5+ Year Member
Apr 24, 2012
Hey, I'm an upcoming sophomore studying pre-med. I am very new to the concept of research. I know that I am too late to apply for a research position at a local institution, but how do I do research? I know that is a strangely formed question but I don't know how to apply, who to contact to possibly apply, or if there are many requirements. Hopefully I can get some good feedback (if I made any sense).
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7+ Year Member
Jun 17, 2011
New Jersey
Resident [Any Field]
Your right that the summer research programs are closed, but I would suggest contacting pretty much every professor at your school to see if they need/want an undergrad researcher, assuming you're a science major. You'll probably have to work for free, but it shouldn't be too many hours a week and will definitely help your application.

Next fall, look into applying to the summer research programs, they're all over the country and offer a pretty nice stipend.
Jul 10, 2011
As stated above, you need to contact professors and basically ask if they need help and if you could contribute in some way. Look at descriptions of various research projects that professors have going, and see if any of them interest you.

Also, you do not have to limit yourself to typical bench (lab) research, even though this is probably the most common type of research among pre-meds. You can also do clinical research, which commonly involves working directly or indirectly with patients and patient data. In this case, you'd probably need to contact clinicians, so if you're near an academic hospital or medical school, then that's an option. You can do public health research, in which you look at broad-scale community interventions, assess their effectiveness, etc. If you're near a school of public health, consider contacting professors there. There are more options, such as humanities research. Having pursued all of these research paths throughout college, I can assure you that they are all very possible. Bottom line: Figure out what interests you, contact professors and/or clinicians actively doing research, and go from there.
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Discere faciendo
Apr 17, 2012
Medical Student
Bottom line: Figure out what interests you, contact professors and/or clinicians actively doing research, and go from there.
Precisely. :thumbup: I am currently doing clinical research and find it very rewarding, especially since I get to see patients and not rodents and petri dishes. How I got my job: I was taking a class taught by several clinicians and talked to them after lecture about whether I could work with them.
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