Current trends in biological research demand biologists with strong quantitative skills and mathematicians with training in biology. This project will involve long-term research experiences for undergraduates as well as curricular improvement activities in both mathematics and biology. Research experiences for annual cohorts of four biology or biotechnology students paired with four mathematics or statistics students will be co-mentored by faculty from biology and from mathematics. Participants will enroll in interdisciplinary courses team-taught by faculty from both disciplines. Faculty will contribute curricular modules for existing courses to provide broad exposure of the interdisciplinary interactions between biology and mathematics to students in other biology and mathematics courses.
The central theme for all aspects of the program is the role that mathematical methodologies and tools can play in all aspects of the scientific method. Research projects will be based on active research of biology faculty with collaborating mathematics faculty. Both biological and mathematical students will participate in all aspects of scientific inquiry, learning the biology and the mathematics needed. Preliminary coursework and seminars will prepare students for a summer research project. Following this research, students will disseminate their results through regional and national meetings. Faculty and students will work together to publish appropriate results in peer-reviewed journals. Curricular modules developed by faculty will be submitted to web-based curricular repositories for broad dissemination.