Science Research Program

Welcome to the Science Research program page!  

Science Research
On Thursday, October 6th the RVHS Parents Association hosted their lunch period guest speaker program in the library by inviting two SUNY Ulster librarians to speak to our Science Research students on the importance of improving their information literacy and journal research skills.
Pictured above: SR teachers Mr. Lawrence Sicheri, on left and Dr. Thomas Ticknor. SUNY Ulster's librarians Judy Capurso, on left and Marla Gruner

What is Science Research?

Started in 2001, Science Research is a 3-year, honors level course accredited by the New York Department of Regents Education and SUNY Albany University in the High School program.  Students may earn up to 12 college credits through this program. Ninety-three percent of our graduates have earned a four-year college degree. Ninety-six percent of those graduates have completed a degree in science. Eighty-six percent of the students with a science degree have entered a program in advanced science or earned an advanced degree in science. Twenty-two percent of Science Research graduates are minority students. From a career in aeronautical engineer or veterinarian to Capuchin Monk, Science Research graduates have achieved incredible success outside of RVHS. 

The philosophy behind this course is to provide an authentic, process-based education using the principals of inquiry in science education. SR utilizes immersion in a scientific topic of the student’s choice to integrate knowledge across curriculum and provide extended investigation and research at a graduate level. Students gradually expand their investigation, during a three-year time span from background research, experimental design, bench research, to publication of a paper for scientific competitions. The SR course methods include portfolio assessment, time management, public presentations, professional mentors and student goals.

Each first year student selects a general research topic and progresses to reading journal level literature through biweekly portfolio assessments, goal setting, and time management. Through authentic investigations in their selected topic and a model of journal level research students model the process of the scientific method and present their topic at annual symposia. Finally students obtain mentors in their field and develop a research plan. Each second year student, conducts original research under the guidance of a mentor and prepares for entry into various state wide symposia and science competitions. Each third year student writes an original journal article. They submit their research to scientific publications and competitions and present their findings at symposia. 

What are the accomplishments of Science Research students?  

Science Research students have been accepted at many wonderful colleges throughout the country. Their success is marked by accomplishments in fields in aeronautical engineering, computer science, medicine, dentistry and scientific research. This is a comment from one of our first students in SR that is now a Test Operations Engineer at the NASA Stennis Space Center .  “I'm proud to say that the experiences I had in Authentic Science Research helped prepare me for my future science endeavours to land me my dream job working on a NASA engine. In all honesty, I have had the project I worked on in ASR on my resume from the beginning, and every time it was noticed that I took such an advanced course while in high school, they were extremely impressed and interested. My advice to those taking the course now would be to never forget where you came from. I can almost guarantee that you will later on see what an impact ASR made on your path to get where you want to go” -Amanda Schmidt 2002 

Each year our students have placed in state and national competitions. This year’s seniors Jessie Gifford and Molly McAvoy competed and won second place at the NYC Hudson River Park Marine Science Competition with their research entitled 
The threat of the invasive species Dojo loach, Misgurnus anguillicaudatus, in Hudson River Tributaries”