This post is the 2nd in a series of brief profiles of people who will be presenting their work at VOICES, a first-of-its-kind online conference on using music to teach STEM, on Sept. 27-28, 2017.
Rick Heineman is an assistant professor of biology at Kutztown University in Pennsylvania. His research specialty is the genotypic and phenotypic evolution of bacteriophages (viruses that infect bacteria). He also writes biology songs, and has published several of them as articles in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education (BAMBEd) and the Journal of Microbiology and Biology Education. The title and abstract of Rick’s VOICES presentation are as follows:
Parody songwriting presents a number of constraints on performers which may impact student learning. I will discuss my use of annotations, written notes external to the lyrics but presented alongside lyrics, to bypass some of these constraints. Annotations can clarify concepts, provide definitions and point students to important ideas. I will present evidence that students enjoy this innovation and go through some advantages and disadvantages (with examples). I will also discuss some special challenges for educators (like myself) who cannot play a musical instrument.
Rick is one of over 40 people who will present their ideas, insights, and investigations at VOICES. To have full access to all presenters and their presentations, please register for the conference. It’s only $10!