Kimberly D. Tanner, Ph.D. is a tenured Professor of Biology with a research focus in Biology Education and is Director of SEPAL – The Science Education Partnership and Assessment Laboratory, which is her research group within the Department of Biology at San Francisco State University. Since joining the SFSU faculty in 2004, Dr. Tanner’s SEPAL research group has addressed many inquiry, including: 1) investigating the novice-to-expert transition among undergraduate biology students, 2) developing novel approaches to measuring student conceptions and instructor teaching approaches, and 3) evaluating the effectiveness of approaches to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion in science. Her collaborative research investigating Science Faculty with Education Specialties (SFES) has been published in Science
, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences,
and PLOS ONE
. She has been Principal Investigator on NSF-funded GK-12, TUES, CAREER, and Core Research awards, as well on a National Institutes of Health Science Education Partnership award and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Undergraduate Science Education Award. Through these awards, she has engaged hundreds of science faculty, postdoctoral fellows, and graduate students – locally, regionally, and nationally – in professional development to support innovative and evidence-based science teaching.
Dr. Tanner is a founding member of the Editorial Board and current Co-Editor-in Chief for CBE: Life Sciences Education (LSE)
, co-author of the widely read Approaches to Biology Teaching and Learning
features, and co-author of Transformations: Approaches to College Science Teaching
. Dr. Tanner regularly serves on committees for the National Academy of Sciences, the National Science Foundation, and the American Society for Cell Biology, and she is an Elected Fellow of the California Academy of Sciences and the American Society of Cell Biology. Dr. Tanner has been nationally and internationally recognized for both her research and her teaching in biology, including the 2012 National Outstanding Undergraduate Science Teacher Award
from the Society for College Science Teachers, the 2017 Bruce Alberts Science Education Award
from the American Society for Cell Biology, the 2018 SFSU Distinguished Faculty Award for Excellence in Teaching,
and the 2018 UCSF Audacious Alumni Award
Kimberly earned her BA in Biochemistry from Rice University in 1991, her PhD in Neuroscience from UC San Francisco in 1997. She also completed a National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship in Science, Math, Engineering, and Technology Education (PFSMETE) jointly between Stanford University and UC San Francisco. Dr. Tanner is a proud first-generation college-going student and accustomed to she/her pronouns.