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The Center for Life Sciences Education (CLSE) at the Ohio State University was established in autumn of 2006 expressly to meet the challenge of teaching biology to the next generation of students, researchers, and educated citizens. CLSE’s mission, expertise, and values support the academic plan and the science and technology plans of the College of Arts and Sciences, the Ohio State University, and the State of Ohio. The CLSE draws on the skills of its outstanding faculty and staff to design and deliver effective undergraduate biology education programs aligned with the recommendations in the NSF/AAAS report, “Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education.” A suite of courses and programs offered through the CLSE prepare our undergraduate and graduate students to become life-long learners (and to teach others to become life-long learners) in a rapidly changing world.  As we pursue programmatic, curricular, and pedagogical innovations in biology teaching, we measure the impact of these changes on student learning, and we disseminate information about our best practices among faculty, staff, graduate students, and undergraduate students in the college, as well as to the larger community.


  • CLSE collaborates primarily with four life sciences departments in the College of Arts and Sciences: Chemistry and Biochemistry, Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology, Microbiology, and Molecular Genetics, whose faculty and graduate students teach in CLSE and offer upper division courses for biology majors.
  • CLSE offers the B.S. and B.A. in Biology, as well as a minor in Biology.
  • The interdepartmental Biology major is the largest STEM major at OSU and the second largest major overall at the Ohio State University. It serves the needs of students who plan to pursue professional degrees in the health sciences, students who are interested in employment in life science-related areas, and students who will apply for graduate studies in the biological sciences. Biology major curricular requirements are flexible, allowing students to accommodate research, study abroad and other high-impact educational practices, to graduate in timely fashion, and/or to change majors relatively easily.
  • The Biological Sciences Scholars program [link] helps us recruit and retain high ability students interested in biology and other life science majors.
  • The CLSE hosted the 2018 Association for Biology Laboratory Education (ABLE) National Conference.
  • CLSE faculty and staff participate in national STEM Education associations and projects, including the Partnership for Undergraduate Life Sciences Education (PULSE) www.pulse-community.org, the Association for Biology Laboratory Education www.ableweb.org, and the Biology Teaching Assistant Project (BioTAP) biotap.utk.edu.
  • CLSE is involved in educational research aimed at evaluating and disseminating undergraduate biology education reforms. CLSE faculty, staff and students have also published research articles describing scientific research carried out by undergraduates in course-based undergraduate research experiences (CUREs).
  • The CLSE provides an integrated and ongoing professional development program for GTAs that prepares them to be better teachers in CLSE and in their careers.
  • CLSE provides professional development to instructors via the Mobile Summer Institute (MoSI). OSU MoSI is a version of the nationally renowned National Academies Summer Institute (NASI) founded at the University of Wisconsin – Madison by Jo Handelsman (Yale) and Bill Wood (UC-Boulder, Emeritus). MoSI is an intensive workshop on undergraduate STEM education, focusing on transformation of science education by improving classroom teaching and retaining diverse students in the sciences.

CLSE space in the renovated Jennings Hall (formerly the Botany and Zoology Building), includes offices, meeting spaces, teaching laboratories that are flexibly designed to foster collaborative learning opportunities, and well-designed laboratory preparation rooms.