Frequently Asked Questions

I already have a bachelor’s degree but I am working on a second bachelor’s degree. Can I apply to UBRP?


The UBRP selection committee will consider applications from students who are working on a second bachelor’s degree if they are enrolled in seven credit hours or more AND are “degree seeking.” Students who are ONLY fulfilling course requirements to be able to apply to medical school are not eligible.

I am not a student at the University of Arizona, can I apply to UBRP?

No. Participation in UBRP is restricted to University of Arizona undergraduates. We would like students to be able to continue their research experience beyond a summer experience, which is why we support only University of Arizona students.

Can I earn credit as well as being paid for the work I do through UBRP?

The program policy is that this is negotiated between the UBRP faculty sponsor and the student. Some faculty sponsors are comfortable with allowing students to receive both credit and pay for the hours they work in the lab; others do not feel this is ethical. A frequent compromise is for the student to work for some hours for credit and other hours
for pay.

For example, if a student worked 15 hours a week during the academic year and s/he was going to receive three hours of independent study credit, the student would work nine hours a week for credit without being paid and would report six hours for pay, to total 15 hours per week in the lab. The program policy, however, is to support whatever arrangement the faculty sponsor and the student negotiate.

I am working for a faculty member who is not on the UBRP sponsor list. Can I still be in UBRP and stay in his/her lab?

Yes, if s/he is willing to become a UBRP faculty sponsor. Some of our most active faculty sponsors have been recruited by students in this way. The faculty member should call Carol Bender (520-621-9348), UBRP Director, and she will explain what is involved. If the faculty member wants to sign up, we add him/her to our list.

I can’t stay in Tucson for the summer, can I start UBRP in the fall?

No. We want students to begin work in the summer and to work in the lab full time for twelve weeks or more. This way, the student becomes immersed in a research project that can be carried on during the academic year when s/he has competing demands on his/her time from courses and other commitments. We have found that adding students to the program during the academic year does not work well because the student does not have the large blocks of time available to him/her in the summer. This does not mean that you can’t work in a lab, it just means that you need to find a position for yourself independent of UBRP, and many people do!

I need to take six credit hours of summer school classes to graduate on time. Can I still participate in UBRP?

No. Summer school courses are intensive because they cover an entire semester’s work in only five weeks. The amount of time students must spend on summer school classes cuts into the time they can spend in the lab. We want students to work full time which means NOT taking summer school classes. Summer school is important for some students and a worthy activity. But so is summer research. Each student needs to decide what is best for him/herself.

I have another job on campus, can I still participate in UBRP?

The University has a rule that students should not work more than 35 hours per week if they are not enrolled during the summer and not more than 25 hours per week if they are enrolled (even in a single credit hour). If you are working at two campus jobs, and putting in a credible performance with both, it is likely that you are routinely exceeding these university mandated limits. While you may feel that s/he can do justice to both jobs, the University will not permit students to exceed these maximums on a regular basis.

Can I attend UBRP functions if I am not a part of UBRP?

Everyone is welcome to attend UBRP seminars and datablitzes. Students who are not part of UBRP and who are working in labs can present posters of their work at the annual UBRP conference as long as they have the endorsement of the faculty member in whose lab they are working.

Can freshmen apply to UBRP?

Absolutely! We encourage students to apply as freshmen.

I am not a biology major. Can I apply to UBRP?

Of course. While the majority of UBRP students major in one of the biological sciences, we have had a number of engineering students, students from the social sciences and humanities, and other areas. The UBRP selection committee members look more closely at the student’s reasons for seeking a research experience in biology and how this fits in with his/her career goals than they do at the student’s major.

I have class all afternoon on February 1. Can I submit my application first thing in the morning on February 2?

Absolutely not. The deadline for applications is is firm – no exceptions.

You can always submit the application early. There is no need to wait until the last minute. Late and incomplete applications will not be accepted.