On-Campus Experiences

Currently Unavailable 

Face-to-face engagements, like in-class workshops, are temporarily unavailable due to the COVID-19 pandemic. For the fall 2021 semester (September to January) we will be continuing our virtual offerings to support you and your students. 

If you would like to be notified when face-to-face opportunities become available again and be the first to hear about upcoming events, registration openings, and activated request forms, you can sign up for our semesterly newsletter by clicking the button below.

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 For more information on U of G's response to the global pandemic see  "2019 Novel Coronavirus Information". 

Session List

Climate Change Gardening

Learn how to care for plants in our ever-changing climate. Explore how plants are adapted to survive under a broad range of different environmental conditions. Learn more about plant science here. Not available in March.

Discovering Honey Bees

Visit the Honey Bee Research Centre and get the buzz on bees. Students will learn about honey bee biology, social structure, and how to behave around stinging insects. Students will then have an opportunity to visit the apiary to see different parts of a live hive. Finish with a taste of honey directly from the honeycomb! Only available in September, October, and May due to weather conditions.

Soil Texturing and Biology Lab

Students will participate in interactive exercises using hand textural tests to determine different types of soil texture. The difference in soil textures and its importance to agriculture. environmental planning and urban development will be explored. Learn more about Soils At Guelph.

Soil Testing Techniques

Students will earn how to extract DNA from soil and predict erosion through hands-on activities that focus on environmental sustainability and soil health. Learn more about Soils At Guelph.

Insect Inspectors at The Arboretum

Step outside of your comfort zone and uncover the diversity of insect species in The University of Guelph Arboretum. Students will search for live insects in the environment and identify them with help from a naturalist. Only available in September, October, April and May due to weather conditions.

Insect Identification

Discover and explore Ontario's amazing insect diversity by starting with a look at the insects that occur in and around our homes! Students will learn how to properly use a microscope and examine a variety of preserved insect specimens in this unique workshop.

All About Trees at The Arboretum

Visit one of the most beautiful natural spaces on campus, the Arboretum! Students will walk through The Arboretum with a naturalist to learn about tree identification, disease, conservation, and biology.  Only available in September, October, April and May due to weather conditions.

The Gluten Project 

A short presentation on the Department of Food Science is followed by hands-on activities including a sensory test with gluten-containing and gluten-free bread. The differences in texture and structure are discussed in relation to the role gluten plays in cereal processing.  Students will compare the properties of wheat flour to other cereal flours and discuss the negative perceptions of gluten. 

Exploring Food Chemistry 

Visit the Department of Food Science to learn about the chemistry of food. Students will learn about scientific concepts using food activities including; cold cream versus warm cream to make butter and using egg white to stabilize foams.

Tempered Chocolate

In a short presentation, students will learn the science behind making a chocolate bar. During a hands-on activity, they'll control the structure of the chocolate fat crystals in order to achieve an appropriate mouthfeel. The students will have the opportunity to compare the apparent quality and taste properties of the tempered and un-tempered chocolate bars made by themselves.

Chocolate: Tempering to Tasting

Students will be given the opportunity to temper chocolate (group demonstration), after a short presentation on the physical properties of the fat crystals in chocolate/cocoa butter. The students will have the opportunity to compare the apparent quality and tasting properties of tempered and un-tempered chocolate bars. 

Ice Cream Basics

This activity will cover the basic concepts of ice cream making-- from understanding the importance of the ingredients in the ice cream mix, to uncovering the reason behind the type of freezer used. Students will get the opportunity to use a semi-electric ice cream maker to freeze ice cream. A comparative tasting of different ice cream products will solidify the concepts discussed.  

Product Development: Beverages

Food Science is not just about understanding the scientific principles of taste and chemistry, but also about applying them. In this activity, students will be given the opportunity to be product developers, a very common career for Food Science grads. After a tour of the pilot plants, students will taste a beverage that they will then need to match by adding colour, flavour, acidity, and sugar to a carbonated water base. 

Plant Identification

Challenge your knowledge of plants at Bovey Greenhouse. Learn from a Greenhouse Technician about current plant research followed by an interactive activity where students will work in groups to identify a collection of plants. Not available in March.

Plant DNA Extraction Lab

Get introduced to plant genetics with the Department of Plant Agriculture. Students will extract DNA from plant tissue accompanied by an informative lecture on applications in plant research and breeding. 

Plant Preservation at GRIPP

Visit on the Gosling Research Institute for Plant Preservation and uncover the concepts of plant preservation, conservation and biodiversity. Students will attend a short lecture on plant tissue culture, cryobiology, and plant production system followed by an activity of transferring plant tissue culture in a laboratory setting.

Biomaterials at BDDC

Tour the innovative Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre. Students will be introduced to research focusing on biobased materials like green plastics, plant by-products, and industrial co-products to create products such as compostable coffee pods and car parts. Students will tour the labs where different formulations are engineered and samples are tested for various properties. Not available in January.

There are no more animal themed opportunities for the Winter 2020 semester. Sign up for our Newsletter to get updates for the 2020/2021 offerings.


We are working to develop workshops within the theme of business.  If you are interested in participating in business workshops, email oacoffcr@uoguelph.ca, or fill out a request form and indicate in the notes section of the form that you would like this type of experience.

For questions about on-campus experiences please contact:
Christine Wilkinson, Liaison Officer
273 D Johnston Hall, University of Guelph
519-824-4120, Ext. 58359