Undergraduate Research in the College of Science

The College of Science has over 100 faculty within the seven departments mentoring students in undergraduate research.

Why do research? Participating in research is often the greatest and most fulfilling experience a student can have as an undergraduate. Students get to know a faculty member and other students in a close-knit research group. They learn how to approach research to answer scientific questions. Many graduate schools, medical schools, and dental schools require or strongly encourage undergraduate research.  Potential employers also look favorably on students who have had research experience.

Who Any student majoring in one of the College of Science degrees who is interested in a rewarding undergraduate experience can join a research group with one of the COS faculty.

When:  Depends on the faculty member and their research project, but most students can begin anytime.  The earlier, the better.  Beginning research during a student’s sophomore (and even Freshman) year is ideal.

Where:  Most students usually, but not always, work with a faculty member who teaches in the department in which their degree is given.  However, there are many cross disciplinary projects that have students from various majors working with a faculty mentor.

How:  Here are some suggestions on how to identify a faculty mentor and research project:

  • Download Current Faculty Research Projects by clicking on the button on the right. All College of Science faculty who are currently mentoring students in research projects are listed, including a description of their projects and contact information. Many students work with faculty who are in a different department than their major. Once projects of interest are identified, email the faculty to make an appointment to:
    1. Ask about details of the project.
    2. Ask about expectations, including # of hours per week students typically work in the lab.
    3. Apply to join the research group, if there is space and interest.
  • If a class sparks your interest, talk to the professor about their research and the possibility of doing research with them.
  • If you are interested in a particular subject, find a professor who teaches that or a similar subject. Talk to them about the subject and about their research projects.
  • Talk to Department Chairs or Advisors about who is doing research in the College of Science.