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Opportunities in Science at Lewis & Clark

HHMI Undergraduate Science Education Grant

In 2012 Lewis & Clark was awarded its second consecutive four-year grant from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI). This new grant follows and builds on the successes of our initial award, the Undergraduate Science Education Program Grant “Collaborative Approaches to Undergraduate Science Educations” (C.A.U.S.E.). Our new initiative C.A.U.S.E. 2.0 will be an integral part of the challenge set forth by President Barack Obama as a national priority to improve the quality of science education through a commitment to prepare 100,000 new science, technology, engineering, and math teachers.

The grant is awarded by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) and will allow Lewis & Clark to develop a new core undergraduate curriculum in the mathematical and natural sciences.

“Our goal is to give students the tools to become effective K-12 educators with a solid foundation in the current practice of science,” said Elizabeth Stanhope, HHMI Program Director. “The curriculum will feature connections between the traditional disciplines, early access to scientific research, and an introduction to science pedagogy.” 

The new curriculum will be created in partnership between the College of Arts and Sciences and the Graduate School of Education and Counseling.

L&C C.A.U.S.E. 2.0 Initiatives

  1. Bridge Activities
    • The GSEC will open a new tenure-track position whose holder will originate and continue programs that develop undergraduates as effective science and mathematics teachers.
    • The two HHMI CAUSE Advisers will be specialists in science and mathematics education from the GSEC and they will work with the HHMI Fellow to plan and implement the development activities for undergraduate students interested in becoming science teachers.
  2. Outreach
    • Community Engagement & Leadership in Science (CELS)
      Continue and expand the former HHMI-funded SOLTT Tutoring Program, with modifications to provide better training in teaching for the tutors and to encourage them to consider careers in education.
    • Weekly In-Service Education Seminar (WISE)
      The WISE Program will occur during the summer research period. CELS students will attend weekly, hour-long round tables with in-service educators from our partner schools, our HHMI Fellow, and the HHMI CAUSE advisers
  3. Curriculum
    • Quantitative Skills for the Life Sciences
      A revision of the quantitative reasoning curriculum in our introductory sciences courses, including a new course titled Quantitative Skills for the Life Sciences, which will equip students with mathematical and computational skills necessary in the modern practices of the life sciences

      To educate students about the connectedness of the sciences and the multidisciplinary approaches needed in teaching, faculty teaching introductory level courses will have the opportunity to attend workshops to better promote coordination among introductory courses.

      For emerging sciences in which we do not offer courses, workshops will be held to educate faculty and undergraduates of the current issues of these fields. In collaboration with Reed College, one set of workshops will be centered around the integrative field of bioinformatics with another focusing on another emerging science.

HHMI C.A.U.S.E 2.0 Governing Body

Elizabeth Stanhope, Program Director

Liza Finkel, HHMI Science Education Fellow   

Janet Bixby, GSEC Associate Dean