. Website: www.aibs.org.


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