Team:HKU-HKBU/Human Practice Website


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Educational Website

Main Page:

A. Alternative avenues to understanding research

Biochemical research is often criticized to be prohibitive to laymen because of the complicated concepts and jargon it contains. In part, this is due to the lack of an easily accessible guide to basic concepts of biochemistry and related disciplines. This year, the HKU-HKBU team has painstakingly authored an information page on synthetic and systems biology with educational intent.

The objectives of the website are twofold:

- To provide a basic theoretical foundation for understanding contemporary research in biochemistry and related disciplines

- To permit greater understanding of the work and daily lives of researchers

B. Short introduction to synthetic biology

The core of the website is a short introduction to synthetic biology, to be found [here][1]. The content of the webpage is authored by undergraduates educated in related fields and proofread by laymen. We have deliberately minimized the use of jargon to allow for greater interest and understanding. This section is divided into six sections, which then each divide into four to five sub-sections:

1. Quick introduction[2]

2. Basic Biochemistry[3]

3. Basic Microbiology[4]

4. Technical Procedures [5]

5. Applications[6]

6. Further Synthetic Biology [7]

C. Life of a synthetic biologist

Scientists have often been stereotyped by artistic creations as ‘nerdy’, ‘unsociable’ or ‘eccentric’. With so few of them around the place, there is no basis for verification or rejection of these characterizations. This section aims at establishing a human relationship between the research scientist and the public through increased interactions and understanding. We have shadowed Ms Shi Lei, an MPhil student at the Department of Biochemistry, HKU and reported her schedule in a single day. The reader would then be able to know more about both the human and scientist side of the average researcher.

The link for this session can be found here:

D. Penetration and efficacy

The popularity of the website cannot be underestimated. As of now (a few hours before the wiki freeze), there have been more than 3000 visits to our website.

E. Conclusion

In conclusion, the content built up in the website is much more than a bid for this year's Human Practices Advance award. It is an invaluable resource that can benefit the general public, especially the younger generation.