UAV Training Workshop - April 2013
In this new course, SAMS collaborated with a number of expert lecturers, including academics Dr Andras Sobester from the University of Southampton who specialises in aircraft design, Dr Rick Thomas who's developing a gas sampling device for a UAV helicopter platform at the University of Birmingham and Andy Vick from the UK Astronomy Technology Centre. The private sector was represented by Nigel King; owner of QuestUAV a manufacturer of fixed wing unmanned aircraft and Paddy Davies from Horizon Aerial Photography, which specialises in UAV systems for data acquisition. Case studies of the use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) in research settings were provided by Susan Stevens from the Scottish Environment Protection Agency and Dr Phil Anderson Head of SAMS Technology Development Group.
"It was a great course. Really broad and enjoyable."
CB, SMRU Ltd
The course was well attended and, leading on from the MASTS ASM Conference, facilitated the expansion of an RPA user-network to promote robotics in scientific research. It is hoped this network will form a national Knowledge Exchange hub for this exciting new technology and for the growing knowledge-base to expand the use of RPAs in marine research. Please contact us if you would be interested in joining and keeping abreast of this exciting new technology for research.
Research Data Management & How to Use Excel - April 2013
Lovro Valcic returned from Croatia to run these two complementary IT courses. His style was popular with students once again, with comments including:
"It was an excellent course and I got a lot out of it"
"Lovro is an enthusiastic teacher who, amazingly, makes Excel an interesting subject!"
"Enthusiastic tutor. Lovro brings life to the subject!"
As a result, we hope to run the courses again next year. Lovro will be back with us in the autumn for a Georeferencing Course.
Ecosystem Based Management using Ecopath with Ecosim - February 2013
In her most popular course to date; Dr Sheila Heymans was overwhelmed with the demand for this Ecopath course. Delegates covered Ecopath theory and practical sessions, as well as the use of Ecosim and Ecospace; making best use of the experience of our tutors in this software. As the course was fully booked, with a waiting list, a new course has been added for 2013 and will run in September.
GIS and Georeferencing - October 2012
These two courses both proved extremely popular once again, with students attending from Universities and public sector environmental agencies from across the UK. Dr Tim O'Higgins introduced delegates to the use of Arc GIS TM for scientific research, methods of communication using maps and using tools to generate publishable maps. Lovro Valcic provided an introduction to Google Maps and then covered the production of live, interactive maps before allowing delegates time working on their own map projects and benefiting from his knowledge and experience. Both the Geoferencing and GIS Courses will run again in October 2013.
Marine Invasive Species Identification Workshop - October 2012
Once again, this course proved popular and was fully booked. Delegates learnt about the impacts of invasive species and spent time getting their hands wet at the Marina. The samples obtained were then identified in the modern teaching labs at SAMS and students were able to classify any that were non-native. The course will run again in September 2013.
Algaculture for Biotechnology and Molecular Methods for Algae Research Courses - September 2012
These two courses were run back to back and both were fully booked. We welcomed delegates from around the world and the Algae Research course was wholly booked by international students. Our delegates were taught by a team of research-active scientists with considerable expertise in their field, including researchers from the Culture Collection of Algae and Protozoa (CCAP); one of the world's largest collections of algae.
The courses will run again in June 2013, with Algaculture for Biotechnology taking place on the 17th and 18th June and Molecular Methods for Algae Research on the 19th and 20th. The courses will be followed by a Cryopreservation course in July and our new Algal Biotechnology Masters Programme begins in September.
Marine Invasive Species Identification Workshop - August 2012
Over 35 delegates attended two highly successful half-day workshops on the identification of Marine Invasive Species in the Clyde, hosted by the Firth of Clyde Forum. Delegates learnt how to identify the most common marine and estuarine invasive species in UK waters, including the highly invasive Carpet Sea Squirt Didemnum vexillum, the killer shrimp Dikerogammarus villosus and the slipper limpet Crepidula fornicata and what you should to do if you think you've found one of these species.
The workshops highlighted the clear need for increased awareness regarding invasive species in UK waters, particularly in light of the new regulations for notifying invasive non-native species in the recent Wildlife and Natural Environment Scotland (WANE) Act 2011. SAMS will be hosting a 2-day course in this subject in October 2012 for people wanting more in-depth identification knowledge. We're also happy to discuss tailoring the half-day course to specific industries. If you think your business would benefit from this course, please contact Dr Liz Cook
Introduction to Ecosystem Modelling using Ecopath and Ecosim - February 2012
Another very successful course on ecosystem modelling was run recently by Dr Sheila Heymans. The course introduced the modelling tools ECOPATH and ECOSIM to delegates from UK, Ireland and Israel. The course included introductory lectures but was mostly hands-on with delegates learning how to set up data, balance models and review the outputs from the packages. An exciting development is that Dr Heymans has been asked to provide training in ecosystem modelling of low trophic level fish by the Marine Stewardship Council. The next open course will take place in February 2013.
Introduction to molecular methods for algal research - September 2011
A Continuing Professional Development course introducing molecular methods used in algal research was taught recently at SAMS. Scientists and PhD students from the UK, Norway and France attended the 2 day course. The course was designed to give the participants the guiding principles and know-how to start to incorporate molecular research into their algal research. Course content included lectures on the principles of DNA extraction and the PCR, DNA cloning and sequencing, and quantitative PCR. Two practical sessions applied this theoretical knowledge: (i) extracting and PCR amplifying algal DNA, and (ii) an introduction to bioinformatics, working with DNA electropherograms, sequence assembly and tree construction. This was the first time this course has been run, and feedback was encouraging. As a result, the course is running again in September 2012.
Marine Invasive Species Identification Workshop - September 2011
Delegates from DARDNI (Fisheries Inspectorate Northern Ireland) and AEPM Ltd. recently attended a course on Marine Aliens. Delegates learned about how to identify the most common invasive species in UK waters, including the highly invasive Carpet Sea Squirt Didemnum vexillum and what to do if you think you've found one of these species. There is a clear need for improved education on marine aliens in Scottish and European marine industries and agencies. In response SAMS will be developing a half-day course which can be delivered at various sites around Scotland to enable this CPD training to a wider audience.
If you think that your business would benefit from this course, please contact Dr Liz Cook
Displaying georeferenced scientific data using Google Maps - August 2011
Long term conservation of marine microbial resources - February 2011
This course covered both theoretical aspects of cryopreservation and lyophilization, as well as their application to conserve microbial resources including: bacteria, fungi, algae and protozoa. The event attracted delegates from a wide range of backgrounds including: biotechnologists, those working in Biological Resource Centres and scientists from fundamental and applied research environments. Delegates came from Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Holland, Hungary, Italy, Norway, South Korea Spain, the UK and
the USA, reflecting the global importance of this area of science. The course comprised a mix of lectures and practical sessions, with tutors from SAMS and the National Institute for Biological Standards and Control (NIBSC) and input from specialist equipment manufacturers (Planer plc and Linkam Scientific Instruments Ltd). Topics covered included: Cryopreservation theory and application; Freeze-drying (lyophilization) theory and preparation; Health and Safety implications in cryopreservation; Ownership, Intellectual Property and microbial diversity as well as Data management and Quality Assurance. The large amount of interest in this subject means that the course will be repeated in February 2013.
Delegates in the entrance to the new Sheina Marshall teaching facilities at SAMS
Identification of harmful phytoplankton - January 2011
The presence of harmful phytoplankton is a major issue for shellfish growers. The shellfish filter phytoplankton from the water and, if harmful strains are present, the shellfish can accumulate toxins in their flesh. In the EU waters in which shellfish are grown are regularly tested for the presence of harmful phytoplankton. In the UK this is co-ordinated by the Food Standards Agency and in Scotland SAMS undertakes analysis of the water samples.
This training course was run for parts of the industry interested in undertaking their own additional monitoring of phytoplankton in shellfish growing waters. The course explained what we know of the conditions leading to blooms of harmful phytoplankton, introduced the main groups of harmful algae and provided practical training in microscopic analysis and how to recognise and count the phytoplankton themselves.
Trainees practising identification of harmful phytoplankton
Marine Planning - the Policy Background - January 2011
Delegates from the Crown Estate, Scottish Natural Heritage, Scottish Salmon Producers' Organisation as well as academia came together for a two-day course on the policy background to Marine Planning. The course comprised a mix of talks, discussions and group exercises covering the international, European and UK policy behind the emerging field of marine planning. Practical exercises included developing conceptual maps of the legislative framework, group discussions and role playing the planning process.
The course included talks on the current state of progress with marine planning in the UK and Scotland.
Working on conceptual maps to help navigate complex policy legislation
Discussing the current state of UK Marine Planning with Dr Tim Stojanovic of St. Andrews University
Culturing Algae For Biotechnology - September 2010
A very successful course on culturing algae for use in biotechnology was run in Sept (2010) by the Culture Collection of Algae and Protozoa. The event attracted delegates from countries including the UK, Ireland, Spain, Holland and Israel; reflecting the intense global interest in this area of science.
The course comprised a mix of lectures and practical sessions. Topics included algal biodiversity, photosynthesis and its implications for cultures in artificial light, culturing methods and health and safety in culture labs, genomics and the use of algae for biofuel production. The Algaculture course is now fully booked again in September 2012.
As this course provided a broad introduction to the subject, some of the delegates expressed interest in receiving more intensive training in specialised areas e.g. identification of algae and molecular analysis of algae. As a result, SAMS has developed a further Continuing Professional Development course in molecular research and analysis.