Implementing a Grant Proposal Writing Exercise in Undergraduate Science Courses To Incorporate Real-World Applications and Critical Analysis of Current Literature

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Writing is an essential part of a successful career in science. As such, many undergraduate science courses have begun to implement writing assignments that reflect “real-world” applications and focus on a critical analysis of current literature; these assignments are often in the form of a review or a research proposal. The semester-long project described herein is a unique marriage of these two ideas: students first select a topic and conduct a literature review, and then choose an area of that same topic to investigate further in a peer-reviewed grant proposal. A modified version of this project, which incorporates peer-reviewed oral presentations, is also discussed. This project is designed for an upper-level undergraduate course, typically having 15–20 students, and the approach (or parts of the approach) has been successfully incorporated in an advanced organic chemistry course, a biochemistry capstone course, and courses in endocrinology, as well as ecophysiology.

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Journal of Chemical Education

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DOI: 10.1021/ed400130s