In June 2019, a group of STEM educators from across the country came together to discuss a widely-misunderstood approach to laboratory work: design of experiments (DOE). DOE is a system that optimizes processes through the methodical varying of key parameters and a formalized statistical approach to analyzing and interpreting data, and applying the results. However, as it is not commonly used in academia outside of engineering fields, many STEM educators have little to no experience with DOE.
MiraCosta College’s biotechnology faculty and the Dean of Math and Sciences gave STEM educators an opportunity to explore DOE through a three-day-long MiniBioman workshop including hands-on experiments. Workshop participants applied DOE methods using JMP statistical software during laboratory activities, including hypothesis testing, full factorial design, and screening designs with blocking. The MiniBioman was funded by the Northeastern Biomanufacturing Center and Collaborative (NBC2), and the workshop materials are freely available at biomanufacturing.org via the Instructor’s Portal.
In addition, workshop participants toured the Genentech Oceanside commercial biopharmaceutical production facility to get an up-close look and technical insight from their host, Dr. Eric Fallon.