Past Projects

Learn more about the types of projects past participants of the Summer Research Program have been involved in!

Science Projects

Previous participants who identified as young women and gender minorities focused on the following science-based projects:

Discipline

Project Description

Agriculture
Preparing soil samples and exploring different farming techniques to discover how to increase carbon storage in soil and decrease greenhouse gases.
Artificial Intelligence
Researching the etymological language and words for the senses to help create a system that accurately defines a word based on specific context and use of the words. 
Bioacoustics
Deploying audio recording units to capture animal calls and songs in their natural environments. This data was analyzed and then used to study certain species, particularly on their migration patterns, breeding ranges, overall behaviour, and population.
Biochemistry
Determining the 3D structure of various molecules by attaching linkers, a type of protein with a carbon change (these models can then be used in food production and pharmaceuticals.); developing a compound which could potentially be used to treat HIV; researching how agricultural waste can be converted into biofuels.
Biological Sciences
Analyzing gunshot patterns to track illegal hunting.
Chemistry
Researching different ways to synthesize compounds used in pharmaceuticals; learning how to synthesize molecules for solar cells.
Computer Science
Developing a game to help people learn new languages; improving the effectiveness and visuals of a message board software used by some UAlberta professors.
Food and Nutrition
Working in a Utilization of Lipids lab and extracting keratin (a protein) from chicken feathers, and modifying and exploring characteristics of this new compound.
Geology
Testing a high voltage method of separating diamonds from an encased rock and performing tests on diamonds to determine where in the mantle they were formed; dating various compounds with a specific rock.
Geobiology
Conducting experiments to determine whether clay is a source or sink of various trace metals and researching how cyanobacteria could influence the development of the banded-iron formations.
Organic Chemistry
Working on attaching a sugar group to possible cancer medications to increase the solubility of these medications in water.
Paleontology
Creating a 3D computer model of an Albertosaurus by compiling images of the dinosaur and using an animation program to make the model; learning how to clean fossils.
Psychology

Learning about the behaviour and cognition of black-capped chickadees through food preference; comparing human behaviour to machine-learning using video game tasks.

Linguistics
Performing experiments about how bilingual speakers process English differently in quiet and noisy environments.

Engineering Projects

Previous participants who identified as young women and gender minorities focused on the following engineering-based projects:

Discipline

Project Description

Biomechanical
Learning about the regional symmetry of the pelvis to assist in surgical planning of pelvic fractures.
Civil
Performing tests on small walls to determine the compressive strength of how masonry blocks stand up to earthquakes. 
Chemical
Analyzing tailings (an oil production by-product) to determine the concentration of rare earth elements and trace metals; studying the formation and optical properties of nano lenses.
Construction
Working in a Construction Simulation lab and learning the code to make a model that predicts the number of man-hours required to build scaffolding.
Electrical and Computer
Measuring the waveforms of various objects (computer, motor, lightbulbs) and using computer coding to analyze the data.
Environmental
Researching the chemical and physical properties of mine waste to learn the most efficient ways to reclaim land.
Geotechnical
Testing and analyzing clay-based soils to determine when they fail and how they contribute to causing landslides and rockfalls.
Mechanical
Using Solidworks (a computer engineer program) to design and manufacture (using 3D printing) a product (rockets, engineering prototypes, reconfigurable machine) with a specific purpose; learning how to use Solidworks to design a bicycle frame made of various materials and performing tests to compare the different materials used in these designs.

Industry Projects

Previous participants who identified as young women and gender minorities focused on the following industry-based projects:

Organization

Project Description

City of Edmonton

Spending time with the Integrated Infrastructure and Engineering Services Department to explore lab work, architecture, and various types of engineering that contributes to building infrastructures in Edmonton. 

Solstice Environmental Management
Learning about environmental management through field and office work.

Additional Projects

Previous participants who identified as young men focused on the following projects:

Discipline

Project Description

Nutrition
Investigating the credibility of and comparing Instagram posts about nutrition when created by health professionals versus non-health professionals.
Nursing
Assessing actual versus perceived quality of chest compressions in CPR; conducting a literature review on African immigrant children with sickle cell disease; documenting the process of researching Indigenous communities and their relationship with cancer screening resources.