FAQs

From 2009.igem.org

There are many questions and answers on this page ranging from iGEM Registration to lab questions. Please use the navigation below to jump to a particular set of answers.


Registration FAQs Wiki FAQs Lab FAQs


Registration FAQs

How do I add members to my team roster?

There are multiple ways to add members to your team:

  1. After the team application has been accepted, the instructors of the team will receive a team registration code that they can provide to students on the team. The students can then create a user account and at that point, join the already existing team and add themselves to the team roster.
  2. When team members create their user accounts, they will be able to join an existing iGEM team by request. Once they complete their user account setup, they will have a user account but it will be up to the instructors to accept their membership on the team. Instructors will be able to do this by going to the Team Information page.

Can teams use services from their corporate synthetic biology sponsors?

iGEM has two primary corporate sponsors, Mathworks and Geneart. Those companies are providing their services to all iGEM teams.

Individual iGEM teams often receive sponsorship from other companies and receive services from those companies. There are no regulations on this. The only relevant requirement is that the team must properly attribute work done by the team and work done by others.

How big can a team be?

There is no limit to the number of undergraduate or high-school students on a team. The limit is only natural. If there are too many students, you may find it hard to come to a single project. But, some teams do have more than one project. They have to fit all the projects into one poster and one 20 minute presentation.

Also, it may be expensive to bring many students to the Jamboree.

Can one student be a team?

No, iGEM is a team-based program. The interactions of the team members and their advisors are an important part of the iGEM activity. Also, iGEM requires a major effort from the team and it is unlikely that an individual undergraduate student could compete effectively. Finally, the involvement of two instructors is also part of the iGEM program. Simply having two faculty advisors who oversee your work will not be enough. So, find some friends and build a real iGEM team for next year.

For 2009, we are opening an experimental track for DIY Biologists and other non-competition teams/individuals. See the Experimental track page for more details.

We want to have a team next year. Can we get the DNA Distribution now?

Yes, the parts collection is available to Academic Labs that are members of the Registry of Standard Biological Parts. Please have your lab director contact Meagan for membership. When that is complete, we will be happy to send the current parts to you.

We are in the southern hemisphere and summer vacation is during January and February when can we get the parts?

Most of our parts come from iGEM teams in early November. They get processed and put into the DNA distribution for the following year around March. We can send you the distribution from the previous year anytime prior to around March.

Other than the parts, I am interested in seeing how to meet the different schedule needs of the Southern Hemisphere teams. We also have Peru, Columbia, and Melbourne this year. We have had interest from South Africa but no team this year.

What if I already have a Registry account?

The Registry user database has been copied over to the User & Groups Management system. This means that your Registry account WILL work to log in to UNG and therefore, to iGEM 2009. Don't forget that it is all one log in system now.

Note: The Registry (partsregistry.org) has moved over to the same servers/computers that iGEM and UNG are on and therefore works with the single log in system.

What is the difference between Early and Late summer teams?

Schools in different countries have different summer schedules. For example, US schools typically are on summer break during June, July, and August. European schools have a summer of July, August, and September. Summers in other areas vary widely. We have called the June-July-August plan "Early summer" and the July-August-September plan "Late summer".

The teams are expected to have selected their project by the end of the first month of their summer. That would be July 1st for the early summer teams and August first for teh late summer teams.

These project descriptions serve three purposes: 1. To set a deadline for the teams to make a decision. 2. To provide abstracts for other teams and visitors to the iGEM web site. 3. To help teams with related projects find each other.

Do projects have to be described when the team registers?

No, the Resource Description should explain what resources the team has to do their work. The team is given a month after the beginning of their summer to select and describe their project.

Do I have to attend the teachers workshops in person? Can a graduate student attend?

IGEM is a community activity. It will be best for you to meet the other instructors and be able to represent the Synthetic Biology activities at your school.

Also, we do not plan to video or broadcast the lectures and there will be class work.

Graduate student instructors may attend and instructors are encouraged to bring a student.

Do I have to attend the Jamboree?

The Jamboree is the climax of the iGEM program. You should try to attend. In the past we have had some teams who planned to just send a representative to present the team's project. That would be less expensive, but would deprive the rest of the team members of this important experience and full credit for their accomplishments.

However, not all students are able to attend; we are disappointed but understand.

Can I get a Receipt or Invoice for my team payment?

The team payment information is at the Team Registration Fee you can get an invoice there. If you need more help, there is contact information att the bottom of the page.

I don't know the names of the students yet. How can I register?

We don't expect you to know the names of the students yet. You can change your team's roster until the deadline for the Jamboree. All you need now is your primary contact information, requirements description, and team registration fee ($1250)

I am a student at ??? university. What do I need to do to register a team?

You need to have the active engagement of two instructors. One of them will be the primary contact. So, go find some friendly instructors and ask them for help. Check 2009.igem.org for more information about how to start a team.

I am an undergraduate and when I try to register my team, the "Apply for a new iGEM 2009 team" link is grayed out. How can I register?

Only a faculty member can register an iGEM team. We need to know who is the primary contact and who will pay the bills and supervise the team.

What are the team fee and attendance fees?

To participate in iGEM each team must pay a registration fee of  $1250 (increasing to $1750 after March 31st). In addition, to attend the Jamboree each individual needs to pay an attendance fee.

IGEM is more expensive this year. Why?

You get more iGEM this year. Last year, the presentations were all  made on Saturday in 7 classrooms simultaneously. We expect more teams this year , so instead of having 11 simultaneous presentations, we are going to spread the presentations over two days, Saturday and Sunday. The awards ceremony will happen Monday morning.

I see the budget includes stipends for the students. Is that required?

The students have to survive over the summer. Whatever arrangements you work out with the students is up to you. But, please treat iGEM as a full-time activity for the students. Other teams will.

I was the leader of an iGEM team in 2008, but can't participate this year. What should I do?

Please let us know about this sad situation. It will help up plan better. We have to make arrangements for the Jamboree very soon and need an accurate count of teams participating in iGEM 2009.


Wiki FAQs

Where are instructions on how to use the wiki?

Using/editing the wiki is a trial-and-error process. Editing the wiki is a simple, fun thing to do and you definitely get better the more you play around with it. The key is to take a look at other wiki pages and see what you like. Then all you have to do is go to the source (either view source if you're not logged in, or edit if you are logged in), copy it, and modify it to fit your needs. It doesn't have to be perfect before you can take a look at what it looks like. Try things out and see what results they yield. A good place to start looking at some general examples is the iGEM 2008 wiki. For more specific examples, you can look at this 2007 iGEM wiki overview page and the 2008 iGEM wiki overview page for some good examples of team wikis.


How do I keep our team pages in our namespace?

You must keep your team's pages in your team namespace. For an example, take a look at http://2008.igem.org/Team:Example.

Specifically, when you create a new page, you just have to name it Team:(your OFFICIAL team name)/(page you want to make). For example, if you wanted to create a Biosensor project page you would name it Team:(your OFFICIAL team name)/Biosensor_project.


How do I make my user page?

When it comes to user pages, you want to keep them in your user namespace. To do this:

  1. Log in
  2. Click on your name in the grey navigation bar
  3. Edit your page (see my page as an example --Meagan 20:03, 19 May 2008 (UTC))


How do I add the calendar feature to my wiki page?

To add a calendar that can be used as a notebook on the iGEM wiki, please read the instructions on the Calendar help page.

How do I set my user preferences?

Several controls that used to be in the User menu or in the left menu are now in the footer area. Wiki preferecnes can be found there.

Why do I get an error when I try to upload a file?

We have fixed a bug that caused users to get this error message when uploading some files: "The file is corrupt or has an incorrect extension. Please check the file and upload again." We allow files up to 15 MBytes in length and with any of these extensions: 'png', 'gif', 'jpg', 'jpeg', 'pdf', 'ppt', 'txt', 'zip', 'mp3', 'mov', 'swf', 'xls', 'm','ogg', 'gb', 'xls', 'tif', 'tiff', 'fcs'. Please note that some of these extensions may not be rendered very well by MediaWiki. Please let us know if you eed to upload larger of different files.

Lab FAQs

How do I test the transformation efficiency of my competent cells?

Please see the protocol on how to make competent cells for instructions on how to calculate transformation efficiency.


Why isn't there any location information for part X?

Please take a look at the part status box in the upper right hand corner of the part page. We only have physical DNA for parts whose status is 'Available' (as opposed to DNA Planning, Building, etc.)


How do I check if a part is correct?

Please follow the instructions on the Registry's Help and Documentation page.

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