Archipelago Research Institute

Field station full of stories

Tag: teaching

New seawater laboratory in the making

During the winter, the “Laundry” building has undergone major renovations, which finished a few weeks ago. This week our staff started to move the lab equipment, glassware and other small items from the water lab in the main building (also known as a course lab) to the new sea water lab. The old lab will also undergo some renovations later this year and transform into something complete different. Here is a sneak peak to the new seawater lab!

Seili sea water laboratory

The “Laundry” building (on the left) will significantly improve the field laboratory facilities on the island. Next to it is a red storeroom (“Makasiini”), which includes two climate chambers and a couple freezers, where researchers can store samples during summertime. On the right is the “Sikala” building, named after its ancient use as a piggery. The building nowadays also functions as a small seawater lab with facilities for indoor and outdoor aquaria experiments. 5.5-6 PSU seawater is supplied to both labs with openings outside the island.

Seili sea water laboratory

The laundry room after the renovations.  The old washing machines and drier are replaced with a fume hood and stainless steel tables. The room is almost finished, only a couple of items remain to be added.

Seili sea water laboratory

The former drying room is still empty, waiting for two aquaria racks to be installed. The space is designed for experimental work.

Seili sea water laboratory

Previously a gym for the staff and visitors, this  course room is now a perfect class room for school and university students awaiting to learn about the Baltic Sea and species identification. The cabinets includes new Zeiss stereomicroscopes, acquired with FINMARI funding, and all glassware and plastic items you need in handling samples. Next week the room will receive few finishing touches, when tables and chairs arrive. The room will also include a  video projector and a WiFi connection.

Planning the future of field courses

Last Wednesday morning, a few of us headed towards the University of Helsinki’s Lammi biological station, where we were to attend in the  BIOPEDA -project’s second seminar, funded by the Kone foundation. In the first 3-day seminar, organized in March in the Konnevesi research station (University of Jyväskylä), teachers from every Finnish university came together to discuss the current state and future of biological field courses. Outcomes of this seminar were a webpage maasto-opetus.fi and a publication, published in the Journal of University Pedagogy (in Finnish). The aim of this 2-day seminar was to further develop the webpage, aimed at benefiting both university teachers and students, and to plan future events. 

Field courses are a central part of biological and other nature-related studies. Despite of their relevance, field courses and, also, field stations have been under budget-cuts. The aim of the BIOPEDA project is to improve cooperation between teachers and sharing of teaching resources within the Finnish university research network. This will aid both to reduce costs and improve the diversity and quality of courses offered to students, thus increasing the expertise and know-how available in Finland.

lammin biologinen asema

The snowy landscape of the Lammi biological station.

lammin biologinen asema, biopeda seminaari

Between planning, we also had time to listen and watch a presentation about a Svalbard trip.

Read more:

Maasto-opetus.fi, the university fieldwork website provides fieldwork related resources to teachers and students.

Turpeen uumenissa -blog, news and stories about fieldwork

Finnish Research Stations – a network to reach different Finnish biotopes and ecosystems

We will take a small break from posting new content and  are unplugging to enjoy the holidays. We will be back with new content again in the beginning of next year! We wish everyone a merry Christmas and a happy new year!

Season's greetings from ARI