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Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2017 3:04 pm
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Help with project ideas

Postby therealfitnerd » Wed Jul 26, 2017 3:18 pm

Hey everyone - I was a Canada Wide participant this year and am already looking forward to planning my project for next year. This year, I had a more psychology-based project and although I love really does not have any direction going forward. So, I'm starting from scratch at the moment.

My ideas right now are quite broad:
-acid precipitation (I wanted to research into one of the byproducts created by one of the processes used to reduce the effects of acid rain; don't remember the molecule but in this time, has no use and is accumulating as waste)
-gene therapy (I want to test gene therapy on brain cancers - particularly glioblastomas)
-cerebral palsy (Not really sure where to go with this but after meeting with a neurosurgeon, I was quite interested in CP)
-pancreatic cancer (Not sure where this came from either...but I remember some interesting articles that spoke of upcoming treatments)
-kinesiology-based research (I'm heavily invested in exercise and it's something of interest to me - I just don't know where to start)
-using exercise to test on various diseases, genes, etc.? (I wanted to see the effects of exercise in neuro-oncology!)

The problem(s) I have right now is/are that I can't seem to find a SPECIFIC topic within the categories I like. For example, I've had friends who have discovered a protein in diabetes that counteract against brain cell death but how do they even find this information? How did they know that protein existed? And if they didn't know beforehand, how could they propose to a mentor/professor in order to obtain a lab? Furthermore, how can I think of an idea that is original and not already tested?

So, I want to contact personnel in order to get help and into a lab but I have no idea where to start. Am I going about this process the wrong way? If anyone has any advice, please feel free to guide me - I need a direction! :(

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Joined: Fri Jun 20, 2014 4:42 pm
Occupation: Biostatistician/Data Scientist

Re: Help with project ideas

Postby MadelineB » Tue Sep 19, 2017 2:20 pm

Hello and thank you for your patience in waiting for a response to your post!

You are correct that you will need to have carefully researched your selected project before contacting potential mentors at labs and universities near you. But do not despair! Science Buddies has a very useful database of over 1100 projects. I suggest that you start by searching for the projects in your general categories. You can enter the key words for each of your ideas here:

Each project will provide you with several references to the scientific literature so that you can learn the background and what research has already been report. There are sections describing the materials and procedures needed for conducting the project. In addition, each project has a section "Make it your own" with ideas for modifying the project so it is your original idea.

Do not hesitate to ask more questions! And good luck!

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