Being a Scientist is a challenging process but it can be rewarding. Like any field of study, its often about hitting the books and kramming in as much specialized jargon as ones brain can maintain. But from experience I can tell you, going into the field and armed to learn about this terminology is one of the best ways to make you you learn the concepts and not forget them. Its called Hands On Learning.
Often when I go camping I go on as many of the nature hikes as I can, and the parks love to provide you with (Grey Literature) information booklets about special natural features you’ll see along the trail. Each trail has a concept with posts you can stop at and read about these unique natural phenomenons.
Well heres one way of being in the ‘field’ and studying Biology! You can use the concepts you read about and recognize them on the same trail or on other trails! Heck you could host your own trail party and be your own guide! Or even walk through your neighbourhood park!
Another cool thing to do is bring a camera with you and take pictures of the many unique species you see along the trail, then identify the species you saw at home! Or bring a field guide and practice identifying trees, flowers, mushrooms or birds on the spot! Before you plan a walk, read up on some of your ecology concepts like Facilitation, Mutualism and food chains, then as your out in nature, point them out and explain them in common terms to your non-science buddies (cough or family)!
This is one way to ensure your studies are not just for that useless multiple choice test but for ‘life’. Also, by being able to recognize these concepts in the ‘real world’ you’ll be able to increase the amount of examples you could provide or draw on if you are researching or teaching later in life!
Remember the time when…. yea I do that a lot.
You can also take field courses! I took one this summer in New Brunswick and boy did I learn a lot! Field courses are offered out of your home University and this link can show you what other Universities offer them too! For credits!!
Don’t be afraid to step in the mud and apply your biology knowledge, even if you’re not in it to research or teach. It can be fun too.
Heres a story about Studying nature In nature.