undergraduate research

Archimedes PrincipleExamples and Resources for High-Impact Practice: Undergraduate Research

Since research is a key component to the University of Kentucky’s success, faculty can readily use good design principles to weave undergraduate students into this academic mission early in their careers.  A hands-on approach to learning how academic scholarship works is crucial for the success of all our students, especially for those undergraduates traditionally underrepresented in particular disciplines or overall on the UK campus.  Being clear up front about the various expectations at each step of the research is crucial.  This can best be handled by preparing and presenting in advance examples of good research projects and a rubric by which the student’s project will be assessed. Intellectual relationships between faculty and first- or second-year undergraduates are enriched through research partnerships – whether as part of a particular course’s requirements or as an independent project.

A rigorous support system is invaluable to the faculty mentor, allowing her or him to focus on the academic challenges unique to a particular scholarly problem to solve.  That support comes from all parts of campus including peer advising, peer research interest groups, skill-building workshops (including academic integrity or information literacy), peer research publication efforts, University-wide speaker events, and research presentations or UK Undergraduate Research showcase events.

The UK Undergraduate Research Office offers support at all levels for faculty and students engaged in research — whether independent research projects or embedded research expectations in undergraduate courses.

Click on the images below for examples of good practices in undergraduate research.

Large Classroom Settings Seminar Settings Small Group Settings
Greek Theatre Seminar setting Small study group
General Resources on Undergraduate Research

“Encouraging undergraduate research,” Office of Educational Development, UC Berkeley, http://teaching.berkeley.edu/research.html

Jenkins, A. and Healey, M. (2010) “Undergraduate Research and International Initiatives to Link Teaching and Research,” Council on Undergraduate Research Quarterly 30, http://www.cur.org/quarterly/mar10/spring10jenkins.pdf

UK Academic Ombud worksheet, “Plagiarism: What is it?
UK Office of Research Integrity, Resources and Policies
UK Office of Undergraduate Research, Resources for Students and Faculty
UK Office of V-P for Research, Student Research Opportunities

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