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Dr. Susan Sullivan Chosen for Biology Scholars Research Residency

Released: 04/22/2010

Dr. Susan Sullivan, associate professor of biology at LSU Alexandria, has been selected to participate in the Biology Scholars Program Research Residency, a year-long evaluation of the effectiveness of different teaching techniques. The program was created by life sciences professional societies to enhance the application of evidence-based teaching and learning in undergraduate education.

Sullivan will attend the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Institute this summer at the American Society of Microbiology headquarters in Washington, D.C. She will participate in a “virtual residency” in the 2010-11 academic year, which requires participants to undertake a rigorous self-evaluation of their own classroom teaching. Results are published as part of the national emphasis to sustain undergraduate biology education reform.

Dr. Carol Corbat, acting vice chancellor for academic and student affairs and chairwoman of the Department of Biological Sciences, said this type of scholarship “is very applicable to LSUA’s mission, but it’s a new concept for our faculty. It will be very helpful to have a colleague trained in this methodology who can share this approach with other faculty.

“Dr. Sullivan has been interested in and dedicated to improvement of teaching and learning for a long time, and this residency will give her the skills to effectively evaluate teaching techniques.”

Sullivan has been on the LSUA faculty for nine years. She is conducting research with her students on the anti-bacterial compounds found in leafcutter ant colonies with the hope that a medical application can be found.

Dr. David Manuel, chancellor, said Sullivan’s participation in the teaching research will “ultimately be beneficial to the LSUA student body and perfectly meshes with the undergraduate mission of the university.”