Non-human/human vertebrate

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We are committed to ensuring the Science & Math Expo is conducted as safely as possible. Masks are recommended in indoor spaces on the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse campus and surgical-grade masks are available at all building entrances. The current safety guidelines for this program are available here. We will continue to monitor public health recommendations leading up to the Science & Math Expo and will adjust the COVID mitigation measures and protocols as necessary.

Use/care of non-human vertebrate animals:

The development of the scientific method involving animals must have clearly-defined objectives. Use of vertebrate animals must be to demonstrate a biological principle or answer scientific propositions. Experiments for both vertebrates and invertebrates must be conducted with a respect for life and an appreciation of humane considerations.

It is strongly recommended that living organisms such as plants, bacteria, fungi, worms, snails, insects or other invertebrates be used. Their wide availability, simplicity of care, and subsequent disposal make them very suitable for student work. If a non-human vertebrate project is decided upon, the following rules MUST be followed. No one can give permission for a project that violates the rules. Projects in violation of these rules will not be accepted.

  1. No intrusive techniques can be used, such as surgery, injections, taking of blood, or giving of drugs and other chemical agents to measure their effect.
  2. No changes may be made to the organism's natural environment. You cannot do ANYTHING to the organism and measure its effect. The exception is maze running and other learning or conditioning activities, but food or water cannot be used or withheld for more than 24 hours.
  3. The animals must be properly cared for in well-ventilated, lighted, and warm locations with adequate food, water, and sanitary conditions - including weekends and vacation periods.
  4. Chicken or other bird embryo projects must be terminated at or before ninety-six hours.
  5. Projects that involve behavioral studies of newly-hatched chickens or other birds are not allowed if no change has been made in the normal incubation and hatching of the organism and all vertebrate rules are followed.
  6. Students who have projects that involve non-human vertebrates must complete with their sponsor the Non-human Vertebrate Endorsement form.

Use/care of human vertebrate animals:

Recognizing that human beings are vertebrate animals and yet need different criteria, the following policies will govern the use of human beings. If a human vertebrate project is decided upon, the following rules MUST BE FOLLOWED. No one can give permission for a project that violates the rules. Projects in violation of these rules will not be accepted.

  1. No cultures involving human cultures of any type (mouth, throat, skin or otherwise) are allowed. However, TISSUE CULTURES purchased from reputable biological supply houses or research facilities are suitable for student use.
  2. Projects that involve taste, color, texture, or any other choice are allowed but are limited to PREFERENCE only. Quantities of normal food and non-alcoholic beverages are limited to normal serving amounts or less. No project may use drugs, food or beverages in order to measure their effect on a person.
  3. No blood may be drawn or used by any person or from any person specifically for a science project. This rule does not preclude a student making use of data collected from blood tests not made exclusively for a science project. Blood cannot be drawn exclusively for a science project.
  4. Projects that involve exercise and its effect on pulse, respiration rate, blood pressure, and so on are approved if a valid normal physical examination is on file and provided the exercise is not carried to the extreme.
  5. Projects that involve learning, ESP, motivation, hearing, vision, and surveys present no problem.

Students who have a project involving human vertebrate animals, must complete with their sponsor the Human Vertebrate Endorsement form.