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Scholarship of Teaching and Learning

The faculty and academic staff of Lyman Briggs College take a scholarly approach to the College's mission of teaching and advising students. Grant-funded research, peer-reviewed publications, and participation in local and national education-related workshops keep them at the forefront of pedagogical developments.



Research-validated Pedagogy

LBC faculty are engaged in a long-term effort to strengthen the core STEM courses by adopting research-validated educational techniques that help students acquire graduate-level thinking skills. Examples include concept mapping linked to question creation by students, transformation of recitations into hands-on workshops, and incorporation of inquiry-based labs that stress experimental design as well as lab techniques.

LBC faculty of all disciplines who are engaging in research on or dissemination of effective pedagogy continue to be recognized and supported by MSU's Lilly Teaching Fellows program and external programs such as The Biology Scholars Program and the New Physics & Astronomy Faculty Workshops. LBC faculty also serve on the MSU Faculty Advisory Boards of the Lilly Teaching Fellows Program and the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL).

Bridging the Two Cultures

Lyman Briggs College was founded with the mission of bridging what physical chemist and novelist C.P. Snow famously called the "Two Cultures" of the sciences and humanities. In early years, the Introduction to History, Philosophy, and Sociology of Science (HPS) course was even called "Third Culture Rhetoric." The HPS classes continue to be a crucial component of the liberal science education provided to Briggs students. In May 2009, LBC co-sponsored a conference "Science & Liberal Education", marking the 50th anniversary of Snow's "Two Cultures" lecture and reflecting on progress in realizing a Third Culture. The LBC community continues to build bridges among the varied STEM and HPS elements of the College's culture and curriculum. Some faculty audit entire LBC courses in other fields in order to assess opportunities for highlighting cross-disciplinary connections in their own courses. Another increasingly popular path is the team-teaching of linked courses by STEM and HPS faculty, either during the academic year or as part of a summer study abroad program. Many faculty are involved in an NSF-funded project Bridging the Disciplines through Authentic Inquiry and Discourse (BRAID), which studies the impact on student learning of educational modules interconnecting courses in separate disciplines or suites of STEM and HPS courses taught as an inter-related whole. Briggs faculty, staff, and students also are key participants in three cross-college projects that place science in broader context: the specialization on Science, Technology, the Environment and Public Policy (STEPPS), the 21st Century Chautauqua on Personal and Social Responsibility (Chautauqua), and the Residential Semester at Kellogg Biological Station.

Publications on the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning since 2005
Coming soon...

Grants for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning since 2005

Society for the Study of Evolution, (Smith, James), Science Supper: Bringing Together mid-Michigan High School Biology Teachers and Michigan State University Evolution Researchers and Educators $800

National Science Foundation, (Gerd Kortemeyer, Julie Libarkin (PI, Lead), Collaborator Research: Community development of an expanded Geoscience Concept Inventory: A webcenter for question generation, validation and online testing $333,048

National Science Foundation, (Doug Luckie), C-TOOLS supplement request to NSF for a funded extension of the project into 2007 to develop a cycel mapping system apporach to support a novel learning findings using concept maps in geoplogy by Duncan Sibley at MSU $32,000

National Science Foundation, (Doug Luckie, Ryan Sweeder), BRAID: Bridging the Disciplines with Authentic Inquiry & Discourse $149,976