Policies for Student Researchers

Requirements for Enrollment

Refer to the Undergraduate Researchers page


COGS 160 (or [HDP/PSYC] 199) requires a commitment of at least 10 hours/week for 3 academic quarters, or the equivalent. Research activities may include running test sessions, processing data, coding data, creating stimuli, refining new experiments, programming, and/or assisting with preparation of materials for presentations or publications. Research group and journal club meetings may count towards lab hours.

Students must undergo a background check and provide evidence of a negative Tb test result from the last 3 years. Students must also complete the on-line CITI training course on ethical treatment of human research participants, as required by the UCSD Committee for Human Research Participants Protection.

At the end of each quarter, every research group will prepare and deliver a 6-7 min presentation of their activities during the quarter. Presentations are given during the week 10 journal club meeting.

Students must turn in a brief report/reflection paper or alternate assignment during finals week.

Getting Started

When you start in the lab you should:

  • make a GoogleDrive or Dropbox folder entitled [firstname_lastname_CDLabwork] and share it with your project coordinator and with Gedeon
  • make a GoogleCalendar (named by your name) with all of your other commitments (i.e., list conflicts, not “open” times) and share it with your supervisor, Gedeon, and your project group.
  • make a GoogleDrive task-sheet (ask any current researcher for a template): each week you will enter your activities.


Q: Do I need to turn in a  special projects form for every quarter if I’m enrolled in 199?
A: Yes. Usually you can copy the information from a previous form. You need Gedeon’s signature. No form is necessary if you’re signing up for COGS 160.

Q: Can I enroll in COGS 160 even if I am not a Cognitive Science major?
A: Yes. PSYC majors can enroll in COGS 160 to fulfill at least half of their 199 requirement for the B.S. degree. HDP majors can fulfill a research methods requirement or upper-division requirement by enrolling in COGS 160.

Q: Do I have to attend Journal Club meetings? May I attend if I am not enrolled in COGS 160? What if I have a schedule conflict with journal club?
All COGS 160 and [HDP/PSYC] 199 students are expected to attend journal club meetings. All others (volunteers, graduate students, visitors) are encouraged and welcomed to attend. We make every effort every quarter to schedule JC meetings at times that will not conflict with COGS 160 students’ schedules, but usually the group is so large that this is not possible. If you cannot attend, talk to Gedeon about doing an alternate assignment based on the JC readings.

Q: Who should I come to with general questions about a task or proceess?
A: First check the relevant manual. If the answer can’t be found there, any “senior” RA, research staff or experienced student will know the answer. If all else fails, Gedeon might know the answer.

Q: Where can I find technical details for some procedure?
Manuals for each project are in a GoogleDrive folder. These are periodically backed up in the lab Dropbox folder. If it isn’t in the manual, raise the question by email. When you get an answer, add it to the manual.

Q: What if I have an idea for a new project based on what I’ve been working on?
A: Honors Programs in Cognitive Science, Human Development, or Psychology offer opportunities for seniors to do research projects. Eligible juniors should explore that option and talk to Gedeon. Students can also apply for an Amgen, McNair, summer research, or STARS fellowship,the Faculty Mentorship Program, or an TDLC Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) position, all of which are a great mechanism for doing a more independent research project.

Q: Can I come study, hang out, etc. in the lab?
A: Absolutely, as long as you don’t distract others from doing their work. You can use any unoccupied work station for UCSD related activities (not, e.g., file-sharing of questionable legality!).

Q: Can I come into the lab to work on the weekends or in the evening?
A: Yes. The building and the corridor will be locked for security, but you can arrange with Gedeon to get access.

Q: Can I eat in the lab?
A: Of course. Usually there’s some food/tea/coffee that you’re welcome to partake in, and bring whatever you like. Just clean up after yourself, and don’t eat at a workstation (no sticky keys).

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