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ABS Education Committee

The Education Committee consists of six-subcommittees dedicated to outreach to the general public, providing education of membership and encouraging innovation in teaching pedagogies. All members of the Education Committee are expected to be actively involved in the Outreach Grant, Genesis Award, Educational Resources and Innovations, Penny Bernstein Distinguished Teaching Award, Outstanding Children’s Book Award, or Outreach Fair subcommittees. The Education Committee promotes quality instruction and training in the area of animal behavior. We help to facilitate collaborations across the ABS community to amplify education and engagement initiatives.

Key Activities

  • Educational Resources and Innovations: This subcommittee collects, develops, and disseminates resources to the animal behavior teaching community by hosting workshops (e.g., the annual ABS conference) and maintaining the education website.
  • Genesis Award: The Genesis Award recognizes outstanding poster presentations by undergraduates at the annual meeting.
  • Outstanding Children’s Book Award: This annual award recognizes outstanding English-speaking children's books about animal behavior. The sub-committee solicits nominations from publishers and selects finalists; and schoolchildren then review the nominees and select the winner.
  • Outreach Fair: The annual Outreach Fair subcommittee organizes a public education event at the annual conference with the goal of educating the public.
  • Outreach Grant: Annual Outreach Grants support outstanding community engagement efforts by ABS members win which animal behavior is shared with diverse communities of all ages using creative approaches based on best practices in education.
  • Penny Bernstein Distinguished Teaching Award: This annual award recognizes a sustained record of excellent teaching of animal behavior at any level. The teaching can be in the classroom or other educational settings, such as zoos, aquaria, museums, 4-H programs, research labs, field stations, or environmental centers.

Curricular Resources

  • Resources Shared by ABS Members: Check out the searchable list of animal behavior resources shared by fellow ABS members!

    Do you know of or have you created any education resources?
    If so, share it by completing this form. The education committee will look it over and post it.
  • Workshop Resources: The Education Committee hosts a workshop every year at the Annual Meeting, and any shared resources from these meetings can be found here. Find lesson plans, activity ideas, and more! For your convenience, the resources are separated by workshop year, and each folder name contains the title of the workshop.
  • Open Educational Resources (OER): OERs are resources that are available at no cost and most can be re-distributed. To learn more about OERs- whether searching for ones to use or learning how to publish OERs, check out Michigan State University’s OER library guide.
  • Peer-reviewed Digital Resources: The following is a list of databases and journals in which people can publish their activities or find activities to use. It is not an exhaustive list of places to find resources, only places where teachers can publish, and it is peer-reviewed.
    • EcoEd Digital Library
      Maintained by the Ecological Society of America. Searching on terms such as “animal behavior” will help identify resources
    • NCCST Case Studies
      Peer-reviewed database that publishes ready-for-the-classroom case studies and teaching notes. Maintained by the National Science Teaching Association. There is a small fee for access to the teaching notes and answer keys.
    • CourseSource
      Open-access peer-reviewed journal that publishes college-level activities for various biology disciplines. Developed a couple of years ago; recently started assigning DOI’s to their articles; they’re working on getting indexed.  Author instructions include a template.
    • American Biology Teacher (Author guidelines)
      Peer-reviewed journal that is indexed. Maintained by the National Association of Biology Teachers. They publish activities for K-16; there are some education research articles. A search for animal behavior articles came up with over 900 matches.
    • Journal of College Science Teaching (Author guidelines)
      Peer-reviewed journal that is indexed; maintained by NSTA. NSTA has four journals and this journal is focused on college. It has a mix of curriculum publications and science education research papers.
    • Journal of Microbiology and Biology Education (Author guidelines)
      Peer-reviewed journal that is indexed. Maintained by American Society for Microbiology. Search for “behavior” had over 200 matches; primarily behavior of microbes or how microbes influence animal behavior.
    • Bioscene: Journal of College Biology Teaching
      Peer -reviewed journal that is maintained by the Association of College and Biology Educators. They publish activities and teaching strategies that include some sort of assessment.