Professional Development Short Courses

Date: Sunday, October 6, 2019


Four short courses will be offered at the Québec City Convention Centre, 1000 Boulevard René-Lévesque Est, Québec City, QC (rooms to be announced and/or go to CEW Registration Desk upon arrival)

Short Courses:

1) Go Big or Go Home: the utility and limitations of ecosystem-scale studies

Presenters: Vince Palace (Ph. D.), Mike Paterson (Ph. D.) and Scott Higgins (Ph. D.), International Institute for Sustainable Development, Experimental Lakes Area

Description: A major focus of this short course will be the tradeoffs of large ecosystem level studies, which inherently must sacrifice replication, with environmental realism.

Duration: Half day course; morning

2) An Introduction to Environmental DNA (eDNA) and its Applications 

Presenter: Robert Hanner (Ph. D.), University of Guelph, Caren Helbing (Ph.D.), University of Victoria

Description: The goal of this half day workshop is to provide attendees with knowledge on the current science of environmental DNA (eDNA) methods and their application. Subject matter experts from academia and industry will explain what eDNA is, where it comes from how long it tends to persist. Methodological approaches will be described, starting with sample collection, filtration, and DNA extraction. We will then consider analytical methods for both active/targeted detection of a particular species of interest and passive detection of community assemblages using eDNA, highlighting differences in analytical time, sensitivity and cost between methods. Participants will gain an appreciation for the current strengths, limits, uncertainties and sources of error associated with existing eDNA detection methods. Questions concerning appropriate sampling strategies, study design and data archival will be addressed. Emerging regulatory perspectives on the use of eDNA will also be discussed.

Duration: Half-day course; afternoon

3) Fluorescence spectroscopy opens new windows into dissolved organic matter and contaminant dynamics in aquatic ecosystems

Presenter: François Guillemette (Ph. D.), Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières

Description: Advances in fluorescence spectroscopy provide a rapid and alternative to traditional approaches for characterizing aquatic dissolved organic matter and allows to more comprehensively trace DOM dynamics and its interaction with contaminants. This course will cover the basics of fluorescence spectroscopy, sample preparation, instrumental analysis and spectral correction, modeling using parallel factor analysis (PARAFAC), and data interpretation. Finally, examples of how to integrate fluorescence spectroscopy routinely in current and future research programs will be provided.

Duration: Full-day course

4) Development and Implementation of Canadian Environmental Quality Guidelines in Water and Soil

Presenter: Doug Spry (Ph. D.), Philippa Cureton (M.Sc.) and Kathleen McTavish (B.Sc.) National Guidelines and Standards Office, Science and Technology Branch, Environment and Climate Change Canada; Darcy Longpré, Risk Assessment and Toxicology, Regulatory Operations & Regions Branch, Health Canada; Isabelle Guay, Ministère de l’Environnement et lutte contre les changement climatiques, Quebec

Description: The goal of this full day workshop is to provide attendees with the background, guiding principles, data requirements, derivation procedures, and application of Canadian environmental quality guidelines (CEQGs). CEQGs are developed following Canadian Council of Ministers of Environment (CCME) protocols. They are developed to either protect the ambient environment (e.g. guidelines for protection of aquatic life, wildlife diet) or for the assessment and remediation of contaminated sites (e.g. soil, groundwater and soil vapour quality guidelines). The CCME protocols will be described and discussed. Participants will gain an understanding of the purpose, derivation methods and implementation of environmental quality guidelines. An introduction to site-specific considerations will also be provided.

Duration: Full-day course