SMART and MAPS Teams

What do you get when you combine enthusiastic high school teachers and their students, researchers in the molecular biosciences, and 3D printing technology? SMART ( Students Modeling A Research Topic) and MAPS (Modeling A Protein Story) Teams!

In these multi-faceted programs, students explore the invisible molecular world as they experience science as a process of discovery rather than a collection of facts. Students work as teams to understand a molecular story and to design and build a physical model of a protein that is the focus of a research project.

In either program, students will be exposed to the molecular biosciences through active learning with the use of engaging hands-on models and materials. They will also learn to utilize 3D visualization software and coding to design a virtual representation of their protein of interest that incorporates their developed understanding of the protein. This design can then be 3D-printed, allowing them to use their physical model to present their work to others.

Choose One to Learn More!



In the SMART program, teams made up of students, a teacher advisor, and a research scientist mentor, explore and model a protein related to the mentor’s research area.

In the MAPS program, teams made up of students and a teacher advisor explore a specific protein theme (e.g. aquaporin, globins, or insulin) and then develop and model a related protein story.






SMART Teams are funded by NCRR, HHMI and the CTSI of Southeastern Wisconsin

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