Hartmut G. Doebel
a. Professional Preparation.
Institution Major Degree Year
Freie University Berlin, Germany Biology B.S. (Vor-Diplom) 1983
Freie University Berlin, Germany Zoology M.S. (Diplom) 1987
University of Maryland, College Park, MD Entomology M.S. 1987
University of Maryland, College Park, MD Insect Ecology Ph.D. 1996
2006-present Assistant Professor, Department of Biology, The George Washington University, Washington, DC
1997-2009 Adjunct Professor, Department of Entomology, University of Maryland, College Park, MD (part-time)
2002-2006 Biology / Chemistry Teacher / Science Department Chair, Washington Waldorf High School, Bethesda, MD
1998-2002 Principal, Washington Waldorf High School, Bethesda, MD
1994-1998 Biology / Chemistry Teacher, Washington Waldorf High School, Bethesda, MD
 Schwartz, K, H Minor, C Magro, J McConnell, J Capani, J Griffin, HG Doebel. 2020. The neonicotinoid imidacloprid alone alters the cognitive behavior in Apis mellifera L. and the combined exposure of imidacloprid and Varroa destructor mites synergistically contributes to trial attrition. Journal of Apicultural Research.
 Doebel, H.G., and R.P. Donaldson. 2013. Lecture-Free Biology: In All Classes Great and Small. Conference Proceedings. Lilly Conference on College and University Teaching and Learning.
 Doebel, H.G., and S. Frey. 2006. Walking the talk: A Forest Transect Study. In: Living Science: Humane, Student-Inquiry Science Projects for Middle and High School. ASPC, New York
 Denno, R.F., C. Gratton, H.G. Döbel, D.L. Finke. 2003. Predation risk affects relative strength of top-down and bottom-up impacts on insect herbivores. Ecology 84: 1032-1044.
 Denno, R.F., G.K. Roderick, M.A. Peterson, A.F. Huberty, H.G. Döbel, M.D. Eubanks, J.E. Losey, and G.A. Langellotto. 1996. Habitat persistence underlies the intraspecific dispersal strategies of planthoppers. Ecological Monographs 66:389-408.
 Döbel, H.G., and R.F. Denno. 1994. Predator - planthopper interactions. Pages 325-399. In The planthoppers. R. F. Denno and J. Perfect (eds.). Chapman and Hall, New York.
 Denno, R.F., G.K. Roderick, K.L. Olmstead, and H.G. Döbel. 1991. Density-related migration in planthoppers (Homoptera: Delphacidae): the role of habitat persistence. Am. Nat. 138: 1513-1541.
 Döbel, H.G., and H. Kulike. 1982. Biology and protection of bumblebees in an urban area. Nature Series of the Senate of Berlin.
d. Synergistic activities
1. Co-taught graduate course, CPED 6547: Teaching Science in Secondary Schools, as part of our NSF-NOYCE award (Building Capacity for Disciplinary Experts in Math and Science Teaching).
2. During fall of 2013, collaboratively started GW’s Learning Assistant (LA) Programs in Chemistry and Biology with Tiffany Sikorski (GW Graduate School of Education) and LaKeisha McClary (GW Chemistry) to create learner-centered classroom environments, making use of trained and advanced peer assistants (LAs).
3. Training of graduate (GTA) and undergraduate teaching assistants (UGTA).
Over the last 6 years I have developed and employed an instructor training program for about 20 GTAs and UGTAs per semester. Each GTA is paired up with an UGTA and together they independently teach one to two of the introductory biology labs for majors. The focus of this training program is to expose my teaching assistants to a variety of student-centered learning activities and authentic assessment techniques. The increased success of this program led to three departmental nominations of and two awards for my GTAs for the GW-wide Amsterdam Teaching Award. Furthermore, UGTAs are more eager to learn and assist than just a few years ago.
4. Co-facilitator of the Future Faculty Program.
For the fall semester 2012, I was asked by the Teaching & Learning Collaborative (TLC) to co-facilitate the Future Faculty Program (FFP), a successful pilot study for 20 competitive selected PhD students from a variety of departments and schools of GWU. Participants are exposed to modern, student-centered teaching techniques; classroom management skills; on-line teaching expertise; and backwards course design – to name a few topics. The interest among the graduate students at GW is large, and we have been asked to continue with the FFP.
5. Do students’ learning styles influence their success of learning?
In the summer of 2012 I ran a small pilot study supported by a departmental summer Harlan grant of undergraduate research on assessing whether or not different learning styles of students can explain learning outcomes. While a large body of literature indicates that the knowledge of one’s students’ learning styles should be reflected in one’s own teaching styles, findings from newer research has started to cast some doubt on this notion. To further investigate this issue, I plan to continue with this study using a large enrollment class during spring 2013.
6. Can introductory students improve their math skills during the course of one semester?
A good knowledge of how to use and apply simple algebraic mathematical skills is required to gain a deeper understanding of many scientific processes. Yet, incoming students often do not appear sufficiently prepared and comfortable doing simple algebraic calculations. We have started a pilot study in a large enrollment class to investigate whether frequent and regular exposure to solving mathematical problems in introductory biology will significantly improve students’ mathematical skills and attitude towards quantitative reasoning during the course of one semester. I have IRB approval for this study, plan to repeat it, and publish our results.
7. In spring of 2012 I turned a large enrollment lecture class of 290 students into a studio class environment by using student-centered class activities; homework assignments; small project development and execution; journaling; and group work. My ‘stand-and-deliver’ time was cut to less than half of the allocated 75 minute ‘lecture’. Students overwhelmingly demonstrated in surveys, invited review sessions, and exams that they prefer an active learning environment far more than the traditional lecture; they learned a variety of different skills; were engaged; and performed better at critical thinking assignments. I have IRB approval for this study, plan to repeat it in a more formal way, and publish our results.
8. In spring 2013 I was a team member of a newly formed initiative at GWU to formally start rigorous peer reviews of teaching: Peer-Reviewed Exploration in Teaching (PRET).
9. Received an invitation to the AAAS Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education 2013: Chronicling the Changes. My submitted abstract ‘Lecture Less in Large Enrollment Classes’ chronicles the steps I have taken to create a learner-centered environment in my courses, having slowly but surely abandoned the stand-and-deliver approach over the course of several semesters.
e. Collaborators & other affiliations.
Janko Bocik Biotechnical Faculty, University of Ljubiljana, Slovenia
Khem Neupane Biology/Apiculture, AFU, Rampur, Nepal
Robert Donaldson Biology, George Washington University
Curtis Pyke School of Education, George Washington University
Mark Reeves Physics, George Washington University
Jeff Pettis Bee Research Lab, USDA
Gerald Feldman Physics, George Washington University
Larry Medsger Physics, George Washington University
Lakeisha McClary Chemistry, George Washington University
Tiffany Sikorski School of Education, George Washington University
Rahul Simha Computer Science, George Washington University
Nancy Spillane School of Education, George Washington University
Daniel Ullman Mathematics, George Washington University, and Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies
2. Graduate advisors.
Robert Denno Entomology, University of Maryland
Charles Mitter Entomology, University of Maryland