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Research Electives & Extended Research

With approval, MSIIIs and MSIVs may execute either a one- or two-month research elective. These electives may be pursued to gain new knowledge in a research or clinical area. Alternatively, these experiences may also be used to deepen a student’s knowledge in a field of interest. Credits from the 1- and 2-month research experiences may be applied to graduation. Under special conditions, students may consider engagement in an extended research elective experience to attain similar goals and to increase the possibilities of achieving research products such as: publications, conference presentations, and fellowships. Extended research electives (longer than 2 months) will not provide graduation credit.

Advising and Approval

All research electives must be approved by the Office of Student Research (OSR) prior to enrollment. An advising session with Dr. Greg Carey, Assistant Dean for Student Research and Education, is required to begin the process. If you are considering a one-month or two-month research elective, please contact OSR at least 6 weeks prior to the start of your intended research elective. Because several items must be evaluated and processed before approval, all research elective application documents should be submitted to the OSR at least 30 days in advance of the start of your elective. Once your research elective has been approved, OSR will forward the approval and the application documents to the Office of Student Affairs (OSA) to complete the registration process.

If you are planning on conducting a research elective or an extended research elective, please complete this Research Elective Interest Form as soon as possible and at least 6 weeks prior to your planned elective or experience. Completing this form will serve as your initial contact with the OSR.


Application items that will be required (details will be provided upon initial contact or advising):

  • Application form
  • Hypothesis-driven project proposal
  • IRB or IACUC determinations (final and documented, not pending) by the time of application
  • Mentor declaration form

For an extended research experience of more than two months, approval from both OSA and OSR is required. When leaves of absence may be involved for extended research electives, please contact OSA first and as early as possible, as this is an extensive process that involves several steps and approvals.

Course Director:
Gregory B. Carey, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Microbiology and Immunology
Assistant Dean for Student Research and Education
Executive Director of Student Research and Community Outreach, OSR
Director of PRISM, UM Scholars and STAR-PREP Student Research Programs

Course Administrator:
Qi Cao, J.D.
Research Coordinator