Research Opportunities

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Independent research on faculty projects is a direct way for students to experience real discovery. Studies show that the benefits of performing undergraduate research are numerous  (eg. Lopatto, 2007).  In particular, students report increased gains in independence, motivation to learn, and clarification, confirmation and refinement of career path. Some students even go on to co-author scientific papers with their research mentor.

Michelle Sullivan, a biology major from Urbandale, IA who graduated in May 2014, talks in this video feature about her major in biology, her challenging lab work, and how the creative problem solving of her dance minor complemented her scientific training. Starting in the fall, Sullivan will pursue her Ph.D. in biology.

Research for academic credit

BIOL:4899 (Introduction to Research) – 1 credit hour is equivalent to 3-5 hours per week of research in a lab.  Most students sign up for 2-3 credit hours of research.  You are responsible for finding a research mentor but the research projects are guided (i.e. you don’t have to think up a project on your own).

BIOL:4999 (Honors Investigations) – Limited to students with UI GPA > or = 3.33 and UI Biology Major GPA >= 3.25.  1 credit hour is equivalent to 3-5 hours per week of research in a lab.  Most students sign up for 2-3 credit hours of research.  You are responsible for finding a research mentor but the research projects are guided (i.e. you don’t have to think up a project on your own).  Research credit can be used towards the Biology Honors Program:

Biology Honors Program

Potential sources of funding

One way to get started in a lab is to find a position washing glassware and making solutions for pay on Jobnet.

2014-2015 NASA Iowa Space Grant Scholarship and Fellowship Program

ICRU (Iowa Center for Research by Undergraduates)
http://www.uiowa.edu/icru/ICRUResearchFellowProgram.shtml

IBA (Iowa Biosciences Academy)
http://iba.biology.uiowa.edu/

Department of Biology scholarships and fellowships

Living Learning Community - Honors: Research Opportunities in Natural/Life Sciences