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Undergraduate Research

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Many of the laboratories in the Department of Neurobiology and Behavior offer opportunities for undergraduate students to do original research.  Spaces may be limited and the criteria for being accepted into a lab may vary considerably between research groups, but students with curiosity, ability to ask good questions, and motivation to explore the unknown beyond the classroom will find research richly rewarding.  It is an important first step for students wishing to go toward graduate school or for an MD/PHD degree. 

How to get started. The NBB website offers information about research projects and publications and the Office of Undergraduate Biology offers information to guide students seeking research opportunities. Ultimately the decision about what to work on and where depends on the interests of the student and the individual mentor, so it is a good idea to inquire about the possibility for research directly with individual researcher in the area of interest.  Try to narrow your search by Departments, and by faculty research statements, but be aware of the possibility of working with a graduate student or post-doc on a project within a research group.

Research takes time, so it is good to start early.  Many students get started in a research lab during their sophomore year.  Many students will spend one summer or more in a lab.  If the project is productive and successful, it may result in an honors thesis or a publication.

Here are a few bits of advice about getting started in a lab.

Research is not for everyone.

Plan ahead.

Find the best match to your interests.

Contact individual faculty members.

Be persistent.