Integrating evidence-based teaching practices into the Mammalogy classroom

L. E. Patrick, Jennifer Duggan, L. Dizney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The teaching practices used in college science classrooms have a profound influence on which students pass their courses (and continue to major in science) and which are ‘weeded out.’ Students from traditionally marginalized backgrounds have lower grades and learning gains compared to their nonmarginalized peers in courses that rely heavily on lecture and high-stakes exams. This achievement gap narrows or disappears when instructors use student-centered, evidence-based teaching practices. These teaching practices can include actions that shape our classroom environment, communicate course material, and assess student learning. In this paper, we provide a summary of the evidence supporting the use of student-centered teaching practices, followed by examples of several effective evidence-based teaching practices that can be integrated into organismal courses. Examples include faculty mindset for inclusion, teaching practices to increase student confidence and to reduce stereotype threat, increasing course structure by spreading points among several different types of activities, several active learning methods, jigsaws, Scientist Spotlights, course-based undergraduate research experiences, and inquiry-based labs. Each example is linked to supporting resources to help instructors easily implement these practices in their classrooms. The American Society of Mammalogists endeavors to be equitable and inclusive through numerous initiatives, and modifying our teaching practices can increase equity and inclusion of future mammalogists into our own classrooms.
Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)685-695
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Mammalogy
Issue number4
StatePublished - Feb 26 2023


  • evidence-based teaching
  • inclusive teaching
  • organismal courses
  • student-centered practices
  • teaching


  • Science and Mathematics Education

Cite this