Friday Harbor Laboratories
Page last modified Sept. 23, 2104


2014 Information for Students


APPLICATION PERIOD NOW CLOSED. Student applications for coursework in Spring, Summer and Autumn 2015 will be accepted beginning in late October 2014. Course lists and course descriptions will be posted very soon.

Friday Harbor Laboratories (FHL), part of the University of Washington, offers coursework in marine biology and oceanography for undergraduates, post-baccalaureates and graduate students. FHL is sited on a 484-acre biological preserve on San Juan Island, 75 miles northwest of Seattle; the island is accessible by ferry and scheduled commuter aircraft.

Credits for FHL coursework will be earned through the University of Washington but applicants to FHL courses do not need to be enrolled at University of Washington. Students from all over the world come to study and conduct research at Friday Harbor Labs.

SPRING QUARTER 2014 (10 weeks)
Link to Spring 2014 Web page

Spring Quarter: Monday, March 31 - Friday, June 6, 2014
Application review begins January 25. Applications will be accepted after Jan. 25 on a space-available basis.


1) ZOO-BOT QUARTER - Students participate in a combination of 3-4 courses:
- Marine Zoology (Biology 430, 5 credits) and
- Marine Botany (Biology 445, 5 credits)
plus either
- Nearshore Ecology Research Experience or Aquatic Animals Research Experience (Biol, Fish or Ocean 479, 6 credits)
- (optional) FHL Undergraduate Seminar (Biol 490, 1 credit)



4) THREE SEAS PROGRAM - Northeastern University program at Friday Harbor Labs

SUMMER SESSION A 2014 (5-week, 9-credit courses)
Link to Summer 2014 Web page

Summer A Term: Monday, June 16 - Friday, July 18
Application review begins February 1; applications will be accepted after Feb. 1st on a space-available basis.



3) MARINE ALGAE (Biology 539A)


SUMMER SESSION B 2014 (5-week, 9-credit courses)

Summer B Term: Monday, July 21 - Friday, Aug 22
Application review begins February 1; applications will be accepted after Feb. 1st on a space-available basis.



3) LARVAL BIOLOGY (Biology 533L)


SUMMER 2014: Blinks - NSF REU - BEACON Internship Program

(8-12 weeks) Seeking senior undergraduates, post-bacs or graduate students from diverse cultural backgrounds, especially those under-represented in the sciences; includes financial support funded by the Blinks Endowment and the National Science Foundation.


August 11-23 (two weeks), applications due April 15

Summer Workshop on the Dynamic Brain

August 24 - September 7, applications due April 1

Co-hosted by the Allen Institute for Brain Science and the Computational Neuroscience Program at the University of Washington and directed by Drs. Christof Koch and Adrienne Fairhall.This workshop is being held on the FHL campus but current information and the application process is being managed through this website:

Questions? Please contact


AUTUMN QUARTER 2014 (10 weeks)

Link to Autumn 2014 Web page

Autumn Quarter: Wednesday, Sept 24 - Friday, Dec 5
Application review May 15 (early review date) and July 1 (standard review date). Applications will be accepted after July 1 on a space-available basis.


Applicants choose a combination of courses to total full-time enrollment (12 or more credits):

- Marine Biology (5 credits: Biol 250)
- Biology of Fishes (5 credits: FHL 305) equivalent to Ichthyology, Fish 311
- Integrative Oceans (3 credits: Ocean 210) previously listed as Ocean Circulation, 3 credits
- Reading and Writing the Marine Environment (5 credits: English 365)
- Creative Writing Lab (1-5 credits: English 493)
- Foundations of Ecology (3 credits: Biol 356)
- Marine Sciences Seminar (1 credit: FHL 490)
- Research in Marine Biology (6 credits: FHL 470) equivalent to Biol 479/Ocean 479/Fish 479

RESEARCH APPRENTICESHIP (Ocean 492, 15 credits)

Independent Study for UW graduate students


General information about Friday Harbor Laboratories

Research Apprenticeship Program

International Student Information

How to request transcripts

Traveling to Friday Harbor

Spring 2014 course descriptions

Summer 2014 course descriptions

Autumn 2014 course descriptions

2014 Costs

2014 Academic Calendar

Spring 2013 course descriptions

Summer 2013 course descriptions

Autumn 2013 course descriptions

2013 Academic Calendar

For additional information, please contact FHL Student Coordinator, Stacy Markman at or (206) 616-0753.

Students generally live in double-occupancy dormitories on the FHL campus with meals provided in the FHL Dining Hall. FHL has limited capacity to house family members of students. If you would like your familiy to accompany you, please submit a request as early as possible.

Spring and Autumn sessions
run a full academic quarter (10 weeks) with courses and research apprenticeships targeted to undergraduates and post-baccalaureates. The Spring and Autumn sessions require a full-time commitment, generally Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Accepted students should plan to arrive at FHL after 3:00 p.m. the day before class begins. Spring Quarter and Autumn Quarter classes will run through 5:00 p.m. on the final Friday of the term, and students may stay at FHL on Friday night, departing on Saturday morning after breakfast (served 7:45-8:15 a.m.).

Summer sessions*
run 5 weeks each; FHL schedules two sessions each summer. Students may enroll in one course per session. The FHL summer schedule includes a number of graduate-level courses plus two or three undergraduate-level courses. Summer courses require a full-time commitment, generally Monday-Saturday: Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. plus Saturday mornings 8:30-12:00 (no Saturday class held during the final week of each summer session). In the two Summer Sesssions students must depart on Friday following lab clean-up in the morning followed by lunch (lunch is served 12:15-12:45), after which students are expected to leave campus. Students may be asked to move their belongings out of the dorms before breakfast (to a building nearby) if another group is arriving.

* Please note: a number of graduate-level (500-level courses) summer courses at Friday Harbor Laboratories are offered under the "umbrella" course Biology 533: Advanced Organismal Biology. If a course is listed as Biology 533 the students' transcripts from University of Washington will list the course title "ADV ORG BIOL" rather than the specific Friday Harbor Laboratories' course title. Students may wish to provide to their home department or advisor the specific FHL course description, or provide a link to the appropriate FHL web page where the specific course descrition is posted.

Admission decisions are usually made within four to six weeks following the application review date; applicants will be notified via email. If a student has applied for financial aid from Friday Harbor Labs, notifications regarding financial awards may be emailed separately at a later date, often several weeks after admission decisions have been sent.

Research Apprenticeships
(targeted to undergraduates and post-baccalaureates)

Research apprenticeships at FHL are scheduled for a full academic quarter (10 weeks) in Spring and Autumn Quarters. Please visit the Research Apprenticeships webpage for more information.

Independent Study for UW Graduate Students

During all quarters, graduate students may register for research with the consent of their faculty advisors.

600 Independent Study or Research
700 Master's Thesis
800 Doctoral Dissertation

Students' Frequently Asked Questions

What are the Friday Harbor Laboratories?

Friday Harbor Laboratories (FHL) are a University of Washington campus dedicated to teaching and research in the marine sciences. Located on San Juan Island, Washington (75 miles NW of Seattle) FHL enjoys an international reputation for high quality courses and a research-intensive atmosphere.

Can I commute daily to Friday Harbor from Seattle?

No, it is not possible for students to communte from Seattle on a daily basis. Students and research apprentices will live and study on the FHL campus full time: five days per week (Mon-Fri) in Spring Quarter and Autumn Quarter; six days per week (Mon-Fri plus Sat morning) for courses in Summer Term A and Summer Term B. It may be possible to leave campus on the occassional weekend.

outside dorm student dorm room

What are the accommodations like?

Dormitories have comfortable, double occupancy rooms with bathrooms down the hall. Each dorm room contains single beds (regular length), desk space with ample lighting, and two chairs. There is space to store belongings. There are no phones available in dorm rooms but communal phones are available around campus. You may bring a cell phone (AT&T and Verizon work here, as do some other companies) and you should have a calling card or pre-paid phone card to use for long distance calling or faxing. Housing in an FHL double-occupancy dorm room will be automatically assigned by FHL staff for each accepted student; no action by the student is required to reserve housing.

BEDDING: All students are provided, at no cost, a pillow and a blanket. We encourage students to bring their own sheets and towels but bedding may be rented from Friday Harbor Labs. Rented bedding includes two sheets, one pillowcase and one towel. The cost to rent bedding is $5 per week; rented bedding may be exchanged for clean items once per week.

What are the arrangements for food?

Students and research apprentices at FHL are required to purchase the full-board meal plan (20 meals per week). The Dining Hall provides numerous options for the diversity of student preferences, including vegetarian and meat dishes, and a salad bar. There are no cooking facilities available in the student dorms. Electrical appliances such as refrigerators or hot plates are not allowed in dorm rooms. A communal refrigerator is available for student use behind Dorm B.

May I have visitors at FHL?

Yes, if housing is available when requested and reserved prior to visitors' arrival. Huts or cottages may be rented at a reasonable price on a first come, first served basis. (Huts are heated, one-room structures without plumbing. Bathrooms are nearby.) To request guest housing send an email to:

How do I get to Friday Harbor?

Click here for information about traveling to Friday Harbor.

How do students register after applying and being accepted for courses at Friday Harbor Labs?
Students must apply and be accepted by Friday Harbor Labs before they can register for FHL courses or research apprenticeships. FHL staff will provide registration instructions to each admitted student. There are different registration procedures for spring, summer and autumn quarters at FHL, and for University of Washington (UW) students and non-UW students.

REGISTRATION INFORMATION for UW STUDENTS: UW students may NOT register themselves for research apprenticeships in spring or autumn. Self-registration for UW students through MyUW is only possible for the Zoo-Bot Quarter classes in spring or the Marine Biology Quarter classes in fall but registration will require Add Codes provided by FHL staff. For summer courses, admitted students will be provided with registration forms to register through UW Professional and Continuing Education (UWPCE).

REGISTRATION INFORMATION for NON-UW STUDENTS: All students not currently enrolled at University of Washington will be registered with assistance from FHL staff. Instructions will be provided by FHL staff after admission.

REGISTRATION INFORMATION for SPRING "ZOO-BOT QUARTER" or AUTUMN "MARINE BIOLOGY QUARTER" (full-time enrollment, credits vary): To register for the FHL "ZooBot Quarter" (a combination of courses in spring) or the FHL "Marine Biology Quarter" (a combination of courses in autumn) UW students accepted by FHL will be provided with Add Codes by FHL staff so students can register themselves through "MyUW" in the usual way. All non-UW students will be registered by FHL staff.

REGISTRATION INFORMATION for SPRING or AUTUMN RESERACH APPRENTICESHIP (15 credits): To register for FHL Research Apprenticeships in Spring or Autumn Quarter, ALL students will be registered by FHL staff through UW Professional and Continuing Education (UWPCE). UW students may not register themselves for research apprenticeships.

REGISTRATION INFORMATION for SUMMER COURSES (9 credits/5 weeks each): All students, including UW students, will be provided with an individualzied registration form from staff at Friday Harbor Labs so they register through UW Professional and Continuing Education (UWPCE). UW students may not register themselves without assistance.

For additional information, email or call 206-616-0753.

How do I get transcripts for a course completed at Friday Harbor Labs?

Yes, to receive a transcript for a course or apprenticeship completed at FHL, follow instructions provided at the following University of Washington website: reg/transcripts.html#Q1.

Please note that your transcript from University of Washington may list a course title that does not exactly match the title of the course you complete at Friday Harbor Laboratories.

The course title on the transcript will list the University of Washington "umbrella" course title under which the Friday Harbor Labs course is offered. For example, the FHL course title may be "Neuroetholgy" but because the course is Biology 533 it will be listed on a transcript as "BIOL 533 ADV ORG BIOL" (for Advanced Organismal Biology) as this is the name assisgned by the UW Biology Department for all Biology 533 courses. Unfortunately, the FHL course title cannot be posted on the transcript.

Some FHL students choose to print the FHL course description with title, or provide a link to the appropriate FHL web page, to give to their home department or advisor. This information may be helpful if you plan to transfer the FHL course credits to your home institution. Students should speak with their advisors prior to enrolling for a course at University of Washington Friday Harbor Laboratories.

The following are examples of University of Washington "umbrella course" titles under which FHL courses are frequently offered:

BIOL 479 Research in Marine Biology

BIOL 533 Advanced Organismal Biology

What are the requirements for international students?

Students come from all over the world to Friday Harbor Laboratories. All non-U.S. students, including Canadians, accepted to a course or apprenticeship at FHL must request an "I-20 Form" (Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status) issued by the University of Washington International Outreach Program. The I-20 Form will be needed to apply for a U.S. student visa through a U.S. embassy or consulate in the student's home country, a process that may require a month or more. Canadians do not need to obtain a U.S. student visa but will be required to present their I-20 Form at the border when entering the U.S.

Instructions on how to apply for the I-20 Form will be provided by FHL staff to all international students following admission to an FHL course or apprenticeship. Once the I-20 Form has been issued by UW, all non-U.S. students, including Canadians, will also need to submit an application and $200 payment for the U.S. "SEVIS I-901" (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System).

Stacy Markman, FHL Student Coordinator, will communicate with all international students to provide information about how to apply for an I-20 Form and a U.S. student visa (F-1) AFTER a student has been accepted for a course or apprenticeship at Friday Harbor Labs.


How can I learn more about Friday Harbor Laboratories? Click here for other frequently asked questions.

For additional information, please contact FHL Student Coordinator, Stacy Markman at or (206) 616-0753.