Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU)

Supported by the National Science Foundation (Award # 2050755), the Brooklyn College Psychology and Neuroscience REU Program provides students the opportunity to immerse in rich and innovative mentored research experiences in clinical, cognitive, and behavioral neuroscience. The 15-week program aims to engage students in:

  • comprehensive laboratory research,
  • scholarly didactics,
  • research ethics training, and
  • professional research dissemination.

A hands-on education is provided on the scientific process, from idea conception to presentation of results. Mentored research and structured laboratory experiences provide practice in writing, problem-solving, technical, collaboration, and presentation skills. Academic and professional confidence is built through engagement in scholarly didactics, such as attending scientific talks and the discussion of issues in research.

The personal and professional growth experienced is essential for fostering and reaching graduate school aspirations and leads the way toward meaningful scientific careers, especially those in clinical, cognitive, and behavioral neuroscience.

Potential mentored research projects may encompass (but are not limited to) the following topics:

  • neuropharmacology of learned flavor preferences
  • neural and cognitive underpinnings of memory and language disorders
  • identification of biological markers for criminal behavior and schizophrenia
  • scientific nature of creativity
  • cortical systems that mediate visual perception
  • mechanisms of associative learning
  • the mechanisms underlying steroid-induced neural plasticity
  • sex differences in brain and behavior

All projects will culminate in a first-authored research poster at Brooklyn College’s annual, campus-wide Science Day.

Our program seeks talented undergraduate students from diverse ethnic, cultural, and socio-economic backgrounds who seek to obtain a Ph.D. degree. All eligible students are encouraged to apply, especially students who are members of underrepresented groups in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines, which include but are not limited to students who:

  • are racial/ethnic minorities, first-generation college students, women, or veterans, or
  • have experienced educational and/or economic disadvantage or other personal circumstances that may have impeded their transition to the next stage of training toward a science career.

To be eligible, each student must fulfill the following requirements by the start of the REU program:

  • be a U.S. citizen or non-citizen permanent resident,
  • be enrolled as a full- or part-time student at a public college/university in the New York metropolitan area (including SUNY programs and institutions in New Jersey), leading to a baccalaureate or associate degree,
  • have completed an introductory psychology course,
  • have at least sophomore standing (i.e., completed 24 college credits),
  • have an overall GPA of 3.30 or higher (exceptions are possible),
  • have at least one semester of undergraduate school remaining before graduation (eligible applicants should not be a graduating senior), and
  • be able to arrange a class schedule so that only a maximum of two courses from his or her home institution are taken concurrently with the REU program.

Ten to 12 students are selected by the Psychology and Neuroscience REU Program each year. A stipend of $3,100 helps defray research expenses, including a possible loss of some financial aid for that semester.

Program Dates and Deadlines

The Psychology and Neuroscience REU Program takes place during the spring semester at Brooklyn College (late January through mid-May).

Application Deadline

Application review for the spring 2024 program will begin on December 1, 2023. Applications will be accepted until December 25, 2023. If you experience issues with the application process, contact the REU coordinator.

Required Application Materials

  • Applications are submitted online. Read it carefully; copy your essay responses and mentor choices before submitting.
  • All official transcripts from all college-level institutions enrolled in to date.
  • Two academic letters of reference. Give this evaluator form to your recommenders.
  • Résumé/Curriculum Vitae (uploaded into the application form).

Materials may also be sent to the REU program coordinator.

Medical clearance will be required by Brooklyn College if accepted. See the immunization requirements page.

Contact Information

Shristi Karim, M.Ed.
Program Coordinator

Laura A. Rabin, Ph.D., NSF REU P.I.
Professor of Psychology
Brooklyn College and CUNY Graduate Center

Jennifer Drake, Ph.D., NSF REU Co-P.I.
Associate Professor of Psychology
Brooklyn College and the CUNY Graduate Center

Brooklyn. All in.