Research Connecting Experiences can be a research assistantship or an independent research project. To have a successful research experience, make sure to
- Plan ahead so you can meet deadlines
- Keep in touch with your BDP advisor to discuss your plans
- Clarify your interest and objectives relative to your BDP topic and strand
- Use our Self Assessment worksheet (PDF) to guide you
A research assistantship is an opportunity for students to work with faculty on a research project. Most research assistantship positions are created because students ask professors about the possibility. Be proactive! Explore resources below for potential assistantship positions and ideas.
Independent Research Projects
Use the tips below to help you develop an independent research project.
Choose a topic or idea
- Brainstorm topics related to your BDP
- Explore your ideas through writing or journaling
- Consider using current events as the basis for formulating a topic
- Think about issues or articles you’ve explored in course discussions
Develop a research question
- Narrow your focus by considering What would be the first step in solving a problem? For example, if you are interested the problem of glacial ice melting, you may want to research current theories on chemicals that speed up this process.
- Define your purpose and develop a question. A research question is the primary question you want to answer by the time you complete your project.
- Adapt your narrowest focus into a question you want to answer.
- Consult with an advisor, faculty, or the Office of Undergraduate Research to further develop your research question.
Address Ethical Questions
No matter what type of project you do, it is important to approach your Connecting Experience with an understanding of the potential challenges and rewards of engaging with a new community. What does it mean to be responsible in your research? See our handout on Responsible Community Engagement (PDF) for more information.
Institutional Review Board (IRB)
Are you working with human subjects? If so, be sure to contact the IRB office to find about steps you need to take.