Undergraduate Education Program

Gonzaga University

Jeff Watson
Spokane, WA
June 2014

The benefits of undergraduate research are many, for the student and the institution.  As universities seek to increase access to undergraduate research, they quickly run into a lack of space, money and faculty mentors to effectively provide these experiences.  A team at Gonzaga University seeks to show how their “linked experimental system” model can overcome these limitations.  This model links multiple teaching laboratory courses through a common experimental system.  In doing so it promotes multidisciplinary learning, provides an extended time frame over which to accomplish a scientific study, and offers the ability to learn from and expand upon the work of previous cohorts of students.  All of these replicate many aspects of a research laboratory and are not characteristic of traditional teaching laboratories.  To fully develop this pilot model and expand it to other areas of the curriculum, the team will acquire scientific equipment and complete and expand the materials necessary for a robust experimental system.  They will also host faculty workshops, first in the initiating departments of biology and chemistry, and later across the Gonzaga campus.

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