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The Arkansas Center for Space and Planetary Sciences
in partnership with
The Honors College

Research Experience in Space and Planetary Sciences for Honors Students

The Program

The Research Experience for Honors Undergraduates in Space and Planetary Sciences Program at the University of Arkansas provides undergraduate students enrolled in the honors program an opportunity to perform research and associated activities with faculty in the Space Center.  The program requires:

· At least 10 hours per week of research in a laboratory working on a project of mutual interest to the student and their mentor for one academic year. 
· Participation in a weekly colloquium during which topics in space and planetary science are presented by students and faculty in the program.
· Submission of a two-page abstract in the format of the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference and a poster presentation describing their projects at the end of the fall semester. 
· Submission of a two-page abstract in the format of the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference and an oral presentation describing their research and its results at the end of the spring semester. 
· Participation in field trips and other events organized by the program.  These might be trips to see Mars-like geology in the region, trips to a NASA base, trips to local aerospace industries, or social events.

Research & Colloquia

The theme for the 2006-2007 academic year will be Mars.

Examples of possible colloquium topics presented by various Space Center researchers appear below.  Some of these could be research topics.

· Astronomy of Mars
· Geomorphology of Mars
· Mineralogy and geochemistry of Mars
· The atmosphere of Mars
· Mars in popular movies
· Mars in popular books
· A history of the exploration of Mars
· Space missions to Mars the rovers
· Space mission to Mars the landers
· Space missions to Mars the orbiters
· Making a poster
· Giving an oral presentation
· Writing a paper
· Laboratory safety


The program provides support at the rate of $8/hour for 10 hours a week for the academic year.  In addition, $500 is made available to each student to support the costs of their research and a further $500 is provided to go towards the cost of attending and presenting their work at a conference.  This support is independent of any other form of support the student may obtain on a competitive basis, e.g. SILO, SURF, Space Grant, Honors College, and students are encouraged to explore these possibilities.

Academic Credit

Procedures have been started to enable participants in this program to earn academic credit through the Space Center (two hours for the laboratory experience and one hour for the colloquium series), but it is unclear when this will be available.  In the meantime, students can approach the Space Center director, their mentor, and his/her chair with a view to obtaining credit through the departments. Participants in this program can use the research as a basis for honors dissertations, with the consent of their honors committee.


The deadline for application is September 5, 2006 for the 2007 academic year.  Applicants should submit an application form available from the Space Center, which includes a 250-word statement of background and interests.  The form requires the identification of three Space Center faculty with whom the applicant would like to work, a transcript, and two letters of support from persons who have known them in an academic context.  Students are encouraged to make contact with a potential mentor and mention this in their statement.  Students in disadvantaged groups are especially encouraged to apply.  To apply on-line, please click here.

Arkansas Center for Space and Planetary Sciences
Stone House North, room F50
346 N. Arkansas Ave.
University of Arkansas
Fayetteville, AR 72701, USA
Tel. 479-575-7625 Fax. 479-575-7778