Brian M. Forster, Ph.D.

GEP Science Lab Coordinator; Chemical Hygiene Officer
Office: 112 Connelly Hall
Lab: 130, 220, 230 Connelly
Phone: 610-660-3188
Fax: 610-660-1832

Dr. Forster is the laboratory coordinator for the General Education Program Natural Sciences laboratory-based classes for students who are not majoring in science. With his classes, he has several ongoing pedagogical projects focused on (a) examining how science can be taught effectively to non-science majors and (b) topics in microbiology education.
Dr. Forster is also involved in several outreach programs in the Department of Biology.  He co-directs the High School LINKS program where undergraduate students work with high school students.  He works mainly with Overbrook High School & Bishop McDevitt High School.  Dr. Forster also participates in the GeoKids LINKS program with the Wagner Free Institute of Science offering field trip lessons to elementary school students to learn more about photosynthesis and microorganisms. 
Learn more about the GEP Natural Sciences Instructional Labs for Non-Science Majors by clicking the links below:


  • B.S. Biological Sciences (Cell/Molecular), State University of New York at Binghamton (2006)
  • Ph.D. Microbiology, Cornell University (2011)

Professional Experience

  • Consultant/Math Instructor (2004-2008), Tottenville High School After-School/Saturday Academy, Staten Island, NY.
  • Laboratory Coordinator, GEP Natural Sciences (2011-Present), Saint Joseph's University, Philadelphia, PA.
  • Chemical Hygiene Officer (2018-Present)

Courses Taught

  • BIO 160: Heredity & Evolution Lecture (on-ground and Online)
  • BIO 165: Exploring the Living World Lecture
  • BIO 165L: Exploring the Living World Laboratory
  • BIO 270/L: Microbiology (Nursing/Allied Health) Lecture & Lab
  • BIO 550: Research Techniques (guest lecture)
  • BIO 552: Biology Graduate Seminar
  • ENV 106L: Exploring the Earth Laboratory


Grants and Awards


  • 2017 Faculty Merit Award for Teaching Recipient
  • Ramirez, J., C. Arango Pinedo and B.M. Forster. 2016.  Exemplary Contribution to the Curriculum Section of the Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education.  Spotlighted at the American Society of Microbiology’s Conference on Undergraduate Education (ASMCUE).
  • 2014 #topprofsju Award Winner



  • Terry, E.  2019.  Calculus: Crossing the Bridge to Success in STEM. Mathematical Association of America (MAA, Tensor Foundation).  Personnel: J. Cerda, PhD., J. Dessus, Ph.D., B.M. Forster, Ph.D.  
  • King Smith, C., B.M. Forster, C. Fritz. 2014. Bringing Cell Biology to High School Students. The American Society for Cell Biology. 
  • Forster, B.M. 2014. Development of a collaborative-based laboratory exercise investigating bacterial load in water samples. Association for Biology Laboratory Education (ABLE) Learning and Teaching Innovation Grant.
  • Li, E., B.M. Forster, C. Fritz, M. Jurkiewicz. 2013. Genes, Mutations, and Diseases: understanding the origins of genetic disorders through experimental learning. American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.
  • Forster, B.M. 2013. Integration of laboratory video tutorials and webcams for students completing their GEP Natural Sciences requirement through a laboratory-based class. Saint Joseph’s University Technology Innovation Grant.