Undergrad Research Assistants
Research Assistant Overview
Operation Wallacea is a network of academics from European and North American universities, who design and implement biodiversity and conservation management research programmes. Research is supported by students who join the programme, to strengthen their CV or resume, gain course credit, or collect data for a dissertation or thesis.
If you are in, or have completed university level education and have a good level of English, you can join the expeditions as a Research Assistant. Alternatively if you are a medical student (or intending to go to medical school) you can gain experience in expedition medicine on our expedition medicine experiential course. Relatively few people have field experience working alongside real research projects and the Operation Wallacea research programme offers the opportunity to work with a range of academic teams to strengthen your CV (resume) or to help you decide whether tropical field work is of interest for your career. Research Assistants are involved in a wide range of tasks on each research topic and help to gather primary data. In addition, if you are at a North American university, you can gain credits towards your degree by registering your expedition itinerary with St Andrews University in Scotland and, if you are at a university outside of North America, you can gain credits towards your degree by registering your expedition itinerary with Imperial College London. It is also possible that your own university will award credit for joining as a Research Assistant. Some universities will award their own credit for joining the programme as Independent Study or as an Internship. However, it is not necessary to register for credit – many students join the expeditions just for the unforgettable international experience in beautiful parts of the world.
There are two types of Research Assistant projects – those where you have a range of options and can individualise your itinerary by moving between teams (as available in Indonesia and Honduras) and those where there are mixed teams of academics who work together on an agreed set of research objectives and Research Assistants follow a fixed itinerary according to these objectives (as available in Peru, Madagascar, Egypt, Guyana, Cuba, Mexico and South Africa).
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