Field lab

University of Texas at Austin students interact with the Biodiversity Center's collections and field labs in various courses in the biological sciences. Specimens in the collections are used in teaching labs to improve understanding of the natural world. And two field labs located within one hour of the main campus of The University of Texas at Austin provide students with opportunities to get out of the classroom for boots-on-the-ground scientific experience.

The center has a national reputation as a premiere site for research on invasive species, evolution and behavior, biodiversity, climate change, and drought, which also enhances students' academic experiences.

By enabling hands-on, discovery-based learning, center initiatives let students pose their own questions, develop hypotheses and design experiments to address their questions. At the Brackenridge Field Lab, Professor Larry Gilbert says a major breakthrough in research about fire ants began with an undergraduate student's research project: "That student’s research led to just about everything that happened later, quite a few millions in grant money and lots of progress in the science of biological control." 

Biodiversity Center programs include a number of outreach and research opportunities for undergraduates, including for students in streams of the Freshman Research Initiative