Research in Progress Seminars

The ability to speak clearly, concisely, and knowledgeably about your science is an essential skill.  The BISI graduate program would like to create an environment where you receive constructive feedback on your research in progress talks that makes you a better speaker.  We have made these talks a requirement for students entering the program in fall 2015 and urge our current students  to give talks in years 2 and 4.  

We in the BISI administration expect all BISI MOCB and CBBG students to present at RIPS in their 2nd and 4th years (and every 2 years thereafter).  The 2nd year presentation should be a practice for your qualifying exam and the 4th year presentation should begin preparing you for your defense.  BEES students will be asked to present during the BEES seminar time (Mondays at noon).

A student does not have to speak in the designated Research in Progress time slots (MOCB: Thursday 12:30 p.m.; CBBG: Thursday 2 p.m.).  Any student that speaks in front of a critical audience consisting of peers and UMD faculty will have fulfilled their requirement.  If you speak at a time or location other than those listed above, please contact the BISI office by email ( to let us know that you've given a talk.


The Google document to sign up is located here (be sure to sign up on the appropriate sheet; see tabs at bottom) :

If you’re a 2nd or 4th year student, please sign up asap so that you get a date that works for you.  ( 4th year students: If you presented last spring, you do not have to present again this fall)


For the new students and those of you that need reminded, here are the rules:

  • MOCB & CBBG Students: The BISI Office will send an email late in the fall semester (December) for Spring RIPS sign up and late in the summer (August) for Fall RIPS.
  • Access the electronic schedule (linked above and in the email) during the sign up time and sign up for an open date
  • If you would like to present your dissertation seminar during RIPs, you will need to sign up for two time slots.
  • You are responsible for remembering your RIPs date.
  • MOCB students are strongly encouraged to sign up for a RIPS talk sometime during years 2 and 4.
  • If you have not signed up for a talk and you are in year 2 or 4, and there are open slots in the schedule, I will assign you to those times.  
  • If you sign up for a talk and then cannot make it, YOU are responsible for finding a replacement.
  • BEES Students: The seminar coordinator will contact you at the beginning of each semester to assign you to a seminar date.
  • PSYS Students: Can present in the MOCB time slot if their advisor is in the CBMG department. Otherwise contact your concentration area director to determine the best venue for your talk.

Once you sign up for a RIPS talk:

  • We need a title and abstract by close of business on the date indicated in the schedule.  If you are giving an invited talk (e.g. a job talk) and you do not provide this information in a timely manner, then you are probably not going to be in the top 3 for the offer letter.  The abstract does not have to be long, but should give the reader a brief overview of your talk.  YOU are responsible for entering both your title and abstract into the schedule.
  • We will provide the faculty and other students with a feedback sheet that they will complete for each speaker.  You will receive copies of this constructive criticism.  We recommend that you take some time to read through the comments carefully.