Applications are open for Winter 2017
The BioClock Studio is an innovative course in which undergraduate students, drawn from diverse disciplines across the arts and the sciences, work collaboratively to develop their scientific and communication skills and produce creative educational materials. UC San Diego's Center for Circadian Biology (CCB) is home to two dozen research labs that perform world-class research on circadian rhythms (in behavior, body temperature, protein levels, gene expression) in diverse systems (including humans, mice, plants, fungi, tissue culture cells, and cyanobacteria). Students in the BioClock Studio will work with CCB faculty to enhance scientific understanding among different audiences, including the general public, clinicians and researchers outside of circadian biology, and students’ academic peers.
During the Winter quarter of 2017, the BioClock Studio will meet twice a week, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5:00-6:50pm. In addition, you should expect to do work outside of class related to projects. Students can participate in the BioClock Studio by enrolling for 4 units in the following courses, upon approval of their application:
BIMM116B (BioClock Studio) – P/NP or Letter grade
CAT124 (Sixth College Practicum)
Some current projects will continue to focus on developing new course materials for UCSD's undergraduate course, “Circadian rhythms -- biological clocks” (BIMM 116/PSYC133). However, we are also extending our projects to produce educational materials for more general audiences. For the 2016-2017 academic year, the BioClock Studio is seeking students who are interested in pursuing the following projects:
- Review-style e-text articles designed to provide an accessible introduction to core topics in circadian rhythms research, suitable for assignment in an undergraduate class (e.g., BIMM116/PSYC133).
- Interactive exercises (on- and off-line) to help novices learn key concepts in circadian biology.
- Professional biographies of high-profile researchers in the field of circadian rhythms, based on in-person interviews.
- Short (6-minute) videos detailing the experimental methods used to generate data in the field of circadian rhythms research.
- Animated short(s) to communicate the basics of circadian rhythms (and their relation to health) to diverse audiences.
- A searchable, online database that will contain explanations of hundreds of scientific terms in circadian biology, making them accessible to diverse audiences.
- Uniform sets of static graphics, as well as short animations, that show the functional similarities between molecular clock mechanims in diverse organisms.
- Short, Documentary-style videos detailing the work of the BioClock Studio participants.
The BioClock Studio will challenge students to translate and communicate research findings to the public to promote more widespread awareness of the importance of circadian rhythms for daily life, work, and health. BioClock Studio students will work closely with researchers in workshop, conference, and interview settings to bridge the communication gap between scientists and the public.
Click here to see examples of past projects from the 2015 and 2016 years.
Apply now! Enrollment is limited to 20 students, and requires permission of the instructor.
- I have never taken BIMM116/PSYC133 (Circadian Rhythms – Biological Clocks). Can I still be considered for the BioClock Studio?
Yes. We hope that about half of Studio students will be familiar with circadian rhythms research through BIMM116/PSYC133, but we also welcome applications from students who do not consider themselves to have any kind of “science background.” We want students who are critical thinkers, makers, and creators, who can evaluate and improve upon the materials used in BIMM116/PSYC133. Prior familiarity with those materials is not required.
- I took BIMM116/PSYC133 (Circadian Rhythms – Biological Clocks) last year (or earlier). Can I still be considered for the BioClock Studio?
Yes. The main purpose of the BioClock Studio is to help develop new educational materials for use in future iterations of BIMM116/PSYC133, as well as for use in educating the broader population about the results of circadian rhythms research. If you took the class in the past, we would be happy to hear from you about what worked and what didn’t, and there will be plenty of opportunity to re-familiarize yourself with relevant materials as we seek to improve them.
- I am taking BIMM116/PSYC133 (Circadian Rhythms – Biological Clocks) this fall. Is this OK?
Yes. We hope that about 5-8 W17 Studio students will come from the F16 Clocks class.
- I want to use the BioClock Studio to count towards a requirement in my major or in my College at UCSD (e.g., Sixth College’s practicum). Can I do that?
We are partnering with Sixth College for CAT124, so the practicum is probably a good match.
- My resume and transcripts are not good indicators of my skills, since I learned them outside of school and/or have not held a job where they were put to use. What can I do to ensure that my application is evaluated properly?
You can use your Statement of Interest and your Sample of Work to provide us with additional information.
- I’m really only interested in the BioClock Studio if I get to work on a specific one of the projects set out for the 2016-2017 academic year. What happens if I am accepted to the Studio, but cannot work on that project?
You should be more open-minded! Everyone in the Studio will receive basic training relevant to all the projects we hope to pursue, and everyone should expect to be exposed to something new and unfamiliar. Furthermore, everyone in the Studio will be expected to provide feedback to all of their peers, and this requires taking their work seriously even if it is not “your favorite.” With all that said, we will be selecting applicants with their preferences in mind, so if you are accepted to the BioClock Studio, you will likely be able to work mainly on the project you find most exciting.