Dr. Barbara Krumhardt, making science relevant for students

May 4, 2012

Barb Krumhardt
Dr. Barbara Krumhardt

Dr. Barbara Krumhardt, a senior lecturer in genetics, development and cell biology, is known for motivating her students to think creatively about science in the large Biology 255 human anatomy and 256 human physiology lectures and the smaller lab sections she teaches. In 2011, she received the Excellence in Teaching by Lecturer and Adjunct Faculty Teaching Award from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, which recognizes outstanding performance in teaching undergraduates.

In the fall, Dr. Krumhardt worked with two Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Post-Doctoral Fellows, Dr. Mike Slade of Chemistry and Dr. Liz Addis of GDCB, to design a student-led experiment in Biology 256. Dr. Slade and Dr. Addis are part of the Engaged to Excel program funded by HHMI. HHMI awarded ISU a $1.6 million grant in 2010 as part of the medical research organization’s program to help universities strengthen undergraduate and precollege science education nationwide.

Dr. Krumhardt said the student-centered concept pushes students to be more creative in the lab. After students in the Biology 256 lab learned concepts and finished some exercises, they made group proposals for further investigation. Upon approval by teaching assistants, students tested their own hypotheses. “I kept thinking we could do more,” Krumhardt said. “This makes students think.”

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