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RiSE Colloquium: Ash Heim

March 21, 2022 @ 3:00 pm4:00 pm

Maine Center for Research in STEM Education (RiSE Center)
Colloquia & Seminar Series


Ash Heim, Ph.D.

Cornell University
Department of Physics
Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology

Monday, March 21, 3:00–4:00 p.m.
Barrows Hall 119 and Zoom

Measuring critical thinking in biology: What influences students’ abilities to make comparisons?


The ability to critically evaluate the reliability of scientific data is paramount to scientists. However, few methods exist to assess the development of students’ critical thinking skills, especially within a disciplinary context. To address this, Dr. Heim and her team developed the Biology Lab Inventory of Critical Thinking for Ecology (Eco-BLIC), an instrument to assess students’ critical thinking in the context of ecological field studies in lab and field scenarios. She will explore how students critically evaluate aspects of research studies in biology when they are considering one study at a time versus comparing and contrasting, and whether support questions are needed to elicit critical thinking among students. The presentation includes a discussion of how undergraduate ecology courses can enhance how students think critically about ecological data, and how to use the Eco-BLIC in your class.


Ash Heim is a postdoctoral associate in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Cornell University. Her main research project focuses on developing the Eco-BLIC, though she is involved in numerous other collaborations exploring social networks in physics classrooms and how faculty use open education resources, as well as developing learner-centered curriculum materials for both in-person and virtual biology courses. Ash is also the chair of the Society for the Advancement of Biology Education Research’s Scholars-in-Training committee, and her work has been published in journals such as Science, PLOS ONE, CBE-Life Sciences Education, and Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education.

To be added to the Colloquium email list and receive the Zoom link and password, please email the RiSE Center:

To request a reasonable accommodation, please contact Natasha Speer by email or phone: 207.581.3937.


March 21, 2022
3:00 pm–4:00 pm
Event Category:


RiSE Center
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