You're hearing about the benefits of doing research, engaging in hands-on, discovery-based learning and creation. You'd like to work one-on-one with a faculty member and learn what is happening at the forefront of your field of interest. But how do you go about it ?
See also : URECA Researcher of the Month
1. Visit the Departmental Research Liaison or Undergraduate faculty director in the discipline(s) that interest you. These faculty members can help you to clarify your research interests and identify faculty mentors. They have the most up-to-date information about research opportunities in a particular department/discipline, and about appropriate preparatory coursework needed. 2. Talk to other students in your major. Many students report learning about research and studio placement through their peers. 3. Check the URECA bulletin board for available projects: URECA Researchers Wanted!
IMPORTANT NOTE : there are many more opportunities than are posted on the bulletin board.
4. Look at department Web sites. Read through the descriptions of faculty interests and specializations. Pick one or two faculty whose work appeals to you, and do some background reading. If you're taking a class that you enjoy, talk with the instructor about possible opportunities in that field, either with the instructor or another faculty member. Avoid blanket e-mails to large numbers of faculty in a department beginning with generalizations such as "I'm interested in the brain or "I'm interested in cancer." Instead, try to focus on a few labs, studios or projects that really interest you. Contact potential faculty mentors directly to see if they would be willing to supervise you. 5. Visit the Director of Programs for Research and Creative Activities, Karen Kernan. Karen Kernan and Patty Liggan are available to help you find out about the range of opportunities and programs (including fellowships and grants) that are available, and welcome your questions.
earlier you start learning about research opportunities, the easier it will be
for you find a good research mentor who will help you to develop a project or
research program. Keep in mind that a faculty member may advise you to take a
few more courses or serve as an apprentice before undertaking a project and that
there may be limited space and/or resources in some of the labs. Despite the competition
that is sure to exist for certain positions, be assured that many research options
are available to you in a wide variety of subjects. Don't be discouraged if the
first couple of labs you contact have no space at that time. And don't forget
about the option of applying for undergraduate summer