Bio-Rad Science Ambassador Program


 
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Bio-Rad Science Ambassador

Frequently Asked Questions

Resources

Bio-Rad Science Ambassador FAQ

Click on a question for the answer. If you still need assistance, feel free to contact us.

Questions from teachers

  • What should I expect after registering?

    Once registered, it is very important that you acknowledge the email confirmation so that your status becomes active. Only active participants will be matched with a scientist based on the criteria set during registration. You will be notified by email once a suitable match is made and it is your responsibility to initiate contact with the scientist.

  • How do I use the My Info page?

    Each Science Ambassador registrant creates a My Info profile page during the registration process and should update the page as needed. You may access your profile page at any time by clicking the My Info tab and logging in using the email address and password set up during registration. This profile page is where you will keep track of matches as well as both past and upcoming events.

  • What happens after a match is made?

    After receiving notification via email, the teacher and scientist should check their profile pages for information on how to communicate with one another. It is the teacher's responsibility to initiate contact with the scientist. It is possible that you may have to contact multiple scientists before finding someone available in your desired timeframe. Once you agree on a date and time for the event, you, the teacher, should log into your profile, select the scientist, and indicate the date of the event. Confirmations are sent and once final confirmations are received by Bio-Rad, the Genes in a Bottle™ DNA extraction kit will be sent to the scientist.

  • What if there are several scientist matches for one teacher?

    All scientist matches will appear on your profile page. If there is more than one to choose from, we suggest you contact one volunteer at a time until a date for the event is agreed upon.

  • Why haven't I received any matches?

    The Science Ambassador Program was launched in 2012, and while it is growing quickly, there are still certain geographical areas where teachers and scientists may not be present within a reasonable distance of one another. Please be patient — your profile will remain active in the system until you've successfully held your event, so when a scientist does sign up in your area, you'll be notified.

  • Can I request a particular scientist?

    Teachers and scientists are matched using the location criteria entered during registration, but if you know a particular scientist, please mention your request in the special notes section. It is essential that both the scientist and the teacher be registered to be able to match you to a specific individual. When you see the scientist on your match list, simply select him or her and set an event date.

  • What happens if I need to reschedule or cancel the event?

    If the need arises to cancel or reschedule, log into your My Info page and enter that information. The system will send an email alerting the scientist of the change. We do hope that you'll find an alternate date for the event — once you have, you may reenter the new date into the system. If the scientist cancels the event, you may select an alternate scientist from the list of matches and begin the process as before. While the system does send out notifications, please coordinate closely and directly with your selected scientist.

  • What does the activity entail?

    The activity involves use of the Genes in a Bottle™ DNA extraction kit, which provides enough supplies for 36 students to perform the experiment. Clear, step-by-step instructions are also provided to guide the students through the activity. The basic steps include cheek cell collection, cell lysis and proteolysis, DNA precipitation, and necklace assembly. This is a perfect activity for students and scientists to explore biotechnology side by side.

  • What is provided in the kit?

    The Bio-Rad Science Ambassador Kit comes in a tote bag and includes all of the supplies necessary to conduct an activity with a class of 36 students in grades 3–12. Included are the Genes in a Bottle kit, necklace modules, a thumb drive containing helpful documents, "I Love Your DNA" temporary tattoos, a quick start guide, and a Bio-Rad Science Ambassador T-shirt as a keepsake for the scientist.

  • What should I do if my class has more than 36 students?

    The kit is designed for a class size of 36, but we realize that at times, classes are larger and events may be held on a school-wide basis. When you confirm your event, you will indicate the number of students in the class. We use that information to ensure enough supplies are sent to the scientist.

  • What additional items will I need to provide?

    Additional materials that are needed but are not supplied in the kit include alcohol (91% isopropanol or 95% ethanol), marking pens, and small paper cups. The volunteer scientist will arrive with the kit containing everything else necessary to run the activity. Please coordinate with your volunteer on classroom preparation and supplies.

  • Do I need to prepare the students for the visit?

    Your lesson plan is at your own discretion, but it's advisable to at least go over some background on DNA. Of course, the amount of detail should be age-appropriate. Some scientists will have time to make a brief presentation and others will not, so it is recommended that you discuss available time with them during your communications. You may download two PowerPoint presentations prepared by Bio-Rad Life Science Education that you are free to use in lecture sessions. You may freely modify these presentations as appropriate based on the time available and grade level of the class. Remember that our volunteer scientists may not be accustomed to teaching at a level appropriate for your students' age group, so please reach out to them before the event and discuss the best approach for your class.

  • What additional resources are available to help me prepare?

    See the Resources section for a variety of useful presentations, videos, and checklists to better prepare you and your students for the event. If you require additional information, please contact us, or email scienceambassadors@bio-rad.com. Should you require technical support, please call 1-800-424-6723 and select option 2.

  • How do I provide feedback?

    Bio-Rad welcomes feedback from scientists, teachers, students, and anyone else who takes part in an event. Use our online survey form or send comments by email to scienceambassadors@bio-rad.com. Please share notes from students and photographs taken during the activity, but keep in mind that you will need to get signed consent from parents of the students involved before posting such materials online.

Questions from scientists

  • What should I expect after registering?

    Once registered, it is very important that you acknowledge the email confirmation so that your status becomes active. Only active participants will be matched with teachers based on the criteria set during registration. The teacher will be notified by email once a suitable match is made and it is their responsibility to contact you to arrange a date for the event.

  • How do I use the My Info page?

    Each Science Ambassador creates a My Info profile page during the registration process and should update the page as needed. You may access your profile page at any time by clicking the My Info tab and logging in using the email address and password set up during registration. This profile page is where you will keep track of matches as well as both past and upcoming events.

  • What happens after a match is made?

    It is the teacher's responsibility to initiate contact with the scientist. Once you've settled on an agreeable date and time for the event, the teacher needs to log in and formally register the event date on the Science Ambassador website. This is a critical step, as it is how we know when to send you the Genes in a Bottle™ DNA extraction kit and classroom materials. The scientist is then prompted via email to confirm the date, and both parties are notified that the scheduling process is complete. It is crucial that this email be opened and acted upon; shipping is dependent on receipt of this confirmation.

  • Can I request to visit a particular school?

    Teachers and scientists are matched using the location criteria entered during registration, but if you know a particular teacher or have a school in mind, please mention that in the special notes section. It is essential that both you and the teacher be registered if you'd like to volunteer at a specific school. If your selected school is outside the available travel distance you selected at registration, you may need to update your criteria to see the match.

  • What happens if I need to reschedule or cancel the event?

    If the need arises to cancel or reschedule, log into your profile page and enter that information. The system will send an email alerting the teacher of the change. We do hope that you'll find an alternate date for the event — once you have, the teacher can enter the new date into the system. If cancellation is the only option, the teacher may select an alternate scientist from the list of matches and begin the process as before. In the case of cancellation on short notice, please also contact the teacher directly to make sure the class is not assembled and left waiting!

  • What does the activity entail?

    The activity involves use of the Genes in a Bottle™ DNA extraction kit, which provides enough supplies for 36 students to perform the experiment. Clear, step-by-step instructions are also provided to guide the students through the activity. The basic steps include cheek cell collection, cell lysis and proteolysis, DNA precipitation, and necklace assembly. This is a perfect activity for students and scientists to explore biotechnology side by side, without the strain of event planning.

  • What is provided in the kit?

    The Bio-Rad Science Ambassador Kit comes in a tote bag and includes all of the supplies necessary to conduct an activity with a class of 36 students in grades 3–12. Included are the Genes in a Bottle kit, necklace modules, a thumb drive containing helpful documents, "I Love Your DNA" tattoos, a quick start guide, and a Science Ambassador T-shirt.

  • What additional items will I need to provide?

    There are a few common supplies that you'll need to provide which aren't included in the activity kit, including: paper cups and towels, zip-top bags, permanent markers, and alcohol (91% isopropanol or 95% ethanol). Amounts are listed in the itemized supplies checklist. You can work with your teacher to prepare these items ahead of time.

  • Am I expected to teach the students about DNA?

    Your primary responsibility is to conduct a successful activity in the timeframe you have set aside. Therefore, we advise the teacher to at least go over some background on DNA. Of course, the amount of detail should be age-appropriate. Some scientists will have time to make a brief presentation and others will not, so it is recommended that you discuss your plans with the teacher when planning your visit. You may download two PowerPoint presentations prepared by Bio-Rad Life Science Education that you and the teacher are free to use in lecture sessions. You or the teacher may freely modify these presentations as appropriate based on the time available and grade level of the class.

  • What additional resources are available to help me prepare?

    Our resources section provides a variety of useful presentations, videos, and checklists to better prepare you and your students for the event. If you require additional information, please contact us, or email scienceambassadors@bio-rad.com. Should you require technical support, please call 1-800-424-6723 and select option 2.

  • How do I provide feedback?

    Bio-Rad welcomes feedback from scientists, teachers, students, and anyone else who takes part in an event. Use our online survey form or send comments by email to scienceambassadors@bio-rad.com. Please share notes from students and photographs taken during the activity, but keep in mind that you will need to get signed consent from parents of the students involved before posting such materials online.


 

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