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Mechanisms of Behavior

A Summer Program for Undergraduate Research in Behavioral Neuroscience at Duke University

Please note (as of January 11, 2013)

Thank you for your interest in our “Mechanisms of Behavior” NSF-REU program at Duke University. Unfortunately, we don’t anticipate offering the program this summer (2013) or in the summer of 2014, but we will post new information to this site if there is a change in status.

Best wishes,

Warren Meck

The Mechanisms of Behavior (MOB) program is a 10-week summer research internship that allows undergraduates from small colleges and universities around the country to conduct supervised independent research in the field of behavioral neuroscience at Duke University. The program is directed by Dr. Warren Meck and co-sponsored by the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience and the National Science Foundation with a “Research Experiences for Undergraduates” grant.


Awards are given to qualified college students from around the country who are interested in behavioral neuroscience and are considering a career in basic scientific research. All applicants who will still be undergraduates at the commencement of the 2012 session of this program are eligible to apply; however, strong preference will be given to rising juniors (i.e., current sophomores). Awards may also be made to exceptionally qualified rising sophomores (i.e., current freshman) and rising seniors (i.e., current juniors) who have had either no or very little previous research experience. Members of minority groups that are under-represented in scientific professions are particularly encouraged to apply. Applicants must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States.

Program description

The focus of the 10-week summer program is a research mentorship with a participating faculty member at Duke University studying animal learning & behavior or systems and integrative neuroscience. For a list of participating research mentors, click [here] (/education/undergraduate-neuroscience/academics/undergrad-research/mechanisms-of-behavior/participating-research-mentors). Students also participate in a two-day Orientation Conference at the outset of the program, and meet several times each week thereafter for seminars by participating faculty, as well as for tutorials and workshops covering topics such as experimental design and analysis, science writing and oral presentation, science ethics, career paths in neuroscience, and applying to graduate school. At the conclusion of the program, students report on their work at an Undergraduate Research Conference held jointly with other summer research programs.


The program will run from May 28 until August 3, 2012. Note that participants are required to move into the provided housing the weekend prior to the beginning of the program (on the afternoon of May 27th). Participants are also required to remain for the duration of the program. Participants should plan to move out of the housing on the morning of August 4th (or the evening of August 3rd).


Students receive a stipend of $4,500 for the 10-week program. Students are also provided with on-campus housing at no cost and given a food allowance. Students are expected to cover their own travel expenses. (Stipends may be subject to tax withholding.)