Generating Ideas for an Independent Project

Tom Susman '04 collecting water samples for a project done with Emily Ruffing on the presence of antibiotic resistance in Escherichia coli found in local streams
Part of the the excitement embodied in science is based on a sense of discovery. Scientists are constantly revising their ideas as new knowledge becomes available and old hypotheses are rejected in favor of new ones. But how do scientists find questions to investigate? Where do new ideas come from?

Often new ideas grow out of a novel way of looking at the same system. Rapid advances in technology have made it possible to look for patterns in new ways, but new ideas can also be generated by taking ideas from two different areas of study and looking at them in combination.

Your challenge is to come up with an idea that can be developed into a five week independent project.
Finding an idea

Once you have the area and organism narrowed down, choose a question that you think you can answer.

Edited 1-15-09

Back to 110 Resource Page