Madison Coyle

Meet Madison Coyle:

Headshot of person smiling with long brown straight hair and a purple blouse.

About Madison

Madison Coyle is a fourth year U of G student studying Biomedical Sciences, exepcting to graduate in 2023 with a BSc. Honours. Over the summer, Madison was hired as an Undergraduate Research Assistant in Dr. Andrea Clark’s lab, researching osteoarthritis in mice, opening new opportunities and larger impact for humans who experience osteoarthritis; something that does not currently have a cure. Before this role, Madison thought research was the same thing over and over again. Now having experienced a research position where each day is different and she is constantly learning new things, it has reshaped the way that she is thinking about her career, and has her considering a Masters in a similar field. Madison shares details of her role, how her perspective on research has shifted, and more about experiential learning. Watch this video to see Madison’s experiential learning in action!

Tell us about your research in the lab you were working in this summer and what you were focusing on. Are you still working there? 

“Our research was looking at the role of integrin α1β1 and TβRII in spontaneous osteoarthritis of the mouse knee. The mouse model we used has been shown to cause fibrosis in other organs, so we are looking to see if the same mechanisms cause fibrosis in the knee. I am still working in Dr. Clark’s lab, currently doing a one semester fourth year project (BIOM*4510) and will be on Work-Study again for the Winter semester.”

What impact do you think the research you were doing is making on the campus, community, and/or workforce? 

“As osteoarthritis is currently an incurable disease, this research opens the door for new pharmacological treatments for individuals suffering with it. This has an extremely beneficial impact on the community which is really exciting to be a part of. 

What's the most exciting thing you learned in this role?  

“I have learned many exciting things in this role, from histological and scientific techniques such as staining, cryosectioning and microscopy, to professional skills such as effective communication and collaboration.”

How did this role shift the way you thought about research?  

“This role has not only introduced me to the research field, but it has also developed my interest to pursue a career in research. Following graduation, I am hoping to complete a Masters in a similar field because of this experience.”

Has experiential learning created opportunities for you to learn and grow? If so, how? 

“Yes, experiential learning has created opportunities for me to learn and grow. Within the roles I have had I have been able to apply knowledge and concepts I learn in class into practice. With this additional hands-on experience, I have become a more effective and well-rounded worker.”

What does it meant to you to have access to the equipment and resources that you use in your role? 

“Having access to the equipment and resources used in my role helps to solidify my understanding and appreciation for concepts and techniques I learned in class. The research we do would also not be possible without the equipment and resources we use so I am appreciative to have access to them.

Are you participating in any other Experiential Learning? If so, what are you doing?  

“Yes, I am participating in other Experiential Learning. I am currently taking Human Anatomy (HK*3401) which we use cadavers to increase our learning.”

What does "Experiential Learning" mean to you? 

“To me, Experiential Learning is learning through experience! For me this has been through hands-on experience and reflecting on what I am doing by myself and with my lab members.”