A Conceptual Framework for Organizing Active Learning Experiences in Biology Instruction

Abstract: 

Introductory biology courses form a cornerstone of undergraduate instruction. However, the predominantly used lecture approach fails to produce higher-order biology learning. Research shows that active learning strategies can increase student learning, yet few biology instructors use all identified active learning strategies. In this paper, we present a framework to design biology instruction that incorporates all active learning strategies. We review active learning research in undergraduate biology courses, present a framework for organizing active learning strategies, and provide clear implications and future research for designing instruction in introductory undergraduate biology courses.

About the Author

Joel Gardner, Ph.D.

Dr. Gardner is currently an instructional designer and department chair for the International Institute for Innovative Instruction at Franklin University.