The AIBS Education Office provides analysis and communication for the AIBS Board, Headquarters Office, and Education Committee on issues of import to the AIBS membership and the larger scientific community. Reports are broadly disseminated by email every few months to AIBS membership leaders and contacts. Special reports are sent more frequently as needed. We have archived these reports here for your information and attention. Read about each report's contents below, then click to read the complete text.


AIBS Webinar to Help Science Students, Young Professionals Explore Career Options in Science Policy Are you a student or early-career professional interested in an alternative science career? Have you ever thought that a career in science policy or public affairs might be right for you? If so, an upcoming webinar hosted by AIBS could help you weigh your options. Interest has been growing in employment that allows individuals to apply their scientific skills and training to the resolution of societal problems. Whether your expertise is in education, health, environment, or the nation’s investment in scientific research, a public policy career is one way you can convert your education into action. This webinar, taking place on Monday, December 21st, from 2:00 to 3:30 p.m., Eastern Standard Time, is intended to help viewers understand the pros and cons of a career in science policy and the knowledge, skills, and experiences that are required to be successful in science policy and public affairs. Registration is required. See for information and registration.

Registration Now Open for 2010 USA Biology Olympiad Take advantage of this opportunity to challenge your outstanding students and become part of the USA Biology Olympiad, jointly sponsored by the Center for Excellence in Education (CEE) and Purdue University. The competition ultimately selects four students as “Team USA” to represent our nation at the International Biology Olympiad. Last year, for the third year in a row, Team USA returned home from the International Biology Olympiad with four gold medals. The team hopes to capitalize on this success in 2010. For additional information, the program schedule, and online registration, please visit or contact Marcy Reedy, at or 703-448-9062.

Encyclopedia of Earth’s Student Science Communication Project The Student Science Communication Project (SSCP) is a science writing initiative in which undergraduate and graduate students, with the guidance of faculty members, develop writing skills through the preparation of articles for publication in the Encyclopedia of Earth (EoE). For more information on the project, a subset of student articles, ideas on how others have tailored the SSCP for use in their own courses, and a Teacher’s Guide, visit or contact Emily Monosson, SSCP coordinator, at

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Resources for the Classroom

What is the impact of climate change and ocean acidification the world’s coral reefs? In “Coral Reefs under Stress,” Peter J. Mumby, University of Exeter, UK, provides an update of the current science and explains why coral reefs are critical to an ocean’s health:

What is the CDC doing to prevent food-borne disease, and what new strategies are being used to investigate outbreaks? In “Investigating Food-Borne Illness,” Robert Tauxe of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shares insights and updates about detecting and preventing food-borne illness: /tauxe.html.

How are you going to mark the final month of the Year of Science? Celebrate the beneficial connections between advances in science and improved human health. To join the end-of-year festivities, visit

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Special Announcement

National Search for Science Faculty with Education Specialties (SFES) A group of Science Faculty with Education Specialties (SFES) is seeking to identify other SFES across the nation to participate in a collaborative professional community. SFES are defined as those who (1) have been specifically hired in science departments to specialize in science education or (2) have transitioned to a role as a science faculty member focused on issues in science education after their initial hire. A collaborative research team of SFES conducted and published an initial study of SFES in the California State University system. That study was recently published in Science magazine (visit From this study, it became clear that there is a need for a greater understanding of SFES across the nation. As a result, a national SFES search is now underway. Beyond a national research study of SFES, the long-term goals are to foster a national SFES professional community and to promote cross-disciplinary SFES conversations. If you are an SFES or think you might be, please complete a brief, 3 to 5 minute survey:

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From the Journals

New in BioScience: To celebrate the 150th anniversary this month of the publication of On the Origin of Species, BioScience magazine is offering open access to two peer-reviewed articles about Charles Darwin and his historic insights into evolution:

  • “Ten Myths about Charles Darwin,” by Kevin Padian of the University of California, Berkeley, which appeared in the October issue,
  • “The Darwinian Revelation: Tracing the Origin and Evolution of an Idea” by James T. Costa of Western Carolina University, published in the November issue,

New in CBE Life Science Education: Peter Armbruster, Maya Patel, Erika Johnson, and Martha Weiss share their experiences and the outcomes of an introductory biology course redesign in “Active Learning and Student-centered Pedagogy Improve Student Attitudes and Performance in Introductory Biology.” Found in the fall 2009 issue: CBE Life Sci Educ 2009: 203-213.

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Upcoming Events

February 25-27, 2010—Council on Undergraduate Research Dialogues, Washington, DC. The Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) Dialogues is designed to bring faculty and administrators to Washington, DC, to interact with federal agency program officers and other grant funders. Workshops and plenary sessions will inform participants about grant opportunities in research and education, both new and ongoing; assist faculty in learning how to find new funding opportunities; and assist faculty in developing grant proposal writing skills.

March 10-12, 2010—3rd Annual SoTL Commons Conference, Statesboro, GA. The 3rd annual Scholarship on Teaching and Learning (SoTL) Commons Conference will take place at Georgia Southern University in Statesboro. The conference brings together people engaging in SoTL and anyone wanting to improve student learning outcomes in higher education today.

March 17, 2010—The 2010 NSRC National Science Education Leadership Development Forum: Designing Effective K-12 Science Education Professional Development Programs, Philadelphia, PA. The forum will provide an opportunity to share research on effective methods and a landscape of current programs related to K-12 science education professional development. The event will also include a special reception to celebrate the National Science Resources Center’s 25 years of excellence in science education.

March 20-24, 2010—National Association for Research in Science Teaching Annual International Conference, Philadelphia, PA. The theme of the 2010 annual international conference of NARST is “Research into Practice: Practice Informing Research” and will be held at the Philadelphia Downtown Marriott.

May 20-23, 2010—17th Annual ASM Conference for Undergraduate Educators, San Diego, CA. The 2010 ASMCUE’s theme is “One Health, One Earth: A Sustainable Future” and the conferences will focus on sustainability of the planet as well as sustaining students in the biological sciences. Information about housing, registration, and abstract submissions is available at

June 14-17, 2010—Biology Scholars Transitions Residency, Washington, DC. The Transitions Residency, planned for 2010, seeks biologists who are transitioning from science education research to science education publishing. The 2010 Transitions Residency begins with the Transitions: Science Education Research to Publishing Institute, planned for June 14-17, in Washington, DC. Application deadline is February 1, 2010.

June 19-22, 2010—Council on Undergraduate Research National Conference, Ogden, UT. The 2010 CUR National Conference will take place at Weber State University, and its theme will be “Undergraduate Research as Transformative Practice.”

July 14-17, 2010—Biology Scholars Research Residency, Washington, DC. The Research Residency seeks biologists who are asking questions about the effectiveness of their teaching approaches. The 2010 Research Residency begins with the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Institute, planned for July 14-17, in Washington, DC. Application deadline is March 1.

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