Scientist Spotlight assignments feature the life and work of diverse scientists, and can be used to integrate inclusion and diversity into your course, while also covering content and scientific process (see an example here).
Recently, Yonas et al. (2020) showed that Scientist Spotlight assignments were well-received by students and that student relatability to the scientist spotlights varied by student self-identities (gender, sexual orientation, religiosity, ethnicity, personal experiences, interests, etc.). And Aranda et al. (2021) made the case for engaging students in the creation of Scientist Spotlights to leverage students’ authentic perspectives and unique cultural assets and increase the likelihood that the Scientist Spotlights produced will resonate with them and their peers.
Interested in incorporating Scientist Spotlight assignments in your course?
- The Scientist Spotlights Initiative is a great place to start, providing an assortment of diverse scientists to spotlight and tips and strategies for assignment implementation.
- Jaclyn Dee shares her experience with using a Scientist Spotlight activity in her BIOL 112 course here.
- Some places where you can find diverse scientists to spotlight:
- Breakthrough: Portraits of Women in Science: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLB2w1JNHV4HS7iJrO7IPpxN8bgW5FrFDe
- UBC Biodiversity – Researchers Revealed: https://www.zoology.ubc.ca/~biodiv/rr/index.html
- The Story Collider podcast: https://www.storycollider.org/podcasts/
- Project Biodiversify: https://projectbiodiversify.org
- TED Talks: https://www.ted.com/talks
- Your own professional networks and organizations