So you want to be in Animal Behavior and Zoology...

The program is full for 2008-2009. Thanks to all who submitted applications, or otherwise indicated their interest in the program. There may be a similar program in the 2010-2011 academic year, for advanced science students, but it seems unlikely as of May 2009, due to budget cuts. If there is a program in 2010-2011, admission will also be by application, which will be due sometime in Winter quarter of 2010, and will be similar to the 08-09 application (viewable here, if you're curious).

FAQs regarding getting in to the program in 2010 (last updated July 23, 2008)

Q: I’m hoping to get technical skills that I can put on my resume—things like analyzing leaf litter samples, using an SEM, or how to run a PCR. Is this program a good choice for me?
A: Probably not. In this program, the focus will be on all aspects of the scientific process—from generating all of the plausible hypotheses that could explain an observed pattern, researching the theory that underlies the process, designing experimental or observational protocols that best discriminate between the hypotheses, collecting and analyzing data, interpreting what it means, and presenting it to an audience of your peers. That process—the research cycle that emphasizes creative idea generation and reliance on meshing empirical observation with theory—is science. The data that the process generates is only one small part of the scientific process. Furthermore, we will emphasize on-the-ground problem solving skills, especially for the tropical portion of the program: one goal is to rely only on equipment that you, the researcher, can fix when it breaks. Our equipment will therefore tend to be low-tech, which will allow the rigor and logic of our scientific ideas to be exposed more clearly.

Q: Why is “college-level writing” a prerequisite for this program?
A: Being able to write well is a necessary skill for all informed citizens, including scientists. The better your basic writing and math skills are coming in to the program, the greater our advances as a learning community can be in scientific investigations and critical thinking.

Q: How much upper-division science credit will be possible through this program?
A: I will probably give 12 upper-division science credits in the Fall, 12 or 14 in the Winter, and 16 in the Spring. It will not be possible to earn 48 upper-division science credits through this program for two reasons: First, the statistics that we will be learning is not at an upper-division level; second, students pursuing a B.S. should get at least some of their upper-division science credits from another program.

Q: I will be transfering to Evergreen, so don’t have an evaluation from a previous program to include with my application. What should I do?
A: Have a former professor write you a letter of recommendation. The letter should, if possible, speak to your intellectual breadth, science background, and level of dedication to your academic work.

Q: I was in one of your programs previously. Do I need to give you an evaluation from a faculty member?
A: No, if you’ve been my student in the past, then I already have an evaluation of you, so just fill out the application. You also don’t need to supply the name of a different faculty who will recommend you, unless you think that you showed better academic potential with another faculty.

Q: I am interested in the program, but won’t be able to go to Panama in Winter. Can I still apply for Fall only?
A: Yes. There will be more students enrolled in Fall than go to Panama in the Winter, so having a few students in the program for Fall only will increase the chances that other enrolled students can go to Panama. Please indicate on your application if you are interested in the program for Fall only, Fall and Winter, or the whole year.

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