Video: First-year students or trained phage hunters?

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There is a long list of learning objectives for the phage genomics course in which first-year undergraduates conduct hands-on research. Students learn how to purify and isolate novel bacteriophages — viruses that infect bacterial hosts — from soil samples. They learn how to characterize their individual phages, which can only be viewed using an electron microscope. They learn essential laboratory techniques used to analyze and design unique experiments. But most importantly, the first-year students learn how to learn. Because without that knowledge, the rest is moot.

See how first-year students’ participation in a national research projects helps them learn how to think like scientists and prepare for their futures — whether that’s in STEM fields or the humanities.