Undergraduate Research

Undergraduate Research

Undergraduate Research

ABT students engage in significant research as an important part of their degree program. Students and faculty advisors work to help identify research opportunities in the student's area of interest. The experience our students have working in a lab on a significant research project gives them a perspective and competitive advantage that cannot be found in the classroom.

Flow of the Research Process

Person conducting researchFinding a Research Mentor

ABT 201 is a seminar-style course with researchers from all over campus visiting the classroom and discussing their ongoing research with ABT students.  Students learn about opportunities to work on campus with researchers involved in biotechnology and in companies, government labs, and other universities.

Writing your Proposal 

ABT 301 is designed to ensure the completion of your research proposal. Once you have selected a research mentor and a project, you will complete your research proposal in our Writing & Presentations for the Life Sciences course. You, with the assistance of your mentor and the course instructor, will write and complete your proposal. Since communicating your ideas to the scientific community is also important, you will hone your oral presentation skills by giving practice and formal presentations during the semester.

At some point, everybody is new to a research lab.  ABT 394 allows you the opportunity to learn about the research lab. You may shadow another lab member and learn about the culture in the lab.  You may learn about lab safety, how to care for lab equipment and learn basic lab techniques critical to the function of the lab.  The course is designed to for you to experience the lab at your own pace before you begin your research experiments.

ABT 395 captures your research project. It is not a typical three lectures week and four exams during the semester.  Instead, you go to your research lab and spend your time running your experiments, collecting data, compiling your results and discussing your research with your mentor . You spend time critically thinking about what your are doing and what your results mean. Then, after the completion of your project, you communicate your findings to the ABT community during our student speaker symposium. 

Each year, our program recognizes students who have excelled in research by awarding the Agricultural and Medical Biotechnology Excellence in Research Award.  

Love the research and want more?

ABT 396 is designed to give you college credit for doing what you love, more research. This course gives you the space to continue researching in your favorite lab or it gives you a chance to explore research in another lab, if that is part of your career goals.  Whether you stay in your original lab or change up to a new lab, the hands-on experience can contribute to your life- long learning in science.

Student presenting their researchThe final step of your research project is presenting your findings to the scientific community.  Every student works with their research mentor to develop and present an oral presentation, compose a document describing your research project, explaining your results and conclusions from the experiments you performed.

Each semester, our program recognizes one student who exemplifies outstanding independent research and presentation skills by awarding the Glenn B. Collins Undergraduate Research Achievement Award.

View Past Presentations

Since the inception of our program, ABT students have successfully contributed to published works in peer-reviewed journals in conjunction with their research mentors.

View Student Publications

More on Undergraduate Research

More to Presenting Your Research

Your research mentor may recommend undergraduate student presentation opportunities at the appropriate professional meetings in your research field. Other opportunities include:

Undergraduate Research Funding

    Contact Information

    Esther Fleming
    Academic Coordinator

    N-24C Ag. Science Center North Lexington, KY 40546-0091

    +1 (859) 257-3263