Preliminary Program

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Pre-Conference Workshops

Preparing Successful Proposals for the NSF Directorate of Biological Sciences

Thursday, May 28 at 10:00 am-12:00 pm and 1:00 pm-3:00 pm (Lunch will NOT be provided during the 12:00 pm-1:00 pm meal break.)

This workshop will actively walk participants through the process of writing an NSF grant proposal to be submitted to the Directorate of Biological Sciences. Within the context of the two review criteria, intellectual merit and broader impacts, participants will practice the development of working hypotheses, crafting feasible specific aims, and integrating educational elements into the project design. The workshop will also help participants develop the ability to address review criteria used by panelists to critically assess proposals. By the completion of the workshop, participants should be able to craft a one-page Summary that describes their proposed program of research. Attendees will have direct access to successful grantees from a variety of institutions, and faculty from community colleges, principally undergraduate and research institutions are invited. While designed for those who have not yet submitted a successful NSF proposal, it is by no means limited to junior faculty. (Select this option when you register for ASMCUE. Registration Fee: $60 (until March 9); $85 (March 10-April 20))

Integrating Quantitative Reasoning in Biology Education: Making the Science More Authentic and the Learning More Robust
Louis Gross, University of Tennessee - Knoxville
Sam Donovan, University of Pittsburgh

Thursday, May 28 at 10:00 am-12:00 pm and 1:00 pm-3:00 pm (Lunch will NOT be provided during the 12:00 pm-1:00 pm meal break.)

Join us for an education workshop where you will get hands on experience using a variety of freely available scientific tools to explore biological problems. Our primary goal is to help participants adopt and adapt existing curriculum modules that address two of the core competencies outlined in the Vision and Change report (“Ability to use quantitative reasoning” and “Ability to use modeling and simulation”). The tools and modules we will present are appropriate for use in introductory biology and microbiology course and laboratory settings. One tool introduced will be the R package, a freely available statistics and modeling package available on multiple platforms that has become prevalent in many areas of biology. Attendees will work with examples of its use with naive students to enhance quantitative analysis of data. Topics will include data analysis/visualization, agent based modeling, and general strategies for engaging students quantitative reasoning. (Select this option when you register for ASMCUE. Registration Fee: $100 (until March 9); $125 (March 10-April 20))

Designing Courses Based on National Recommendations for STEM Education

Thursday, May 28 at 10:00 am-12:00 pm and 1:00 pm-3:00 pm (Lunch will NOT be provided during the 12:00 pm-1:00 pm meal break.)

This writing workshop will help you with the process for re-considering an existing course or designing a new course. Participants will be encouraged to incorporate guidelines from recently published national recommendations for STEM education, such as Vision and Change and the ASM Curriculum Guidelines for Undergraduate Microbiology, in the early stages of the course design process. (Select this option when you register for ASMCUE. Registration Fee: $60 (until March 9); $85 (March 10-April 20))


Plenary Lecturers at the Forefront of Science and Teaching

National award-winning educator and author of Teaching Naked 
José Antonio Bowen, President, Goucher College 



Erica Ollmann Saphire, The Scripps Research Institute 

pierson duaneMicrobes and Spaceflight
Duane Pierson, NASA Johnson Space Center

no-personMobility and Higher Education
Education and Medical Development Executives, Apple Inc.


Concurrent Scientific Sessions 

RNA Protein Interactions
Lydia Contreras, The University of Texas at Austin

Bacterial Symbionts
Nancy Moran, The University of Texas at Austin 

Bacterial Pathogenesis

Stephen Trent, The University of Texas at Austin

Microbial Biofilms
Marvin Whitely, University of Texas


Networking Sessions

Sharing Issues, Finding Local Support, and More

One of the top reasons attendees give for attending ASMCUE is the opportunity to network with fellow educators. Meals at the Conference are intentionally served as a group to allow a time and place for this important networking to occur. This year, the three breakfast meals have been organized to maximize attendee interaction.

Friday - Breakfast by Topical Areas
Several issues have been identified by the Steering Committee such as implementing the lab safety guidelines, community colleges issues, online teaching, Meet the JMBE Board, LINK Program, iTeach, and more.  If you have a topic for an interest group, please email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Saturday - Breakfast by Location
ASM's supports thirty-five Branches organized by geographical territories that are defined by one or more states and/or zip code areas. On site, attendees will receive information about their branch and region and be encouraged to meet others in the same vicinity. International attendees will have an opportunity to meet as well.

Sunday - Free for All!
You are on your own! Take a chance. Sit at a table where you recognize no one. Experienced faculty, introduce yourself to a first-timer. First-timers, hobnob with a speaker or ASM leader. Go outside your comfort zone! You never know, you may meet a collaborator or a friend for life. Many close friendships were born and nurtured at an ASMCUE meeting. 

Microbrew Session: Mixing Ideas for Successful Teaching Strategies in Microbiology

These sessions provide a forum for attendees to share ideas and thoughts on best practices in microbiology and biology education. Oral presenters are selected from attendees submitting abstracts for consideration in the Microbrew categories and give 15 minutes "chalk-talks" in which they share their activity.


Poster Presentation Session

The poster abstracts are organized by both content and pedagogy. The content themes are evolution, cell structure and function, metabolic pathways, information flow and genetics, microbial systems, and impact of microorganisms. For the purposes of ASMCUE, a seventh concept, advancing STEM education and research has been added to the abstract in order to identify authors working in this broader-scoped area. The pedagogy themes are organized into five categories: course design, hands-on projects, student learning, teaching approaches, and teaching tools.