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Evidence Based Instructional Design
Life Sciences Core Curriculum Tranforming Teaching Initiative: The introductory biology courses, Life Sciences 1-4, are undergoing major changes in pedagogy and curricular content to flip the series and embrace active learning pedagogy.
Quantitative Biology Initiative: Transforming first year mathematics and statistics series for UCLA Life Science majors into a curriculum that incorporates biological examples and computational exercises using student-centered pedagogies.
Career Development Curriculum for Life Science Majors: Creating a Career Development curriculum for undergraduate Life Science STEM majors on student interest in career alternatives to medicine, engaging UCLA alumni and faculty to raise awareness of and create pathways to emerging careers in STEM.
The Big Data To Knowledge (BD2K) Concept Network: Online Active Learning Tools: Creating open educational resources that include online teaching materials, services, and training for instructors and students in bioinformatics and computer science. Development of the Open-Response Concept Test (ORCT) module for UCLA’s course management system, CCLE, is underway so that this technology can be used by UCLA instructors campus-wide.
Video Production in Introductory Life Science Curriculum: UCLA students enroll in a series of 3 seminar-style classes where they learn to produce short documentary videos on topics of societal interest in evolutionary biology. Students are chosen from among those identified as underrepresented in STEM disciplines and who have experienced life challenges.
Competency-based Research Laboratory Curriculum (CRLC): This interdepartmental laboratory program provides all undergraduate majors in two Life Sciences departments meaningful exposure to authentic, inquiry-based research. Goals include fostering student excitement about the discovery process central to scientific research, actively engaging students in the creative process of scientific inquiry and the collaborative nature of research, developing skills necessary for students to analyze data and make evidence-based conclusions, and mirroring how results are communicated in a modern research laboratory.
Biomedical Research Minor:This interdepartmental program incorporates a structured curriculum to introduce students to independent laboratory research early in their college careers, provides didactic instruction to complement the research, and oversees student progress to ensure that the research experience is productive and meaningful. The goal is to produce students who are outstanding biomedical research scientists and well-prepared to take on challenges in the life sciences and medical sciences at academic institutions and in the biotechnology industry. A description of the pedagogy employed in the seminar course and learning gains students acquired as a result of their experience was described in a recently published article in PLoS Biology (Vol. 7, No. 12. p. e1000264).
Previously funded by HHMI Award No. 52006944
Contact: Ira Clark (Email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Howard Hughes Undergraduate Research Program (HHURP):In this rigorous scientific training program, undergraduate participants work in faculty research laboratories in UCLA’s College of Letters and Science and the School of Medicine. Aimed at juniors and seniors, HHURP encompasses two academic years and one summer of intense, stipend-supported research experience. The success of the program is based on combining direct involvement in research with in depth analysis of the primary literature. Student researchers (“scholars”) are required to participate in two seminar courses, each with unique yet substantial requirements that are tailored to the learning goals of the program. A description of the program and feedback from an alumni survey covering 1998-2004 were published in the Council for Undergraduate Research Quarterly (March 2005, p. 114-117) and Cell Biology Education (Dec. 2006, Vol. 5, p. 340-347).
Previously funded by HHMI Award No. 52006944
Program Faculty / Contacts: Karen Reue (Email: email@example.com) and Felix Schweizer (Email:firstname.lastname@example.org)
A major goal of PEERS is to increase retention of underrepresented and under-served student populations. To achieve this goal, PEERS students (1) are enrolled as a cohort into core courses in math, physics and chemistry, (2) participate in collaborative learning workshops that complement courses in their core science curriculum, (3) receive counseling and career planning advice from dedicated academic counselors (4) attend seminar courses focused on for academic success strategies, science career options and importance of undergraduate research, and (5) attend research colloquia presented by leading scientists at UCLA. Through these activities, PEERS students earn higher grades in their science classes, have higher overall GPAs, and graduate faster than their PEERS. This academic success combined with integrated program activities that foster a sense of community results in PEERS students having significantly higher retention rates in science and participation in undergraduate research.
Towards Improving Persistence in STEM: UCLA has established a highly successful mentoring program that enhances the persistence of underrepresented undergraduate students to continue as STEM majors – the Program for Excellence in Education and Research in the Sciences (PEERS). CEILS is coordinating an assessment project funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (DDCF); this project encompasses evaluating the roles that research mentoring and math preparation play in the effectiveness of PEERS. This information will be compiled into an online handbook made available to academic institutions wishing to replicate this highly successful PEERS program.
Science and Mathematics Achievement and Research Training for Students (SMARTS): This outreach program recruits and develops students from low-performing urban schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) who have high potential for rigorous STEM subjects. The goal is to close the education gap between talented urban school students and their peers in more educationally and economically advantaged communities. An important goal is to increase the number of SMARTS students who can compete for admission in STEM programs at top-tier University of California campuses. SMARTS provides students with early exposure to laboratory research under the direction and mentorship of faculty and graduate students. High school students enter SMARTS in the 10th grade via a six-week summer enrichment program. SMARTS offers students demanding college-level courses, engaging them in laboratory research, providing career guidance as well as college and financial planning. Students’ parents are directly involved in SMARTS, and their involvement is expected to increase demand for advanced courses in low-performing Los Angeles schools. Immersing high school students in a research experience is expected to increase their interest (motivation) and performance (achievement) in STEM subjects and subsequently increase their participation in advanced math and science high school courses.
Previously funded by HHMI Award No. 52006944
Contact: Rick Ainsworth (Email: email@example.com)
Pre-K Teacher Training
One Degree, Many Careers: Opening Doors for STEM Majors: This scholarship program is providing financial, academic, and peer support of high-need STEM majors who, because they desire both to be trained as a professional scientist or mathematician and seek a career in teaching, are traditionally marginalized by the culture of the research university. The One Degree, Many Careers program enables these talented students to give back make a difference to the community. It also serves as a steppingstone for graduate school.
Nationally among top-ranked universities, UCLA has been ranked as having the highest economic diversity and percentage of students receiving Pell Grants (US News and World Report, 2012). The pool of applicants with financial need far exceeds the 30 scholarships available annually. Our expected average awards ($7,000 for the academic year and $3,000 for a Summer Session) are unlikely to completely offset student loans or eliminate unmet need for all students; they will, however, significantly reduce both the time students need to spend working and the ability to progress in a timely manner to their STEM degree while exploring secondary STEM teaching career options.
Opening the Teacher Pipeline:The University of California, which admits the majority of science majors in the state, created in 2006, a system-wide program to address the dire shortage of science teachers. Building on the strong UCLA student commitment to community, the UCLA California Teach program has developed five service-learning courses consisting of an academic seminar supported by a science- or math-focused field internship. However, to truly effect a change in the number of UCLA students entering STEM teaching, we needed easier curricular paths to teaching and a cultural change among faculty towards students wanting to teach. Opening the Teacher Pipeline has created a Science Education minor within the College of Letters and Science. A Math for Teaching minor is under development. These curricula prepare students for entry into any secondary science or math credential program in the state or graduate teaching assistantships.
SUMMER INTERN PROGRAM: Grounded on the “Planned Happenstance” theory” that chance and unexpected opportunities play a significant role in most peoples’ career decisions, Tipping the Balance provides a one-week, paid summer internship for STEM students interested into teaching. The synergistic confluence of a late September start for the UCLA quarter system and the social-justice focus of the UCLA Teacher Education Program provides ideal Noyce-type environments for internships for our STEM students who are considering teaching careers.
JOINT B.S.-CREDENTIAL-M.ED.: UCLA offers students the opportunity to earn their credential concurrently while completing their baccalaureate degrees. Noyce scholarships allow these talented STEM majors the time and resources to compress a rigorous B.S. degree with a year of graduate work including student teaching in a high-need school. Teachers earning their credentials at UCLA stay in teaching longer than average.
Previously funded by NOYCE Award No. 1035164
Contact: Contact: Arlene Russell (Email: firstname.lastname@example.org)