Research Mentor Qualifications, Roles, and Responsibilities

The primary role of the BIS faculty/research mentor in the BIS sequence is to provide academic guidance as the student designs and implements the BIS interdisciplinary 390/BIS 490 senior capstone project. Support from the faculty/research mentor is essential to the success of a student pursuing academic work in the BIS program.


All must meet the following requirements to be qualified to participate as a BIS research mentor:

  • Current full-time or adjunct Mason faculty member (research, teaching, or administrative) or research librarian
  • Hold a Master's degree or above
  • Have relevant expertise and appropriate academic credentials (or significant professional experience) relative to the student's concentration

Mentor Responsibilities

  • Mentor meets with student to discuss references for their project idea; mentor summates major points of discussion, shares summation with students.
  • Mentor discusses research question and literature review and meets with student; mentor summates major points of discussion, shares the summation with student and BIS 390 instructor.
  • Mentor meets with the BIS student (either in-person or virtually) a minimum of three times throughout the semester in which the student is enrolled in BIS 390 and replies to student’s emails in a timely manner.
  • Mentor advises on final project in the semester in which the student is enrolled in BIS 490 with a focus on continuity and academic formatting particular to the primary academic discipline of the capstone.

Mentor Opportunities and Rewards

  • Work with students in an area of scholarly interest
  • Work individually with enthusiastic, motivated, energetic, and mature students
  • Receive a stipend for each advisee during their BIS 390 semester.

Resources for Research Mentors