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Bio 490 Senior Project

Coordinator: Dr. Eichinger

After attending the two scheduled Senior Project group meetings, consult with your topic advisor about choosing and focusing your topic. Your topic advisor will also help you with organization and style.

Senior Project Topic Submission Form

Example of Senior Project Title Page Format

Sample of Topics — Senior Projects 2010

Most Senior Projects in biology will include the following sections: ABSTRACT, INTRODUCTION, REVIEW OF LITERATURE (this may be replaced by separate METHODS and RESULTS sections if original research is presented), DISCUSSION, and LITERATURE CITED. Below are guidelines and examples for citing sources in your paper.

Citing Other Works Within the Text of Your Paper

In discussing your data and/or comparing it to the data of other investigators, you must cite or acknowledge the author(s) who wrote the paper or book. When references are cited, the proper form for citations depends on the context. For example: ".. This response to lowered temperature is well known (Larsen and Lee 1994)...", or "... It has been shown by Sordahl (1990) that males are more aggressive than females toward predators ....", or "... species were categorized using the criteria listed by Larsen et al. (1994).” If two authors are cited, both names should be listed: (Larsen and Lee 1994). If there are more than two authors, only the first author's name is listed, followed by et al.: (Larsen et al. 1994).

Do not use footnotes or quotes in the text of your paper. Instead, cite relevant information from the literature in your own words and acknowledge the source using the author and date format. Full reference information is given in the Literature Cited section at the end of your Senior Project.

Literature Cited

Literature Cited contains, in alphabetical order, only those items specifically referred to within the text. Items you read but did not specifically cite in the text of your paper should not be included. The following format should be used:

To cite a journal article with one author:

Sordahl, T.A. 1990. Sexual differences in antipredator behavior of breeding American Avocets and Black-necked Stilts. Condor 92:530-532.
(this is the author, date, title of an article in the journal Condor, volume 92, pages 530-532.)

with two authors:

Larsen, K.J. and R.E. Lee. 1994. Cold tolerance including rapid cold-hardening and inoculative freezing of all migrant Monarch Butterflies in Ohio. Journal of Insect Physiology 40: 859-864.

with three (or more) authors

Larsen, T., T.A. Sordahl, and I. Byrkjedal. 1996. Factors related to aggressive nest protection behaviour: a comparative study of Holarctic waders. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 58: 409-439.

To cite a book

Southwood, T.R.E. 1984. Ecological methods with particular reference to the study of insect populations, second edition. Chapman and Hall, New York.

To cite an article in an edited volume (book):

Trivers, R.L. 1972. Parental investment and sexual selection. Pages 136-179 in Sexual selection and the descent of man, 1871-1971 (B. Campbell, ed.). Aldine Publishing, Chicago.

To cite an internet article off the world wide web:

World Wide Web (WWW) sites can be used SPARINGLY in research papers. Such sites often have very different quality from one another. In some cases the site may be no better than a newspaper, in others they can equal a good journal. Be careful when you choose a site, as we look suspiciously at MOST web sites referenced. Web sites come and go, good journals don't.

World Wide Web citations should consist of the following structural units (items 1 & 2, if unknown, can be substituted with "anonymous" and "n.a." for "none available"):

  1. author
  2. publication date (look at the copyright info for the page, don't confuse the homepage with the page you are citing!)
  3. page title
  4. Site title (in a FEW cases this will be the same as # 3)
  5. URL (the Universal Resource Locator - i.e., the address)
  6. date accessed
  7. paragraph number (often this is not available - if so, then omit as in the example below)


Wintersteen, W. 1996. Black cutworm IPM saves money, reduces insecticide use. ( (18 November 1997).

For more details, see the instructions for writing scientific papers.