Smith takes part in Trends in Genetics discussion

Michelle Smith, an associate professor in the School of Biology and Ecology at the University of Maine, is participating in a 10-part series in Trends in Genetics to stimulate thought and discussion on the importance of undergraduate genetics education. For the second question in the series, Smith and other experts were asked how genetics courses have changed since they were a student or first began teaching. Smith, who has been teaching for about a decade, says the objective of genetics courses used to be to “cover as much content and describe as many techniques as possible.” But she says genetics education research has shown memorizing content and how to do techniques does not equate to a better understanding of fundamental concepts. “My goal is to empower students to take known information and tackle new problems,” she said.