The overarching goal of BEST Science! is to advance interest in biomedical research and health sciences by Louisiana high school students and to ultimately stimulate further education and vocation in these areas. By giving area science teachers the tools to teach more specialized, hands-on curricula in their classrooms, the program expects to reach a greater number of students on a deeper level.
Workshop: Each year of the BEST Science! program kicks off in the early part of summer with a paid, professional development workshop for participating teachers. During these workshops, teachers are exposed to that year's topic in varied formats such as hands-on laboratory work, lectures, in-class activities, and readings, but are also partners in each module's development in order to provide for a more customized curriculum. Scientists, physicians, and other faculty from Ochsner, LSUHSC, and other local institutions of higher learning provide and collaborate on each of these workshop components.
Lab2Go Kits: While teachers are encouraged to use any portion of the BESTScience! curriculum whenever they wish, the program provides a kit for each laboratory module with enough supplies for a 32-student class free of charge. These Lab2Go Kits provide every reagent, consumable, and piece of equipment necessary to complete its corresponding protocol in a high school classroom and can be reserved through this website.
Evaluations: As part of the program's NIH funding, data and outcomes must be thoroughly reported to demonstrate its impact on science educators and their students. This reporting is done through simple surveys given throughout the program.