Co-op Student Exchange Program

The Co-op Student Exchange Program in the Department of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics at the University of Iowa provides a vigorous training program for co-op students from other universities in the field of biomedical research. The goal of this program is to give co-op students the opportunity for collaborative research projects or independent research projects with Physiology faculty members.

Projects in the department aim at bridging the gap between basic physiology and human diseases using state of the art techniques. Research interests in the department include the cellular and molecular basis of diseases such as cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, muscular dystrophy, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, reproductive disorders, and cystic fibrosis.

Our program stresses the interaction of co-op exchange students with outstanding faculty and postdoctoral fellows in the department as well as the Carver College of Medicine. A weekly seminar series, laboratory meetings and regular social gatherings facilitate interactions by the students with various scientists.

Four to twelve-month terms are offered so that the students may make significant progress on their research as well as master a number of new laboratory techniques. Competitive stipends are available.


  • Students are admitted to the Co-op Exchange Program based on their previous research experience, their ability to work in a cooperative laboratory setting and their academic standing.
  • Students will have the opportunity to present their research at the end of their term and in some instances, may have the benefit of co-authoring a paper while in the laboratory. 

Stipend and Benefits

  • $22,000 annual rate
  • Medical coverage paid by the Department of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics
  • Entrance to the United States on a J-1 visa
  • Housing is available near campus; must be secured by participant and paid by participant. If needed, the program administrator will help applicants find housing.

Iowa City

The University of Iowa is located on the Iowa River in Iowa City (population 62,000) and has numerous parks, several museums, theatres, and excellent restaurants. In addition, Iowa City has a lovely downtown area that includes a pedestrian mall and is located within driving distance of several major Midwest cities. Please visit the Iowa City & Coralville Convention and Visitors Bureau website for more information about Iowa City and the surrounding area or find maps and directions to our department on our Location Information page.

Faculty Mentors

Please view individual faculty research interests and contact information. You should contact directly the faculty member whose laboratory you are interested in joining.