Biochemistry/Molecular Biology Program

WPI or Clark for biological sciences? Which school offers the best opportunities for undergrad research?

Undergraduate research is a degree requirement at WPI for students to receive their BS degrees. For details see You may check out the faculty @ The graduate job and grad school placement may be viewed at by class and by department.

Clark University has a capstone experience called LEEP which is explained @ It states:
" Before you graduate, you’ll complete a LEEP Capstone in your major independently or as part of a group. The Capstone will involve advanced work that addresses an issue, problem, or theme of significance in your field or in the world, and it can take the form of a thesis, project, or 200-level course. In consultation with a faculty member, you will define and carry forward the project on your own initiative."

Clark also has an honors program. If you are accepted to this program you are assured mentored research. The program is described at

During your junior year, you may apply to the department’s honors program. Joining the program means you’ll work closely with a professor to create a thesis on a topic of your choice. Examples of recent honors thesis topics are:

Effects of Light-Emitting Diodes on the Light Harvesting System of Green Photosynthetic Bacteria
Understanding the Function of KIFAP3 and Its Possible Role in ALS
Biophysical Studies of the Self-Assembly of the Amyloid b-2 Protein in the Presence of Rifamycin SV
Gene Delivery Via Functionalized Poly(ethylene imine)-DNA Polyplexes
Biochemical and Genetic Analysis of Octopamine Biosynthesis

Clark, I believe, is on the traditional semester system. WPI is on (4) seven week terms where students carry three courses (9 semester hours) every seven weeks or 18 semester hours every semester. Some students complain about the course pace at WPI while others adopt well to it. The seven week terms were set up to accommodate the three different project requirements and the off campus project system.

How can one realistically rate these departments? Both faculties do significant research. It appears some Clark undergraduates may take advanced course work in lieu of research. WPI does require project research of all undergraduates. :bz