Have you ever imagined being trained one-on-one by a professor? That is exactly what the Office of Undergraduate Research (OUR) offers students. Through OUR, undergraduates are guided by faculty mentors in the completion of scholarly projects. The OUR specifically supports students’ scholarly apprenticeships. When you think of research, you probably think of laboratory experiments in chemistry, physics, or biology. But could you see yourself writing and performing a music composition? Maybe you would benefit from traveling to Europe to review original historical documents. Perhaps you want to understand the impact of a particular treatment on patient care. Research, or scholarship, can take many different forms depending on your field of study.
Less than 1% of undergraduates complete an undergraduate thesis. Consequently, completion of these faculty-student collaborative projects enables undergraduates to further distinguish themselves from other students graduating with the same degree. In addition to developing the very skills that will assure your success in graduate and professional programs, by completing a thesis you have distinct opportunities to develop exceptional credentials including:
OUR offers courses that guide students through the thesis process from identifying and selecting a mentor to constructing and carrying out professional presentations. OUR also provides undergraduates with workshops on grant writing, protection of human subjects, and other research related topics. The Coordinator of OUR acts as a resource to undergraduates and their faculty mentors throughout the research process assisting with the identification of conference and publication opportunities, identification of potential financial resources to support projects, and acting as a consultant in problem resolution.
The Office of Undergraduate Research sponsors a competitive grant process that funds up to a maximum of $1,500 ($1,000 for the faculty mentor and $500 for the student) to support undergraduates and their faculty mentors collaborating on scholarly or creative projects. Student grant recipients receive a minimum of three hours of directed individual study academic credit for undertaking their research projects. Grant applications are due twice per year and grant recipients must submit their final projects by May 1 of the following year. In April of each year, the Office of Undergraduate Research hosts a university wide conference - Showcase of Osprey Advancements in Research and Scholarship (SOARS) - in which the award recipients from the previous year present their projects. The Scholars Program also publishes the Osprey Journal of Ideas and Inquiry, which includes the finished products of the research or scholarly projects of all of the previous year’s award recipients.
Additional information about SMART grants, including applications, worksheets and evaluation criteria, can be found by clicking on the image below.
Although research involves the generation of new knowledge, it is equally important that this new knowledge be communicated to others. One popular method for communicating research findings and other forms of scholarship is poster presentations. The Office of Undergraduate Research therefore offers students poster printing services. To learn more about how to construct a professional poster, you may want to visit the poster construction website. To learn more about poster printing services, click on the image below.
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