In compliance with Indiana University’s policies regarding COVID-19, we are cancelling the 2020 Summer Research for Undergraduates program.
NSF Research Experience for Undergraduates
Get a jump start on your research
A small group of undergraduate students—usually about 10—comes to Indiana University each summer to engage in animal behavior research that involves neuroscience, cognitive science, and molecular approaches as well as traditional fieldwork and behavioral analysis. This work is made possible through the Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) in Animal Behavior.
Funded by the National Science Foundation, the REU program has been running since 1990 and is one of the most successful undergraduate summer research programs in the country. It offers talented undergraduates a unique opportunity to conduct key research and gain valuable skills while exploring career opportunities in the sciences.
- Frequently asked questions + answers about the REU Program
1. I graduate in the spring. Am I eligible to apply?
ANSWER: The REU program is funded by the National Science Foundation. The eligibility criteria for applying is: - Applicants must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States. - Applicants must be enrolled as undergraduate students during the REU program. - Program participants must not attend classes or hold outside employment during the term of their internships.
2. My school does not have a numerical GPA. How should I enter my GPA on the REU application?
ANSWER: Please write a note regarding your school’s grading system. Most schools’ post their grading systems on the transcripts.
3. Is there a minimum GPA to be eligible to apply to your REU program in Animal Behavior?
ANSWER: We do not have a minimum GPA to be eligible to apply. However, we receive many applications for 10 internship positions making the program very competitive. In addition to academic ability, our program looks for good matches of interest between interns and the labs they enter, so think about the research that most interests you before you apply.
4. I transferred schools in my sophomore year and now I’m a senior. Do you want transcripts from both schools?
ANSWER: Yes, please send transcripts from schools you’ve attended as an undergraduate.
5. My school’s semester ends June 15th. Am I eligible to apply and arrive after the program starts?
ANSWER: The first week of the course has several important components needed for the duration, so we generally do not accept people who are going to have to miss significant portions of the program.
6. Is it okay to have letters of recommendation from Jobs?
ANSWER: Your letter writers should be familiar with your academic or research work. We accept letters of recommendation from current and previous employers, associate instructors or teaching assistants, professors, and advisors.
7. I didn’t receive an email confirmation after I submitted my application. How do I know you received my application?
ANSWER: Please check your junk/spam mail and if you don’t find the confirmation email please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org asking if we’ve received your application. You might also check with your letter writers to be sure they have received an email from the program with instructions for uploading a letter of recommendation.
8. My letter recommender said she didn’t receive an email from you with instructions on uploading my letter of recommendation. Who should I contact?
ANSWER: Please ask your letter writer to check their junk/spam mail. If they don’t find the email ask them to send their letter to
email@example.com and we will add it to your application.
9. When will the internship decisions be made? How will I know if I’ve been chosen?
ANSWER: The review process starts immediately following the application deadline and ends when all 10 internship positions are filled. Mentors contact applicants they are interested in either by phone or email to discuss a potential research project. The program director sends chosen applicants an email offering an internship.
10. I made a mistake on my application. How do I correct it?
ANSWER: If it’s a minor error you can send an email requesting we make the change for you, otherwise, you can resubmit an application and let us know to delete the first one.
Applications for 2020 REU Program in Animal Behavior are available November 1, 2019 to February 15, 2020.
2020 Program cancelled due to Covid-19 pandemic.
Indiana University REU Program in Animal Behavior
Every summer, the Center for the Integrative Study of Animal Behavior (CISAB), with generous support from the National Science Foundation, invites ten talented undergraduates to Bloomington, Indiana to work with IU faculty on individualized research projects in animal behavior.
The REU schedule
During the first two weeks, interns divide their time between group training activities and their home laboratories. Group training activities include research seminar presentations, hands-on training in field and laboratory techniques, a trip behind the scenes at the Indianapolis Zoo, and a workshop on research ethics.
For the remainder of the summer, students conduct individual research projects under the guidance of their mentors, preparing final presentations of the results. They can also attend brief workshops on taking the GRE, applying to graduate school, and designing professional presentations in Power Point.
Benefits offered by REU
With the help of the National Science Foundation, the Animal Behavior REU program provides each student with the following during the 10-week program:
- A single occupancy room in the Ashton Residence Center
- A basic meal plan for on-campus dining
- Travel expenses
- A stipend of about $5000
- Stipends depend upon available funds
Bloomington offers culture, nature, + action
Located in the heart of Bloomington, IU is a Big Ten university with a national reputation for research in the sciences. The city is nestled in the hilly, wooded countryside of southern Indiana near local lakes, state parks, and the Hoosier National Forest. It is conveniently located one hour south of Indianapolis (home of the Indy 500, the Colts and the Pacers, and the largest children's museum in the US), 2.5 hours from Cincinnati, and 4 hours from Chicago.
The area offers a variety of outdoor activities including biking, boating, caving, camping and hiking, as well as a rich cultural life of music, museums, and restaurants. An extensive public bus system can take you anywhere you want to go.Explore Bloomington
I had an extraordinary REU experience. I learned a great deal about how to properly and professionally conduct research. The experience improved my writing skills and showed me that I am capable of reaching my goals. I will use the knowledge and skills gained with me throughout the rest of my academic career. The program was very warm and welcoming, with many mentors helping us along the way. I loved my experience and highly recommend other motivated students to apply to the CISAB REU program.Taran DePaola, Senior, Psychology Major at Northern Arizona University
The REU is sponsored by the Center for the Study of Integrative Animal Behavior. We represent more than 40 Indiana University faculty members whose primary homes are in biology, psychological and brain sciences, anthropology, neural science, and the medical sciences.
Many of these researchers and their postdocs, technicians and graduate students are available to REU interns each year as possible summer mentors. Previous REU interns have studied the behavior of a wide variety of animals, including birds, bats, hamsters, lizards and insects.
The National Science Foundation offers many REU Programs across the United States.
I am grateful for having been part of the 1995 CISAB-REU program and have had a very successful career in part because of the opportunity afforded to me.Dr. Mabel Lopez, Director for Mental Health Services at Florida Spine and Brain; Chief of Psychiatry and Psychology for Lee Memorial Health Systems