450 Leaving Certificate biology students from all over Munster are getting hands-on experience of the state-of-the-art laboratories at the University of Limerick this week.

The Department of Biological Sciences at UL are giving the students an opportunity to conduct the laboratory practical experiments set on the Leaving Certificate Biology curriculum in a third level environment.

The Leaving Certificate Biology Practical Sessions were first presented by the Department of Biological Sciences at UL eleven years ago.

“Many biology leaving cert students throughout the country do not get the opportunity to actually carry out and practice the experiments included in their course work and a lot of secondary school laboratories simply don’t have the facilities to allow this” explained Professor Sean Arkins of the Department of Biological Sciences, UL.

“Our biology laboratories have the most up to date experimental equipment to facilitate in depth research and experimentation.  It’s also a great opportunity for secondary school students to practically engage with the University.

“The departments technical team as well as post graduate students and final year BSc Ed students who will be qualified as second level biology teachers at the end of this semester, will be present in the laboratories to assist students throughout the week and instruct them in conducting the experiments.

The biology students will also be given information on programmes offered by the Biological Sciences Department and the Faculty of Science and Engineering at UL