Summer 2013 Research with Janet Davis:

Applications for summer research with Janet Davis must include answers to some preliminary questions as well as a description of the project you wish to undertake. You will also submit the divisional application to the Science Division Office. Applications are due Friday, Feb. 22. I will select students (and make a waiting list) by Friday, March 8.  You must make a decision by Friday, March 15. However, since many REUs and other off-campus opportunities do not make decisions until after that date, I will understand if students who initially accept positions with me later choose an off-campus position.

Please send your answers in a plain text email. Your answers should be part of the message and not an attachment.

Note that there are two parts to the application: A preliminary list of questions and a discussion of your approach to the project.

Preliminary questions

  1. Name
  2. Major (or "undeclared") and year
  3. This research includes some preparatory work in spring, and some followup work in the fall.  Will you do this work to the best of your ability, even if it is uncompensated?
  4. What courses have you taken in computer science? What grades did you receive?
  5. What other courses have you taken that may contribute to your ability to do this project?
  6. What programming languages do you know, and how would you assess your proficiency with these languages?
  7. Do you have experience developing software for the Web, mobile phones, or other software environments? If so, briefly describe your experience.
  8. How would you assess your ability to learn new tools, libraries, and programming languages?
  9. How would you assess your writing skills?
  10. What other applicable skills or background do you bring to the project?
  11. Experience shows that group projects are more successful. Are you willing to collaborate with other students on your project?
  12. Are you prepared to do summer research under Grinnell's Mentored Advanced Project?
  13. Are you willing to have the product of your work used and evaluated at Grinnell College or in other environments?
  14. What sets you apart from other students?
  15. What else would you like me to know?

Project approach

Write a few paragraphs discussing:

You will strengthen your application by showing me that you've looked into related research and suggesting creative or thoughtful approaches. You will weaken your application by writing poorly.

Janet Davis (

Created January 30, 2008
Last modified February 1, 2013
With thanks to Sam Rebelsky: