Welcome to the Ugly Bug Contest Homepage

Welcome to the Oklahoma Microscopy Society's Ugly Bug Contest Homepage! This page is produced by the Oklahoma Microscopy Society (OMS) as a part of its educational outreach program. Navigation buttons are provided in the margin at the left for your convenience.

Announcement: PBS is premiering their "Beauty of Ugly" show, this Sunday November 18th at 7pm CST


- The 2006 Contest is on! Download an application and the new rules.


- 2005 Contest poster. Click on the poster image to see a larger version.

2006 OMS Ugly Bug Contest Winners are In! - Click here to see the winning bugs.

Click here to see the 2006 Ugly Bugs!

Flea Image

The Ugly Bug Contest is one component of the Oklahoma Microscopy Society (OMS) outreach program, called 'SCOPE. The goal of 'SCOPE is "to promote the awareness and usage of microscopy; as its own science, as an element of scientific literacy, and as a tool for stimulating scientific curiosity and discovery." To that end, we began four years ago to provide hands-on microscopy curriculum units, as well as microscopy videotapes and books,to elementary school teachers in areas where OMS members live and work. As part of the program, a society member is available for consultationFlea Image and classroom visits and offers a follow-up tour to their own microscopy laboratories. We now have kits in Tulsa, Bartlesville, Norman, Stillwater, Yale, Coyle, South Coffeyville, Pawhuska, Oklahoma City, Perkins, Little Axe, Perry, and Broken Arrow. As demand for the kits increased beyond our ability to fund them, we looked for a project that would allow us to reach many more classrooms. Inspiration struck when we heard about an "Ugly Bug Contest", run by Marilee Sellers of Northern Arizona University as part of the Flagstaff Festival of Science. We adapted her format for a state-wide contest, and in 1997 ran a pilot, inviting 70 schools to participate. Now, yearly, every elementary school in the state is invited to enter in hopes of winning the microscopes and other microscopy learning materials offered as prizes. Enthusiasm from all parties involved in the contest, from the OMS volunteers to the students, runs high and OMS hopes the Ugly Bug Contest will be an annual event for years to come.

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This page is maintained by Gregory W. Strout, Noble Electron Microscopy Lab, University of Oklahoma. Please address any comments or inquiries to gstrout@ou.edu. As with most web pages out there, these are still under development, so any suggestions for improvements, useful links or information abo improvements, useful links or information about defective links would be appreciated.

This page was last revised October 13, 2006.