Involvement in a research project will help you develop and hone critical thinking, teamwork, problem-solving, and quantitative skills. Schools of the health professions typically do not have a preference for the type of research that you conduct (bench, translational/clinical, honors work); it is more about the demonstration of your intellectual curiosity and scholarly development.
Some professional programs incorporate research requirements into their curricula and therefore expect applicants to have demonstrated an interest in conducting research at the undergraduate level. If you are considering a PhD (MD/PhD, DO/PhD, etc.) you should plan to gain significant research experience as part of your application portfolio.
As with the other elements of your prehealth preparation, it is critical to seek out and get involved in meaningful activities that help you grow as an individual, preprofessional student, and scholar. If a research opportunity arises and it aligns with your interests, we encourage you to add this type of experience to your portfolio.
Not sure how or where to gain experience?
As you embark on new research activities and deepen your existing ones, don't forget to reflect on what you're observing and learning. Be sure to log your experiences in AdviseStream's Academics and Engagements Planner so that you and your advisor can take stock of your progress.