New series showcases postdocs' expertise Oct. 12-Nov. 23

September 21, 2015
Two postdocs assisting each other in a computer, graphic representation of research.

VCU postdoctoral researchers share hands-on knowledge and insights in a new speaker series, How-to Talks by Postdocs, sponsored by Tompkins-McCaw Library for the Health Sciences, the VCU Center for Clinical and Translational Research and the VCU Postdoctoral Association. The series starts Oct. 12 and runs through Nov. 23.

The sessions are free and open to all. Each talk is 45 minutes followed by 15 minutes for networking and discussion. They take place at Tompkins-McCaw Library, 509 N. 12th St., first floor conference room, Mondays, noon to 1 p.m. Bring your own lunch. Snacks and coffee will be provided. Registration is preferred but not required

Oct. 12  

Locomotor behavioral assessments

Pretal Muldoon, Ph.D.

What questions should you ask when deciding on a behavioral/locomotor test for rodents? This talk will cover how to determine which locomotor assay is best for your research, e.g. spontaneous activity, beam walking, rotorod, etc. Additionally, criteria to consider when determining the best test for translating an animal model to human conditions will be discussed.

Oct. 19  

Ambulatory assessment: Examining behavioral and physiological processes over time

Lance M. Rappaport, Ph.D.

Recent developments in technology have made it possible to collect physiological and behavioral data at higher frequency and in situations not otherwise feasible. Drawing on techniques such as time-series data, ecological momentary assessment and event-contingent recording, this talk will address the potential to offer novel insights in physiology, behavioral and medical research through statistical and experimental methodologies. Attendees will learn how to design and conduct research using ambulatory assessment to examine how processes of interest unfold over time and in naturalistic settings.

Oct. 26 

How to detect and isolate stem cells

Sarmistha Talukdar, Ph.D.

A quick overview of different types of stem cells will be given, followed by guidance on how to detect and isolate stem cells from different tissues. Mesenchymal stem cells and cancer stem cells will be discussed.

Nov. 12 

The active learning teaching revolution: Teaching STEM so that your students actually learn

Rebecca Martin, Ph.D., and Bianca Baker, Ph.D.

The importance of an evidence-based active learning approach will be considered, followed by a survey of active learning techniques. Freely available technologies that can be used to assist with those techniques will be reviewed as well. Each technique will be utilized in class so that attendees can get a feel for how and when they can be used.

Nov. 19  

CRISPR/cas9 genome editing

Chen Yang, Ph.D.

The groundbreaking significance of the CRISPR/cas9 genome editing technique in biomedical research applications will be explained. Step-by-step instructions on how to apply this technique in your research will be given.

Nov. 23 

Causal analysis: How to examine mediation and moderation of treatment or experimental effects

Lance M. Rappaport, Ph.D.

Two critical areas of development in causal analysis pertain to identifying mechanisms in the course of change (i.e. mediation) and factors that alter the nature of a process (i.e. moderation). This talk will discuss current approaches in estimating mediation and moderation and will provide practical examples of their implementation. Attendees will learn how to design and conduct research to test for mediators and moderators of the effect of a treatment or experimental manipulation.

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