Pam Kalas

Associate Professor of Teaching

Academic History

  • 1998 Licence en Biologie (Université de Genève)
  • 2000 Diplôme de Biologie (Université de Genève)
  • 2008 Ph.D. Genetics (UBC); 2013 B.A. Adult Education (UFV)

Contact Information

  • Office Phone: 604-822-0911
  • Office Location: IBLC 362

Teaching Interest

Whether I am teaching a large first year lecture, a specialized upper-level seminar-style course, in a classroom or in a laboratory, my ultimate goals are to stimulate curiosity and critical thinking, and to help students become independent learners. As a scientist, I aim at adopting teaching practices that have been validated through rigorous evidence-based research. To educate myself about such practices, I regularly participate in science teaching and learning events, discussion groups, as well as education conferences and other off-campus professional development activities. I am always keen on experimenting with new activities and strategies in my classrooms, and I endeavor to assess how effective they are in enhancing students’ learning.
I have participated in the development of concept inventories (CIs) with the Biology Q4B group and been heavily involved in UBC’s Flexible Learning Initiative. My current interests include incorporating Community-Based Experiential Learning and authentic research projects in my classes, investigating various aspects of students’ perceptions of their own learning, and identifying misconceptions in student thinking. In strict collaboration with Dr. James Berger I have also been reorganizing and partly redeveloping the biology curriculum and student assessment format in the Science One program.

Selected Publications

Leander, C. A., P. Kalas 2017. One whale or two or…? The speciation of orca whales. National Centre for Case Study Teaching in Science…

Kalas, P 2016. Genetics and a transcontinental romance: An interrupted case study.National Centre for Case Study Teaching in Science…

Kalas, P., S.S. McLellan 2014. ‘Evidence for learning’ as expressed by undergraduate biology students in learning journals.Alberta Journal of Educational Research60(2): 420-423

Kalas, P., A. O’Neill, C. Pollock, G. Birol 2013. Development of a Meiosis Concept Inventory. CBE-Life Science Education 12(4): 655-664