Information for students

Biology Colloquium Project

BIOL 1093, Biology Colloquium: Directed Study


  1. In order to do a project, you must have already been a colloquium student for one semester and be concurrently registered in the Biology Colloquium class (Biol 1020).
  2. Projects are worth one semester credit.
  3. Due to the University's definition of one credit, the minimum time requirement is three hours per week, or a total of 45 hours per semester. Time and depth of involvement beyond this is encouraged, but not required.
  4. Projects cannot be affiliated with paid employment. Current jobs in labs, hospitals, etc., will not be approved due to University policy. Projects are strictly volunteer positions, but may and often do lead to paying positions.
  5. A signed, completed “pink” project form must be submitted after your project has been arranged. This form will be re-submitted at mid-term and at the end of the semester.
  6. A mid-term evaluation should be made with one of the Biology Colloquium project coordinators. This is to discuss progress, problems or further questions.
  7. The final report will be either a five page write-up or a short (ten minute) presentation to the Biology Colloquium class at the end of the semester. Biology Colloquium Project Coordinators must know before the 13th week if you are doing a presentation so arrangements can be made.

What to do

  1. Identify areas of interest: Research opportunities are available in areas of medicine, animal sciences, microbiology, ecology, plant biology, biochemistry, genetics, and many other areas. There are projects available in every biology-related department on both campuses, so pick one in which you are truly interested.
  2. Find a faculty sponsor: The project book, a 3-ring binder, located in 303 Bell Museum, has hundreds of names and phone numbers of researchers interested in assisting colloquium students in a mentor-type program. Although some have minimum course requirements, many accept undergraduates who may have little biology background. Individual faculty interest sheets contain information about project location, job description and area of research.
  3. Contact faculty sponsor: The forms also contain names and phone numbers of each faculty member. When contacting your sponsor, make sure to identify yourself as a "biology colloquium student" and explain your reasons for calling (see help sheet). They will usually ask for an informal "interview" to discuss potential projects. Make sure you inquire about a time table, length of project and specific duties before starting your project. Anyone uncomfortable with contacting faculty members by phone should ask for assistance from the project coordinator or your group leader.
  4. Submit project form with the faculty sponsor's signature: These sheets are used by the project coordinators to assure that everyone registered has a project. Anyone not having a project by the end of the second week should seriously consider dropping the project credit, or you will be in danger of receiving an "N." Submit the “pink” copy of the project form to the Biology Colloquium Project Coordinator by the end of the second week.
  5. Do project: A mid-term progress evaluation must be completed by your faculty sponsor. Submit the “yellow” copy to the BCQ Project Coordinator by the end of the 7th week.
  6. Submit the signed project form: Submit the “white” form at the end of the semester along with the reports.
  7. Write a five page paper or give a short (10 minute) presentation on last day of class.