Laboratory Rotation Requirement

The key for every successful Ph.D. graduate is the relationship with the research advisor. To facilitate their learning about various research projects and lab environments, first-year Ph.D. students participate in laboratory rotations. Prior to the start of the academic year, the department arranges faculty presentations and provides project descriptions for lab rotations to introduce students to the active research in bioengineering. These presentations are typically given during departmental orientation, one week before classes begin. During the lab rotation periods, students are expected to learn key problems and experimental methods/options of the field related to the hosting lab. Students are expected to use the skills/knowledge acquired during the rotation (and potentially any data they collected) in the preparation of the Research Aptitude Examination. The students are expected to continue their advisor/lab search by meeting with faculty members, consulting with other graduate students, and reading up on the research. As a part of the BIOE 605: Bioengineering Graduate Studies I course credit, first-year students are required to attend the weekly Fischell Department of Bioengineering Seminar.

Below is an approximate timeline for lab rotation. Specific dates will be provided each academic year.

    • Before and during the first week of the fall semester, students will be responsible for setting up individual meetings with faculty offering rotations to identify their first lab rotation, beginning the second week of the semester and lasting six weeks. A signed rotation contract from both the student and PI must be submitted to the BIOE Graduate Office to confirm rotation.
    • Students are encouraged to continue meeting with faculty throughout the first rotation to learn about labs and identify their second rotation. Several days before the end of the first rotation, students must submit a signed rotation contract to the BIOE Graduate Office to confirm the second rotation, beginning the eighth week of the semester and lasting six weeks.
    • Students will again be required to submit a signed rotation contract to the BIOE Graduate Office several days before the start of the spring semester to confirm their third lab rotation, beginning the first week of the spring semester and lasting six weeks.