James Clerk Maxwell Building

One of the largest buildings on campus, lots of students from different Schools have classes in here!

The James Clerk Maxwell Building (JCMB) is named after James Clerk Maxwell, the Scottish mathematical physicist who studied for his undergraduate degree at Edinburgh. This building is where lots of teaching takes place for students. There are 3 large lecture theatres near the main entrance; a number of large workshop rooms; computer rooms for practical classes or studying; classrooms for tutorials; teaching laboratories for practicals, and a cafe on the third floor.

Biological Sciences teaching administration staff work in this building in the Biology Teaching Organisation. You might submit assignments here, or you can come to ask a question or to see our student support team. The trick to this building is that if you come in the main entrance you've entered on floor 2! All the room numbers start with the floor they are on e.g. the Biology Teaching Organisation is Room 2105. The JCMB is also the home building for the School of Mathematics and School of Physics and Astronomy.

Magnet Cafe
Magnet Cafe

JCMB Teaching and Study Spaces

There are a wide variety of different teaching spaces in the JCMB including:

  • lecture theatres
  • tutorial rooms
  • workshop rooms 
  • computer rooms

There are also lots of places to study including bookable student study rooms and the area around the Magnet Cafe.

Students in Lecture Theatre
Biological Sciences students in Lecture Theatre A
Students in a workshop room
Biological Sciences students presenting in a workshop
Students studying in JCMB
Students studying in JCMB

JCMB Teaching Laboratory

This laboratory is mainly used to teach the more molecular aspects of Biological Sciences such as exploring how cells communicate; the process of active transport, or DNA analysis and insertion into a plasmid. The class will be set up ready you when you arrive and all the equipment is provided. You will work in pairs or small groups and will usually work with the same people each week.

We provide white lab coats for you and lockers for bags. Demonstrating staff who are usually PhD or PostDoc students wear navy blue coats (so you can spot them easily!) and are there to help out.

Demonstrator in a practical
Demonstrator showing how to load an SDS gel
JCMB Teaching Laboratory
JCMB Teaching Laboratory
Student loading a gel
Student loading samples for agarose gel electrophoresis