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Are You Doing Too Many Lab Chores?

Are You Doing Too Many Lab Chores?

Depending on the academic discipline and type of project you have, washing lab dishes might be part of your research experience.

However, if you’ve been in the lab for eight weeks and your entire research experience thus far has been washing dishes and doing random chores in the lab (such as dragging bags of autoclaved waste to the disposal site) then it’s time to ask the PI for a research project.

True, dishes need to be done and lab chores are endless for most researchers. But a research experience needs to actually include research if you’re going to get the personal and professional development that should be at the core of your overall experience.

(Of course, If you accepted a paid position as an undergrad lab assistant to wash lab dishes and do chores, then absolutely don’t ask to do research instead of what you were hired to do! You can open up the discussion on how to become a researcher if it was mentioned as a possibility before you accepted the position, but that’s a different post.)