For Instructors

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How to utilize the MBL as an instructor

Any behavioral lab's success rests on obtaining qualified participants who are willing and able to dedicate their time and energy to studies. The Mendoza Behavioral Lab (MBL) is no different. For participants, we rely on Mendoza instructors to request or require their students to sign up through our system and come in for studies.

The MBL is easy to use for instructors. Instructors merely assign their students to participate in the MBL. At the end of the semester, each instructor receives a specialized report detailing each student's SONA participation credits. Instructors determine the value of each SONA point for their class grading. Please see the tab For Students for more details regarding the participant process, which is handled by the participant, with the lab program director as needed.

  1. Insert MBL text into your syllabus (see the section Suggested MBL syllabus text in this tab).
  2. Notify the lab program director that you will be inviting your students to participate in the lab during your course term.
  3. Plan to familiarize your students with the MBL section of your syllabus and/or invite the program director to give a brief presentation to your section(s) at the beginning of the term.
  4. Forward any student emails regarding the MBL or their participation to the lab staff at, who will directly respond to the student inquiry, record the results, and inform you of the outcome.
  5. Receive the end-of-term credit allocations for each of the students in each of your sections, separately, in order of your class roster(s) for ease of use.
  6. Assign your desired weighting of SONA points to your students for your grade book.

Principles of Management and Principles of Marketing research requirement

In fall 2016, the Mendoza College of Business instituted a research requirement for students enrolled in Principles of Marketing and Principles of Management. Instructors of these classes must include the paragraphs in the following section in their syllabi and are encouraged to invite the program director to give a brief lab presentation to their sections at the beginning of each term.

A student in one of these classes must earn 2 SONA credits for that class during the term. A student in both Principles classes concurrently is therefore required to earn 4 SONA credits for the term (2 SONA credits per class). SONA credits from previous terms may not be reassigned in the system to meet this requirement, and SONA credits cannot be used for more than one class.

Suggested MBL syllabus text

The following paragraphs are suggested for inclusion in class syllabi, with modifications as needed:

Students must fulfill 2 credits of research activity per class through one of the three options below.

Option 1: Participation in studies at the MBL

Students serve as subjects in academic research projects through the Mendoza Behavioral Lab (MBL). Common experiments include surveys, negotiations, and choice studies. Studies that run 30 minutes in duration earn 1 credit toward the requirement. Studies that run 45-60 minutes in duration are worth 2 credits. Participation can help students become better critics of research discussed in class, allowing them to refine their critical thinking skills. Also, students receive exposure to the type of research being conducted by their professors, which aids in furthering the knowledge that is a critical component of a great course.

A SONA account is required to sign up for studies. Lab staff will set up new accounts and update existing accounts with course information for students that participate in studies for research credit. New accounts and updates will be made after the last date for class changes. When new accounts are set up, students will receive an email. Students can use their campus NetID to log in to SONA.

Students without a SONA account and participating in studies for extra credit should log in at and request an account. Those with existing SONA accounts must update their accounts to include the course for extra credit. For assistance with adding a course in SONA, contact the behavioral lab staff.  

Option 2: Research review

A research review involves reading a scientific article related to the course and writing a one-page summary that discusses how the research findings apply to actual organizations. The review must be single-spaced, formatted in 12-point Times New Roman font with one-inch margins. Students may select any article published within the last three years in an academic journal designated by the professor. Include the title of the article and journal name in the review. For resource assistance, please contact a librarian at the Thomas Mahaffey Jr. Business Library in the lower level of the Mendoza College of Business.

Please note that one article summary is worth 1 credit. Submit your research review using the Qualtrics form to the Mendoza Behavioral Lab for grading. Research reviews are due by the last lab day at 5:00 pm.

Option 3: Lab study and Research review

Students may participate in a 30-minute lab study and submit one research review for credit. Students who complete 1 credit toward this option will not satisfy the research requirement.  

All questions about the research requirement should be sent to the Mendoza Behavioral Lab staff at

Your students and the MBL

We believe the MBL is of high value to Notre Dame students in providing them with hands-on exposure to research processes in a behavioral lab environment. Through the MBL, students may participate in studies, learn about current projects, engage further in research as paid Research Assistants (RAs), and connect with expert Mendoza faculty members in their business discipline areas.

You and the MBL

Thank you for your confidence in the MBL. If you have questions or would like to know more, please contact the program director. Feedback from instructors helps the MBL spirit of continuous improvement, so please impart your suggestions.