A crucial responsibility for new graduate students is to choose a research area and a Thesis Advisor. In order to acquire sufficient knowledge to make an informed thesis lab selection, students complete lab rotations. A lab rotation consists of a research project under the supervision of a faculty trainer which lasts several months. Students complete their first lab rotation at NIH during the summer before the start of first year courses. During the first year at Brown, students complete one or two further rotations. While these rotations cannot serve to establish a thesis project at Brown, they can be very useful in acquiring research and interpersonal skills that will be useful to the student's future research. Upon moving to NIH at the start of the second year, the student may either return to the same NIH lab to begin thesis work, if the student, faculty member, and program directors agree, or do a second rotation.
Brown Neuroscience Professor John Donoghue, with a prosthetic arm controllable via brain-machine interface.