DNA workshop participants from Fife High Schools (back) pictured with Fife College staff Irene Motion, Susan Davidson and Katharine Wright - Lucienne McCallum from Timstar far right.
Science teachers, lecturers and lab technicians were given an insight into the latest DNA Molecular Technology thanks to a workshop hosted by Fife College recently.

The College welcomed six Science teachers from high schools across Fife to join their own staff and take part in a DNA workshop run by Lucienne McCallum, Regional Sales Manager from Timstar, who produce specialist DNA kits which are used in schools and colleges throughout the UK.

Fife College already uses the DNA kits in its industry-standard labs and recognises the importance of teaching Molecular biological techniques and the dramatic impact it has in a range of fields, from the development of vaccines and diagnosis of disease to gene therapy and criminal forensics.

Molecular biology is an important part of the curriculum in Higher Biology, Higher Human Biology, HNC Applied Science and in HND Applied Biological Science, even more of a reason to ensure that teachers and lecturers benefit from the latest knowledge on the subject.

During the workshop, the staff were taught the versatility of the kits and were set practical tests to enable them to pass on their knowledge to their students in a fun, practical and interesting way.

Susan Davidson, Science Lecturer at Fife College’s Halbeath Campus in Dunfermline, found the workshop extremely useful and said: “The workshop was great for our own continued professional development and ensures we are up-to-date with the latest technology and teaching methods that we can pass on to our students. DNA testing is becoming the gold standard technique in the majority of scientific disciplines and so it is fantastic that we are at the forefront of learning this remarkable science.”

Dr Yvonne Bayne, Curriculum Manager for Science at Fife College organised the workshop and said: “We are pleased to be able to facilitate new learning with our colleagues in high schools while enhancing the skills of our own staff. Together this ensures we maximise opportunities for our pupils and students as they progress on to future study or science careers.

“Workshops such as this also help us to showcase our excellent laboratory facilities here at our Stenton Campus in Glenrothes and build links with schools. All of this plays an important part in responding to the Government skills agenda for employment in the science industry.”