Personal Genetics Education Project

Professional development workshop for teachers – July 11 & 12 in Boston

pgEd recently conducted a very successful two-day summer institute for teachers, where teachers from the New England area were able to join us for two days to deeply examine the big issues in personal genetics. They left with an array of tools, resources and knowledge to tackle some of the trickest and most important questions in personal genetics.

pgEd offers professional development training courses, ranging from a 1-2 hour workshop to a 12 hour course for which we can offer PDPs. If you are interested in more information about scheduling a pgEd professional development session, please email Lauren Tomaselli at  We are based in Boston, MA and Brunswick, ME.

A description of our 2012 summer institute:

Personal genetics in the high school classroom: Ethical, legal, social and scientific issues.

Current high school students are among the first generation that will have unprecedented access to information about their DNA, as genome sequencing and genetic testing become cheaper and more available.  We create interactive lessons that engage students in discussion about the potential risks and benefits of knowing more about your DNA, as well as ways in which they could be impacted.

This two-day training for teachers will be an introduction to personal genetics and its impact on society. A wave of personal genetic information is coming – how can we prepare students to make informed choices for themselves and for society as a whole?

Through workshop-style sessions, we will look at examples of the hopes, realities and controversies in personal genetics.  We will start with an overview: Why is genetics getting more personal?  What has been happening, scientifically and technologically, since the completion of the Human Genome Project?  Starting with scientific questions and concepts, we will make connections to real world opportunities and conundrums your students and their families will face in the coming years.

Topics to be Covered: Advances in personal genetics, personalized medicine, low cost genetic testing, fears and realities of genetic discrimination, the intersection of athletics and genetics, crime and DNA, reproductive genetics, genetic information and how to use it, and critical thinking as it applies to assessing genetic risk factors.

Content Area: Biology, Genetics, Health, Human Reproduction, and Bioethics; grades 9 – 12

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