Student perceptions of research authenticity in introductory versus advanced biology laboratory courses

In response to national calls to teach science as it is practiced, with more inquiry, autonomy, and discovery-based research (1, 4), our department has redesigned 10 biology laboratory courses as Course-based Undergraduate Research Experiences (CUREs). CUREs have been established as equitable, high-impact practices that engage students in what it means to work and think like a scientist. They offer many of the benefits of traditional undergraduate research experiences, but are available to all students and offered within the normal class schedule. Our courses have been re-designed with research-based curricula that address an important, local issue – human impacts on the American River Ecosystem. Collectively, this endeavor is called the Sustainable Interdisciplinary Research to Inspire Undergraduate Success (SIRIUS) Project.