Community College Instructors’ Perceptions of Constraints and Affordances Related to Teaching Quantitative Biology Skills and Concepts Journal Article uri icon



  • Quantitative skills are an important competency for undergraduate biology students and should be incorporated early and frequently in an undergraduate’s career. Community colleges (CCs) are responsible for teaching introductory biology to a large proportion of biology and prehealth students, and quantitative skills are critical for their careers. However, we know little about the challenges and affordances that CC instructors encounter when incorporating quantitative skills into their courses. To explore this, we interviewed CC biology instructors ( n = 20) about incorporating quantitative biology (QB) instruction into their classes. We used a purposeful sampling approach to recruit instructors who were likely to have tried evidence-based pedagogies and were likely aware of the importance of QB instruction. We used open coding to identify themes related to the affordances to and constraints on teaching QB. Overall, our study participants met with challenges typical of incorporating new material or techniques into any college-level class, including perceptions of student deficits, tension between time to teach quantitative skills and cover biology content, and gaps in teacher professional knowledge (e.g., content and pedagogical content knowledge). We analyze these challenges and offer potential solutions and recommendations for professional development to support QB instruction at CCs.

publication date

  • December 1, 2019

has restriction

  • gold

Date in CU Experts

  • January 14, 2020 1:55 AM

Full Author List

  • Corwin LA; Kiser S; LoRe SM; Miller JM; Aikens ML

Full Editor List

  • Tanner K

author count

  • 5

Other Profiles

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1931-7913

Additional Document Info

start page

  • ar64

end page

  • ar64


  • 18


  • 4