I work about 20 hours a week in my advisor's research lab. My duties include reading papers, giving presentations, and working on research projects. Currently, I am working on semantic concurrency control mechanisms. The lab is a very cooperative environment, and I will often help my fellow researchers by critiquing their drafts or code. Most weeks, we have a "reading class," where each student is assigned a paper to present. This provides presentation practice and a good opportunity for the group to meet up and discuss our research.