University of Minnesota
Office of Human Resources

Christina Ingrid Petersen


Associate Education Specialist

  • Campus Phone: 612-625-5645
  • Email:
  • Office: University Office Plaza Suite 400, Room 403


  • B.S. University of Wisconsin, Zoology
  • Ph.D. Vanderbilt University, Pharmacology

Teaching Interests

My educational background is in biomedical research and I am broadly interested in higher education pedagogy, science pedagogy, and the scientific process. I currently teach GRAD 8101 – Teaching in Higher Education. I have created a new undergraduate course PHCL 4343 - Pharmacology of the Synapse, and co-teach in PHAR 5113 - Scientific Speaking and Writing for Graduate Students. Other areas of teaching interests include:

  • Teaching In Active Learning Classrooms
  • Scientific presentation skills
  • Evidence-based teaching practice
  • "Sticky" teaching (based on the book Made to Stick by Chip and Dan Heath)

Development Interests

I currently partner with the Department of Pharmacology for course and curriculum design, and have collaborated with the Applied and Professional Studies program in the College of Continuing Education as a faculty teaching consultant. I also create customized workshops for departments and colleges. Other areas of personalized consultation interests include:

  • Teamwork in the classroom
  • Integrating active learning into science courses
  • Preparing future faculty
  • Course and curriculum design at the course, department, and college level

Research Interests

My current research examines the factors that influence faculty approaches to teaching. Other areas of research interest include:

  • The biological basis of learning
  • Best practices for effective teamwork

Selected Publications and Presentations


Petersen, C. I. and Gorman K. S. Strategies to Address Common Challenges When Teaching in an Active Learning Classroom. New Directions in Teaching and Learning 137, 63-70 (2014).

Petersen, C. and O’Brien, J. What constitutes evidence? Teaching approaches that faculty deem valuable do not correlate with the approaches that faculty judge to have supporting evidence. International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning annual conference, Liverpool, UK (2010).

Petersen, C. I., McFarland, T. R., Stepanovic, S. Z., Reiner, D. J., Yang, P., George, A. L., Roden, D. M., Thomas, J. H., and Balser, J. R. In vivo identification of genes that modify ether-a-go-go-related gene activity in Caenorhabditis elegans may also affect human cardiac arrhythmia. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 101, 11773-11778 (2004).

Petersen, C. I. and DeFelice, L. J. Ionic interactions in the Drosophila serotonin transporter identify it as a serotonin channel. Nature Neuroscience, 2, 605-610 (1999).