Resources for teaching and assessing the vision and change biology core concepts

Janet L. Branchaw, Pamela A. Pape-Lindstrom, Kimberly D. Tanner, Sarah A. Bissonnette, Tawnya L. Cary, Brian A. Couch, Alison J. Crowe, Jenny K. Knight, Katharine Semsar, Julia I. Smith, Michelle K. Smith, Mindi M. Summers, Caroline J. Wienhold, Christian D. Wright, Sara E. Brownell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


The Vision and Change report called for the biology community to mobilize around teaching the core concepts of biology. This essay describes a collection of resources de-veloped by several different groups that can be used to respond to the report’s call to transform undergraduate education at both the individual course and departmental levels. First, we present two frameworks that help articulate the Vision and Change core con-cepts, the BioCore Guide and the Conceptual Elements (CE) Framework, which can be used in mapping the core concepts onto existing curricula and designing new curricula that teach the biology core concepts. Second, we describe how the BioCore Guide and the CE Framework can be used alongside the Partnership for Undergraduate Life Sciences Education curricular rubric as a way for departments to self-assess their teaching of the core concepts. Finally, we highlight three sets of instruments that can be used to directly assess student learning of the core concepts: the Biology Card Sorting Task, the Biology Core Concept Instruments, and the Biology—Measuring Achievement and Progression in Science instruments. Approaches to using these resources independently and synergisti-cally are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberes1
JournalCBE life sciences education
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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