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COVID-19 Update: 

The safety and welfare of our attendees and staff is our top priority. Consequently, the FEMS Board has decided to postpone the Summer School until 2022.


Educating the next generation of microbiologists is a privilege and responsibility. To ensure we provide relevant and practical skills and knowledge to our students, we must ensure we have to the tools to do this to the highest level. The FEMS Summer School will equip attendees with a knowledge of new strategies and techniques in facilitating learning and engaging audiences through practical examples.


Speakers at the school include specialists in microbiology education and microbiology research: Mary Allen (US), Paul Cos (Belgium), Beatrix Fahnert (UK), Volkmar Passoth (Sweden), Eliora Z Ron (Israel), Michael Sauer (Austria), Grzegorz Wegrzyn (Poland).

Topics and subjects that will be presented include: 

  • innovative approaches to microbiology teaching 
  • new practical work protocols in Microbiology education 
  • explore how these new approaches could be applied both in class and at course level 
  • discuss how educators can stay up to date with the latest research 
  • how we can best design a learning process 
  • how to prepare a great presentation and what to avoid 
  • how a common European curriculum might standardize educational approaches 
  • examine the challenges when presenting scientific topics to the general public 
  • learn about encouraging understanding and communication of microbiology amongst first year undergraduates 
  • explore enhancing students’ skills portfolios through volunteering and project work 

While being primarily a school, substantial free time and an informal and comfortable environment and atmosphere will facilitate academic and networking interactions between all attendees. 


Please note that this programme is preliminary. The final programme including timelines will be published as soon as available.

Mary Allen (US)

  1. Active learning to improve student knowledge and performance.What we knew before the emergence of SARS-CoV2 and what we learned from the COVID-19 pandemic. (seminar) 
  2. Active learning: methods, resources and professional development (workshop)
  3. Using a backward design approach to develop course content (workshop)

Paul Cos (Belgium)

  1. Lessons learned from designing a curriculum, with focus on microbiology (lecture)
  2. The dos and don’ts of a virtual lab of microbiology (workshop)
  3. Develop an industry game for microbiology education (workshop)

Beatrix Fahnert (UK)

  1. Microbiology learning outcomes and constructive alignment  
  2. Assessment as learning versus assessment of learning in microbiology – making the most of everything
  3. Authentic assessment in microbiology

Volkmar Passoth (Sweden)

  1. Teaching microbiology for non-microbiologists (lecture)
  2. Summary and advancement of the lecture- group presentation and discussion of lecture topics, presentation of own experiences and ideas. Feedback to students’ presentations (workshop).
  3. Group work: develop a syllabus for a short course (three weeks) in microbiology for non- biologists (workshop)

Eliora Z Ron (Israel)

  1. Teaching the new microbiology – genomics and microbiomes
  2. Learning from the past – microbiology from Antonie van Leeuwenhoek to gene editing
  3. Dealing with the issue of vaccines and vaccination

Michael Sauer (Austria)

  1. Not only microbes, butalsowe are diverse. Use it! 
  2. Order is half the battle
  3. Motivation to learn microbiology – about science and realworld problems 

Grzegorz Wegrzyn (Poland)

  1. Preparing diploma theses by microbiology students – keeping quality or research and writing during pandemic
  2. Data analysis and presentation by students – can consultations and seminars on-line be effective?
  3. Involving students in research projects and preparing manuscripts – how to do this at lockdown?


Menu: Introduction – Programme – Applications 

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