MacEngaged takes students beyond the classroom

MacEngaged is helping students learn to apply knowledge and skills gained in the classroom in the broader civic space and Ayesha Khan, Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour, is leading the way. The initiative developed by Khan, was piloted last winter in Psychology 2NF3 -- Basic & Clinical Neuroscience. There, students developed projects ranging from creating a campaign to promote dementia awareness to an app promoting the health benefits of mindfulness and meditation. One group produced a video on the effects of brain trauma and partnered with a non-profit organization in India to distribute the video as part of an awareness campaign in that country. Khan is now looking at ways to expand the program.

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John Valliant awarded the Brockhouse Canada Prize

Valliant Feb 2015Congratulations to John Valliant, Chemistry & Chemical Biology, who is a member of an interdisciplinary research team CycloMed9, awarded this year’s Brockhouse Canada Prize for Interdisciplinary Research in Science and Engineering. Drawing on the fields of nuclear medicine, chemistry, physics, regulatory affairs and clinical testing, the team discovered a way to make technetium-99m (Tc-99m) in hospital-based cyclotrons instead of in large nuclear reactors. The medical isotope is critical for imaging to diagnose patients with cancer and heart disease and is used in about 5,000 procedures each day in Canada.

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Forget laying eggs, this frog gives birth to live tadpoles

fanged-frog-1Ben Evans, Biology, was instrumental in discovering a frog, the only known of roughly six-thousand species in the world, that gives birth to live tadpoles instead of laying eggs. Found on the tiny island of Sulawesi in Indonesia, known to scientists as a hotspot of biodiversity, the rare species of fanged frog first discovered in the late 1990s. Evans is a member of an international team that documented the frog’s evolution for years to make this and other discoveries. Evans was interviewed recently about his role in the research on CBC’s Quirks & Quarks.

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iSci receives prestigious education award

Competing with submissions from 427 universities and enterprises from 43 countries and judged by a panel of 25 international experts, the Faculty of Science’s Integrated Science Program (iSci) was honoured with an 'Oscar of innovation in higher education' in December. The program, started in 2009, received a prestigious Wharton-QS Stars Reimagine Education Award, winning a Presence Learning Award for its focus on student learning and outcomes.

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