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Opportunities to Get Involved

Graduate Students

We recruit most of our Ph.D. students through the J. Crayton Pruitt Family Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Florida. As such, interested students are encouraged to apply for entrance into the biomedical engineering graduate program. Students can be admitted directly into the Ph.D. program with only a Bachelor’s (B.S.) degree. Applications are due in December to begin the program in August. Further information on the application process can be found here.

We also support M.S. students interested in gaining unpaid research experience for course credit. We primarily recruit M.S. students pursuing thesis and non-thesis research projects through the J. Crayton Pruitt Family Department of Biomedical Engineering. Students from other departments, such as those completing internships through the Department of Applied Physiology and Kinesiology or seeking research experience through the Department of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering, are also welcome in the lab.

If you are interested in joining the Musculoskeletal Biomechanics Lab as a graduate student, you are encouraged to contact Dr. Nichols directly via e-mail.

Undergraduate Students

We support hard-working undergraduate students who are interested in learning more about the musculoskeletal system and the study of human movement. Prior research experience is not required to join the lab. Students are also not required to have completed any specific courses. You just need to be curious and willing to learn! Note, you also need to have time and energy that you can dedicate to research. Undergraduate students are expected to spend 10 hours per week working on their research.

We accept new undergraduate students into our lab during the Fall and Spring semesters. Interested undergraduates will be interviewed during the 4th and 5th weeks of the semester. If you are interested in joining the lab during the Fall term, you should express interest between Aug. 15 – Sept. 15. If you are interested in joining the lab during the Spring term, you should express interest between Jan. 1 – Feb. 1.   To express interest in joining the lab, please contact Dr. Nichols directly via e-mail. In your e-mail, please include (1) your major, (2) expected graduation date, (3) a brief statement explaining why you are interested in biomechanics research, and (4) a copy of your resume attached as a PDF.

Participate in a Research Study!

We have a variety of ongoing research studies in the lab.  The studies listed below have approval from the University of Florida Institutional Review Board (IRB) to be advertised on our website.

Study: Thumb Osteoarthritis (IRB #201900693)
We are currently seeking females over the age of 40 to participate in a study on thumb osteoarthritis. The purpose of this study is to identify how muscle actions, joint movements, and nerve signals contribute to symptoms in thumb osteoarthritis. A diagnosis of thumb osteoarthritis is not required to participate.

Study: Rotator Cuff (IRB #202101682)
We are currently seeking adults between the ages of 50 and 80 to participate in a study on rotator cuff injuries. The purpose of this study is to identify how muscle actions and joint movements contribute to symptoms following rotator cuff tears. A diagnosis of rotator cuff tear is not required to participate.

Study: Transfer Learning for Personalized Hand Models (IRB #202002061)
We are currently seeking volunteers over the age of 18 to participate in a study on hand biomechanics. The purpose of this study is to create personalized computer models of the hand based on sparse, readily available data.  

For all studies, if you live in or near the Gainesville area and are interested in learning more please contact:
Jennifer Nichols, Ph.D.  (352) 294-8803, jnichols@bme.ufl.edu