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What Is a Biology Teacher?

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  • Written By: Tricia Ellis-Christensen
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 22 July 2014
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A biology teacher is someone who has studied biology or life sciences at the college level and then pursued advanced studies by getting a teaching credential, master’s degree or doctorate. These instructors might teach in middle school or high school settings, and they could also teach at community colleges or universities. School setting may dictate type of job performed.

Distinction might be made between biology teacher and professor. The biology teacher in secondary school may or may not have spent significant time studying and majoring in biology in college. They may have a science major in a different field like microbiology, chemistry, zoology or elsewhere. Despite other emphasis, they’ll know how to teach beginning high school biology courses and to instruct in topics like life sciences. Many science teachers teach outside their area of expertise to meet the demands of a school, and might not be restricted to teaching classes in their major.

It’s important to understand that the scenario described above is not always accurate. In secondary schools some science teachers majored in biology prior to obtaining a teaching credential. In their work, they might teach only biology and life sciences courses and not be involved in teaching other scientific fields.

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At the college level the biology teacher generally belongs to a life sciences or biology department, and they’re likely to teach courses only within their field. It would be unlikely that a chemistry professor would teach a biology class or vice versa, unless the professor had dual expertise in subjects like biochemistry. Given that biology has so many subspecialties, college biology teachers can be expected to have a wide range of course offerings they might teach. These could include instruction in more advanced biology of life sciences topics and far more participation in biology labs, but teaching still could encompass beginning classes for those students needing to fill life science prerequisites.

As the would-be biology teacher advances in his studies, he is likely to acquire highly specialized knowledge in the field. With these specializations, particularly at doctoral level, the teacher could get hired to a college to teach in new areas of discovery. This means teachers might participate in designing some or all of their own classes, particularly for upper class or graduate students. Teachers at the college level also may supervise students majoring in this subject, and design more extensive work for advanced students.

In contrast, class design is usually limited for the high school biology teacher, and he or she may have to follow regional or state standards when designing classes or choosing subject matter. Decision on what books to use may not even be available. Even with these limits, lots of secondary school biology teachers love their work and enjoy teaching the beginnings of this field, in hopes of inspiring students to pursue it in college.

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ronburg44
Post 4

As a biology teacher I can tell you that one of the biggest challenges that I face during every single semester is dealing with parents on the subject of creationism and evolution.

As a Christian it is very hard for me to deal with these parents sometimes but I think I have more understanding than other biology teachers that are atheists. science does conflict with some parts of the Bible and because of this you are facing an uphill challenge as a biology teacher in dealing with religion and life science that you love.

There a specific courses that a biology teacher can take to help in coping with this modern-day political issue and a separation between the church and state. I just hope that these differences in beliefs will never need to be dropping of biology as a legitimate subject in school. The years and years that have been spent spent by countless researchers would be lost to an ideology that is written about in old text.

FrogFriend
Post 3

The gross part about biology class in high school was the dissection of a frog. Some of my classmates decided not to take part in the experiment and some of them had legitimate vegetarian reasons of why they would not. Other students that did not want to participate, were simply trying to get out of the project assignment.

While I disagreed with the use of a frog to learn the lesson I can now see the benefit that it had been having to deal with the lessons of biology. Only when you slice into that real life flesh will you understand what life really is.

This may seem gruesome but to understand the mind boggling intricacies and astounding bewilderment that natural life has is worth the experience.

summertime
Post 2

My favorite teacher in high school was my biology teacher. I took the summer of course in order to avoid a full-length semester inside of the science lab but I ended up regretting that choice because of how much I love the curriculum.

one of the best parts about the course was that we were able to get the biology teacher edition of the textbook and use it as a further reference for information. We didn't use the extra information as a means to cheat on any types of tests but just use the side notes and footnotes as a means to extend the knowledge that was being passed through the student text.

This extended knowledge has significantly added to my understanding of biology has given me an edge over my fellow students because I had at such an early age.

The biology teacher resources that are available mean that the lessons you can learn inside of a biology course are extremely flexible and diverse.

FootballKing
Post 1

I think the value of biology education is undervalued in America today. The education system in the United States does not focus on the teachings of biology as much as we should.

Specifically in math and science, our country is falling behind industrialized nations to a point where we soon we will not be able to compete with these nations. By reevaluating our priority on educational curriculum I think that we will find biology has some key concepts and that we must teach every student.

Simply put, biology is life, and if we are teaching life to our students and what are we teaching students in our public education system that we pay so much money to have in our great country of the United States.

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