Assistant Professor of Biology Education (Tenure System) at Lyman Briggs College, Michigan State University

  • 11/04/2021 7:39 AM
    Message # 12099267


    Michigan State University (MSU) and MSU’s Lyman Briggs College (LBC) actively promote a dynamic research and learning environment in which qualified individuals of differing perspectives and cultural backgrounds pursue academic goals with mutual respect and shared inquiry.

    MSU invites applications for a tenure system Assistant Professor faculty position focusing on biology education. The faculty appointment will be 75% in LBC and 25% in MSU’s Department of Physiology in the College of Natural Science.

    This position is one of three tenure track positions that LBC seeks to fill. We aim to recruit outstanding scholars for a series of new faculty positions in the core areas of Physics, Mathematics, and Biology. This group of hires will bolster existing strengths and support the launch of exciting new programs and initiatives focused upon scholarship in DEI&B: Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging. We believe that this research agenda is best advanced by a cohort of faculty with varied perspectives and lived experiences, in order to challenge biases and conventions in research and academia; promote innovation; and educate future generations. These scholars will show a commitment to building an equitable and diverse scholarly environment through their teaching, research, and/or community engagement.

    Founded in 1967, LBC is a vibrant undergraduate residential college within MSU focusing on the study of the sciences in their societal and global contexts ( The LBC curriculum integrates the natural sciences and mathematics with the history, philosophy, sociology, and communication of the sciences. There are approximately 2,000 students in Lyman Briggs, 66% of whom are women. 31% of all primary, secondary degree, and additional majors identify as students of an underrepresented racial/ethnic group. Additionally, 32% of LBC students are members of the MSU Honors College. Faculty work closely with students in small classes. LBC is also a leading center for research on teaching and learning and for interdisciplinary scholarship. Most LBC faculty members in the tenure system have a joint appointment in a disciplinary department or program to support their scholarship and professional development. The college boasts a dynamic community of students, staff, and faculty who make LBC an exceptional place to learn and work. 

    We are searching for an energetic and visionary individual to join the LBC Biology group. The successful candidate will teach introductory biology at LBC, including laboratories, and will develop upper-level courses in their own area of expertise and interest. The candidate’s research should focus on how DEI&B impacts or is impacted by student learning. The faculty member will collaborate with the other new hires and/or with the existing interdisciplinary faculty who prioritize undergraduate education as well as disciplinary and education research (i.e., DBER and SOTL).

    Teaching: We are searching for an innovative and scholarly teacher who has experience using research supported pedagogical techniques. Ideal candidates will be enthusiastic about joining the community of teaching-focused faculty within LBC. The position offers candidates the opportunity to teach in a small, liberal-arts college environment with all of the resources provided by a large research university.  Candidates should have experience teaching using active learning, inquiry-based learning, and other student-centered approaches.   

    Research: The ideal candidate should have experience in discipline-based education research with a DEI&B focus. Each candidate is expected to pursue an active research program that provides opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students. The successful candidate may employ any number of approaches, ranging from theoretical to experimental, and can be either field-, lab-, classroom-, or community-based. Ideal candidates will be broadly trained in biology and enthusiastic about joining an active biology education research group.

    Required Degree

    Doctorate in Biology or Biology Education

    Minimum Requirements

    A Ph.D. in Biology or Biology Education will be required, and relevant postdoctoral experience valued, along with evidence of strong potential to establish a productive and externally-funded research program evidenced by DBER publications on DEI&B, and including effective mentorship of undergraduate students. The successful applicant will be a dedicated and innovative teacher with: (i) demonstrated potential for excellence in student-centered instruction, (ii) demonstrated interest in science teaching pedagogy, curriculum and program development, (iii) excellent communication and interpersonal skills, and (iv) willingness to work in a collaborative teaching environment.  

    Required Application Materials

    To help mitigate implicit biases, we will conduct the review of packets in two stages. First, we will use de-identified materials and pre-screenings that involve no video conference interviews. Only at a later stage will identities be revealed via CVs and reference checks.

    To ensure a holistic assessment of candidates, we request that applications include:

    First phase of review - the candidate should submit de-identified versions of all of these materials by removing their name (replacing it with [Candidate]) and address prior to submission:

    1. Cover Letter that frames the application in the context of this position in Lyman Briggs College and the Department of Physiology. ​​For de-identification, the cover letter should NOT be on university letterhead.  

    2. concise teaching portfolio (max 20 pages) with: 

      1. 1-2 page Teaching Philosophy

      2. Description/Example of experience teaching laboratory exercises and/or proposed inquiry-based, multi-week laboratory exercise idea(s). 

    3. 1-2­-page statement highlighting past research successes and future research interests

    4. 1-2 page statement of contributions to and interest in a diverse, equitable, and inclusive academic community. Universities are complex institutions that rely on faculty to assume broad responsibilities, including fostering student learning, advancing research, disseminating knowledge, and sustaining inclusive communities. The applicant should describe how they have been involved in departmental and/or institutional activities as part of their institution’s academic community. They should also describe their interests and plans for enriching the MSU community.

    Second phase of review (these materials should be submitted with the initial application along with the materials listed above, but they will not be examined by the committee until later):

    1. Curriculum Vitae, including education background/qualifications, a list of publications, teaching and mentoring roles, leadership positions, contributions to the academic community, and efforts in public outreach;

    2. Contact information for three references. While letters will not be solicited for the initial evaluation of candidates, references should be prepared to submit letters (promptly upon request) that focus on the candidate’s research impact on the field, teaching and mentoring experience, and/or efforts to broaden representation. At least one letter should address the candidate’s teaching experience and commitment to student learning in the classroom setting.

    We actively encourage applications from -- and welcome nominations of -- biologists within the LGBTQIA+ community, biologists of color, veterans, biologists with disabilities, and biologists from other minoritized groups. MSU is an affirmative-action, equal-opportunity employer and is committed to achieving excellence through diversity.

    MSU is proactive in exploring opportunities for employment for dual career couples, both inside and outside the University. Information about MSU’s dual career support can be found at

    Applications must be received through the Careers @ MSU website, posting #738874. Questions regarding this position and nominations of applicants may be directed to the search chair Dr. Jerry Urquhart, Associate Professor of Biology, at, or at 919 E. Shaw Lane; Room E-35; Michigan State University; East Lansing, MI 48825-1107.

    Special Instructions

    The university is requiring all MSU students, faculty and staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19 with limited exceptions. Learn more at:

    Department Statement

    LBC is a vibrant undergraduate, residential, liberal arts and science college at MSU focusing on the study of science as well as its interactions with society.  The LBC curriculum attempts to help students integrate natural sciences and mathematics courses with courses in the history, philosophy, sociology and communication of science. 

    MSU Statement

    Michigan State University has been advancing the common good with uncommon will for more than 160 years. One of the top research universities in the world, MSU pushes the boundaries of discovery and forges enduring partnerships to solve the most pressing global challenges while providing life-changing opportunities to a diverse and inclusive academic community through more than 200 programs of study in 17 degree-granting colleges.

    Last modified: 11/04/2021 7:40 AM | Anonymous member

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