Education and public outreach is hugely important to us. As such, we made sure that we reach different age groups as well as scientists and non-scientists alike! For example, we have:
  • ✧ Written and illustrated a children's book about lab techniques (transformation)
  • ✧ Taught biotechnology high school students about SynBio
  • ✧ Taught non-science high schoolers about idea generating in SynBio
  • ✧ Taught about our project focus and USER cloning on social media
  • ✧ Taught about ethics in SynBio to high schoolers
  • ✧ Designed a Biosensor Kit for Biotech Academy

Children's Books Line

We are firm believers that the earlier you are taught about science, the more interested and open you will be to learning about science later in life. Good habits start early, and as GMOs are often met with skepticism, we set out to demystify and explain the science behind it in the most relatable way possible, and what better way to do that than with a line of children’s books ? In this way, we hope to educate both children and their parents about synthetic biology and make abstract concepts both a little more tangible and, at the same time, a little less scary.

Our children’s books will cover different routine procedures within the field of synthetic biology, such as transforming, conducting a PCR, designing plasmids etc . The first book in our series is about transformations and can be found here!
We have already started the planning of the sequels to our book, where our researcher sister will go through the different procedures in her lab. In accordance with the iGEM spirit, the book is of course free to print out for anyone looking through this page!

To expand the reach of our children’s book, we asked some of the other lovely iGEM teams if they’d like to help us translate it into different languages . Thanks to them, our book is now available in Arabic,Dutch,and Japanese

Thanks to everyone involved! We couldn’t have done it without:
• Team TU Delft
• Team Qdai
• Team AFCM-Egypt

High School Visit

Borupgaard Gymnasium is the largest ordinary high school in the city of Ballerup with over 1100 students spread across roughly 36 classes. Despite the situation caused by the ongoing pandemic, the CIDosis team managed to organize an iGEM day, which included a presentation and workshop on the 10th of September for a class consisting of roughly 30 students majoring in biotechnology and mathematics. The presentation took the interested students behind the scenes of what iGEM is all about and gave them an introduction to the basic concepts of synthetic biology and the most commonly used techniques within this field, such as PCR , as well as lesser known techniques, such as USER cloning . Using simplistic, graphical tools, the students managed to get a good understanding of these concepts.
Using their knowledge in synthetic biology, knowledge acquired by the information provided in the presentation, the students were instructed to design devices or systems based on parts that we had prepared in paper-form to solve previous iGEM projects. This included making a detailed description of the sequence of experiments they would have to perform to make their devices or systems. It was evident that the students were inspired and found it exciting to use the tools of synthetic biology to solve complex issues. We could not be prouder of how well they managed to solve the issues despite having no previous knowledge about synthetic biology. While we had originally planned on holding a more hands-on lab workshop in collaboration with Biotech Academy, the students still learned a lot about synthetic biology
Thank you to the class of 2.K for being such a wonderful and accommodating class!

Academy for Talented Youth Collaboration

The Academy for Talented Youth (ATU) is part of a larger, national initiative to stimulate the most talented students from all levels of education in Denmark, and is a 2-year high school talent program that runs in parallel with the students’ normal school schedules. This gives students the opportunity to take part in university-grade lectures and workshops with researchers and experts from different fields.

This year we were lucky enough to hold a lecture and workshop for the ATU’ers, where students of different fields and schools could come together to talk about innovation based on SynBio, and how interdisciplinary work is crucial to the development of a good SynBio project. Our lecture entailed going through popular methods within the field of synthetic biology, examples of the synthetic biology projects that utilize these methods and concepts in their designs, and finally also a run-through of how to come up with a good idea within this field.
The students attending our workshop were from 27 different high schools, ranging from biotechnology students to humanities students. This mix of people really consolidated the concept of everyone being able to partake in science and help develop it in a meaningful way. After the workshop, everyone equally felt that they could give input to the idea generatation, no matter their previous knowledge of biology.

As per ATU tradition, the event was followed by an evaluation of how it went detailing what the students thought about our workshop, and we were incredibly happy to see how well-received it was! One quote that we were especially fond of from the evaluation was:

Idea Generation Guide

In extension of our lecture at ATU, we developed the following guide to be used by future iGEMers (or future scientists!) during the brainstorming phase of their projects. The idea is to make it easier for people to know about the different problems in the world where SynBio could provide a solution. It leaves participants with the opportunity to mix and match as they like, and develop their own idea for a future SynBio project.

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High School Ethics Workshop

SynthEthics is a start-up aiming to help iGEM teams in their ethical work. We presented to approximately 60 students enrolled in the SynthEthics Buzz Course . The topic of this course was ethics within synthetic biology.

We explained our project and the different ethical considerations we came up with during the process. We explained our ethical motivations - patient empowerment and reduced mental distress - and our ethical problems - environmental impact, self-monitoring and disposal . We also tried to summarize the most common ethical concerns that synthetic biology give rise to, such as false positive/negative results, safe production or allergic reactions .

Presenting at the Faculty for Health and Medical Sciences

Synthetic biology is often seen as something used in agriculture, but as the iGEM competition has illustrated, diagnostics and therapeutics are just as popular of a choice for iGEMers to work within. We want to spread awareness about the use of synthetic biology within the field of medicine, which is why we’re going to be presenting our project and SynBio health opportunities in general at the Faculty for Health and Medical Sciences at University of Copenhagen (popularly called Panum). The presentation is set to happen on November 4th in collaboration with PUFF, Panum’s Youth Researchers Organization, as part of their ‘Researcher Dating’ Event.

In anticipation of our collaboration, we conducted a survey amongst medical students to see just how much they know about synthetic biology within the medical field. We hypothesized that medical students hadn’t heard too much about the application of SynBio in healthcare, but the results surprised us!
First and foremost, 78% of the medical students answering our survey didn’t know what synthetic biology is, and overall, the worst application of synthetic biology that they could think of was within healthcare, as shown here:

Overall, the participating students answered that they’d like to contribute to the field of SynBio, and would like medical students, in general, to be more knowledgeable about the application of SynBio in their field.
In collaboration with PUFF, we hope to inform them about the huge potential of synthetic biology in healthcare!

Teaching on Social Media!

We have been trying to engage with people and teach about synthetic biology on social media, showing off our lab routines and educating them about inflammation, synthetic biology and laboratory techniques, such as USER Cloning; a cloning technique that has been invented in the labs at University of Copenhagen.

Biosensor Kit for Biotech Academy

One of our "after iGEM" plans is to design a biosensor kit for the Biotech Academy. Biotech Academy is non-profit educational organization affiliated with the Technical University of Denmark (TUD) and sponsored by Novo Nordisk. Biotech Academy provides schools with biotech learning material that is made in collaboration with scientists and students and revolves case work that are heavily oriented towards practical implementation. We would like to further promote SynBio among high school students and after speaking with a student employee at Biotech Academy, we decided to start on a "Biosensor Kit". The kit will contain the necessary and relevant materials for every student to complete a small experiment with cloning yeast. They will get the opportunity to design a biosensor that can help solve an issue that they have come up with by themselves. We would like to encourage brainstorming and scientific thinking among students, and our Biosensor Kit would be a good way to engage children and get them interested in the STEM education. Click here to read about the case we're developing.

Entrepreneurship Presentation with SUND Hub

At CIDosis, we do not solely focus on educating students of all ages in science and synthetic biology, we also focus on the entrepreneurial aspects of how to make a start-up in the health sector. Through our collaboration with SUND Hub, which can be read about in details on our entrepreneurship page , we arranged a presentation for second year university students in the major of molecular biomedicine at The University of Copenhagen. We took them through what SUND Hub offers to them as students within the start-up and innovation area, including how we have incorporated the advice of experts from SUND Hub in our plans to get CIDosis into the market and out to the patients. The students were interested and had great questions to both us and SUND Hub regarding the business behind iGEM and how to develop their own projects!

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