Doing scientific research is not easy, nor does it come with an automatic pay check! While there are many ways to be involved in academic research, there’s one way that most people don’t know about. This way isn’t necessarily more or less important than others, but it can help you get closer to having your work recognized as legitimate science.
In fact, being involved in scientific residencies and fellowships is one of the best ways to contribute to academia while also improving your personal life. Not only do these opportunities give you experience working in professional settings, they often provide valuable connections for future career paths.
Talk to the researcher(s)
As mentioned before, there are many ways you can get involved in scientific research. One of the easiest is to talk to the researchers directly!
Meet with the other members of the project team, either at their workplace or via online meeting tools like Zoom or Google Hangouts.
You may also find it helpful to attend local events where the scientists will be speaking about different aspects of the project.
By attending these events, you would not only learn more about the work being done, but you would also meet other professionals in your field who could help you advance your career later on.
Blog post: What is Thesis Writing?
Bullet point: Definition and examples
The main difference is that a thesis must make a claim or argument based on something established or certain.
This typically involves another topic or idea as a basis, then extended discussion or analysis using valid reasoning.
A good example of this is an article written about why students should consider studying science. You could use engineering instead of just “science”, so that version of the article would be wrong.
That wouldn’t really apply here because engineers already study science (or physics at least)! A better example might be “Why teaching children mathematics makes no sense” or “How math education harms kids”. Both of those articles make logical points so they’re good sources for ideas.
Make a list of topics you would like to explore
Now, as mentioned before, being involved in scientific research is more than just signing up for studies at academic institutions. There are many ways to get involved in scientific research, outside the classroom!
There are several different types of researchers that can appeal to various people. Some may be interested in doing clinical trials, while others may want to test products or procedures on small groups or themselves.
Some individuals may be seeking funding to conduct their own experiments, whereas others may simply enjoy putting together new technologies or exploring potential applications for them.
No matter what kind of scientist you aspire to become, there are always opportunities to contribute. All it takes is some effort to find out who needs your help and how you could best provide it.
Write down some possible experiments you would like to try
Running an experiment is not as simple as going up to someone and asking them if they want water or milk with their cereal! Doing scientific research involves experimenting with things or concepts to see how well they work.
For example, there are many ways to test whether adding probiotics to your diet helps improve gut health. Probiotic supplements contain live microorganisms that can be consumed orally.8-10
You can also make your own probiotics by ingesting certain foods or purified bacteria strains. Nutritionists recommend eating a balanced diet to ensure adequate nutrition and wellness of your body.
By incorporating more foods that include probiotics into your daily routine, you can help promote digestive health.9
There are several different types of probiotics that have been shown to aid in weight loss and overall wellbeing. By choosing which ones are needed, you can maximize benefits while minimizing unnecessary risks.
Organize a lab kit
One of the first things you will need is some equipment for your laboratory. This can be anything from test tubes, pipettes, plate washers, laminar flow hoods, micro-plates, micropipettes, and more!
You do not have to buy all of these pieces at once, but it is helpful to have them organized into an account so that you do not purchase several items at one time and then get confused as to where they go.
Having this organization makes finding each piece easy. You may also want to buy software or apps for your smartphone or computer so that you can access extra tools such as measuring devices and spreadsheets.
Practice laboratory techniques
The second way to get involved is by practicing laboratory skills or techniques. This can be as simple as learning how to perform an experiment, to more complex procedures such as conducting micro experiments or using scientific equipment.
Practicing laboratory techniques helps you develop your understanding of science and gives you some basic tools that you can use to begin experimenting with materials and concepts.
There are many ways to practice experimental technique. You could try making your own experiments, looking up practical recipes or trying to execute them as close as possible.
The most important thing about practicing laboratory techniques is to have fun! If you’re having trouble executing a procedure, then look into why it’s done that way and find another way to do it.
Read up on scientific methods
There are many ways to get involved with academic research, from serving as an internal or external reviewer for manuscripts before they’re published, to participating in studies as a study participant, to helping design new experiments or test existing ones.
As we know, conducting rigorous, credible research takes time and resources. And there are always other things needing done at a university.
So, how do you choose which area of research to focus on? Start by reading about different types of research and what each one covers. Then, look into opportunities within your department and beyond your campus to get involved.
Be a good listener
As mentioned before, being a good researcher means more than just presenting new findings at the best you can. You have to be able to listen to what others are talking about and put that information into action.
Aspiring researchers often struggle with this. They want to do something productive, but they don’t know where to start because there’s so much going on around them.
It’s easy to get distracted by all of the interesting things happening and lose focus on what you were originally trying to accomplish.
That would be a big waste of time and energy. You wouldn’t want to spend your life chasing after the wind!
Good listeners take notes and organize what they’ve heard to make it meaningful and applicable for their own projects. This is an important quality to possess if you intend to contribute to scientific research.
Ask lots of questions
Asking good questions is one of the most important things you can do as an aspiring scientist. So what are great questions? They’re ones that make someone else answer them because they want to!
Ask about things that matter to you, like research studies or clinical trials. Are there any that look promising for your health?
Ask how others were able to get involved in scientific research, such as through social media or word-of-mouth. If you’d like to contribute to medical research, there are many ways to do this too!
If you’re more creative, ask if anyone is looking for input from experts in related fields. For example, if you love making art, see if anyone is seeking inspiration by studying painting or sculpture.
When doing so, be kind and thoughtful instead of trying to talk up yourself or promote your own products or services. Your goal shouldn’t be to gain praise for what you’re offering, but to help other people — that’s what real contribution is.