Opportunities abound for biology students to get their feet wet with meaningful research with the Biology faculty. Summer field classes have taken students to Indonesia, Costa Rica, Honduras, and the Keys/Dry Tortugas where faculty not only bring graduate students but numerous undergraduates as well. Several of these undergraduatess have used Indonesia as the primary location for an honors thesis project, or have simply "gotten a taste" of research in general. Combining international travel and research allows students to learn about entire ecosystems in another country.
Students in tihe Biology Department also have the opportunity to participate in a program called Directed Independent Study (DIS). Undergraduates may apply to work with one or more graduate students in the labs to help them with their thesis work. These students accompany the graduates out in the field where they collect samples and specimens. They assist in maintaining the animals by running water quality tests, scrubbing tanks, and can even help collect data. Undergraduates may take up to 2 credit hours of DIS, and they really get a "hands on" experience with research.
The GED/UWF Science Training in Ecology Program (STEP) is another program designed to provide undergraduate students with cooperative and collaborative scientific research and training opportunities. It is anticipated that most, if not all, research will be conducted at the Environmental Protection Agency, National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory, Gulf Ecology Division, Gulf Breeze, FL (GED) (http://www.epa.gov/ged/).