Experiential Learning (EL) Activities

Experiential learning in the Biotechnology department is a cornerstone of the educational experience, offering students invaluable opportunities to bridge theoretical knowledge with practical application in real-world settings. Through hands-on laboratory work, internships, and collaborative research projects, students immerse themselves in the dynamic and interdisciplinary field of biotechnology. In laboratory settings, students engage in experiments ranging from basic techniques such as DNA extraction and PCR amplification to more advanced methodologies like protein purification and cell culture. These experiences not only reinforce theoretical concepts but also foster critical thinking, problem-solving skills, and attention to detail. Internships provide students with exposure to industry practices, allowing them to apply their knowledge in professional settings and gain insights into career pathways in biotechnology. Collaborative research projects offer students the opportunity to work alongside faculty mentors on cutting-edge research initiatives, contributing to scientific discovery and innovation. Through experiential learning in the Biotechnology department, students develop the practical skills, scientific expertise, and professional acumen needed to excel in the ever-evolving field of biotechnology and make meaningful contributions to society.


EL Coordinator: Dr. V Handa


Semester 1: Conceptual Design of PCR primers


Polymerase chain reaction is a facile yet very important application of recombinant DNA technology that has wide range of applications. As part of this exercise, students will be required to design primers for amplification of a region of DNA with given sequence. The design process will ensure good yield of amplification product while avoiding problems of non-specific amplification and primer-dimer formation. The students will be given accession number and approximate position of the DNA to be amplified for a particular goal. The primers are required to be designed for amplification using genomic DNA as template. The students will also propose PCR conditions for the amplification as a starting point for further optimization experimentally, if required.

Faculty Facilitator

Dr V Handa

The basic outline of the activity is:

  • Students typically engage in a variety of activities aimed at understanding the principles, methodologies, and applications of PCR primer design.
  • Students learn about the fundamental concepts underlying PCR primer design, including primer specificity, melting temperature calculation, GC content optimization, and avoidance of primer-dimer formation. They study the principles of primer design algorithms and software tools commonly used in the field.
  • Critically analyze primer design results, considering factors such as primer specificity, potential for nonspecific amplification, and primer-primer interactions. They learn to interpret primer design output and make informed decisions about primer selection based on experimental requirements and constraints.
  • Troubleshoot common issues encountered during primer design, such as primer dimers, hairpins, or off-target amplification.
  • Overall, students engaged in the conceptual design of PCR primers gain a comprehensive understanding of the principles and practices involved in this essential molecular biology technique, preparing them for future endeavors in research, biotechnology, or clinical diagnostics.





Comparison of developed colour in presence and absence of detergent in milk. Relatively more blue colour in lower layer (right side tube) than upper layer indicates presence of detergent in milk.

Faculty Facilitator

Dr O S Qadri

The basic outline of the activity is:

  • Comparison of developed colour in presence and absence of cane sugar in milk using Seliwanoff’s reagent.
  • Limit of detection of cane sugar in milk using resorcinol test.


Semester 3: Development of a solid phase denitrification bio-filter.


Nitrate toxicity causes blue baby syndrome in infants, miscarriages in pregnant women, acute poisoning in cattle, and the formation of carcinogenic compound like nitrosoamines and nitrosoamides. Therefore, nitrate removal from water/wastewater has become an inescapable process to minimize nitrate toxicity.


Faculty Facilitators


Dr. PR Rout

The basic outline of the activity is:

  • The second-year students were given a problem of designing and developing a solid phase denitrification reactor. Particularly, the students focused on the use of waste/by-products as possible carbon sources for denitrification from an economic, environmental, and sustainability viewpoint. The class was divided into15 groups with 4 – 5 students each to work on their idea as a team.
  • The students came up with different types of denitrification bioreactors. Prototype models were designed and produced by the students at the end of the activity. Two groups successfully demonstrated their working prototypes with a significant nitrate removal efficiency more than 90% even after a short treatment time of 6-12 h.


Semester 4: Microbial Fuel Cells: Technology for Sustainable Bioelectricity Generation


A bio-electrochemical system to produce electricity mimicking microbial interaction occurring in nature.


Faculty Facilitator


Dr. Bunushree Behera

The basic outline of the activity is:


  • Focused on enhancing the efficiency of MFCs by optimizing various parameters such as electrode materials, microbial strains, reactor design, and operating conditions. Efforts have been made to increase power output and reduce internal resistance within the cells.
  • Investigate ways to optimize this process for more efficient and cost-effective treatment of wastewater.


Semester 5: Flora Protecting Flora


The non-judicious use of synthetic pesticides results into environmental contamination and adverse health effects. While Punjab is the third highest consumer of pesticides in India, the per hectare consumption of pesticides is the highest in Punjab followed by Haryana and Maharashtra. The multifaceted toxicity, persistence and recalcitrance of these chemicals have attracted research orientation of scientific community towards exploring efficient and cost-effective and eco-friendly alternatives to synthetic chemical pesticides.


Faculty Facilitator


Dr. Jyotsana Mehta

The basic outline of the activity is:


Exploration of various natural pesticides, their easy synthesis methods along with demonstration of explored natural pesticide cocktails for performance evaluation

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