MCDB 494 - Teaching College Science
Winter 2022, Section 001
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is  In Person (see other Sections below)
Subject: Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology (MCDB)
Department: LSA Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology
See additional student enrollment and course instructor information to guide you in your decision making.


Requirements & Distribution:
With permission of instructor.
Advisory Prerequisites:
Science concentrators having completed a range of courses, such as BIOLOGY 171,172 and 173; BIOLOGY 225, 281, 305 or EEB 390; CHEM 130, 210 or 211; PHYSICS 140 or 160; or EARTH 119.
This course counts toward the 60 credits of math/science required for a Bachelor of Science degree.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:
Start/End Date:
Full Term 1/5/22 - 4/19/22 (see other Sections below)
NOTE: Drop/Add deadlines are dependent on the class meeting dates and will differ for full term versus partial term offerings.
For information on drop/add deadlines, see the Office of the Registrar and search Registration Deadlines.


This course will help participants build a foundation of knowledge about effective science teaching. The course is both scholarly and practical in nature: students construct an understanding of fundamental principles and sound pedagogy that they apply to their own teaching. Students will examine existing notions about how they were taught and how it has shaped their own teaching expectations, philosophy, and practice. Through a variety of assignments that are designed to model the scientific teaching philosophy that guides the course, students will develop skills in engaging diverse audiences, active learning, and assessment of learning gains. Participants will be able to effectively communicate about the nature of science and engage students in activities that promote understanding of key science concepts as well as science process skills.

Course Requirements:

Students read from text of “Scientific Teaching” as well as a variety of readings from primary research articles in science education and cognitive psychology. Students write 11 reflection papers during the 15 week semester that synthesize, analyze, and evaluate ideas presented in the readings and in our class discussions. Students write a teaching philosophy prior to the first class meeting (and revise their philosophy for the last writing assignment), take five unannounced quizzes on the readings and also choose topics to explore in greater detail or conduct an action research project on their own teaching and then present the results to the class. Each student gives two presentations during the semester. In addition, it is expected that students will attend class. Participation in in-class discussions will also influence final grades.

Intended Audience:

Undergraduates or graduate students interested in teaching science at the college level or teaching science to adult learners in other settings.

Class Format:

Format is based on discussion and debate among the students and the instructor. The class will meet for 2 hours per week. No GSI assistance is needed.


MCDB 494 - Teaching College Science
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
 In Person
TuTh 10:00AM - 11:00AM
1/5/22 - 4/19/22

Textbooks/Other Materials

The partner U-M / Barnes & Noble Education textbook website is the official way for U-M students to view their upcoming textbook or course material needs, whether they choose to buy from Barnes & Noble Education or not. Students also can view a customized list of their specific textbook needs by clicking a "View/Buy Textbooks" link in their course schedule in Wolverine Access.

Click the button below to view and buy textbooks for MCDB 494.001

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Syllabi are available to current LSA students. IMPORTANT: These syllabi are provided to give students a general idea about the courses, as offered by LSA departments and programs in prior academic terms. The syllabi do not necessarily reflect the assignments, sequence of course materials, and/or course expectations that the faculty and departments/programs have for these same courses in the current and/or future terms.

Click the button below to view historical syllabi for MCDB 494 (UM login required)

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CourseProfile (Atlas)

The Atlas system, developed by the Center for Academic Innovation, provides additional information about: course enrollments; academic terms and instructors; student academic profiles (school/college, majors), and previous, concurrent, and subsequent course enrollments.

CourseProfile (Atlas)