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Independent Research

Biology 490
  • Before research can begin, the student must discuss the prospective research with her/his supervisor to establish the expectations by student and supervisor. A plan for the project must be formulated and is the responsibility of the supervisor.
  • Students will be allowed to take a maximum of 4 credits of Biology 490 that can count toward the Biology major. If students take more than 4 credits,these will be used as general credit toward the 126 hours required to graduate. Students have the option of taking BIO 490 for zero credit.
  • Biology 490 will normally be a 6-8 hour/week commitment per credit hour on the student's part. Students taking the course for zero credit must spend a minimum of 2 hours per week on the research project.
  • Weekly attendance at the seminars of the Biology Department is required for all students enrolled in Biology 490 (please note that the time listed in the schedule of classes for this course number is the same as the time for Biology departmental seminars).
  • A final product from the research is required. The definition of this project is left up to the individual supervisor, but could include a report written in the format and following the guidelines for a specific scientific journal or a presentation at an appropriate scientific forum such as the Hope College Undergraduate Research Celebration, regional or national meetings of Tri Beta, the Midstates Consortium in Science and Mathematics, NCUR, the annual REU summer research symposium, and meetings of professional biological societies.
  • The grade for Biology 490 will take into account the number of hours worked, the quality and quantity of the data, the record of attendance at the departmental seminars, and the quality of the final product. Students will be assigned a pass or fail grade for BIO 490 if they are taking it for zero credit.

What can I do with a Biology Degree?

Unique programs

We believe that students learn best by doing biology so it is equally important that we provide new and interesting ways for you to do exactly that. The programs below are only available at Hope College, so you won't find these anywhere else.

Unique Biology Programs