faculty at other institutions. PKAL also has significant experience in addressing the question of how to effect change, and its strategy focuses on promoting reform at the grassroots. Additional information is available at http://pkal.org.
As was discussed earlier, the transformation of undergraduate biology education is critically dependent on the availability of new texts and monographs, project-based laboratory guides and materials, and modules to enhance interdisciplinary education. The potential formats of these needed teaching materials are diverse and complementary: printed books and guides, CDs and videos, Web sites, and interactive computer programs. The most effective and influential teaching materials arise from the creative activity of committed scientists and educators. This is an exciting and rapidly changing area not only because of the evolving combinations of textbooks, computerized materials, labs and simulation programs, but also because of the changing roles of commercial publishers, software developers, and nonprofit institutions and organizations.
To facilitate the design and production of these materials, individual colleges and universities must support these efforts. They do not necessarily need to provide the financial support that could come from other sources. However, faculty members will need to devote considerable time to conduct background research and to ensure that content is appropriate and accessible. Faculty also need time and resources to prepare new teaching materials or to find ways to adopt and adapt existing materials to their particular circumstances. Colleges and universities should provide sabbaticals and release time in the form of defined periods of reduced professional responsibilities (teaching, service, or research) to enable prospective authors to concentrate on such development work. Educational institutions, foundations, and publishing companies can encourage and catalyze innovative authoring in many ways. The development of teaching materials requires computer and visualization resources, and staff or students who are knowledgeable in their use in order to fully develop new teaching concepts and approaches. The design and promotion of the new materials can be greatly enhanced by consulting professionals in graphics or marketing. Private foundations can play a key role by financing these types of resources and also by sponsoring new works while they are still in their early stages of