All students enrolled in the Science Learning Communities this Spring will complete a collaborative research project. Facilitated primarily through Seminar II, a true academic seminar class, successful completion requires the synthesis of knowledge from all of your courses. As a Science Learning Community project, all students enrolled in the Learning Community sections of Biology and/or Chemistry must complete the project, whether or not enrolled in Seminar.

Your challenge this semester is to design and conduct an observational research project utilizing an appropriate statistical analysis to test your hypothesis. You may opt to use the Chi-Square test that most of you learned in Biology 1406 or you may use other statistical tests that you may be familiar with, such as T-test, ANOVA, or linear regression/correlation.

You will work as a research team with 4-6 classmates to design and conduct a science investigation- from idea formulation to publication/presentation. Together, you must decide on a research question related to biology or ecology to drive your experiment. Your task is to choose something interesting either on campus or nearby, develop a research question and safely investigate your question as a scientific team. This is not a lab assignment so you must choose something that is non-hazardous. Answering your research question is through observation only; no tests involving humans or physically interacting with or influencing your research subjects in any way! The data gathered must be strictly observational, and NO you cannot observe humans! After determining a suitable research question, you will formulate a hypothesis and design an experiment to gather sufficient amounts of data to test your hypothesis. In your investigation, you must use statistics to test a hypothesis.

You will complete various assignments in Seminar to help guide you through the development of your research project, including the formulation of a Collaborative Research Contract, an Annotated Bibliography an Experimental Design, and a pilot study. In Composition, you will do the background research to help you further understand your research area. Each team is also required to prepare a formal Interdisciplinary Research Proposal and present it as a PPT during Seminar class.