Welcome to College Confidential!

The leading college-bound community on the web

Sign Up For Free

Join for FREE, and start talking with other members, weighing in on community discussions, and more.

Also, by registering and logging in you'll see fewer ads and pesky welcome messages (like this one!)

As a CC member, you can:

  • Reply to threads, and start your own.
  • Post reviews of your campus visits.
  • Find hundreds of pages of informative articles.
  • Search from over 3 million scholarships.

Question about research internship

luke8ballluke8ball Registered User Posts: 159 Junior Member
edited May 2012 in College Life
So I just started working in the math fluids lab at my university. I really like what I'll be doing, but is it normal for me to have no remote idea of the advanced concepts my mentors/grad students are working on? I'm a rising senior, but most of their work is completely beyond me. Interns don't have to do a lot of the 'mental work', do they?
Post edited by luke8ball on

Replies to: Question about research internship

  • spectasticspectastic - Posts: 847 Member
    not really. you're there basically as a glorified research assistant. the only difference between part time research assistant and an REU is the hours you put in, and the disparity in credibility. REUs tend to hold more weight against plain research assistant positions.

    Just out of curiosity, are you guys trying to characterize and model turbulent flow? What are the details of your research thrust?
  • TomServoTomServo Registered User Posts: 2,047 Senior Member
    Nope, at my school it's not uncommon for a brand-new freshman to assist in research in one of the high-energy physics labs, or for physics students to get involved in research before they've even taken intermediate E&M or intermediate quantum. The idea is to expose you to the environment, you aren't expected to understand everything. What they *do* expect is enthusiasm and a love of your field.
  • luke8ballluke8ball Registered User Posts: 159 Junior Member
    The lab I'm working in is dealing with how particles diffuse in the ocean. We're not working with turbulent flow as of now. Thanks for the responses!
This discussion has been closed.