High School Research: Where to Start

<p>I am really hoping to compete in the Siemens Competition next year and I have no idea of how to start. I have decided that I would conduct research in Biochemistry, so that would mostly mean I would need to work in an established lab to work with live tissue.</p>

<pre><code> I am uncertain of what to do: I want to come up with my own topic, but the chances of a lab accepting my idea is slim. Another alternative is to start at a budding lab and ask for permission to submit their project to Siemens. Would the latter be a better idea?

<p>I also have a few targeted question:<br>
1)As a beginning researcher, how much background research do I need? So in the field of Biochemistry, do I need to have read all of the undergrad + some of the graduate curriculum?
2) What are the chances that an established lab will take me as an assistant when most post-grad have trouble too?
3) Do researchers generally feel annoyed when a student asks to submit their project for a competition?
4) Where would be a good place to start when searching for a topic?
5) How difficult would it be to find a lab with similar goals that would support my research idea?</p>

<p>Thank you!!</p>

<p>You really don't need much background to get started in research. In many fields it's mostly manual labor or computer programming.</p>

<p>Different professors have different attitudes towards high school interns. Your best bet is to email a lot of professors and ask if you can work in their lab for free as a summer intern. Try for a lab that produces a lot of research in good journals, because if you're lucky you might get published. You might also look at labs that have undergraduate students listed on their web pages (undergrads, as I understand it, are similar to high school students).</p>

<p>My professor wasn't annoyed when I submitted our project to ISEF. Actually most people at the competition worked with researchers in actual labs (which doesn't mean most researchers like people who do competitions, but it's saying something at least).</p>

<p>It is generally more practical to start with no topic and adopt your professor's idea. Otherwise you may be working on something that obviously doesn't work or something that's been done before.</p>