Annual Science Education Open House

An annual spring showcase of teaching and learning projects across UBC Science with talks, a poster session, and workshops.

The next Science Education Open House will take place in April 2024. Check back later for more details!

2023 Open House

Hosted by Skylight on Monday, May 1, 2023, at the Earth Sciences Building (ESB).

Event Schedule

  • 10:30am – ESB Atrium: Check in at registration desk, coffee available
  • 11:00am – ESB 1012: Morning session* featuring an update from Skylight and presentations highlighting the Sex and Gender Inclusivity Project in Biology and first-year calculus reform in the Faculty of Science
  • 12:30pm – ESB Atrium: Lunch and socializing with colleagues 
  • 1:00pm – ESB Atrium: Poster session showcasing teaching and learning projects across the Faculty of Science 

*If you are interested in viewing the recording of the Morning Session, please email us at

Poster Session

  • Posters presented during the session featured teaching and learning projects from departments across the Faculty of Science.
# Poster Title Poster Contributors Description
 1  Online Assessment Platform Enables Different Levels of Question Randomizations

Cinda Heeren, Stephan Koenig, Steven Wolfman

How and why do we randomize problems on computer-based exams? We give concrete examples of different approaches to randomization already used in exams. Let's use these to discuss potential problems of randomization, its impacts on students, and system support (where we use the PrairieLearn system).
 2 Ungrading in a Third-Year Biology Lab Tessa Blanchard, Celeste Leander This poster will describe qualitative and quantitative outcomes over two years of ungrading in BIOL 342. 
 3 Faculty Support to Advance Sustainability and Climate Action at UBC Oliver Lane (Manager, Teaching and Learning) & Tara Ivanochko (Academic Director), UBC Sustainability Hub The poster showcases some of the resources available to faculty interested in teaching sustainability and climate change content in their classes.
 4 BUDR: Pilot Project that Promotes Equity in STEM Kenzie Arnott Our new program, BUDR (Biology Undergraduate Diversity in Research), targets early steps in student career development to mitigate systemic and invisible barriers that lead to lowered diversity in later stages of academia. By providing opportunities targeted towards and allocated for equity-seeking groups, the BUDR Program works towards increasing inclusion in academic spaces.
 5  Using Post-Midterm Reflection Surveys to Enhance Student Engagement in a Second-Year Analytical Chemistry Course Jade Poisson, Emma Davy, Tao Huan This poster will outline our development and deployment of a post-midterm reflection survey (exam wrappers) in two semesters of an analytical chemistry course including analysis of student responses and data from a student welcome/exit survey.
 6 Choice-Based Personalization in MOOCs: Impact on Activity and Perceived Value Ilana Ram, Sara Harris, Ido Roll We compared student outcomes in a climate change MOOC between students who wrote assignments (1) based on their local region, and (2) based on a specified region. The first group (the "personalized" group) engaged in more course events and self-reported (1) greater knowledge about climate change in their area, and (2) greater likelihood to change climate-related habits.
 7 Investigating Student Experiences and Behaviours in Teams within Team-Based Learning Classrooms Céline Ruscher, Anka Lekhi We investigate the connections between the cultural, socioeconomic and health backgrounds of 15 students, and their participation in team-based learning (TBL) during chemistry, marine pollution and ocean lectures. Their experiences and behaviours in teams will be presented.
 8 Creating Collaborative Learning Programs for Science Students: First-Year Focus Program and Cohort-Based Seminar Course Jessie Yu (First-Year Focus Program Coordinator), Karen Smith (Associate Director, Science Gateway Programs), Nancy Qiu (Graduate Teaching Assistant) This poster will showcase a cohort-based program (First-Year Focus in Science) and a first-year seminar course (SCIE 100) that breaks down barriers for the first-year student transition. The FYF program and SCIE 100 empower students to strengthen academic skills, build connections, explore campus resources, and form a community with fellow students who share similar academic/professional interests in science.
 9 Enhancing Equity in Post-Secondary Science Jackie Stewart, Joss Ives, Karen Smith, Yulia Egorova, Alexis Bahl, Balraj Rathod, Liz Saville The Canadian Consortium of Science Equity Scholars (CCSES) is a group of educators and researchers dedicated to enhancing equity in post-secondary science at the course level. Our research aims to change systemic barriers to student success, uncover ways to foster students’ sense of belonging in science, and gather evidence for inclusive teaching practices. This poster will highlight activities of the Canadian Consortium of Science Equity Scholars in 2022-2023.
10 EaSEIL Laura Lukes, Silvia Mazabel, Shandin Pete, Sarah Bean Sherman, Brett Gilley Results from year 1 of EaSEIL project
11 Design of a Virtual Field Tour to Support Inclusion in Field-Based Learning Experiences Cynthia Liu, Abhideep Singh, Laura Lukes Results of a design study that developed a virtual tour of the UBC-Teck Geological Field Station
12 Exploring Outputs from a CCSES Instructor Report - Learning and Possibilities Jackie Stewart, Joss Ives, Karen Smith, Yulia Egorova, Alexis Bahl, Liz Saville This poster will highlight an example instructor report generated from 2022-2023 institutional data collected as a part of a national study being conducted by the Canadian Consortium of Science Equity Scholars. The report aims to provide instructors with a visual assessment of student demographics, the influence of classroom climate on social and disciplinary belonging, barriers, and efficacy. 
13 Students Hate Inconclusive Results: Lessons from a First-Year Physics Lab  Aaron Kraft, James Day, Joss Ives, Doug Bonn We set out to study what factors explain whether students interpret their results correctly in our first-year physics lab and found that students are much more likely to misinterpret their results if the result is inconclusive. This finding provides insight into how to better support students’ scientific reasoning in our labs.
14 EaSEIL: Students as Partners Model Laura Lukes, Silvia Mazabel, Sarah Bean Sherman Results of EaSEIL's Students as Partners model
15 Strategic Approach to Developing a Data Science CURE in Microbiology Using Publicly Available Microbiome Datasets Evelyn Sun, Stephan Koenig, Mihai Cirstea, Marcia Graves, Steven Hallam, David Oliver In 2020, with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and concomitant shift to remote learning, the University of British Columbia set out to develop an online data science course-based undergraduate research experience (CURE) in microbiology. A team of faculty with collective domain expertise in microbiome research and CUREs developed and implemented a data science CURE in which teams of students learn to work with large publicly available datasets, develop and execute a novel scientific research project, and disseminate their findings in an undergraduate research journal. 
16 C.R.E.A.T.E’ing Shifts in First-Year Students’ Science Self-Efficacy that are Independent of Instructor Rank and Experience in a Large, Multi-Section Online Introductory Course Jessica Garzke, Hannah Crepeault, Blaire Steinwand We demonstrate that using a creative teaching approach significantly impacts the understanding of 1st-year biology students of the way research is done and increased the self-efficacy of students.
17 The BioCore Collective Assignment Science One, Class of 2022-2023 Which of the forty principles of biology identified by the BioCore Guide (Brownell et al., 2017) were covered this academic year in Science One Biology? How were they exemplified? Hear it directly from the students!
18 A Deep Dive Beyond the Syllabus: Comparison of Cognitive Processes & Knowledge Domains in Upper- & Lower-Level UBC Undergraduate Biology Courses Monika Jandu (BSc, Integrated Sciences), Pamela Kalas (Associate Professor of Teaching, Botany and Zoology)
Using the revised version of Bloom's taxonomy, we classified the assignments and assessments in two UBC Biology courses based on the type of cognitive process and knowledge domain required by the student. Through this classification, we seek patterns or differences between cognitive processes and knowledge dimensions utilized in higher-level versus lower-level biology courses. 
19 How Do I Get Started? Creating Inclusive Learning Environments for Indigenous Students in STEM at UBC Frances Butterfield, Ashley Welsh This poster will highlight a resource aimed to guide UBC Science faculty with creating more inclusive learning environments for Indigenous students. The guide is structured in a Q&A style and provides resources and responses to questions relating to Indigenizing STEM curriculum, personal education, language, land acknowledgements, and positionality.
20 Distances in the Universe: An Inquiry Lab Sequence Taught in West Africa and North America  Linda Strubbe, Deborah Good, Jielai Zhang, Heidi White, Kelly Lepo, Warren Code, Sarah Abotsi-Masters We recently published an article in the journal CourseSource about the inquiry lab curriculum we designed and taught in UBC's Astronomy 101 in 2017. Come check it out!
21 Promoting Sex and Gender Inclusivity in the Classroom:  A Re-Evaluation of Discipline Norms Irene Ballagh, Liane Chen, Faye McBride, Kerie Galvez, Jordan Kovacs This poster version of our presentation is meant to initiate a conversation on how we approach sex and gender in the classroom, and what changes we may make to improve sex and gender inclusivity.
22 The Math 100/101 Student Experience: Perceptions of First-Year Calculus Kelly Paton, Matthew Coles, Peter Harrington, Yuveshen Mooroogen In Winter 2022/23, almost 4000 students took calculus via two, redesigned, large-scale courses -- Math 100 and 101 -- that included one active learning class each week, and group assignments. We are currently using surveys and focus groups to explore how students felt about the courses, with a goal of keeping the core pedagogical benefits while improving the student experience for next year.


Please contact us at if you have any questions or feedback about this or the previous years' events.

Past Events