Yuma, Arizona - Arizona Western College Professor of Biology Joann Chang has been selected for a year-long Physiology Education Community of Practice (PECOP) Fellowship by the American Physiology Society (APS).

The PECOP project is designed to build a growing and dynamic community of undergraduate physiology educators who interact, share resources, and collaborate on an ongoing basis.

“It is a wonderful experience that will benefit me and the students and faculty at AWC,” she said.

“I will have the opportunity to interact with other fellows from across the country and we will be able to discuss critical issues in education, whether there are similarities or differences in student populations, and if there are steps that can be taken to improve student success.”

Chang will also get the chance to attend the 2018 APS Conference: Institute on Teaching and Learning in Madison, Wisconsin from June 18-22.

She applied for the fellowship as a way to prepare for a new role she is taking on in the fall as AWC’s new Director of the Center for Instructional Excellence (formerly the Center for Teaching Effectiveness). The opportunity will expand her network of educators within the science education field and allow her to bring back resources for AWC faculty.

As an educator herself, she wanted to learn scientific teaching methods she can apply in the classroom to help improve her own teaching too.

“I wanted to challenge myself to get out of my comfort zone. I have been teaching for eight years and it's easy to lull yourself into a path of least resistance in your instruction. I didn't want that for myself and wanted this opportunity to expand my teaching skills.”

Chang will also be working with other fellows in the program to develop an idea for a blog entry that will be published on the PECOP Life Science blog.