For Students Entering Grades 7 – 12

Summer Teen Research Programs
Summer 2024

Experience top-tier, immersive science education with The Lawrence at U.C. Berkeley! Elevate your teen’s learning journey through our unrivaled, hands-on, research-based approach that brings science to life with real-world applications. In one dynamic week, your teen will delve into the college experience, embarking on campus tours, engaging in captivating lab visits, networking with esteemed students and faculty, and exploring diverse STEM career paths.

Four teens work together during mechanical hand construction during the Body Systems Teen Research Program

Registration is open for all grades!

Teen Research Programs
2024

Entering Grades 7-9

A small group of students build a roller coaster construction project

Designing and Engineering Bridges

How do engineers design and build bridges? In this program, you will learn about different types of bridges, including truss bridges like the Richmond–San Rafael Bridge and suspension bridges like the Golden Gate and Bay Bridges. Then, design, build, and test models of bridges as you engage in the engineering process. Non-residential with Optional Residential Add-on
Week of June 24-28

Two students conduct heart investigations during the Body Systems teen research program

Body Systems and Biomedical Innovations

What tools and techniques do doctors use to diagnose and treat illnesses? Scientists have developed all sorts of innovations to help people with chronic diseases and other conditions. In this program, you will explore and deepen your knowledge of body systems, investigate how some of these systems may break down, and explore how scientists and engineers work to solve these problems.  Non-residential with Optional Residential Add-on
Week of June 24-28

A coding instructor is working with a teen during the Coding Nano-Satellites teen research program

Coding and Engineering Nano-Satellites

Satellites are an important tool for scientists and their efforts to explore the deepest reaches of space. In this program, you will explore an exciting real-world application of computer programming. Learn block-based coding to overcome engineering challenges as you build and program your own model satellite for deep space exploration.  Non-residential with Optional Residential Add-on
Week of June 24-28

Two students work together on an electrical engineering project.

Solar Energy and Electrical Engineering

Have you ever wondered what the future of energy looks like? In this program, you will explore exciting solar energy applications while designing and building solar-powered gadgets to solve real-world challenges. Learn electrical circuitry, become familiar with the iterative design process, and hear from engineering professionals about their cutting-edge work. Non-residential with Optional Residential Add-on
Week of June 24-28

Entering Grades
10-12

Students are working together in small groups to build a robot.

Bioinspired Design

Did you know that scientists can study flora and fauna and adapt ideas from nature to solve real-world problems? Explore the exciting field of Biodesign and learn how scientists are taking inspiration from the natural world to spark innovation in biology and engineering. This program is based on the work of, and in partnership with Dr. Robert Full at the Integrative Biology Lab. Non-residential with Optional Residential Add-on
Week of June 10-14

A student conducts a biotech experiment during the Biotech Genetics teen research program

Biotech Genetics

Gene editing is a cutting-edge frontier of science, but how does it work? Explore the exciting biotechnology field and learn how scientists use CRISPR to accurately and efficiently change organisms’ genes accurately and efficiently. This program also explores ethics in the applications of gene editing. Non-residential with Optional Residential Add-on
Week of June 10-14

A group of students work together during the Artificial Intelligence teen research program

Artificial Intelligence

Artificial Intelligence is increasingly impacting our day to day lives, but what makes AI tick? Explore cutting-edge AI technologies, concepts, and ethics as you learn about ongoing artificial intelligence research from Berkeley scientists and experts. This program is offered in partnership with Berkeley Artificial Intelligence Research Lab. Non-residential with Optional Residential Add-on
Week of June 10-14

Two students work together on a laptop during group work in the Social Media teen research program

Science of Social Media

How much time do you spend on social media? Do you think it impacts our attitudes and beliefs on current events? Explore the field of social psychology including core concepts and ethical concerns around social media. You will investigate data from existing research and learn to conduct your own research. This program is based on a Big Ideas course at UC Berkeley, developed by the Nobel Laureate Saul Perlmutter. Non-residential with Optional Residential Add-on
Week of June 10-14

Teens investigate a tide pool during the Marine Biology Teen Research Program

Marine Biology

Have you ever wondered what it takes to be a Marine Biologist? In this residential program, travel to UC Santa Cruz to step into the shoes of a biologist and experience firsthand the investigative work, exciting discovery, and fun of ocean science. Parents are invited to teen presentations at 2 p.m. on Friday. U.C. Santa Cruz, Residential Only
Week of July 21-26

Teens in the Field Ecology Teen Research Program conduct leaf investigations

Field Ecology

Are you interested in conducting science experiments in the great outdoors? In this residential program, travel to UC Santa Cruz to step into the shoes of an ecologist. Learn how scientists study and protect terrestrial ecosystems in the face of climate change. Parents are invited to teen presentations at 2 p.m. on Friday. U.C. Santa Cruz, Residential Only
Week of July 21-26

A mentor is mentoring a teen while they play a chess game together on campus

Residential Add-On

Are you curious about college life on campus? This optional add-on experience will further demystify the college experience and boost teens’ confidence for their unique pathway to college and beyond. Teens will engage in additional after-hours content related to college life, meet current students, and become more familiar with all aspects of life on any campus, including personal insider experiences that our RAs will share.

Optional Residential Add-on can only be purchased in conjunction with a daytime Teen Research Program offered during the same week.

For Entering Grades 7-9

The week begins Sunday, June 23, at 4:00 p.m. and ends Friday, June 28, at 5:00 p.m.

Registration for grades 7-9

For Entering Grades 10-12

The week begins Sunday, June 9, at 4:00 p.m. and ends Friday, June 14, at 5:00 p.m. 

Programs
By Date

Week of June 10-14, 2024*

Entering
Grades
TitleLengthLocationType
10-12Bioinspired Design1 weekUC Berkeley CampusNon-residential with optional residential add-on
10-12Biotech Genetics1 weekUC Berkeley CampusNon-residential with optional residential add-on
10-12Artificial Intelligence1 weekUC Berkeley CampusNon-residential with optional residential add-on
10-12Science of Social Media1 weekUC Berkeley CampusNon-residential with optional residential add-on
*Optional residential add-on begins Sunday, June 9 at 4:00 p.m. Transportation to U.C. Berkeley is not provided.

Week of June 24-28, 2024*

Entering
Grades
TitleLengthLocationType
7-9Designing and Engineering Bridges1 weekUC Berkeley CampusNon-residential with optional residential add-on
7-9Body Systems and Biomedical Innovations1 weekUC Berkeley CampusNon-residential with optional residential add-on
7-9Coding and Engineering Nano-Satellites1 weekUC Berkeley CampusNon-residential with optional residential add-on
7-9Solar Energy and Electrical Engineering1 weekUC Berkeley CampusNon-residential with optional residential add-on
*Optional residential add-on begins Sunday, June 23, at 4:00 p.m. and ends Friday, June 28, at 5:00 p.m. Transportation to U.C. Berkeley is not provided.

Week of July 21-26, 2024

Entering
Grades
TitleLengthLocationType
10-12Marine Biology1 weekU.C. Santa Cruz CampusResidential Only
10-12Field Ecology1 weekU.C. Santa Cruz CampusResidential Only
*Drop off at U.C. Santa Cruz Sunday, July 21 at 4:00 p.m. Transportation to U.C. Santa Cruz is not provided.
*Pick up at U.C. Santa Cruz on Friday, July 26 at 4:00 p.m. Transportation from U.C. Santa Cruz is not provided.
*Teen presentations on Friday, July 26, 2-3 p.m. Parents and family members are invited to participate.

Important Dates

Registration is open for all grades!

Mon. December 13, 2023

Financial Aid Application is open to Members and Non-members

Wed. December 20, 2023

Registration is open to Members

Wed. January 3, 2024

Registration is open to the Public

Mon. April 1, 2024

Last day to cancel for a refund.

Wed. April 24, 2024

Deadline to register using Financial Aid

Wed. May 15, 2024

Last day to register for Teen Programs

One Week Before Your Program Starts

The last day to enter information, including immunization records, into Campdocs is one week before the program starts.

Program Costs

We are committed to offering high quality, hands-on STEM learning for teens. As you can imagine, many of the costs to run these programs have increased. We have worked diligently to reduce costs wherever possible without compromising the quality of the programming. In our continued effort to make these incredible learning experiences available to more families, this summer, we are offering spots at two different prices: (1) the full price, and (2) the subsidized price. If your family is able, we ask that you register and pay the full price and leave the subsidized price option for families in need. You can select the price option, full or subsidized, during the registration process, and no questions will be asked to justify your choice.

Financial Aid

Families who are facing financial hardship and are unable to pay the full or subsidized price, can apply for financial aid. Half- and full-price financial aid assistance is available to a limited number of families through our financial aid application process. Financial aid is prioritized based on financial need, the teen’s prior access to STEM opportunities or mentors, and family exposure to higher education.

Please note: financial aid awards for all middle school programs as well as two high school programs- Bioinspired Design and Artificial Intelligence have been distributed. Some aid remains for Science of Social Media, Biotech Genetics, and BAIR Lab Summer Teen Programs. For BAIR Lab Summer Teen Program, please apply here.

Testimonials

“I loved this program and was excited to go to it every single day! To be honest, this will probably be one of my most memorable experiences in STEM and in general.”

Sunstones at The Lawrence

Teen Research Participant

“It was a great program that sparked intellectual curiosity and new friendships and demystified the college experience. Growth for my teen in so many dimensions!”

Children playing on the DNA sculpture at the Lawrence

Parent of Teen Research Participant

“I loved asking questions and hearing about different people’s experiences in college or STEM careers.”

Two children and a staff member are working together during a science activity.

Teen Research Participant

“It was an amazing experience! The exposure to the scientific method, application, presenting skills, and residential experience. Exposure to college students and the college ambiance were illuminating. New friendships were forged. The Team Leads and the RAs were wonderful.”

The Lawrence Hall of Science

Parent of Teen Research Participant

“It was literally so amazing to visit a research lab. I genuinely realized I wanted to work here in college for sure, and it made me happy to recognize the equipment they were using and ask questions. It all just kind of came together like a puzzle being solved. When our transformation lab resulted in blue bacteria, I felt accomplished because we did it correctly, which gave me self-confidence.”

Children playing on Pheena the Whale

Teen Research Participant

“What could be better: your teen growing academically and socially, with a highly driven peer group, and having the time of their life? Worth every penny and more!”

Students in front of The Lawrence

Parent of Teen Research Participant

“I loved seeing the people teaching us about STEM. They’re all really fun, which shows that STEM doesn’t have to be all work or frustration with errors. That STEM is also about having fun with people who share your interests and want to work with you.”

A young person looks through a telescope of the view at The Lawrence.

Teen Research Participant

“I really liked the dissections we did, as well as being able to observe and touch real human organs. The trip to the neuroscience lab was a real treat, and I enjoyed it immensely.”

A child looks through a telescope.

Teen Research Participant

“Finding areas of STEM during the camp that I found interesting that I wouldn’t have before made me feel like there could be a chance of me pursuing a STEM career.”

A child and an adult work together on a science project at an exhibit at The Lawrence.

Teen Research Participant

“It was so fun. I got to talk with undergrad and grad students who gave me a lot of insight into what life is like for them and their path of how they got here.”

Two young people explore an exhibit at The Lawrence.

Teen Research Participant

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I take a Teen Research Program instead of another summer program?

Our programs stand out for their unparalleled in-depth content and expert UC Berkeley instructors deeply immersed in their respective fields. Your teen is not just acquiring knowledge but gaining invaluable skills across a spectrum of STEM areas. Each program is uniquely crafted to equip your teen with a profound understanding of science and tangible experiences to enrich their college and career journey significantly. Join us because Teen Research Programs are not just informative—but transformative.

Do middle and high school Teen Research Programs take place on the UC Berkeley Campus?

All middle school programs take place this summer on the UC Berkeley Campus in the Valley Life Sciences Building. For high school, all programs, EXCEPT Marine Biology and Field Ecology, also take place in the Valley Life Sciences Building at UC Berkeley. Marine Biology and Field Ecology will occur on the U.C. Santa Cruz campus. More details can be found in the program-specific information.

Will lunch be provided to my teen?

Yes, to help demystify the college campus experience, all teens will eat a campus-provided lunch in the dining hall. Lunch costs are automatically included in the price of the program. Campus dining halls can accommodate most dietary restrictions as part of their regular offerings.

Does my teen need to pack anything?

Yes, all teens should pack a hat, water bottle, and snacks for themselves for the day. For the safety of others, we ask that you not include any food containing tree nuts or peanuts. Lunch will be provided. If your teen requires any medications with them throughout the day, there will be a place for you to share that information in CampDoc. We cannot administer any medications, but we can offer teens a friendly reminder.

Are cell phones and other media devices permitted?

Phones and other devices should be stowed in your bag during program times. Phones and other devices are permitted during breaks and other designated times. The program is designed to increase socialization, collaboration, and small-group work. We strongly encourage you to leave valuables, other devices, and laptops at home. The Lawrence is not responsible for your personal items.

Does my teen need a laptop?

No, we will provide a laptop if it is required for the program. We strongly encourage you to leave valuables, other devices, and laptops at home. The Lawrence is not responsible for your personal items.

When and where do I drop off my teen?

All programs on the UC Berkeley campus run Monday through Friday, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. These times are also the designated drop-off and pick-up times; please stick to them. The drop-off and pick-up location is the north-facing lawn of the Valley of Life Sciences Building to the Free Speech Bikeway. This information will be communicated to you in a welcome email before the program starts. We encourage parents to sign the ‘Teen Program Dismissal Form’ so that teens can arrive and leave independently daily.

Can my teen arrive and leave by themselves?

Yes, we encourage parents to sign the ‘Teen Program Dismissal Form’ waiver so teens can arrive and leave independently daily. They must still make direct eye contact and sign out with their instructors at the conclusion of each day.

Can I drop off my teen late/pick up early when they have medical or other engagements?

Yes, you can pick up your teen before 5:00 p.m. or drop them off after 9:00 a.m. Please let us know as far in advance as possible! Depending on the timing, teens might be located at a range of sites on campus. We encourage parents to sign the ‘Teen Program Dismissal Form’ waiver so teens can arrive and leave independently daily.

Can I register my teen outside of their grade band?

No, for multiple reasons, we do not allow participants to register for programs designed for grade levels other than their own. Since a large portion of each program involves student-driven investigation and exploration, e.g., the design and build of a physical creation or the design and carrying out of an investigation, participants can easily differentiate the challenge level to a just-right place for them. Thank you for understanding.

My teen is registered for the residential component. What should I pack?

A packing list will be emailed to families registered for the residential component. You will need clothing for the week, bedding/ sleeping bag, and personal toiletries.

My teen is registered for the residential component. Can they leave the program?

No, all teens are under our supervision at all times and are not permitted to leave the designated program space at any time. We have multiple outings to and around campus as part of the residential experience. Residential Advisors are always present with teens.

Will my teen receive any form of credit for this experience?

All teens will receive a personalized certificate of completion from UC Berkeley on the last day of the program.

My teen’s needs are unique. How do I communicate that with the staff in advance?

We use CampDoc (also known as DocNetwork), an electronic health record system, to collect participants’ information securely. CampDoc is designed to protect your teen’s privacy while alerting us to details such as allergies or dietary restrictions, medical or medication needs, special learning or social needs, and other home or life situations that might affect your teen’s participation. The information you provide will help us to support your teen safely and to optimize their learning and social experience. We encourage parents to be as transparent as possible. If you would like to discuss your teen’s needs before summer, we would be happy to set up a conversation to discuss how we can best support them. You can email our team at thelawrenceteens@berkeley.edu.

Registration FAQ

Can I cancel or transfer a program for which I am already registered?

All programs are refundable before April 1, 2024, at 11:59 p.m. You will receive a full refund if you cancel in writing before that time. After that, there will be no refund for canceling a program. You may transfer to another program (providing that space is available) if we receive your request in writing four weeks before your start date. Programs are not transferable to another child.

I am a Member of The Lawrence, so why am I not seeing the Members’ price?

We eliminated discounts to Members; instead, Members now receive priority registration for the programs and dates they desire ahead of the general public. To purchase or renew a membership, please view our Membership page . If you have questions regarding membership, please email us at thelawrencemembers@berkeley.edu

Do I get a discount for multiple children or multiple programs?

No, we do not offer discounts for multiple children or multiple programs.

What if I have other questions about registering for programs that are not addressed here?

If you still have any other registration-related questions, please email lhsreg@berkeley.edu

Are any of these programs considered child care and reimbursable through my FSA account?

The University has identified all our programs’ costs as educational, not child care. Educational programs fall into the category “Educational, learning or study skills services” and are not considered FSA reimbursable expenses. Any decision to submit these costs for child-dependent care should be made in consultation with your accountant or employer.

COVID-19 Update

What should I know regarding COVID-19 updates?

Our team continues to track COVID-19 developments and adjust our program accordingly. We will post updates regarding COVID-19 restrictions if conditions change. Covid proof of vaccination is no longer required, but California still requires all other immunizations. The Lawrence does not issue refunds for COVID-related absences.