Laboratory Instructor, Department of Biology

Haverford College
Mar 21, 2018
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

Haverford College seeks to hire a 10 month, full time, exempt, benefits eligible Laboratory Instructor for the Department of Biology. The primary responsibilities of this position include taking the lead with the development, organization and teaching of the introductory laboratory in the Biology Department, BIOLH200A & B, which focuses on cell and molecular biology. This 2-semester sequence is geared towards sophomore students and includes students who are prospective biology majors, other prospective science majors as well as non-majors.

Major Primary Responsibilities:

The lab instructor takes the lead in working with faculty to develop, organize and teach the introductory lab in cell and molecular biology, BIOLH200A & B. The lab instructor assists with writing the lab manual, preparing all lab materials, equipment and solutions for each week’s experiments, and grades all lab assignments and lab notebooks.   The lab instructor selects and trains TAs for the labs, and helps coordinate student staffing of the Guided Learning Group and Biology Question Center.  Enrollments in this course are in the range of 80-95 students, divided into four lab sections.  The lab instructor is responsible for ensuring that appropriate preparations are made for lab session, and co-teaches the lab with a faculty member and an undergraduate teaching assistant four afternoons per week in this team-taught course.

Essential Functions 

Core requirements for the position

  • Develop and organize a coherent set of lab experiments for the introductory biology courses BIOLH200/BIOLH201 (old numbering: BIOLH200A&B) in collaboration with the faculty
  • Create, edit, and electronically archive lab manuals
  • Oversee the preparation and set-up of all lab materials, solutions and equipment for four lab sections per week
  • Deliver pre-lab lectures as needed
  • Coordinate ordering of supplies
  • Select and supervise student lab assistants
  • Develop and grade short pre-lab quizzes on Moodle and help with other forms of assessment
  • With the help of faculty and student lab assistants, grade all assignments and lab notebooks
  • Manage equipment purchases and repairs for the teaching laboratory
  • Maintain the laboratory section on the course website on Moodle
  • Write letters of recommendation as needed for student
  • Coordinate and run lab make-up sessions in the event of a snow day or emergency
  • Partner with faculty who teach the course on the students’ final grades
  • Schedule regular office hours or by appointment to meet with students and assist them with understanding the course lab material.
  • Elicit and compile student feedback in the form of end-of-the-semester course evaluations for BIOLH200/201
  • Participate in department meetings as needed


Other contributions that we expect may develop with time

  • Collaborate with faculty to identify teaching assistants and peer tutors for the introductory biology course
  • Apply an open-ended inquiry-based approach to lab design that may involve sets of modules that run over several weeks
  • Collaborate in the development of laboratory exercises that integrate across years or across interdisciplinary programs
  • Provide relevant service to the institution (e.g., outreach, staff searches, pedagogy workshops)
  • Pursue scholarly work and attend professional meetings as related to pedagogy and teaching lab development


Education, Training, & Experience:

  • A masters or doctoral degree in biology or an affiliated field is required.  Teaching experience beyond the degree is expected, commensurate with the level of formal training.
  • Three to five years of previous experience working with undergraduates in a lab setting.

Physical Demands and Environmental Conditions Required of this Position

  • Lifting (to exert strength to move objects from one place to another):
  • Sedentary Lifting: (0-10 pounds) Up to three hours
  • Light Lifting (10-20 pounds): Up to three hours
  • Moderate Lifting (20-50 pounds): Up to three hours
  • Heavy Lifting (50 to 100 pounds): Never
  • Pulling (to exert force upon an abject to move or change its direction: Up to three hours
  • Pushing (to draw an object toward oneself to move or change its direction): Up to three hours
  • Carrying (to hold objects while moving entire body): Up to three hours
  • Reaching or working above shoulder (to extend arms upward or outward away from body): Up to three hours
  • Walking (to move entire body in erect position): Three to six hours
  • Standing (to maintain body in erect posture in stationary position): Three to six hours
  • Sitting (to rest weight on buttocks and back of thighs with legs bent at knees): Three to six hours Crouching/Stooping (to bend upper body forward while fully flexing knees): Up to three hours
  • Kneeling (to maintain upper body in erect position while resting knees on ground): Never
  • Climbing (to ascend or descent heights using ladders, scaffolding, stairs, poles, inclined surfaces): Up to three hours
  • Twisting (to rotate upper body while feet remain stationary): Up to three hours
  • Driving (operating a motor vehicle, crane, tractor, forklift, etc.): Never
  • Exposure Limitation (i.e., cold water, dust, gas, fumes, extreme temperatures): Up to three hours

To Apply: Interested applicants should visit to apply. Please provide a cover letter, resume, and the names and contact information of three references. The application deadline is April 18, 2018. Failure to provide the required documents may result in failure for consideration.

Haverford College has a longstanding commitment to diversity rooted in values of inclusion and social justice, a commitment reflected in the academic program, lived experience, and composition of the College community. Haverford welcomes applications from candidates who share these values and who will contribute to the College’s educational mission. 

Haverford College is an Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Employer. 

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