At our facility we welcome groups of highschool students to come visit the lab and perform any one of a number of different experiments. We have two main field trip programs, a Genetics field trip aimed at Grade 11/12 students and a Genomics field trip aimed at Grade 9 students. Annually, we are able to host approximately 100 such fieldtrips through these two programs (approximately two per week) and find that they get filled up very quickly. Generally, the only stipulation we adhere to is a matter of space and lab availability. Our lab is currently only equipped to handle a maximum of 32 persons (which includes students and additional adults), although a class size of 24 or less is best.
Most classes will come for our PCR experiment or our Genomics Field trip program. There is no cost involved for any of these experiments and teachers usually do not have to prep their students beforehand.
(We are now booking dates for Term 1 of our Grade 9 field trip program hosted here at the Michael Smith Laboratories at UBC.)
This program is open to Grade 9 classes only and offers your classroom an authentic research experience in the Advanced Molecular Biology Laboratories (AMBL). The field trip content is closely tied to the genetics content in the new Grade 9 curricula. This hand-on visit runs from 9am – 2pm (ish) and offers your students a chance to carry out a DNA isolation experiment and to use laptops to investigate the properties and information contained within DNA and Genomes. All AMBL programs are offered free of charge and on a first come first serve basis. Our lab is currently only equipped to handle a maximum of 32 persons (which includes students and additional adults), although a class size of 24 or less is best.
To book a visit for your Grade 9 class, please email: Dr. Joanne Fox, email@example.com, to request a booking form.
EMAIL: Dr. Joanne Fox, firstname.lastname@example.org
In the PCR experiment, each student (and adults) will perform a simplified DNA fingerprint assay where they will check out their own genomic DNA for a genetic insertion. Overall, the lab is pretty fun and easy to do. The students will get a chance to isolate their own DNA, learn about DNA replication, learn about the amazing PCR (polymerase chain reaction) procedure, and they will run a DNA gel to visualize their results.
The day generally starts between 9:00am and 10:00am and will usually take about 6 hours to complete. Your class will have a chance to get lunch during a 1 1/2 hour break. . In general, any breaks during the day are open season for questions regarding things going on in science or questions regarding science careers and education. We ask that at least one or two adults accompany the class to facilitate minor supervision (we always have two graduate students on hand), and because the equipment being used is both expensive and delicate we ask that students are told prior to respect the facility.
We also have limited sessions on DNA sequencing, a fieldtrip that we can conduct 2 to 3 times per year. This lab generally is less practically intensive, a bit slow actually, but does involves students working in pairs to sequence some real DNA provided by a UBC researcher (i.e. obtain real research data). Data is then collected and emailed to the teacher the following week.
Consult the below for lab availability and provide the following information:
School name, teacher name, grade level (11 or 12), expected number of participants (students and adults), preferred start time, and three possible dates.
(Unfortunately, we are already full for the 2012/2013 academic year)