For my graduate students: Supervising 401 & Honors Students

401 Students

If you would like to have undergraduates involved in your research projects, you may end up supervising 401 students. If this is your first time you are planning on supervising a 401 student in the dynamics lab, please talk with me in person about your plans before recruiting or signing up any students. Lab 401 students will be listed under my class list and grade roster; I am ultimately accountable for their well being in the course. We have our own CRN every term (except summer term) for our 401 students. A very important aspect of supervising 401 students is that you take responsibility as their direct supervisor to ensure that the students are getting a good and appropriate academic experience. The students should not be used for menial or meaningless tasks. They should be involved in the research in a way that will very likely lead to significant learning about psychology and research in psychology. (If you need someone to do something that is unlikely to lead to such learning, talk to me about the possibility of hiring someone for pay.) In the past, grad students who have been particularly successful in this role have typically held weekly meetings with their 401 students and assigned readings for discussion. Typically we expect 3 hours of work per week for each credit unit (so 9 hours of work per week for 10 weeks for 3 credits) Please be very familiar with the material on the lab home page written for the lab RAs: This material includes a contract the student must sign. If you have any troubles with a 401 student that you cannot resolve with the student, please let me know asap.

I do have a Qualtrics evaluation requirement as well. I read the evaluations carefully. It is your responsibility to distribute the  Qualtrics link to your RAs once the RA Coordinator has given you the  link. Each student also has the option of emailing me directly with any  comments or concerns about their experiences in the lab. The Qualtrics  survey will include a link to my email for this purpose. These  requirements are detailed on the RA agreement form at: Also you will  need to let me know your recommendation for a grade (pass or no pass)  for each student -- please email me with your recommended grades no later than the Friday of Week 10. (401  is graded on a P/NP basis). If you have RAs who are not registered for  401 credit (e.g., you hired an RA in the middle of a term or the RA is  volunteering), they still must complete the evaluation requirement at  the end of each term. Supervisors may only continue with RAs the next  term if these responsibilities are met.

Being a lab RA can be a great experience for the undergraduate student and it can be very helpful to the graduate student supervisor, and the guidelines here and on the RA page are intended to make sure that things work out well. If you have suggestions for changes in these guidelines, please let me know.

Process for registering 401 students:

1) If you have not already supervised a 401 student talk to me about your plans before going any further. Experienced students may go directly to the next step.
2) Have student complete application at and sign contract at
3) Look up the specific CRN for Freyd 401 for the term -- we always have our own number except for summer term.
4) Send an email to Cindy Salmon (undergraduate secretary) and cc me requesting authorization. In the email include the following information:
5) I will then follow-up with an email to you and Cindy saying I approve.

More details for administrative steps (including Sona, Yahoo Calendar, and keys)

Honors & McNair Students

Very qualified undergraduate students sometimes complete honors projects in the lab. Preference is given to students who are already in the lab as research assistants. In those cases I am either the primary reader or a secondary reader. Sometimes an advanced graduate student is the primary reader. If you are interested in taking on an honors student (or McNair student) you must discuss this with me first before making any commitments. If the student expects to be working in the lab then I must agree to this arrangement before any commitments are made to the student. I will want to see a written proposal from the student. This should come to me only after you have approved the proposal yourself.

Here are some guidelines:

1) Lab honors students (and/or lab McNair students) must either work directly with me or with an advanced graduate student (that means a student who has completed two or more years of graduate school) unless there is a compelling reason for exception. If the honors student is working in the lab I must be either the primary or secondary reader. I must be involved in all honors projects in the lab.
2) Advanced grad students should take on no more than one honors student (and/or McNair students) per year unless there is a good reason for exception. (For instance, an advanced student who has already successfully advised an honors student might under some circumstances advise two students the next year -- typically when the honors project is connected to the graduate student's dissertation project.)
3) Total number of honors students in lab is limited to 3 unless there is compelling reason for exception. The reason for this is two-fold. First is limited lab space. Second is limited me: Even when I'm not the primary advisor, I am involved in the project, and also the fall-back person when things don't work out or get complicated.
4) Advanced grad students who are willing to supervise an honors project should work with the potential honors student on a written proposal that will be submitted to me prior to my making a commitment for the lab. In most cases we only accept honors students if arrangements are made prior to finals week of the term 12 months ahead of project completion date. Preference is given to students who are already in the lab as research assistants.
5) Honors students must sign a contract at before commencing on the project.

Also see: Administrative Steps Once RAs are Hired

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