FYRIS allows students to get involved in scientific research during their first year at UTEP, while fulfilling their degree plan requirements. In the Biological Sciences, Chemistry and Geological Sciences, FYRIS is a three-course sequence consisting of:

  • One research foundations course (RFC) taught via SCI 1301 - one of the component area options to fulfill the university core curriculum.
  • Two research driven courses (RDC) required by major degree plans, which must be completed in two consecutive semesters. These are lab courses, such as BIOL 1107-1108, CHEM 1105-1106, and others. They have specific sections which have been modified to incorporate research experiences.
  • The topics covered in these courses:
    • Allow entering freshmen to have real-world research experiences in a field of interest related to their majors while generating useful data that contribute to their professor's research project.
    • Teach essential research principles and valuable techniques.

In sociology, the RDCs are lecture courses, In psychology, there are lecture as well as lab RDCs. Visit the RDC page for details.

There are multiple options with different research themes in the Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Sociology and Psychology.

There are also RDCs for upper level students. Visit the RDC page for details.


How to Enroll in the Sequence

Although these courses are open to any student who wants to enroll, to ensure you enroll in the correct section(s), the course instructor or the college advisor must “lift the hold” on the course you’re interested in enrolling.

For the fall semester, students enroll in a specific section of the RFC (SCI 1301) designated as “research”. They also enroll in the first RDC section designated with the theme of choice.

For the immediately following spring semester, students enroll in the second RDC section of the sequence with the same theme. Switching themes from RDC 1 to RDC 2 is not allowed, as the research to be conducted during the second semester of the sequence is a continuation of the one that took place during the first semester.

Sequence 1: Done in 2 semesters

sequence 1


For a description of the Research Foundations Course, visit the RFC page.
For a description and list of Research Driven Courses, visit the RDC page

To verify you will be enrolling in the correct section, you may search in Goldmine for the most up-to-date information.

Course themes followed by “(I & II)” represent a course sequence where the 1st and 2nd courses in the sequence are offered in consecutive semesters. Generally, course I is offered in the fall and course II in the spring.

RDCs in Biological Sciences, Chemistry & Geological Sciences are just the lab portion => You must enroll in any section of the corresponding lecture portion


Quick Facts

  • FYRIS is open to all UTEP students
  • For freshman laboratory courses (see RDC page)
    • SCI 1301 RFC required
    • Completion of the 2-semester sequence of RDCs is highly recommended
    • Multiple tracks are available in Chemistry/Biochemistry, Biology, and Geology
  • Other freshman options available
    • In Psychology and Sociology
    • SCI 1301 RFC strongly encouraged
  • Upper division RDCs are available in Biochemistry, Biomedical Engineering, Psychology and Social Work
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