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The Biochemical Literacy Framework: Inviting pedagogical innovation in higher education

Evans, Danielle L., Bailey, Sarah G., Thumser, Alfred E., Trinder, Sarah L., Winstone, Naomi E. and Bailey, Ian G. (2020) The Biochemical Literacy Framework: Inviting pedagogical innovation in higher education FEBS Open Bio, 10 (9). pp. 1720-1736.

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When developing meaningful curricula, institutions must engage with the desired disciplinary attributes of their graduates. Successfully employed in several areas, including psychology and chemistry, disciplinary literacies provide structure for the development of core competencies‐pursuing progressive education. To this end, we have sought to develop a comprehensive blueprint of a graduate biochemist, providing detailed insight into the development of skills in the context of disciplinary knowledge. The Biochemical Literacy Framework (BCLF) aspires to encourage innovative course design in both the biochemical field and beyond through stimulating discussion among individuals developing undergraduate biochemistry degree courses based on pedagogical best practice. Here, we examine the concept of biochemical literacy aiming to start answering the question: What must individuals do and know to approach and transform ideas in the context of the biochemical sciences? The BCLF began with the guidance published by relevant learned societies – including the Royal Society of Biology, the Biochemical Society, the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and the Quality Assurance Agency, before considering relevant pedagogical literature. We propose that biochemical literacy is comprised of seven key skills: critical thinking, self‐management, communication, information literacy, visual literacy, practical skills and content knowledge. Together, these form a dynamic, highly interconnected and interrelated meta‐literacy supporting the use of evidence‐based, robust learning techniques. The BCLF is intended to form the foundation for discussion between colleagues, in addition to forming the groundwork for both pragmatic and exploratory future studies into facilitating and further defining biochemical literacy.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences > School of Biosciences and Medicine
Authors :
Evans, Danielle
Bailey, Sarah
Thumser, Alfred
Trinder, Sarah
Winstone, Naomi
Bailey, Ian
Date : 1 September 2020
DOI : 10.1002/2211-5463.12938
Copyright Disclaimer : © 2020 The Authors. Published by FEBS Press and John Wiley & Sons Ltd. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Uncontrolled Keywords : Biochemistry; Curriculum design; Higher education; Pedagogy; Scientific literacy
Depositing User : Clive Harris
Date Deposited : 14 Sep 2020 15:45
Last Modified : 14 Sep 2020 15:45

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