Urban Barcode Research Program
Required Courses

NOTICE: These workshops will be offered virtually in spring 2021.

Conservation Genetics

Conservation genetics is the field that seeks to use DNA to study and protect the living world and its biodiversity. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the leading international conservation body, recognizes the crucial need to conserve genetic diversity as one of the three fundamental levels of biodiversity.

The main goal of this course is to introduce students to methods used to study and preserve biodiversity. Laboratory techniques introduced include DNA sequencing and DNA fingerprinting. Students learn how DNA science can be used to determine species distribution patterns, to propagate endangered species in captivity, and more. By the end of the course, students write a proposal for their own conservation project, which they present to the class.

DNA Barcoding and Bioinformatics

In this course, students explore a cutting edge methodology that has helped scientists all over the world identify and study biodiversity: DNA barcoding. This technique can be applied to explore and answer questions in many fields of science: Does the leather used to make this purse, belt, or wallet come from an endangered, illegally harvested species? Does the bug I found in my room cause health problems? Are the plants growing in my backyard native or invasive species? Students will be introduced to the techniques of DNA barcoding in this virtual course. They also learn basic concepts in ecology, biodiversity, and conservation biology. When it is safe to do so, students will be invited to attend a required hands-on lab “bootcamp” before applying to UBRP

2021 Course Schedule

UBRP Prep Courses

Conservation Genetics
February 16–19 Tuesday to Friday,
1:00 pm–4:00 pm
DNA Barcoding and Bioinformatics
March 29–April 2 Monday to Friday,
1:00 pm–3:30 pm

UBRP course locations

2021 school break courses will be offered online. Lab bootcamps will take place at the following locations when it is safe to host them:

Harlem DNA Lab: John S. Roberts Educational Complex (J.H.S. 45), 2351 First Avenue (at 120th Street), East Harlem, New York 10035 [directions]

DNA Learning Center NYC at City Tech: 300 Jay Street, Brooklyn, New York 11201 (Enter at 259 Adams Street) [directions]