Undergraduate Research

Undergraduate Research and
Extramural Research Opportunities

  Dear Undergraduate Students,

    Participation in an
undergraduate research project under the direction of the faculty provides an opportunity for outstanding students to explore the possibility of a career as a research scientist. While these research projects are usually conducted within the Department’s facilities, cooperative programs with other academic and industry laboratories, and NSF funded Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) make it possible for students to conduct research projects at extramural sites.

    Students interested in undergraduate research in the Department of Biological Sciences are required to take BIOL 2992 Research Orientation in the fall of their sophomore or junior year. This course helps students match their interests with specific faculty or a specific extramural research opportunity. The course also requires students to do intensive bibliographic research in the preparation of their research prospectus, i.e., a detailed description of their proposed research project.

    Students generally complete their research during the next academic year or during an intensive 9 week period in the summer. The culmination of the student’s undergraduate research experience, whether in the Department of Biological Sciences or at an extramural site, will require the student to produce a senior thesis and may qualify to present the results of their thesis as an oral presentation at the Boland Symposium or as a poster at the annual Appalachian Student Research Forum held in March or the Beta Beta Beta, Southeast Region, annual meeting in April. Academically outstanding students may be eligible for out of state tuition waivers or fellowships based on the recommendation of the faculty.

Departmental Funding Opportunities for
Outstanding Research Students


For more information regarding Research Opportunities contact any faculty member in the Department of Biological Sciences

University Funding Opportunities

Undergraduate Summer Research Fellowship

Announcements and Links to Extramural Research Opportunities

Undergraduate Student Travel to Professional Meetings

Many of ETSU's academic departments offer scholarships to their majors. Click on the "College/Department Scholarships" to find what scholarships your department offers.

Recent Publications with Undergraduates (in bold)

Jones, T.C., Akoury, T.S., Hauser, C.K., Neblett II, M.F. Linville, B.J., Edge, A.A.and N.O. Weber. 2011.Octopamine and serotonin have opposite effects on antipredator behavior in the orb-weaving spider, Larinioides cornutus. J. Comp Physiol. Ser. A, (In Press).

Levy, F., Baker, J. Chen, K., Cooke, G., Liu, Y.S., Walker, E.S., and T. McDowell. (2008) Patterns of spread hemlock woolly adelgid in Carolina hemlock populations. Proceedings of the 4th Symposium on Hemlock Wooly Adelgid in the Eastern United States (Hartford, CT Feb. 12-14, 2008). USDA and Forest Service, pp 169-176.

Johnson JN, Hardgrave E, Gill C, and Moore D (2010). Absence of consistent diel rhythmicity in mated honey bee queen behavior.  Journal of Insect Physiology 56: 761-773.

Martinez, C. , Madrinan, S., Zavada, M.S. and C.A. Jaramillo. Tracing the fossil record of Hedyosmum (Chloranthanceae), a basal angiosperm. Ameican Journal of Botany , (in revision)

Johnson M, Gilliam T and Karsai I  2009 . The effect of infectiousness, duration of sickness and chance of recovery on a population: a simulation study. BIOS 80: 99-104.

Istvan Karsai and Andrew Runciman 2009 . The effectiveness of the “common stomach” in the regulation of behavior of the swarm In Proceedings MATHMOD 09 Vienna Full papers CD volume, 6 th Vienna Conference on Mathematical Modelling.  February 11-13 2009, Vienna University of Technology, Austria. ARGESIM report no 34 (eds. I Troch and F. Breitenecker). ISBN 978-3-901608-34-6. ARGESIM Publishing House, Vienna: 851-857.

Istvan Karsai and Andrew Runciman 2011. The “common stomach” as information source for the regulation of construction behavior of the swarm. MCMDS (accepted).

 Istvan Karsai and Andrew Runciman 2011. The common stomach as a center of information sharing for nest construction. Springer Lecture Notes in Computer Science (accepted).

Shams W. Es Walker, F. Levy, SA REynolds, SM Peterson, FA Sarubbi. 2010 Comparative activity of telavancin and other antimicrobial agents against MRSA isolates collected from 1991 to 2006. Chemotherapy 56:411-416

Recommended Research Program

Sophomore or
Junior Year

BIOL 2992
Research Orientation
2 credits

Academic Year or
9 week summer experience

BIOL 4910
Research in Biology 3-12 credits

Senior Year -
Spring Semester

BIOL 4010
Senior Thesis
3 credits

BIOL 4300
Seminar in Biology
1 credit