All biochemistry majors are required to do a minimum of 3 credits of BCHM 49800 research as part of their capstone project. Honors students are encouraged to register for BCHM 49900 one time. BCHM 29800 is offered for freshmen and sophomores wanting to get an early start in undergraduate research.
Step 1: Find a professor willing to work with you in his or her lab. See Our Faculty page for descriptions of research done in Biochemistry professors’ labs. Search other departments' faculty research pages if you would like to do your project in another department.
Step 2: (Skip this step if you are working with a Biochemistry professor.) If your professor is from another department, the project needs to be approved by your Biochemistry academic advisor. Write a description of your research and send it via e-mail to your advisor. He or she may have some follow-up questions for you. It is important to note that this description should be written by the student and not by the research supervisor.
Step 3: Discuss with your research supervisor how many hours you will work on the project each week. A minimum of five hours per week in the lab corresponds to 1 unit of credit during a regular 15-week semester. During the 8-week regular summer session, students will earn 1 credit for 10 hours of research per week. During the 4-week Maymester session, students will earn 1 credit for each 20 hours of research per week. In general, one credit requires approximately 75 hours of research. Any activity relevant to the student's research experience (e.g. attending lab meetings, reading necessary literature, etc.) will count toward the approximately 75 hours of work per credit hour.
Step 4: If you have not already done so, you must complete safety training before you can enroll in BCHM 29800, 49800 or 49900, or work in a lab for pay. Review the University’s Chemical Hygiene Plan manual, then meet with your labs' principle investigator (PI) or his/her designee to be trained on laboratory specific safety and personal protective equipment:
Chemical Hygiene Plan (Two parts)
Part 1: Basic Lab Safety Fundamentals:
a. Go to https://purdue.vividlms.com/
b. Register to create a new account and login
c. Complete the 3 modules and take the exam
d. Print the certificate and bring it to BCHM 120.
Part 2: Laboratory Specific Chemical Hygiene Plan:
a. Read the CHP manual: https://www.purdue.edu/ehps/rem/documents/programs/chp2014.pdf
b. Print out the form under Appendix A and take it to your research lab's principal investigator (PI) to discuss laboratory-specific safety. Sign the form and bring it to BCHM 120.
Personal Protective Equipment:
This training should be performed by your research lab's principal investigator (PI) or your immediate supervisor. Complete and sign the form. Your PI must also sign the form.
Deliver the completed forms to the BCHM Main Office (120).
Step 5: Log into myPurdue and go to the Registration tab. Choose "Use the Scheduling Assistant" and select the correct term. In the first open box, type in the CRN for your professor's section (find in myPurdue - Look Up Classes), BCHM 29800 or 49800 should pop up. Be sure to select the one with the same CRN from the drop down list. It will require you to seek permission, which comes to the department for approval. Once approved, you will need to go back into the Scheduling Assistant and click on the approval (highlighted) and resubmit your schedule. This will register you for the default of 1 credit. If you want more than 1 credit, you will need to go back into the Scheduling Assistant and request the number of credits you and your professor agreed on. There's a short YouTube video on how to do that.
Step 6: Download the syllabus so you and your research supervisor have guidelines to follow:
2nd half-semester (8-week) versions of these are also available: