Wondering about Internships for credit

Wondering if you should get credit for your internship?  Here is the Physics 399R SYLLABUS


Undergraduate students majoring Physics, Physics & Astronomy, or Applied Physics at BYU do research either in the form of a senior thesis or a capstone. Usually that research is done at BYU, but it could be done as part of an internship at other academic institutions, companies and/or national laboratories. Internships can be helpful in your professional, academic, and personal development. They are also valuable to the internship providers, as participating organizations receive ethical, capable, and productive interns with the potential could become full-time employees. As such, physics students are strongly encouraged to consider an internship as part of their undergraduate studies. However, internships are not required for graduation. There are conditions where internship credit can be applied towards meeting graduation requirements.

Internships are intended to be high quality academic experiences. In order to ensure that this objective is met, students are encouraged to look for the following characteristics of internship programs as they apply for and accept positions:

  • An assigned supervisor who will work closely with the intern in a mentored relationship throughout the duration of the experience.
  • Substantive assignments that require physics technical skills, provide opportunities for the intern's increased learning and growth, and acquaint the intern with real-world problems and practices.
  • Periodic evaluations of the intern's work.

High-quality internship programs for our majors will incorporate the above characteristics into an experience that benefits both the employer and the student.

After securing an internship and registering, students are ready to start the internship course. Below are the course requirements.

Course Information & Purpose:

Physics 399 R is a variable credit internship experience available to all students doing a physics-related internship. The internship course is designed to provide each student with the opportunity to use classroom knowledge in a practical/real - world setting with the support of both a faculty adviser as well as a professional in a technical area. While the Internship and Career Services Office are a resource, students must locate and secure their own internship.

Now that you have an internship lined up. What to do first?

1.      Decide if you want credit. Credit hours cost money. Why might you want credit?

a.       You are an international registered for classes during the semester. This is often true for spring and summer terms.

b.      You need credit to show that you are a full-time student for some sort of scholarship etc. This is not usual.

c.       You need credit. Again, this is not usually the case with our majors who often find that they have more than enough rather than too few credits.

d.      You know you’re going to use the internship experience for your thesis or capstone and you don’t want to take required two hours of thesis (Physics 497R) or capstone (Physics 492R). Note you would have to petition the undergraduate committee to have the thesis requirement replaced by internship report credit. We have never had such a petition so we don’t know what would happen.

2.      If you decide you want internship credit, go to the internship office webpage and fill out the forms they are.

  1. Does the experience provide direct supervision by a professional in your field (in person, and on a daily basis)?
  2. Does the experience provide you with enough hours of work? For 399R, make sure you can work at least 50 hours total/credit hr.
  3. Are you working with family or relatives of any kind? (Yes? Then it will NOT count)

If you answered yes to the first two questions and no to the last one, then your internship DOES qualify for credit. Now, simply follow the registration instructions HERE.  You may not find a master agreement for your proposed work.  You may be asked to provide information to those seeking to obtain the master agreement.

Syllabus for Internships

Once you have decided to take the class, if you are to earn an A grade for your internship hours:

1.      You need to start a journal of your work experiences that you write in each week.

2.      I will need more detailed written reports- maybe a paragraph or two. Please send to dda2@byu.edu 

3.      You need plan on writing an evaluation of your internship provider at the end of your internship. This will need to be shared with the internship office. Look for a link for you to do this on the BYU internship page.

4.      You need to plan on writing a thank you letter to your internship mentor at the end of your internship.

5.      Your mentor/supervisor for your internship will need to evaluate your performance at the end of the internship.  (Can you please send me contact info for your supervisor?)


1. Are On Campus Internships still available?

Web page: //marriottschool.byu.edu/explearn/ 

2. What are worker's Compensation Benefits instruction for BYU Interns?

From: Adrienne Chamberlain
Thu 1/26/2017 1:27 PM

Hello Department Internship Coordinators,

We have received the instruction below from the Office of Risk Management & Safety regarding BYU Interns and their worker’s compensation benefit eligibility and procedures. This information is also available on our online Department Internship Coordinator Handbook //intern.byu.edu/content/department-internship-coordinator-handbook on pages 131 and 132.

BYU Interns and Workers’ Compensation Benefits

In the State of Utah, some classifications of Interns will be eligible to submit a claim for Workers’ Compensation benefits according to the Utah Code Ann. § 53B-16-403, et seq.  For a student to be considered a BYU Intern, the student must be enrolled in a BYU Internship course: 199R, 299R, 399R, 496R, 599R, and 688R.  If a BYU student is not enrolled in one of these Internship courses, they do not qualify for workers’ compensation benefits. The only exception to this is with the BYU College of Nursing. 

In order for an injury to be covered, the injury must be directly related to the work activities of the internship while the student was “on-the-clock” and the cause of injury must be the work activity.  Acceptance of the claim and distribution of benefits is at the sole discretion of BYU Risk Management.  Benefits should never be promised or guaranteed by the sponsoring department, the supervisor, co-workers, employees at the worksite, or any other individual. If a claim is approved for benefits by BYU Risk Management, the Intern is only eligible for medical benefits relating to the work injury.

1.   Paid Domestic/International Interns:

These are students who are getting paid by another company for their internship. As they are getting paid from another company, they are employees of that company and do not quality for BYU Workers’ Compensation benefits. This is the case whether they are in Utah or outside of Utah including outside of the US.  These students must run the bills for their medical care through their employer sponsored workers’ compensation program or their private insurance.

2.   Unpaid Domestic Interns:

These are students who are not getting paid for their Internship. Providing they are enrolled in a BYU Internship course, these students are eligible to submit a claim for workers’ compensation benefits.

3.   Unpaid International Interns:

These are students who are enrolled in the BYU Internship course and have an agreement with the BYU Kennedy Center. If the student is injured during the work related activity and wishes to receive medical care internationally, the student must run the expenses through the BYU Study Abroad Medical Insurance. When the student returns to the US and either needs to receive initial care or subsequent care, the student is eligible to submit a claim for workers’ compensation benefits.

4.   Study Abroad.

In certain cases, students may be in both a study abroad and internship program. Workers’ Compensation benefits would be determined on a case-by-case basis and students should contact the Workers’ Compensation office at 801-422-3610.

Any Intern who wishes to submit a claim to be reviewed for workers’ compensation benefits must inform their department internship coordinator. The department internship coordinator must fill out a “Supervisor’s Incident Report for All BYU Personnel” form which is found online at //risk.byu.edu/ under “Workers’ Compensation Injury”. This form must be submitted within 24 hours of being notified by the student intern of their intent to submit a claim for benefits.  The department internship coordinator should direct the intern to seek initial medical care at the BYU SHC Urgent Care if they are located in Utah County or at the nearest Urgent Care if outside of Utah County.

For more information, contact the BYU Risk Management Workers’ Compensation office at 801-422-3610 or go to //risk.byu.edu/.

Adrienne Chamberlain
Program Coordinator
Internship Office

Brigham Young University
5435 HBLL
Provo, UT 84602

801-422-0172 fax