Professional Development Workshops

For Middle and High School Science Teachers of Life Science, Biology, AP or Biotechnology 


To register for a workshop please email Adrienne Houck, ABE Outreach Manager, with:

  • your desired workshop,
  • your contact information (phone and email),
  • school you're at
  • classes you're teaching.

All workshops are first come, first served. Many workshops fill quickly. Please let us know, if after registering you can not make it, so others on the waiting list can be added.


Upcoming Workshops:


ABC: Applications of Biotechnology in the Classroom: Three-Part Professional Development Workshop Series. A partnership between Shoreline Community College's Amgen Biotech Experience and Digital World Biology Designed to be taken individually or in series based on your needs and skills! All workshops will be held at Shoreline Community College in Shoreline, WA.


Part A: : An Understanding of DNA: Making the Invisible Visible

Fri., Dec. 5, 2014. 4:00-8:00 PM. Sat., Dec. 6, 2014. 9:00AM-5:00PM

This introductory workshop is designed for middle school life sciences teachers and high school biology teachers who are new to working with DNA in the classroom. Activities include an introduction to micropipetting and agarose gel electrophoresis (separating molecules based on size), DNA extraction from cheek cells (purifying DNA that you can see), genomic DNA purification from cheek cells (purifying DNA that you can use in an experiment), and using bioethics how genetic information is impacting medical decisions. Teachers will also learn how to use the freely-available Cn3D program to help students visualize a variety of macromolecules. No prior experience required. If you have taken other biotechnology workshops in the past or are comfortable teaching about pipetting and gel electrophoresis, you are welcome to take this workshop but you might find part B and C would be better suited. Feel free to inquire through email.


Part B: Bringing PCR into the Biology Classroom

Friday, Feb. 6th  4:00-8:00 PM. Sat. Feb. 7th, 2014. 9:00AM-5:00PM Postponed dates TBD soon

This workshop is designed for high school biology, biotechnology, marine biology or chemistry teachers who have experience with micropipetting, DNA extraction, and agarose gel electrophoresis and want opportunities to build on these skills while bringing authentic research experiences into their classrooms.  This workshop introduces teachers to applications of polymerase chain reaction (PCR).  Activities will include DNA purification, extensive background and experiences with PCR and agarose gel electrophoresis, and an introduction to some of the bioinformatics skills and programs used to compare DNA and protein sequences.  Training and support is on the PTC taster gene lab curriculum with extensions. Basic skills in micropipetting and agarose gel electrophoresis are required (for example, participation in the introductory Workshop A, “An Understanding of DNA;" NWABR’s Bio-ITEST advanced bioinformatics summer workshop, "Using Bioinformatics: Genetic Research;" the Science Education Partnership (SEP) through the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (FHCRC); or the Amgen Biotechnology Experience (held for teachers each summer at Shoreline Community College). 


        Part C: Cloning DNA to Make Protein    


        For advanced middle or high school biology, biotechnology, marine biology or chemistry teachers who have               experience with micropipetting and agarose gel electrophoresis (i.e. separating molecules by size). Teachers

        will learn how to clone DNA using enzymes and bacterial transformation, and then express and purify their

        cloned protein. Teachers will also receive training in bioinformatics and explore ways to infuse science

        career awareness into their classrooms. Basic skills in micropipetting and agarose gel electrophoresis       .                 required.1  

 1For example, participation in the introductory workshop, "An Understanding of DNA" (above), NWABR's advanced bioinformatics workshop, the Science Education Partnership (SEP), or the Amgen Biotech Experience summer program for teachers.


Intro to Biotechnology: Lab Activities for Middle School Life Science or Basic High School Biology  


This half day workshop will give teachers an opportunity to introduce biotechnology to their students. This is a great way to garner interest for AP Biology classes or Biotechnology classes that might be in the HS.  Activities include DNA Extraction, Pipetting and Dye Electrophoresis. After this training, teachers have access to equipment and supplies to run lab 1 in the Amgen Biotechnology Experience program with extension labs included. Supplies and equipment check out during the school year is free.  You are welcome to join also us for the STI:The Amgen Biotechnology Experience.  The workshop and 4 clockhours are provided for free.


Summer Teacher Intensive: The Amgen Biotechnology Experience


This three day workshop takes you through the whole Amgen Biotechnology Experience. You will learn from the student perspective how genetic engineering has made a big impact on the medical field. Students will experience the process of biotechnology breakthroughs and nobel prize techniques. From learning the basics in lab skills to recombining a red fluorescent protein, DNA electrophoresis, transformation and purification columns, students will see how biotechnology is leading the way to exciting opportunities of better health. If time allows, PCR will also be introduced by using the PTC Taster gene.  After training, teachers are able to check out equipment and get the supplies and reagents necessary to run the whole or part of the ABE program with their classes. Everything needed for these labs are provided to the teacher for free. The workshop and 21 clockhours are provided for free.