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Science Education

Formerly known as European Learning Laboratory for the Life Sciences

Our inspiring educational experiences share the scientific discoveries of EMBL with young learners aged 10-19 years and teachers in Europe and beyond. We belong to EMBL’s Science Education and Public Engagement office.

Virtual LearningLAB  

Navigating the Genomic Landscape, March 2024

Overview

Genomics, the key to unlocking the secrets of DNA, is at the forefront of groundbreaking advances in many areas of life and research. From uncovering the genetic basis of diseases and forensics to monitoring the genetic diversity of endangered species and tracing their evolutionary history, genomics has a place in our everyday lives.

This spring, EMBL’s Science Education and Public Engagement team, in collaboration with EMBL-EBI Public Engagement office and partnership with Merck, invites secondary school science teachers to explore this topic in a virtual training course entitled “Navigating the Genomic Landscape: A Journey with Genome Sequencing”.

This professional development course provides an overview of the development of the field of genomics, insights into the latest advances in genome sequencing, and inspiration for teaching genomics in the classroom.

Course Duration: two weeks, from 4 March to 17 March 2024

Language: Conducted in English

Application Deadline: 1 March 2024

Workload: 9 hours (4-5 hours per week), with an additional week for assignment submission

No Cost: free of charge

The two-week course is a mix of self-study and live interactive sessions that allow educators to immerse themselves in the fascinating world of genomics from the comfort of their own homes. The course is designed to enhance educators’ teaching skills with insights into the latest developments in genomics and to connect educators worldwide in live sessions, fostering a collaborative and supportive community.

In the first week of the course, educators take on a journey through the evolution of the field of genomics, discovering the key milestones that have defined it. An immersion in current methods and innovative tools for genome sequencing will give participants valuable insights into the applications and real-world impact of the latest research sequencing technologies used by EMBL researchers.

In the second week, educators move from theory to practice, immersing themselves in a collection of resources for teaching genomics and a brand-new pedagogical resource designed to build students’ practical skills around sequencing through computer-based activities related to a real-life case study.

Upon completing the course, participants will:

  • Enhance their comprehension of genome sequencing, data acquisition and management.
  • Gain an appreciation for current approaches to studying the genome and their medical relevance
  • Familiarise themselves with a hands-on educational resource with an emphasis on real-world applications

Furthermore, the course offers participants the chance to:

  • Connect with active researchers in the field, providing insights and perspectives from the forefront of genomics studies
  • Expand their toolbox of teaching materials for addressing topics related to genomics
  • Become part of an international community of teachers and science educators, fostering knowledge exchange

Organiser

This training course is organised by EMBL’s Science Education and Public Engagement office in collaboration with Merck.

EMBL Science Education and Public Engagement
EMBL’s Science Education and Public Engagement office shares the scientific discoveries of EMBL with young people, teachers and the diverse public in Europe and beyond. Our education programmes convey complex, cutting-edge topics in life science research excitingly and insightfully, fostering the discovery of current research trends, the scientific method, and scientific career paths. Our teacher training courses empower educators to bring modern life sciences into the classroom. Visit our website for further information about our activities.

EMBL-EBI Public Engagement Office
EMBL-EBI science and technologies are increasingly central to the life sciences, from human health to agriculture and biodiversity, and indirectly impact the lives of everybody in society.

Public Engagement at EMBL-EBI

We’re on a mission to share EMBL-EBI’s work with the wider community on our doorstep and beyond. To do this, we work directly with public groups to develop opportunities that bring people together to listen to and learn from each other whilst exploring bioinformatics and its impact. We are focusing on building long-lasting relationships with groups in the community that have little exposure to data science and to what we’re trying to achieve. Our work is for everyone, and we want people to know that.

We aim to enable and empower our staff and students to share EMBL-EBI’s science and technology in context through a mutually beneficial process of engagement with the public through audience-focused activities. EMBL-EBI public engagement works closely with the Wellcome Genome Campus Connecting Science Public Engagement team to promote and support public engagement activity within EMBL-EBI. Our staff and students regularly engage with a varied public audience both on-site; through formal and informal group visits and teacher CPD, and off-site; at community science events and festivals, and outreach to schools and informal groups.

For more information about the EMBL-EBI’s Public Engagement Office visit: https://www.ebi.ac.uk/about/public-engagement.

Merck, a leading science and technology company, operates across life science, healthcare and electronics. More than 64,000 employees work to make a positive difference to millions of people’s lives every day by creating more joyful and sustainable ways to live. From providing products and services that accelerate drug development and manufacturing as well as discovering unique ways to treat the most challenging diseases to enabling the intelligence of devices – the company is everywhere. In 2022, Merck generated sales of € 22.2 billion in 66 countries.

Learning formats & assignment

The course is primarily self-paced with all course materials made available on EMBL’s eLearning platform (eCampus), offering e-lectures, live Q&A sessions on Zoom, pedagogical resources for the classroom, and optional materials. While participants can progress at their own pace, there are scheduled live sessions for interaction with researchers and fellow participants. Recordings of some live sessions will be available throughout the course. The expected weekly workload to cover the mandatory content of the course amounts to 4-5 hours. To qualify for a certificate of attendance, participants must submit required assignments by the following Sunday after the second course week (by March 24, 2024).

Requirements, certificates and cancellations

Requirements
Please note that we recommend a minimum English language level of B2 according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages to complete the course successfully. Please consult this self-assessment chart if you are unsure about your language skills.

The course will take place on a Moodle-based e-learning platform (eCampus) and the Zoom meeting tool. To access the course, participants should have access to a computer with an internet connection. To take part in the interactive live sessions on Zoom, participants should have an audio connection as well as a camera.

Certification
Participants receive a certificate of attendance upon completion of the course. To be eligible for the certificate, participants must have submitted the required compulsory assignments by Sunday of the week following the course (latest by 24th March 2024).

Cancellation
As we anticipate the virtual LearningLAB to be very popular, we ask participants to only apply if they are certain that they can attend the course. In case you find yourself unable to attend after having received our confirmation email, please notify us as soon as possible.

Application

Terms and conditions
Please make yourself familiar with the terms and conditions for participating in our courses and on data protection. Your agreement to these terms and conditions is required before you can continue applying for the course.

Application
Please ensure that you have read all course information on this page before applying and are confident that you can attend if your application is successful. You will need to submit a short motivational statement (min. 100 words) in the application form. To apply, please fill in the following application form.

Application deadline: Friday, 1 March 2024

Schedule

Our live session schedule for the entire course is now available, and we invite you to join us, other educators, and EMBL researchers to explore the field of genomics together.

Week 1

4 March, 18:00 CET– Social get-together

Get the chance to learn more about EMBL, the team behind this course, and your fellow course participants in a friendly and welcoming atmosphere.

7 March, 18:00 CET– Meet the speaker

Bring your questions about genomics and genome sequencing and ask our speakers about their experience and career paths.

Week 2

14 March, 18:00 CET– Get to know the resource

Get an overview and first-hand experience using our brand-new genomics teaching resource in the classroom.

! Please note that you will be notified as soon as possible if the schedule changes due to unforeseen circumstances at the last minute.

Date: 4 - 17 March 2024

Application deadline: 1 Mar 2024

Topic area:  Genome biology

Format: Virtual

Fee: None

Contact: SEPE team

Organiser: SEPE team

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