Scientific Discovery Program

At a Glance

Online: 7/11-9/12 Part-time
In-Person: 9/25-10/2 Full-time
Hybrid (in-person and online)

Upcoming Events

There are no upcoming informations sessions at this time, please check back later.

Discover your inner scientist.

The Marine Biological Laboratory's collecting vessel, the Gemma, sails the waters off of Woods Hole.

The program begins with nine weeks of online instruction from University of Chicago faculty across multiple scientific disciplines, labs, and areas of focus. Each week, the featured faculty speaker will provide insights and practical examples of cutting-edge scientific research. The online instruction will provide a strong base for your work at the Marine Biological Lab, and covers introduction to:

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Leveraging Genetic Engineering
  • Engineering Pharmaceutical Biotech
  • Global Water Supply
  • The Future of the Human (Philosophy)
  • Scientific Ethics
Head of a zebrafish embryo, showing the eye and brain (right).

On September 25, students will gather at the Marine Biological Lab in Woods Hole, MA – an international center for research and education in the biological and environmental sciences. Site explorations, field trips, hands-on experiments, lab work, and lectures will guide students to a greater understanding of the cutting-edge research and consequence of recent scientific discovery. Students will explore:

  • Gene Editing
  • Marine Models for Health
  • Microscopy and Imaging

The Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) is dedicated to scientific discovery – exploring fundamental biology, understanding biodiversity and the environment, and informing the human condition through research and education. Founded in Woods Hole, Massachusetts in 1888, the MBL is a private, nonprofit institution and an affiliate of the University of Chicago.

Digital Instruction

From July 7 through September 15, students will attend weekly online seminars with featured faculty as guest speakers. Each speaker will select one reading for students to review in advance. These sessions are designed to familiarize you with the terminology, logic, and history behind the work you will be doing at MBL.

Marine Biological Lab On-Site Learning

From September 25 – October 2, students will study at the Marine Biological Lab. On site, students will have the opportunity to participate in field work, lab work, and experiments guided by scientists and faculty.

Associated Activities and Events

Select meals, receptions, faculty lectures, and social activities are scheduled throughout. Registered students will receive a copy of the final schedule.

Tuition and fees are $5,995. If you are accepted into the program, a deposit of $1,000 will be requested within two weeks of acceptance to hold your spot. Balances will be due by June 1, 2022.

Students in the Scientific Discovery Program are responsible for securing their own accommodations. We include three options below for your consideration.

The Woods Hole Inn

Award-winning bed and breakfast with an ideal location steps from Martha’s Vineyard ferry offering historic, vintage rooms with modern updates.

Cape Cod AutoCamp

Cape Cod AutoCamp is close to the shore, just a few minute from Falmouth and Woods Hole. Lush wooded grounds, custom airstreams, luxury canvas tents, and so much more.

Marine Biological Lab Dormitory

Embrace the student experience by staying at the Marine Biological Lab dormitory. To learn more reach out to

The Scientific Discovery Program is open to lifelong learners and accomplished professionals seeking a rigorous, enriching, and fun learning experience.

We will begin to accept applications on Tuesday, February 8, 2022. Prompt application is recommended as we anticipate the inaugural program filling quickly.

Starting with Autumn Quarter 2021, the University of Chicago implemented COVID-19 vaccination-related requirements for students and staff.  Students and employees must show proof of receiving any COVID-19 vaccine authorized for use by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or by the World Health Organization (WHO).  Further, by January 24, 2022, all students and staff will need to submit proof of receiving a COVID-19 booster shot. 

The well-being of students in the Scientific Discovery Program will be our highest priority. To that end, we will follow the health and safety guidelines in place at the time of the program’s residency component.

A $1,000 per person deposit is required within one week if you are accepted into the program. The balance of the fee is due no later than May 16, 2022.   All cancellations and requests for refunds must be submitted in writing and will be subject to a $250 per person cancellation fee. Cancellations received between May 16, 2022 and June 6, 2022 will result in a forfeiture of 60% of the program cost per person. No refunds will be given for cancellations received after June 6, 2022.   In the event of the cancellation of the program by the University of Chicago Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies, a full refund of tuition will be given.

The University of Chicago and the University of Chicago Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies have no responsibility in whole or in part for any loss, death, damage, or injury to person or property or accident, mechanical defect, failure or negligence of any nature howsoever caused in connection with any accommodation, transportation, or other services. The right is retained to decline to accept or retain any person as a Seminar member should such person’s health, mental condition, physical infirmity, or attitude jeopardize the operation of the Seminar or the rights, welfare, or enjoyment of other participants.

Proof of health insurance or insurance waiver required.

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