Frontiers and Techniques In Plant Science
June 28 - July 18, 2019
Application Deadline: March 15, 2019


Sean Cutler, University of California Riverside
José Dinneny, Stanford University
Julie Law, The Salk institute
Uta Paszkowski, University of Cambridge, UK

See the roll of honor - who's taken the course in the past

Read an article on peer review written by the 2018 students and teaching assistants

The Frontiers and Techniques in Plant Science course provides an intensive overview of topics in genomics, genetics, physiology, biochemistry, development, and evolution and hands-on experiences in molecular, imaging, computational and high throughput approaches to understanding plant biology. It emphasizes recent results from model organisms including Arabidopsis, maize and tomato as well as a variety of other plants and provides an introduction to current methods used in basic and applied plant biology, both theoretically and practically.

The seminar series will include plant morphology and anatomy, development, evolution, light and mechanical biology, hormones, small RNAs and epigenetic inheritance, biotic and abiotic interactions, plant biochemistry, crop domestication, and applications addressing current agronomic problems. Speakers will provide expert overviews of their fields, followed by in-depth discussions of their own work.

The laboratory sessions will provide exposure to cutting edge experimental and computational techniques currently used in plant research. These include approaches for studying plant development, regulatory networks, transient gene expression, cell-type specific gene expression analysis, computational large-scale data analysis, applications of fluorescent proteins including live imaging, genome editing, and chromatin immunoprecipitation.

Gain hands-on experience in:
  • Computational tools and environments for genome assembly
  • Plant imaging and image analysis
  • Design and use of fluorescent sensors
  • Transcriptomics
  • Identification of quantitative trait loci
  • Mapping by sequencing
  • Mathematical modeling of development and hormone action
  • Purification of cell-type specific nuclei (INTACT)
  • High throughput cloning
2019 Guest Speakers:

Lisa Ainsworth, USDA ARS
Julia Bailey-Serres, University of California, Riverside
David Baulcombe, University of Cambridge, UK
Dominique Bergmann, Stanford University
Roger Deal, Emory University
Liam Dolan, University of Oxford, UK
Xinnian Dong, Duke University
Elizabeth Haswell, Washington University in St. Louis
Julian Hibberd, University of Cambridge, UK
Georg Jander, Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant Research
Mark Johnson, Brown University
Alexander Jones, The Sainsbury Laboratory University of Cambridge, UK
Toby Kellogg, Donald Danforth Plant Science Center
Robert Martienssen, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Giles Oldroyd, The Sainsbury Laboratory University of Cambridge, UK
Ullas Pedmale, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Nicholas Provart, University of Toronto, Canada
Chris Rogers, University of Cambridge, UK
Karin Schumacher, University of Heidelberg, Germany
Neelima Sinha, University of California, Davis
Chris Surridge, Nature Plants, UK
Dan Voytas, University of Minnesota
Olivia Wilkins, McGill University, Canada
Jason Williams, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

Support & Stipends:

Major support provided by: National Science Foundation.

Stipends are available to offset tuition costs as follows-


We would like to acknowledge the following companies that provided invaluable support:
Morrell Instruments Co., Inc., Nikon Instruments Inc.
Equipment: Bitplane, Thermo Fisher Scientific

Please indicate your eligibility for funding in your stipend request submitted when you apply to the course. Stipend requests do not affect selection decisions made by the instructors.

Cost (including board and lodging): $4,990

No fees are due until you have completed the full application process and are accepted into the course. Students accepted into the course should plan to arrive by early evening on June 27 and plan to depart after lunch on July 18.

Before applying, ensure you have:
  1. Personal statement/essay;
  2. Letter(s) of recommendation;
  3. Curriculum vitae/resume (optional);
  4. Financial aid request (optional).
    More details.

If you are not ready to fully apply but wish to express interest in applying, receive a reminder two weeks prior to the deadline, and tell us about your financial aid requirements, click below: