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Job ID: 134222

Lab Instruction Support Associate (9611C)
University of California Berkeley

Date Posted Dec. 2, 2019
Title Lab Instruction Support Associate (9611C)
University University of California Berkeley
Berkeley, CA, United States
Department Department of Molecular and Cell Biology
Application Deadline Open until filled
Position Start Date Available immediately
  • Professional Staff
  • Research/Technical/Laboratory

Lab Instruction Support Associate (9611C)

About Berkeley

At the University of California, Berkeley, we are committed to creating a community that fosters equity of experience and opportunity, and ensures that students, faculty, and staff of all backgrounds feel safe, welcome and included. Our culture of openness, freedom and belonging make it a special place for students, faculty and staff.

The University of California, Berkeley, is one of the world's leading institutions of higher education, distinguished by its combination of internationally recognized academic and research excellence; the transformative opportunity it provides to a large and diverse student body; its public mission and commitment to equity and social justice; and its roots in the California experience, animated by such values as innovation, questioning the status quo, and respect for the environment and nature. Since its founding in 1868, Berkeley has fueled a perpetual renaissance, generating unparalleled intellectual, economic and social value in California, the United States and the world.

We are looking for equity-minded applicants who represent the full diversity of California and who demonstrate a sensitivity to and understanding of the diverse academic, socioeconomic, cultural, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, and ethnic backgrounds present in our community. When you join the team at Berkeley, you can expect to be part of an inclusive, innovative and equity-focused community that approaches higher education as a matter of social justice that requires broad collaboration among faculty, staff, students and community partners. In deciding whether to apply for a position at Berkeley, you are strongly encouraged to consider whether your values align with our Guiding Values and Principles, our Principles of Community, and our Strategic Plan.

Application Review Date

The First Review Date for this job is: December 15, 2019

Departmental Overview

The teaching and research activities of the Department of Molecular and Cell Biology (MCB) concern the molecular structures and processes of cellular life and their roles in the function, reproduction, and development of living organisms.

This agenda covers a broad range of specialized disciplines, including biochemistry, biophysics, molecular biology, structural biology, genetics, genomics, bioinformatics, cell biology, developmental biology, tumor biology, microbiology, immunology, pathogenesis and neurobiology.

Under general direction, this position is responsible for planning and coordinating the presentation of Biology 1A Laboratory course, and assists with the administration of both the Biology 1A and Biology 1AL courses. Topics of study covered by the course include areas of cell biology, biochemistry, genetics, molecular biology, anatomy, and physiology.


Organization, Planning, and Implementation:

  • Coordinate with Supervisor and Academic Coordinator to plan, organize, and implement the laboratory exercises for the Biology 1AL Laboratory Course and to provide some administrative support for both the Biology 1A and 1AL courses.
  • Oversee the preparation, set-up, maintenance, and take down of instructional materials for the weekly laboratory exercises.
  • Determine quantities required, order/obtain/gather/schedule preparation of materials in a timely manner to meet required deadlines considering space limitations and available staffing resources.
  • Preparations include setup of equipment, instruments, and materials within the fields of cell biology, biochemistry, genetics, molecular biology, anatomy, and physiology (i.e.preparing complex solutions, media, enzymes, various live cultures (amoeba, paramecium, fruit flies), rats for dissection, etc.).
  • Test to ensure the accuracy of the preparations with required experimental specifications, and produce back-up experimental results materials and data for classroom analysis in the event that student experiments fail.
  • Prepare DNA samples and reagents for use in class experiments, and for submission to the DNA sequencing facility.
  • Prepare sequencing data for use by GSIs and students, and help with sequence analysis.
  • Review schedules, content of lab exercises and inventories of supplies, instruments, and other instructional materials to ensure all are present in classrooms in the required quantities and in operating condition for each laboratory section.
  • Coordinate the resetting and restocking of supplies, equipment, and fresh experimental material between each lab period; the collection and disposal of animal and hazardous wastes; and the cleaning, checking functional status, and storing of instruments and equipment at the conclusion of weekly lab exercises.
  • Maintain teaching laboratory in clean and orderly condition.
  • Serve as work lead of a cooperative team to train, direct, and oversee junior staff in the performance of all support functions for the teaching laboratories.
  • Plan and schedule work assignments, and follow up on results.
  • Assist the Academic Coordinator and Unit Manager in training the GSIs by demonstrating appropriate techniques, experimental procedures and the use of equipment, and answer questions regarding details of the lab exercises to prepare the GSIs for teaching the lab exercises to the students.
  • During laboratory periods, respond to request for assistance from GSIs and students regarding the lab exercise materials and the use of lab equipment, replenish depleted supplies, perform minor equipment repairs or replace non-functional equipment, and troubleshoot problems with experiments.
  • Provide technical support and troubleshoot problems with audiovisual, microscopic, and other laboratory equipment.
  • Provide technical computer support and troubleshooting assistance to GSIs and staff.

Technical Preparations:

  • Perform preparations of required special materials. Independently perform and oversee preparations of biological materials required for lab exercises using microbiology and molecular biology techniques including the culturing of bacteria and yeast, PCR, gel electrophoresis, replica plating, and fruit fly colony maintenance and crossing.
  • Maintain cultures and stocks of various microorganisms and DNA samples.

Participation in Course Quality Maintenance and Development:

  • Meet with Supervisor, Faculty, Academic Coordinator, and Graduate Students Instructors (GSIs) to discuss the preparation and refinement of lab exercises.
  • Explore improvements in laboratory exercises and procedures by researching and testing the selection of new materials and laboratory equipment.
  • Research changes in procedures to reflect current practice in research laboratories.
  • Run pilot experiments to determine optimum conditions for classroom use, and to ensure proper functioning of lab equipment and materials.
  • Recommend changes and updates of the Student Lab Manual to Supervisor and Academic Coordinator.
  • Revise the Lab Preparation Manual to update procedures and incorporate approved changes.
  • Enter revisions to the Student Lab Manual and Lab Assignments documents each term, and prepare the documents for printing.
  • Design/create/update signs, labels, displays, and digital/video instructional aids to improve classroom instruction and reflect changes in lab exercise procedures and content.

Operational Management:

  • Organize and maintain cleanliness of work and storage spaces to promote efficient and orderly function.
  • Regularly inventory chemicals and supplies, and restock as necessary to meet operational requirements.
  • Work cooperatively to perform the maintenance and inventory of equipment and instruments, and recommend replacement or repair to the Unit Manager.
  • Particpate in annual Lab Self Inspections.
  • Perform a yearly inventory of chemicals in accordance with campus EH&S regulations.
  • Coordinate collection, pack, label, and arrange disposal of laboratory wastes in accordance with EH&S regulations.
  • Work with Safety Officer (Unit Manager) to ensure classrooms and workspaces are free of hazards and laboratory practices comply with Cal OSHA and campus EH&S regulations.
  • Follow standard occupational safety and health procedures (SOPs), and report all safety and health-related incidents, issues, and deficiencies to the Unit Manager.
  • Prepare SOPs for lab procedures involving hazardous material.
  • Prepare and update lab maintenance task checklists for use by staff and student workers and monitor completion of tasks.
  • Update and maintain files of lab procedures, recipes, and lab exercise preparation and maintenance instructions.
  • Ensure animal handling, euthanizing, and use are all in compliance with established Animal Use Protocols and Standard Operating Procedures.
  • In consultation with Supervisor and Faculty Advisor, recommend improvements to facilities, replacement of obsolete teaching equipment, or the acquisition of new equipment (research, evaluate and recommend model types that best fit the needs of the course).

Administrative Support of Biology 1A and Biology 1AL Courses:

  • Printing and assembly of exams to be given to students.
  • Assist with proctoring if needed. Scanning and performing grading analysis of multiple-choice sections of students' examinations.
  • Printing exam score reports and preparing exams for return to students.
  • Transfer students' exams into electronic files. Coordinate storage of exams for 13 months as required by University, and arranging document shredding when due.

Required Qualifications
  • Demonstrated ability to develop, write, and institute complex protocols, and experience with the following techniques: microbiological culturing, DNA preparation, gel electrophoresis, PCR, DNA sequencing, microscopy, spectroscopy, physiological monitoring.
  • Demonstrated ability to handle, euthanize, and dissect rats.
  • Demonstrated broad knowledge of instructional support function.
  • Creative thinking, independent judgment, and critical analysis to develop and implement new experiments and improvements to the existing Bio 1AL curriculum.
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently or as part of a team, organize work assignments, establish priorities, develop appropriate recommendations and solutions, and ensure completion of multiple projects to meet all deadlines.
  • Ability to maintain oversight as well as accuracy and careful attention to planning and detail.
  • Effective interpersonal, customer service, and oral/written communication skills.
  • Ability to develop and maintain cooperative, effective working relationships with students, instructors, and staff, including individuals from a wide variety of cultures and backgrounds.
  • Proficient computer skills using software including, but not limited to: web browsers, e-mail, MS Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint), Adobe Creative Suite (InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator), Google Apps Suite, FileMaker.
  • Ability to work safely and independently at remote locations when collecting specimens.
  • Ability to become familiar with and follow applicable lab safety procedures and requirements, as well as hazardous materials disposal guidelines.
  • Ability to develop instructional display materials, and to assist in the production of audiovisual aids for teaching laboratories.
  • Some weekend and holiday work.
  • Bachelor's degree in Biological Sciences and 3-5 years of laboratory experience, and/or an equivalent combination of education and experience.

Preferred Qualifications
  • Ph.D. in Biology or closely related discipline or equivalent education/experience.
  • Proficiency with web authoring software/tools in a multi-platform environment.
  • Ability to design, construct, and maintain course webpages for University courses.
  • Proficiency with audiovisual production (Adobe Premiere Pro) and ability to create videos for teaching laboratories and webcasts.
  • Work experience within the field of instructional laboratory support, or in an academic department of a large institution.
  • Knowledge of or ability to learn the UC Berkeley organizational structure and administrative policies and procedures, such as accounting, personnel and purchasing.
  • Knowledge of or ability to learn safety and EH&S procedures, processes, regulations, and policies.
  • Knowledge of or ability to learn Department policies and procedures.

Salary & Benefits

This is an exempt, monthly paid position. Annual salary is commensurate with experience within the range of $55,098.90 - $80,280.42, Steps 1.0 - 20.0.

For information on the comprehensive benefits package offered by the University visit:

How to Apply

Please submit your cover letter and resume as a single attachment when applying.

Driving Required

A valid driver's license and DMV check for driving record is required.

Other Information

This position is governed by the terms and conditions in the agreement for the Research Support Professionals Unit (RX) between the University of California and the University Professional and Technical Employees (UPTE). The current bargaining agreement manual can be found at:

Conviction History Background

This is a designated position requiring fingerprinting and a background check due to the nature of the job responsibilities. Berkeley does hire people with conviction histories and reviews information received in the context of the job responsibilities. The University reserves the right to make employment contingent upon successful completion of the background check.

Equal Employment Opportunity

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or protected veteran status. For more information about your rights as an applicant see:
For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy see:

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