There is considerable evidence that undergraduate summer research experiences can have a tremendous impact on student interest and skills in science. In addition, professional societies offer important opportunities for professional socialization (see Project Background in Resources below).

Measurable Objectives

The project is designed to have significant impacts on the overall number of underrepresented students participating in biomedicine. It also is designed to have specific measurable impacts on equipping students for further biomedical training. In addition, it impacts their research hosts, increasing their understanding of and skills in working with underrepresented students.

Specific measurable objectives are listed below. Fellows who complete the first year of the research fellowship will be able to:

  1. Develop and revise a working hypothesis
  2. Conduct experiments
  3. Analyze and report data
  4. Write research summaries in report and abstract forms
  5. Successfully complete RCR training at their host institution
  6. Recognize and respond appropriately to common ethical issues in research and publication
  7. Prepare a scientific poster
  8. Present data and results orally
  9. Network effectively with other Fellows and APS committee members
  10. Explore career options and needed skills
  11. Reflect on their strengths for and interests in specific careers
  12. Recognize and utilize the resources provided to trainees by professional societies.
  13. Describe their interest in IOS-related research

Researchers hosting APS IOSP Fellows in their laboratories will increase their understanding of the training needs of underrepresented students (disadvantaged backgrounds, individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, and individuals with disabilities).

Intellectual Merit:

The project will create and evaluate resources for engaging UR undergraduate students in research experiences, professional socialization activities within the scientific community, and as advocates for science to friends, family, and the public. It will also create and evaluate ways to improve research hosts’ skills in working with UR students from broad backgrounds and with diverse needs. Finally, it will provide a model for other scientific societies in identifying and addressing specific needs in their ongoing diversity efforts.

Broader Impacts:

The experiences provided through this project will help UR students to 1) increase their understanding of and exposure to careers in IOS research, 2) develop their research and presentation skills, and 3) become actively involved in the scientific community (professional socialization). Ultimately, the project will lead to increases in the overall number of underrepresented students participating in IOS-related research; development of a professional network of support and encouragement among UR students and experienced researchers; and increased understanding of and interest in IOS careers among the target group students. Finally, it further enhances APS’ capacity to provide ongoing support for increased diversity among physiologists.

In addition, APS will build its overall capacity to support diversity in IOS areas by 1) creating a resource collection in the APS National Science Digital Library, the Archive of Teaching Resources, on working with students with disabilities in research programs and provide ongoing training for research hosts on working with students from all UR groups; and 2) increasing the number of APS researchers from IOS fields and from UR groups (including women) on the list of APS summer research hosts so all students interested in applying for APS summer research programs see many potential IOS-related projects and a diverse pool of potential hosts for possible research experiences.

Evaluation Methods

Evaluation of the APS IOSP Fellows will include both formative (process) evaluation and summative (impact) evaluation. Evaluation methods will include surveys of awardees and research hosts and evaluation of Fellow assignments and written reports. In addition, at both 2- and 4-year intervals following the Fellowship, IOSP Fellows will be asked to complete another online survey regarding their career choices and current career paths and what role research plays in their career paths.

Annual PI Meeting

Each year, grantees of the NSF IOS Broadening Participation awards meet to share and disseminate effective diversity practices with the NSF Program Officers, Society staff and other invited guests. Below are the agendas from those meetings.


2015 NSF IOS Broadening Participation Principal Investigator Meeting

Read the agenda from the 2015 meeting organized by the Society for Developmental Biology (SDB).

2014 NSF IOS Broadening Participation Principal Investigator Meeting

Read the agenda from the 2014 meeting organized by the American Physiological Society (APS).

2013 NSF IOS Broadening Participation Principal Investigator Meeting

Read the agenda from the 2013 meeting organized by the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR).

Undergraduate Research and Professional Societies: Partners in Increasing STEM Diversity (PDF)

Learn why professional societies play an important role in both the training and professional socialization of future STEM professionals.