Faculty: Gary Baird, Lou Buhrley, Tate Carter, Steven Christenson, Van Christman, Robert Coleman, Kent Davis, Mark Dewall, Clair Eckersell, Lynn Firestone, John Griffith, Michael Groesbeck, Alan Holyoak, Jason Hunt, Todd Kelson, Sidney Palmer, Seth Ririe, Jerry Scrivner, Jason Shaw, Dave Stricklan, Russell Thurston, Travis Wall, Gene Weller, Dwight Wray, John Zenger
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The Biology Education Program at BYU-Idaho has been graduating students since April of 2004. All of our students who have decided to go on and pursue a teaching career have been hired and we are proud of the contributions they are making to help educate scientifically literate citizens.
The Biology Secondary Education program consists of two tracks 1) the Composite Biology Education Major and 2) the Biology Education Major with a required education minor. We also offer a Biology Education Minor.
Students in the Biology Education major programs are required to take two teaching-oriented biology classes, Bio 305,which is a one credit Biology Teaching Practicum (taken in the 1st semester of their junior year) and Bio 405, Biology Teaching Methods, for three credits (ideally, this course is taken in the semester before they are to student teach). Both of these courses provide the pre-service teachers with an opportunity to teach biology to students. Prior to fall semester 2011, our Bio 405 pre-service teachers practice taught biology lessons to freshman students who were taking a non-majors science course at BYU-Idaho. Beginning Fall semester 2011 we have arranged for these students to teach in the Madison Junior High School. This has been made possible by coordinating the teaching of Bio 405 with the Ed 461, Reading in the Content Area. All biology majors in Bio 405 are required to concurrently register in the same section of Ed 461. It is our hope that in the near future we will be able to partner with local secondary schools to provide even earlier authentic teaching experiences in our Bio 305 teaching practicum course as well.
In our biology teacher preparation courses we emphasis the National Science Education Standards [NSES] set forth by both the National Research Council and the AAAS 2061 project. Our pre-service teachers are taught the importance of teaching not only biology but also the Nature of Science itself so that their students, and our future citizens, will be more scientifically literate. We help our pre-service teachers to realize and to implement other important goals of the NSES including: teaching through inquiry, the idea that “less is more”, the importance of making science relevant to their students, the utilization of more effective and varied teaching strategies, the need for constant and more individualized assessments, and focusing on science technology and society.