Clemson University's Department of Biological Sciences will conduct the 35th Annual Clemson University Biology Merit Exam on April 11, 2014. This exam is designed for middle school and high school students for the purpose of recognizing and rewarding outstanding student achievement and promoting further interest in the life sciences. The Merit Exam consists of 40 multiple choice questions, of varying degrees of difficulty, that are distributed among the major content areas of biology. Each year the exam has a different "theme"; for example the 2013 theme was the biology of the yellow jacket. Other recent themes included the biology of the imported fire ant, sea turtles, rice, great white shark, dolphin and gorillas. Also offered is the Biology Bowl, patterned after the TV show "Jeopardy", where students compete against others in their own division to answer questions on the following topics: general biological principles, genetics, molecular biology, ecology, cell biology, taxonomy, plant structure and function, and animal structure and function. The top 3 individuals in each division receive awards. While attending the Exam at Clemson, students also have an opportunity to acquaint themselves with the education and research facilities available on campus and are able to interact with scientists in the various biological and agricultural disciplines.
Through an award from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Precollege and Undergraduate Science Education Program, we attempt to increase the opportunity for 200+ students from distant and economically deprived middle and high schools to participate in the Biology Merit Exam by identifying biology teachers who wish to have their students participate and subsidizing their registration, mileage and lodging expenses for their classes.
The SC Life Project is sponsoring over 200 students and teachers from the following middle and high schools as they traveled to and participate in the 2014 Biology Merit Exam, April 10 and 11:Military Magnet Academy, North Charleston, SC
The award from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Precollege and Undergraduate Science Education Program allows the SC Life Project to fund the following items and events associated with the Biology Merit Exam for each of our sponsored schools: