The Biotechnology Research Academy prepares teachers to conduct research with their students. A $20.00 fee is required for each workshop registration. The registration fee provides hospitality for workshop participants.

Level-I provides an overview of the field of biotechnology with instruction on basic biotechnology tools. These tools include:

  • DNA extraction
  • Gel Electrophoresis
  • Restriction Digest
  • DNA Fingerprinting
  • Bacterial Transformation
  • Protein Chromatography
  • Intro to Bioinformatics

Level-II This workshop provides teachers with skills and knowledge to meet the California Content Standards for evolution, genetics and immunology through inquiry, investigation and experimentation. The instruction includes:

  • PCR
  • DNA sequencing
  • Protein analysis using Western Blotting
  • Bioinformatics

Level-III This workshop prepares teachers to work as members of a research team. Participants develop their understanding of:

  • The nature of science
  • Research strategies and methods
  • Technical writing to communicate research findings

Level-IV Teachers participating in a mentored research internship contribute as a member of a research team. Each teacher receives a $4000 stipend when they complete an 8-week internship. At the completion of the summer research experience each teacher is expected to create and present a research poster at the LLNL Summer Research Symposium. They are required to create a lesson plan that will extend their research experience into the classroom.

Level-V This workshop keeps the graduates of TRA engaged with LLNL to keep their content skills up-to-date. They will attend a half-day workshop on Real-Time PCR at LLNL. A web-based seminar will provide reinforcement to the workshop instruction. The teachers will bring up to 5 students to LLNL for a workshop where they will teach their students with LLNL instructors available for support. This workshop requires a $10.00 registration fee. The registration fee is used to provide hospitality for the workshop. Prerequisite to participate is completion of Level II, or equivalent. Instructors will determine equivalency of applicants. This workshop is not offered in 2013.

Level-VI - Student Scholars Program (SSP) The Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) Student Scholars Program (SSP) teaches modern molecular genetics to high school students by engaging them in genuine scientific research. SSP is offered in collaboration with the Rutgers University's Waksman Institute. High school teachers who have completed Level II of the TRA in biotechnology may apply to participate in this authentic molecular biology student research program.

  • The program is a year-long
    • A teacher and two students who agree to participate in the following year attend a 10-day seminar held in the summer at the LLNL Edward Teller Education Center (ETEC).
    • The program continues during the school year with a year long research project.
    • At the completion of the program the students participate in final poster symposium where they share their research outcomes.
  • College credit: none at this time
  • Eligibility for a teacher requires that they agree to conduct student research for the following school year, have access to the required e equipment and consumables. See list of requirement in the biotechnology TRA web site. The costs are provided only as an estimate. Actual costs may vary. Equipment and consumables may vary from year to year.
  • Prerequisite: completion of LLNL TRA Biotechnology Level II, and the approval of Richard Farnsworth, Science Education Program Manager