Biological Sciences

Undergraduate Research

Why Should You Consider Undergraduate Research?

The Department of Biological Sciences encourages undergraduate students to become involved in a research project under the direction of a faculty member. Whether you are planning to go to graduate school or pursue a career upon graduation, one of the factors that often gives our students an edge is the opportunity to engage in research and become familiar with the state-of-the-art instrumentation used in our research today. 

Students often consider enrolling in undergraduate research credits after they have completed foundational courses at the beginning of junior year. However, students are welcome to begin collaborating on a research project at any time. 

Intimidated by research and not sure where to start? Consider attending Undergraduate Research Workshop Series to learn how to identify and contact a research mentor, what to expect when beginning research, and about opportunities for research internships and fellowships for Michigan Tech students.

How You Can Get Involved!


Sign Up for Volunteer Work

Before you commit to research credits or a paid position, you may want to consider volunteering in a research lab first. It's a great way to gain valuable experience while trying out different lab settings! Positions are variable, depending on the needs of faculty members. Simply email a faculty member to see if they have any opportunities in their research group.


Enroll in BL4000 or BL4995 for Credit

Earn credits toward your degree by registering for Research  in Biology (BL4000) or Research in Biochemistry (BL4995). Students in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology are required to take 3 credits of BL4995. Select the number of credits to take based on your desired time commitment, which is approximately three hours a week per credit. Students may register for multiple terms—most projects last longer than 14 weeks.

Prior to registering, you must meet with a professor and obtain permission to enroll. Check our faculty profiles to find a professor doing research in your area of interest. Once you receive permission, please fill out the Undergraduate Research Credit Request Form.


Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships

Students are encouraged to apply to the Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) program, which offers summer fellowships for paid work on undergraduate research projects. Undergraduates conduct research with faculty members for approximately 10 weeks. The program is sponsored by the Office of the Vice President for Research and the Honors Institute. Awards up to $4,000 are available. 


Undergraduate Research Internship Program

All undergraduate students are able to apply to the Undergraduate Research Internship ProgramAward recipients conduct a research project under the guidance of a Michigan Tech faculty mentor during the regular academic year (September-March). Afterwards, they will present their work at the Undergraduate Research Symposium. Awards up to $1,600 are available.