What I expect from my
What You can expect
Ball State University
Dept of Biology
I EXPECT FROM MY STUDENTS
- Goals - I see the primary goal of a
Masters of Science degree as exactly that mastering science. As
part of that, I expect all my students to complete all the steps
required by the Department and University to graduate. The research
that is required as part of that degree is no exception. The
research should be original and of good quality. I do not expect
the research to be at the level of a Ph.D. But I do expect quality
work and effort. Traditionally a Masters degree takes 2 years to
conduct. However, all too often in the field-sciences students find
themselves on the 2.5 3 year plan. This is often a result of
needing two field seasons which usually come in the summer.
- Learning/training/grades - I see all
aspects of your time here at graduate school as opportunities to
learn. Many of these are formal opportunities such as classes, but
just as many are informal. These can be everything from working
together in the field to discussing potential projects over lunch.
I expect my students to take advantage of as many of these
opportunities as possible. As for class work, I see classes as a
means to learning information. Grades are simply a representation
of how much of that information you have retained. It is not always
the goal of the student to retain all of the information that is
offered. As such, I dont expect students to get an A in every
class. Students should evaluate what level of knowledge they
require from each course and work to attain that level. I do expect
however my students to get a B or better in most classes.
Lab involvement - I expect my
students to be active members of my lab. I feel strongly that
there should be a family-like atmosphere among those that work in my
lab. By design, my lab is a space for undergraduate and
graduate students to gather and collaborate. I feel strongly
that becoming involved in all lab activities from research to
community service is an important part of involvement in my lab.
Cooperation - I expect my students to
work together as often as possible. Graduate school should not be a
competitive setting. Collaborating with fellow graduate and
undergraduate students is
a great opportunity to learn new and different methods and ideas.
- Time - I prefer not to micromanage
students, I do not expect students to be in their office all day and
everyday. But rather I expect my students to manage their time as
they see fit. I do expect students to meet all deadline and
obligations they have.
- Investment in your future -
As an advisor I can not and will not hand you your degree. You
must make some personal investments in your degree - in your future.
This comes in a variety of forms. Their is the obvious mental
investments that come from your time commitments to develop and
conduct your research. But there is also the investment in
your research to make sure you conduct the highest quality research
you can. This
involves being personally ready to conduct research and doing what
it takes to keep your research moving forward.
At the personal level you are responsible for getting yourself ready
to conduct research. You will be expected to supply your own
personal equipment such as rubber boots, hiking boots, headlamps,
and other field clothing. You will also be expected to use your own
vehicle during your research if and as needed. BSU does not have the vehicles
and I rarely have the resources to provide a vehicle. While I
would never ask you to do anything that would damage your vehicle I
will expect that you to drive as needed. I am usually able to
provide mileage reimbursement for fuel and wear and tear.
Regardless whether its is personal equipment or personal vehicle, you must be ready to face and perform in
the field situations you will find yourself.
From the equipment side, I will provide all general supplies and
equipment needed to conduct your research. However, problems
and situations arise daily when in the field and I expect my
students to do what it takes to keep the research moving forward.
This would include emergency trips to the store to buy duct tape, bailing wire, batteries or
anything else needed to keep things moving forward. Of course
you can expect to be reimbursed for any major purchases.
But I also
expect you to realize that this is your research and your degree and
you can not rely on me entirely for your success.