Peter White, Ph.D.

Peter J. T. White
  • Assistant Professor
  • Director, LBC SUTL Graduate Fellows Program
  • Biology
  • Department of Entomology, College of Natural Science
  • Holmes Hall, E-189
  • 919 E. Shaw Lane
  • East Lansing, MI 48825
  • (517) 353-4761

LBC COURSES

  • LB 145, Cell and Molecular Biology 
  • LB 492, Science, Pseudoscience, & B.S. 
  • LB 494, Urbanization and the Lepidoptera
  • LB 493/4, Urbanization and the Lepidoptera

BIOGRAPHY

I am an assistant professor in Lyman Briggs College and the Department of Entomology at MSU. I teach introductory biology and senior seminar courses. I predominantly use a video-assistant flipped-class approach in my introductory biology courses. My senior seminar topics tend to focus on developing and enhancing critical thinking skills amongst students. In research, I explore both entomological and biology education topics. My research includes (1) fundamental entomology research looking at the impact of urbanization on moths,(2) entomology education research, using moth ecology as a means of engaging students and the broader public community in the practice of science, and (3) biology education research, investigating and improving pedagogical approaches in biology education.

EDUCATION

  • Ph.D., Biology, McGill University
  • M.Sc., Biology, University of Ottawa
  • B.Sc., Honors, Biology, University of Ottawa

HONORS & AWARDS

  • Four-Year College & University Teaching Award, (2019) National Association of Biology Teachers
  • #iteachmsu Award, (2019) Michigan State University: Certificate of achievement awarded for dedication to student success and positively contributing to the teaching and learning mission of MSU.
  • Distinguished Achievement Award in Teaching, (2018) Entomological Society of America, North Central Branch: http://tiny.cc/white_ent
  • AT&T Award in Teaching Excellence, Best Blended Course, (2018) Michigan State University: http://attawards.msu.edu/winners/2018/peter-white
  • Honorary Faculty Certificate, (2016) Lyman Briggs College, Michigan State University: Presented by the graduating class of 2016 to recognize dedication to the enrichment of learning outside the classroom.

RESEARCH

External Grant Applications, Funded

  • National Science Foundation, (2017) DRK12 program supplemental award (awarded). White, P. J. T. (PI)., Mead, L. (co-PI). Collaborative Research: Connected Biology: three-dimensional learning from molecules to populations. Total Value: $47,380 (White sub-award of $18,592).
  • National Science Foundation, (2016-2020) DRK12 program (awarded). White, P. J. T. (PI), Mead, L. (co-PI). Collaborative Research: Connected Biology: three-dimensional learning from molecules to populations. Total Value: $1,181,214 (White sub-award of $472,485).

Internal Applications, Funded

  • Science and Society at State, (2019-20), White, P. J. T. (PI), Stroupe, D. (co-PI), Lorenz-Reaves, A. (co-PI). It’s Elementary! Exploring backyard moth ecology to learn about science practices. Total Value: $10,000.
  • Science and Society at State, (2017-18) Smith, J. (PI), White, P. J. T. (co-PI), Bellon, R. (co-PI) Evo-Med-Ed: developing and testing cases for evolutionary medicine learning. Total Value: $10,000.
  • Scholarship of Undergraduate Teaching and Learning, (2017-18) The Figure of the Day: a SotL activity designed to improve biology student quantitative and graphing skills. Total Value: $1500 + ¼ time graduate assistant fellowship for project.
  • STEM Gateway Fellows Program, (2016-18) The intersection of scientific disciplines around the crosscutting concept of energy. Total Value: $8000
  • Scholarship of Undergraduate Teaching and Learning, (2016-17) Changes in undergraduate understanding of biology over time. Total Value: $1500 + ¼ time graduate assistant fellowship for project.
  • Science ahd Society at State, (2015-2016) White, P. J. T. (PI), Stroup, D. (co-PI), Caballero, M. (co-PI): Learning science by doing science: project-based learning through urban entomology. Total Value: $10,000.
  • Science and Society at State, (2014-2015) White, P. J. T. (PI), Sawtelle, V. (co-PI), Lahr, R. (co-PI), Valles, S. (co-PI), Wang, H. (co-PI): Designing, developing and assessing a module-based system of interdisciplinary education. Total Value: $10,000. 

SELECT PUBLICATIONS

  • Wonderlin, N.E., Rumfelt, K.A. and White, P. J. T. (In Press) Associations between nocturnal moths and pollen in urban gardens. Journal of the Lepidopterists’ Society.
  • Kirby, C., Fleming-Davis, A., and White, P. J. T. (2019) The Figure of the Day: A classroom activity to improve students' figure creation skills in biology. American Biology Teacher 81: 317-325.
  • Stroupe, D., Caballero, D., and White, P. J. T. (2018) Fostering students’ epistemic agency through the co-configuration of moth research. Science Education 102: 1176-1200.
  • White, P. J. T. (2018) An aerial approach to investigating the relationships between macromoths and nighttime lights across an urban landscape. Journal of Agriculture and Urban Entomology 34: 1-14.
  • White, P. J. T., Glover, K., Stewart, J. and Rice, A. (2016) The technical and performance characteristics of a low-cost, simply-constructed, black light moth trap. Journal of Insect Science 16: 1-9.
  • White, P. J. T. (2016) Molecular sculpting: Active learning of subcellular systems and processes. American Biology Teacher 78: 482-491.
  • White, P. J. T., Heidemann, M. and Smith, J. (2015) A cross-course investigation of integrative cases for evolution education. Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education 16: 157-166.