Internship Guidelines

Biology Internship Program

The objectives of our internship program reflect the overall objectives established by the University of Central Arkansas Cooperative Education Program.  Biology internships provide students “real world” experiences, allowing the application of theories learned in the classroom to a job setting.  Internships may also provide learning opportunities not available in the Biology Department curriculum.  Internships aid students in choosing career paths and developing career goals prior to graduation.  These can be paid or non paid experiences.

Participating students enroll in the course Internship in Biology (BIOL 4V45) for 1 to 4 credit hours.  For most, 2-3 credit hours are appropriate.  The general rule is that one credit hour is worth at least 3 hours/week of effort by the student.

To enroll in BIOL 4V45, the student must submit a well-written proposal, describing the internship, to a committee of biology faculty for approval (Biology Internship Committee).  For committee approval the internship must clearly provide rigorous learning opportunities that cannot be obtained in one of the listed biology courses. While a student may receive 1-4 hours of credit, it is rare for more than 3 credit hours to be awarded.  Credit cannot be awarded for merely shadowing a professional; the student must clearly demonstrate the internship experience extends beyond observation.  Each student enrolled in Internship in Biology must identify a Biology Department faculty member who agrees to function as Internship Advisor.  The Internship Advisor is responsible for establishing, with the student, the assessment of the internship and is generally the facilitator of the experience with the student and assigns a grade.  Every student enrolled in BIOL 4V45 may be required to present their internship experience.  

Application Process

Additional Requirements

  • GPA of at least 2.5
  • Must have completed 60 hrs of coursework prior to the start of the internship
  • Must be enrolled in Internship in Biology during the semester of the experience
  • Must have a mentor/internship advisor within the Biology Department
  • Sign up for My Interface through Cooperative Education in Bernard Hall 318
  • Completion of application form (with signed approval of faculty advisor/mentor)
    • Credit hours requested
    • Objectives/purpose
    • Full description of internship:  how set up, type, daily tasks, how objectives accomplished
    • Educational benefits:  what is unique about the experience that cannot be received in the classroom and how will this help you achieve career goals
    • Assessment (established by internship advisor and student):  description of how performance will be assessed/evaluated for each objective (such as presentations, journal, paper or case study, professional exam, or custom tool developed by mentor/student).
  • Presentation of internship experience near end of semester.

Note:  Students that wish to be notified of local internship opportunities with companies seeking Biology, Environmental Science, and Chem majors may want to contact the Cooperative Education Dept (Bernard 318) to sign up for info and notifications.

The Medical Internship with Dr. Anthony Manning (BIOL 3245) may count towards the biology elective credit hour requirement for a Biology degree.


Students should begin planning no later than the advising period of the previous semester/term (students wishing to do an internship in spring semester must be make plans by mid-Fall semester and many summer internships require application during Fall semester).  A link to a printable guideline handout can be found here: Internship info sheet.

Application Deadlines

Spring – Dec 1

Summer – Apr 15*

Fall – Aug 1

*Applications may be accepted after the Apr 15 deadline for summer in the event that knowledge or acceptance of the internship is learned after the deadline has passed.  However, the student must provide justification for late submission.

Examples of Internship Opportunities

Known internship opportunities are posted online at the Internships & Job Opportunities tab, the Internship Bulletin Board near LSC 153, and via Instagram (uca_biology).

To see other internship opportunities go to UCA Career Services.