The University of Texas at Dallas School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences


Some core undergraduate courses in the School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences require enrolled students (majors and non-majors) to earn research exposure credits (RECs) in addition to other course requirements. These core courses require students to earn two Research Exposure Credits, however, no more than six RECs are required of a student in any single term.

Students are strongly encouraged to earn RECs by participating in research studies. This is a great way to explore the research process in the School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences. One can take part in a research study as a participant, either in a research lab or online. By serving as a participant in a research study, students will learn how behavioral science experiments are actually done, contribute to the scientific understanding of human thought, behavior, and communication, and support the research going on in BBS. Research participants typically report very positive experiences.

To earn RECs as a research participant you first must register with the UT Dallas Sona System; instructions are available to assist students in signing up for a study using the Sona System.

For students who are not able or choose not to participate in research studies, an alternative assignment is available to meet the REC requirement.

Students may combine credits from research participation and the alternative assignment to satisfy the REC requirement. Because both options require students to follow specific procedures, it is important that students plan early how to obtain their RECs early in the term to ensure that they can meet the deadline.

The research exposure credits for a course must be completed by the last day of classes as shown on the academic calendar for that full-term session. A student’s grade for the course will be lowered by one-third for each Research Exposure Credit that is not completed by this deadline. For example, if a student earned a B+ in the course but only completed one REC, the course grade would be lowered to a B. If the student did not complete any RECs the grade of B+ would be lowered to a B-. More details on completing the research exposure credits requirement are available on eLearning in the BBS Information Center within the “My Organizations” section.

Questions about RECs should be directed to [email protected].