University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota
College of Biological Sciences
Cedar Bog LakeBioCON ExperimentSavanna

Undergraduate and Graduate Opportunties

EEB 3407/5407: Ecology

Come study ecology at the University of Minnesota's Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve, located only 35 miles north of the Twin Cities campus. Cedar Creek is one of the most famous and influential ecological research sites on Earth. It contains an exceptional diversity of plants and animals, partly because it is at the meeting point of the northern boreal forest, the eastern deciduous forest, and the western grasslands and savannas. Here you will visit current experiments, including studies that test how biodiversity loss affects ecosystems and whether climate change will speed up  or slow down, work with data from ongoing studies, and collaborate with other students to develop your own field ecology group project.  

Meeting Location: Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve, 2660 Fawn Lake Drive NE, East Bethel, MN 55005

Credits: 3

Instructor: Dr. Forest Isbell, Email:, Phone: 612-301-2601

Course credits are transferable to most colleges and universities. We welcome students from around the United States and the world. Instruction is in English. Students can commute to Cedar Creek each day or live on site during the course. Lodging space is limited, however, and must be reserved in advance. Please direct requests for lodging to Megan Lauzon ( Undergraduate students should register for EEB 3407. Graduate students should register for EEB 5407.
If you are a current University of Minnesota student, you may register online for May-Summer 2018 courses beginning March 1st, 2018 in accordance with the registration schedule.
If you are not a current UMN student, then please follow the instructions for non-degree students on the One Stop website and send a copy of your transcript (unofficial is acceptable) to the course instructor, Dr. Forest Isbell ( ).

CLICK HERE for more information.

Cedar Creek Graduate Fellows Program


Are you a graduate student or postdoctoral researcher working at Cedar Creek ESR? Are you interested in developing your skills as a mentor and sharing your research experience with motivated undergraduate students? Apply to join the Cedar Creek Summer Fellows! 
These fellowships provide partial support for graduate students or postdoctoral researchers who would like to mentor undergraduate / post-bac student researchers and are conducting research at or related to Cedar Creek. Funding is available for up to five summer fellowships supported at 10 hours per week. Applications are strongly encouraged from graduate students or postdoc researchers who will help support Cedar Creek's efforts to increase the diversity of our research community and create a welcoming and inclusive climate.

Fellows are encouraged (but not required) to live onsite at Cedar Creek, as this helps us build our research community. Free onsite housing will be provided to all Fellows during the period of employment.

Together, the team of Fellows will:

  • mentor undergraduate / post-bac interns working on independent research projects throughout the summer;
  • organize a research symposium in June in which faculty, postdoctoral researchers, and graduate students present results from their ongoing studies at Cedar Creek;
  • organize a recurring seminar series;
  • offer regular workshops that provide formal research training on topics including proposal writing, literature review, data analysis, and presentation of research results;
  • plan and execute opportunities for team-building among interns and others at Cedar Creek; and
  • organize a research symposium in August in which intern researchers present the findings of their independent projects.

We anticipate that most of these activities and interactions will take place in-person at Cedar Creek this year, although Fellows will need to be flexible and adjust as necessary given pandemic restrictions.


Apply by 11 March 2022 by completing the survey and uploading your CV here: Decisions will be made in early April. 

Undergraduate and Graduate Field Tours


We welcome groups from colleges across the Midwest to come visit our research experiments and learn about ecology here at its birthplace! Our field tours are particularly valuable for courses focusing on grasslands, conservation, field biology, and general ecology. Contact Caitlin ( or 612-301-2602) to arrange a visit that meets your needs, group size and curricular focus.

Field tours and presentations range in price from $100 - $300 depending on length and program details. Self-guided tours are also available for frequent visitors and carry a $100 site use fee.