Greetings, fellow biology educators!
Subject: Biology (Educational aspects)
Sciences education (Management)
Author: Ward, Daniel
Pub Date: 01/01/2011
Publication: Name: The American Biology Teacher Publisher: National Association of Biology Teachers Audience: Academic; Professional Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Biological sciences; Education Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2011 National Association of Biology Teachers ISSN: 0002-7685
Issue: Date: Jan, 2011 Source Volume: 73 Source Issue: 1
Topic: Event Code: 200 Management dynamics Computer Subject: Company business management
Product: Product Code: 8522100 Biology NAICS Code: 54171 Research and Development in the Physical, Engineering, and Life Sciences
Organization: Organization: National Association of Biology Teachers
Geographic: Geographic Scope: United States Geographic Code: 1USA United States
Accession Number: 259466246

We have just completed the first decade of the 21st century, and the disciplines of biology and biology education have experienced a transformation. The past 10 years have been an exciting time for us! Think about how you were teaching biology in January 2000 and compare it to how you are teaching biology today. I'd wager you are doing things differently.

The advances in our biological knowledge have been immense. Discoveries made during the last half of the 20th century have changed the basic nature of the questions we ask in biology and fostered the birth of totally new disciplines. The past decade alone has seen the emergence of bioinformatics, computational genomics, astrobiology, and synthetic biology as well as refinement of the knowledge we already possess.

Changes have also taken place in the field of biology education that have reshaped the way we share biological knowledge with our students. New resources and technologies have become available to enhance our teaching. Teachers at all levels literally have unlimited access to tools and resources that would have been unimaginable 15 years ago. New knowledge about how students learn has advanced the education of all students, especially those from underrepresented groups and those who will enter careers outside of biology.

While biological knowledge, educational technologies, and learning theories have changed dramatically in the past decade, the mission of the National Association of Biology Teachers has remained unchanged since its formation in 1938. The NABT empowers educators to provide the best possible biology and life-science education for all students.

To remain focused on that mission, the NABT has undergone a transformation over the past 3 years. Through restructuring, we have enhanced our leadership effectiveness while achieving financial stability. This reorganization has made the NABT more efficient and maneuverable while emphasizing what our association does best: building personal and professional relationships among members.

Strong membership support and volunteer assistance are keystones in the NABT's historical success. Your past and present contributions to the NABT are greatly appreciated. The NABT needs you and your associates' continued assistance more than ever before. Your educational and leadership insights are indispensible keys to the future of the NABT.

As the NABT enters 2011, 1 strongly encourage your continued networking and communications efforts with the Board as together we build a stronger and even more effective NABT.

As your NABT president, I have three major objectives for 2011 designed to enhance the mission of the NABT:

* Membership growth

* Enhancement of NABT programs and services

* Enhanced communications between the NABT membership and the Board

In order to achieve these objectives, I'd like to issue an educational challenge to each of you. Help spread the word--"Get involved with the NABT." Invite your educational colleagues to participate in the NABT "experience" and encourage them to join you as active NABT members.

Preservice teachers, early career educators, adjuncts ... we all have colleagues that should experience the NABT. Teaching at a community college, I know first hand about the trend for hiring adjuncts. These instructors can benefit from an organization like the NABT, and the NABT can benefit from having these instructors join our community and lend their voices to our cause.

When you meet this challenge, all NABT members will discover what I did 19 years ago at my first Professional Development Conference. The National Association of Biology Teachers can (and will) make you the best possible biology educator you can be. Along the way you will become friends with many special people who share your passion for biology and education.

Please feel free to contact me with your thoughts, suggestions, or ideas. I look forward to hearing from you.

DOI: 10.1525/abt.2011.73.1.1

Daniel Ward

Gale Copyright: Copyright 2011 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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