Come explore new models of instruction
for the undergraduate classroom.

An introductory undergraduate class may be the only exposure many students have to the sciences. It can be the best opportunity to interest students in scientific research and careers in the sciences.

Summer Institutes Map of Participating Institutions

Locations and schedules for the 2016 Summer Institutes (SIs) will be announced as soon and possible. Please check back at a later date for more information.

The Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the National Academies invite college and university faculty and instructional staff to develop teaching skills at five-day workshops to transform the undergraduate classroom. The Summer Institutes on Undergraduate Education model the scientific teaching principles they teach. They draw on the expertise of participants and presenters. Current research, active learning, assessment, and diversity are woven into the week, creating a forum to share ideas and develop innovative instructional materials to be implemented upon returning home.


The institutes emerged from the 2003 National Research Council report, Bio2010: Transforming Undergraduate Education for Future Research Biologists. The report concludes that faculty development is a crucial component of improving undergraduate education. It recommends that universities provide faculty with opportunities to refine classroom techniques and better integrate math and physical sciences concepts into biology instruction. The summer institutes bring science faculty and instructional staff together to improve education by integrating current scientific research and pedagogical approaches to create courses that actively engage students in the ways that scientists think. The summer institutes provide venues for college and university faculty and instructional staff to meet for intensive discussions, demonstrations, and working sessions on research-based approaches to undergraduate education. The idea is to create the same atmosphere as a Cold Spring Harbor research course, but instead of a course topic on phage genetics, for example, the focus is on teaching biology. The institutes serve a growing variety of colleges and universities across the country.

Vision and ChangeIn its call for new directions and transformation in teaching the biological sciences, the 2011 report produced by the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the National Science Foundation, Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education, repeatedly cites the Summer Institutes and scientific teaching as models for improving undergraduate biology education.


Read journal articles and background publications about the summer institutes or Bio2010.


The National Academies Summer Institute on Undergraduate Education is organized by the National Research Council's Board on Life Sciences in partnership with the Center for Teaching and Learning at Yale University. Support for the National Academies Summer Institutes is provided by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Presidents' Committee of the National Research Council, and Yale University.