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How to turn data into knowledge: 10 conceptual frameworks that are universal to the pedagogy and communication of biology.

10 conceptual frameworks that make learning easier.

Students majoring in Biology or Biochemistry frequently voice their feedback to me on how dissatisfied they are with their area of study. The most common complaint comes with the viewpoint that biology is just memorization with a little bit of reasoning. Many students upon graduating do not feel like a “real” scientist, capable of critical thinking and having a successful career taking on challenging work. It is my long held belief that this stems from biochemistry and biology having an inherent lack of a strong quantitative theoretical framework, the gold standard of modern science. This lack of a theoretical framework is the primary culprit for the structure of higher education in biology and biochemistry being primarily focused on mindlessly memorizing facts and figures instead of asking questions or even utilizing central themes that connect one idea to another.

 

What is learning ? 7 Books every STEM major should read and Why it matters

The first semester of my graduate studies in biomedical sciences was a painful, difficult, and monotonous series of “core” coursework. However, I constantly would find myself bored and unmotivated to study the material for these classes despite the fact that they were topics that touched on the same subjects I would recreationally read about in books. During these many attempts to drudge through and study for the various biochemistry, cell biology, and biotechnology courses, my mind would frequently wander off to the same question again and again.