ISR students gearing up for the science fair

The science fair for students taking ISR is on February 13th.

The science fair for students taking ISR is on February 13th.

Madison Roney

Mutations, women’s health, teen depression and solar energy storage are just a few examples of the student researched science projects for this year’s science fair.

After last year’s success, the Independent Student Research (ISR) students are starting their experiments in preparation for the Freedom science fair on Feb. 13. In 2019, 12 students/partnerships were chosen to go to the regional science fair. Due to the amount of students in the class this year, each student has the opportunity to go to regionals.

“[The Freedom science fair] is less of a chance to see who gets to go to the regional science fair, and more practice for the regional science fair,” said Kevin Cabaniss, ISR teacher. “It’s lower stakes, and since we know what we are doing now, they are ahead of the game, so they should have better data than we expected.”

The class, with dual enrollment credits, performs mini projects throughout the first semester to inspire them for their research project.

“We did a pumpkin project to learn how to write methods,” senior Bernardo Lopez-Vasquez said.

One of the key aspects of the research project is the question or issue the students attempt to solve. Interestingly, the projects have been aligning closely with current events, specifically, the declining Koala population.

“They started that before the forest fires,” Cabaniss said. “So looking at, there are certain diseases that go through the koala population, how can we masinoculate the group, which is even more important now.”

Other projects are performing experiments that could be commonly overlooked.

“I am looking at mutagenesis in fruit flies using several known and possible human carcinogens and looking at their effects both individually and combined in fruit flies,” senior Catherine Jones said.