Junior Research Lab (entête)

Join the Junior Research Lab (JRL)

28 April – 28 June 2023

Update : 11/28/2022

Be part of a real research unit from May to July in the Montpellier scientific community!

General theme of the course

The Junior Research Lab (JRL) is an eight-week teaching unit dedicated to learning through research. Students can choose their research theme, benefit from the support of senior researchers and are encouraged to develop co-training. It is a bridge between academic input and research activity, an opportunity for students to exchange with students from other disciplines, other countries and to prepare a long-term personal research project.

It puts students in the position of managing a research project from the construction of working hypotheses, the acquisition of data, their analysis and the sharing of their research in written and oral form. The scientific and transversal objective of this module is therefore to enable students to develop their ability to:

  1. Improve autonomously their academic knowledge through the reading of scientific literature and the development of their critical thinking skills
  2. Conduct a research activity,
  3. Manage a scientific project using the AGILE methodology,
  4. Plan the phases of acquisition, analysis and sharing of the products of their research,
  5. Use analytical tools,
  6. Organize their approach with a view to reproducibility and quality of results.
  7. Work in a small (4/5) multicultural group, both face-to-face and at a distance,
  8.  Write a scientific article that is a product of their research,
  9.  Present a scientific project orally in English in 180'.

Scientific disciplines: The scientific topics of the research project are addressed through the field of expertise of l’Institut Agronomique, i.e, mainly in biology, ecology, sol sciences, agronomy, rural economics. Every year, a team of academics is volunteering for mentoring the students during their project. Available discipline varies accordingly.

  • Teaching language: English (B2 level)
  • Organization and credits: The course is a full time 8-week-long course. Successful completion of this course brings 14 ECTS credits.
  • Requirements: The level of the course is pivotal between advanced undergraduate and the start of graduate courses. Good basis in biology, mathematics, physics, chemistry as well as the B2 English capacity are required and will be evaluated. Although it is not mandatory, having a laptop is useful so the student can work with as much flexibility as possible as the projects requires using multiple workspaces in the campus.
  • Grades: The evaluation of Grades is based on (i) the project-group scientific article (50%), (ii) the individual peer-review of another article (20%), (iii) the individual 180 seconds flash presentation (20%) and (iv) the ongoing scientific network exercise.
  • Organization & content course

    The course is a full time 8-week-long course. It is organized into three main types of activities:

    • learning sessions to acquire in-depth knowledge and practical skills for data management and analysis, in particular in R, literature management, data management, good replication practices, scientific writing and oral presentations;
    • weekly seminars led by expert scientists organized by the students themselves;
    • autonomous scientific small-group projects for at least 50% of the time. This is not an internship. The students are not located in the research units, but in the heart of the Gaillarde campus in a room dedicated to the JRL.

    Successful completion of this course brings 14 ECTS credits (1/2 semester).

    Research skills and disciplinary content

    • Agile Project management (12 hours)
    • Literature survey and management - Zotero (3 h)
    • Data analysis and visualization - R Tidyverse (18 h)
    • Basic programming - R and bash script (9 h)
    • Research Data Management (6 h)
    • Reproducible research through code versioning and sharing (6 h)
    • Scientific writing (6 h)
    • Oral presentation skills (3 h)

    All disciplinary content is addressed within the research projects where it is relevant.

  • Partnerships

    Research Units: potentially all (120) research units from MUSE - Montpellier University of Excellence


L'Institut Agro Montpellier
Campus de La Gaillarde
2 place Pierre Viala


L'Institut Agro Montpellier
2 place Pierre Viala
34060 Montpellier - France
Tél. : +33 (0)4 99 61 22 00 Tél. : +33 (0)4 99 61 22 00
Fax : +33 (0)4 99 61 29 00

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