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Undergraduate Research Assistant Program

Students sitting and talking on campusAs a top-ranking research department in the United States, we offer exceptional undergraduate students the opportunity to gain prized research experience by working closely with faculty mentors as Research Assistants.  Students participating in the program will work with faculty and doctoral students with special expertise and interests matched, as closely as possible, to the student's research interests and career goals.  Students who wish to pursue an academic career in teaching or research in the public or private sector are strongly encouraged to apply.

What Do Research Assistants Do?

Research Assistants' tasks will vary among their faculty mentors but should expect experience and training including but not limited to some of the following:

      • collect various types of qualitative and quantitative data including internet and library-based research
      • collaborate in developing and implementing coding systems and provide data entry
      • organizing and implementing research experiments including recruiting and scheduling of study participants, obtaining informed consent of study participants or their guardians, supervising the work of survey interviewers, conducting exit interviews
      • act as a confederate in experiments
      • assist with the preparation of project-related presentations
      • prepare tables, graphs, fact sheets, and written reports summarizing research results
      • perform data entry and other clerical work

How to Become a Research Assistant

Political Science Majors with at least 15 POL credits may review the research opportunities posted on the Political Science Undergraduate Major/Minor Brightspace page. You will review the available research opportunities and fill out the POL 487 application form there. You will then be contacted by the research coordinator to arrange a meeting with your faculty mentor and shortly thereafter you will be informed if you are offered a Research Assistantship and will register for POL 487: Directed Research.

    • An RA is not a paid position and is taken for credit.
    • RAs should expect to commit at least 10 hours per week to their faculty mentor

Contact and Information:

For information about the Political Science Undergraduate Research Assistant Program, please contact:

Michael Peress, Professor
Undergraduate Research Co-Coordinator 
N-743 Social and Behavioral Sciences Building
Jason Rose, Lecturer
Undergraduate Research Co-Coordinator
N-747 Social and Behavioral Sciences Building