Entering Research, Part I

CTA Wrapper

Students sharing their projects at the Undergraduate Research Symposium.
The Entering Research series helps you get the most out of your undergraduate scientific research experience. Cultivate a productive mentor/mentee relationship, design an experience to meet your research goals, and learn about scientific exchange.
Course Number: 
Students must have a confirmed faculty research mentor for the semester.
Permission from instructor required
Please fill out this form to request enrollment permission: https://go.wisc.edu/9oau8c

Fall 2021


  • Tuesday 9:30 a.m.–10:45 a.m.

Integrated Science 260: Entering Research Part I

One-credit course for students interested in engaging in research, to be taken alongside 1–3 independent research credits in a science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM) field. Students must have a confirmed faculty research mentor for the semester. Learn more about the curriculum here.

If you are an undergraduate working in a research lab (or have a mentor already lined up), the Entering Research seminar series can help you get the most out of your research experience.

If you're just starting out and need help finding a mentor or want to learn more about how to get involved in undergraduate research, visit the Research section of biology.wisc.edu or stop by the BioCommons at Steenbock Library and talk with an Undergraduate Research Peer Leader.

Entering Research Part 1 will give you tools and skills to help you foster a successful mentor/mentee relationship and tailor your research experience to your interests and goals.   

  • Learn about the roles, responsibilities, and relationships that make for a successful research experience
  • Define an independent research project with your mentor
  • Develop your science communication skills through reading, writing, and presenting research

Amber R. Smith, PhD

Associate Director of WISCIENCE & Director of Research Mentor and Mentee Training
Contact Info

(608) 265-0850


Room 118C

445 Henry Mall

Madison, WI 53706

I earned my PhD in Plant Breeding Plant Genetics from UW-Madison and continued my education with a postdoctoral experience centered on developing first-year transition programs for biology students. After working at the University of Michigan in the Center for Research on Learning and Teaching, I joined the WISCIENCE staff as the Director of Mentor and Mentee Training.

I coordinate the Integrated Biological Sciences Summer Research Program, coordinate and instruct the Entering Mentoring and Entering Research courses, and oversee the research peer leadership students.

Outside of work, I love hanging out with family, cooking, and spending time outside.