Conference Workshops

Workshop on Biochemistry Education and Communication

Sunday, July 17 2016

Rosemary Redfield, John Dawson, Francis Amara & Diane Ebert-May

Learning outcomes for the participants:

  • Use evidence –based principles of learning/scientific criteria to evaluate instructional methods
  • Reflect on/Recognize the personal and institutional obstacles to making changes in teaching
  • Develop effective classroom methods that encourage scientific ways of thinking
  • Accompany changes with methods to evaluate their effectiveness of student learning and performance

Mol BioSci Higher Education Community/‘Structural’ outcomes for follow-up groups and activities:

  • A continuing online presence for higher education ideas in Canadian molecular biosciences/ for Canadian molecular bioscience researchers
  • An ad-hoc committee
  • A follow-up meeting
  • A proposal of what would be done if funding were available Grant proposal

1:00 pm: Transforming how we TEACH is good, BUT transforming what we expect students to LEARN is better

Dr. Diane Ebert-May, Department of Plant Biology, Michigan State University

Dr. Ebert-May’s research investigates how college students learn best, and how college researchers (graduate students, postdocs and faculty) learn to become more effective instructors.

1:50 pm: Workshop on ‘BOPPPS Model’ Lesson Planning

Dr. John Dawson, Director, CBS Office of Educational Scholarship and Practice, University of Guelph

BOPPPS stands for ‘bridge, objective, pre-test, participatory learning, post-test, summary’; these components provide an effective organizing structure for workshops and teaching sessions.

2:40 pm: Break

3:10 pm: Workshop on Active Learning in the Biomedical Sciences

Dr. Francis Amara, Department of Biochemistry and Medical Genetics, University of Manitoba

This workshop is specifically designed for bioscience researchers; it will focus on ‘Group Learning on Critical Appraisal of a Primary Biomedical Article’.

4:00 pm: Mini-talks on Educational Innovations by Workshop Participants

The format for these talks is an even-shorter version of a ‘PechaKucha’ talk, with 10 slides presented for 20 seconds each, for a total of 3 minutes 20 seconds. An additional 1.5 minutes will be allowed for one or two questions. If you would like to present your experience with an educational innovation, please email a brief description of your topic (100 words max) to by Saturday June 18. Eight presentations will be chosen, and presenters will be notified by June 22.

4:00 pm: Janet Macaulay: Biochemistry Case Studies
4:10 pm: Micaela Lopez Leon: The Transition Between High School and University
4:20 pm: Rosie Redfield: What Would Useful Biochemistry Look Like?

Duration: 3 hours and 30 minutes

Time: 1.00 to 4.30pm

Location: Vancouver Convention Centre, East Building

The Art of Science Communication: An Online Approach to Science Communication Training

Monday, July 18 2016

Geoff Hunt

The importance of effective communication skills is increasingly being recognized throughout the medical and scientific communities, especially amongst students. However, provision of proper, credible training in this area has failed to match the growing demand. In this session, representatives from the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology will present about the society’s novel online training course, “The Art of Science Communication.” Attendees will learn about the genesis of the course, get exposed to course content and format, and will get hands-on experience working through actual exercises that are undertaken by course participants.

Duration: 1 hour

Time: 12.30 to 1.30pm

Location: Vancouver Convention Centre, East Building

NSERC News and Updates

Tuesday, July 19 2016

Enikö Megyeri-Lawless

Duration: 1 hour

NSERC aims to make Canada a country of discoverers and innovators for the benefit of all Canadians. The agency supports university students in their advanced studies, promotes and supports discovery research, and fosters innovation by encouraging Canadian companies to participate and invest in postsecondary research projects. NSERC researchers are on the vanguard of science, building on Canada’s long tradition of scientific excellence.

Time: 12.30 to 1.30pm

Location: Vancouver Convention Centre, East Building

Writing in Science: A Fundamental Skill for Scientists

Thursday, July 21 2016

Phillip Nagley

The practice and development of science depends on effective communication, often involving the written word. A strong foundation on which writing should be based is a core process of scientific argument, namely: proposition; evidence; evaluation and conclusion. This core process is embedded in the traditional layout of scientific manuscripts that report primary research. Such core process of scientific argument also needs to be adhered to by writers collating and evaluating the published work of other scientists, for example, in authoritative reviews or in shorter articles highlighting recently published work. Other forms of scientific writing are carried out in a closed and confidential context, which also requires adherence to the core scientific argument. These include writing applications for grants or the peer review of manuscripts for publication or grant applications for funding, submitted by other authors. A particular need for precise argument and convincing logic applies when authors are responding to the comments of reviewers of articles submitted for publication, or to assessors of applications for funding. For all the above purposes, the writing must display a strong clarity of purpose and a high degree of precision in the words used. Moreover, the written work as a whole must be tailored at an appropriate level of detail (and choice of words) to optimally reach the intended wide audience or the smaller target group of particular people. Understanding the elements of written scientific communication and the various contexts in which it properly takes place are fundamental to the skill set of the scientist throughout his or her career.

Duration: 1 hour

Time: 12.15 to 1.15pm

Location: Vancouver Convention Centre, East Building

Registration fee: Included in full conference registration

Capacity: Limited to 60 participants


Please contact the Conference Secretariat at for further information.  

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