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Mary Pat Wenderoth
UW- Biology Education Research Group
My research interests focus on how to help students learn Biology. The 2001 findings of the National Research Council on How People Learn, indicated that three areas are critical to student learning; confronting misconceptions students hold about the discipline, creating a framework to organize facts of the discipline, and enhancing student metacognition (monitoring their learning).
To help students build more robust and mechanistic understanding of physiology, I have integrated the use of General Models (GM) (Modell 2001)into all my classes. My initial research shows that students who use GM when answering exam questions provide more robust answers that earn more points. I also have students create Summary Sheets, a pictorial form of concept map, to help them form connections between the various parts of each physiological system.
To encourage metacogniton, I have students do weekly reflective paragraphs on what they have learned (not memorized) each week.
My colleagues and I recently developed the Blooming Biology Tool (BBT), an assessment tool based on Bloom
Dr. Wenderoth received her Ph.D. in 1988 from the Department of Physiology at Rush University in Chicago. She worked with Dr. Brenda (Eisenberg) Russell on the remodeling mechanism of the thick filament of cardiomyocytes. She worked as a post-doctoral fellow and research scientist in Dr. Stephen Hauschka's laboratory in the Biochemistry Department of the University of Washington on muscle creatine kinase gene regulation and muscle differentiation.
Her interest in teaching lead her to a part-time teaching position at Green River Community College and then back to the Zoology Department at the University of Washington. She began a collaboration with Dr. Harold Modell on revising her teaching to more fully incorporate active learning into her classroom. She was a Co-PI with Dr. Modell on a grant from NSF-CCLI (Course Curriculum and Laboratory Investigation)-