Centre for Inflammation Research

EBSOC Delivery Team wins the CIR Public Engagement award 2020

June 2020 – Ross Dobie, Elena Dora and Katie Smith have been presented with the Centre’s 2020 Trainee Award for Excellence in Public Engagement for their work with schools, including lab-based workshops at EBSOC.

The Easter Bush Science Outreach Centre (EBSOC) is a science engagement laboratory based at the Easter Bush campus, where the University's veterinary medicine research takes place. It aims to give everyone the opportunity to work with real science equipment, to work with scientists and clinicians, and to learn about real science.

PhD student Katie Smith, research assistant Elena Dora and postdoctoral researcher Ross Dobie make up the current CIR Delivery Team.

The team ran a series of ‘PCR Masterclass’ workshops in October 2019, gradually gaining independence to run the sessions in their entirety with a CIR research theme. PCR, or polymerase chain reaction, is a common laboratory technique that amplifies DNA from a small sample, allowing it to be visualised or used for further experiments. By completing the all-day workshop, secondary school pupils get a glimpse of what life as a biosciences researcher might be like.

Jayne Quoiani, Education & Engagement Officer at the Centre, designed the original workshop and provided training and feedback for the group.


The CIR team engaged with over 100 school pupils aged 15-16 years from Scottish schools.  Through delivering the workshop they developed their public engagement skills and got the opportunity to communicate their important research messages. Their dedication and enthusiasm to this project translated into building the confidence of our young visitors and inspiring them to think about science beyond school.  We are looking forward to welcoming them back in the future, with more of their CIR colleagues.

Jayne QuoianiEducation & Engagement Officer at EBSOC


The team have plans to provide training for other researchers in CIR, providing a foundation for long-term engagement with schools in the area, which will improve skillsets for pupils and researchers alike.

Congratulations to Elena, Katie and Ross for their well-deserved award!  


EBSOC is an excellent facility giving people the opportunity to get hands on with science. Katie, Elena and I have thoroughly enjoyed working with the EBSOC team to deliver CIR-themed workshops for secondary school pupils. We are delighted to have been awarded the CIR Trainee award for "Excellence in Public Engagement" and look forward to sharing more fantastic CIR science in the future.

Dr Ross DobieMember of the CIR Delivery Team for EBSOC
Elena Dora shows pupils how to complete a PCR protocol