What is SPARQ-ed ?
SPARQ-ed (Students Performing Advanced Research Queensland) is a unique educational facility established as a collaboration between The University of Queensland's Diamantina Institute (UQDI) and Queensland's Department of Education and Training (DET). SPARQ-ed aims to promote excellence and innovation in biological and biomedical education by delivering world class specialist programs to Queensland school students and their teachers. These programs are based on a model that brings together personnel and expertise from the education and scientific research communities. The SPARQ-ed facility is located in the Translational Research Institute (TRI) in Woolloongabba, Brisbane. It features a state of the art biomedical teaching laboratory and online learning area on the ground floor of the TRI building where participants can work alongside scientists from TRI's partner institutes. First established in 2009, SPARQ-ed is coordinated by Ward Nicholas and Ezequiel Balmori Melian, registered teachers employed by DET. SPARQ-ed offers the following hands-on laboratory experiences :
|Research Immersion Programs : The flagship service provided by SPARQ-ed are the Research Immersion Programs, authentic week long scientific experiences for senior secondary students and teachers where participants play a part in the cutting edge biomedical research performed at TRI (. . . find out more)|
|Cell and Molecular Biology Experiences : SPARQ-ed offers shorter (one or two day) workshops aimed at giving senior secondary students and teachers an opportunity to carry out the techniques used by modern biomedical researchers (. . . find out more)|
|Upper Primary and Junior Secondary Immersions and Experience Days : SPARQ-ed offers a range of programs suitable for upper primary and junior secondary school students. These programs cover a range of activities used by biomedical scientists in their work (. . . find out more)|
In addition to the practical programs, SPARQ-ed serves as a hub for connecting school communities with the medical research community. The SPARQ-ed web portal provides a selection of quality educational materials for schools to use in their teaching of matters pertaining to biomedical research, and these resources are constantly being expanded to match changes to the school curriculum with the latest advances in biomedical science. SPARQ-ed can also provide training in laboratory techniques to school staff, both in hands-on workshops and online educational packages.
SPARQ-ed represents a unique opportunity to engage school communities with the dynamic world of biomedical research. By connecting students and teachers with the world leading researchers at TRI, SPARQ-ed will light the spark in the next generation of scientists.