Making Undergraduate Research a Key Part of Your Class or Curriculum

Friday 1:30pm-4:00pm Ogg: Classroom 1227
Afternoon Mini Workshop


Lydia K Fox, University of the Pacific
Meagen Pollock, College of Wooster

Undergraduate research is an exciting way to introduce students to the scientific method and to engage them in critical thinking and problem solving skills. Research can also increase relevance of the topics at hand and pave the way for students to transition from novices to experts. In the geosciences, there are a plethora of field, laboratory, and computational research experiences that can be employed from the introductory to upper levels.

This workshop is designed for faculty (including future faculty) who are interested in developing an undergraduate research program, as well as those interested in expanding their research programs to include undergraduates. The workshop will cover: incorporating research into courses (from introductory to advanced), project selection and mentoring of undergraduates in independent research, and ideas for funding opportunities.


By the end of the workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Articulate and identify course/curriculum learning goals that can be achieved through undergraduate research
  • Develop an action plan for a course/curriculum that uses undergraduate research to accomplish learning goals
  • Know where to find information to support undergraduate research as pedagogy


This workshop will focus on developing a plan to integrate undergraduate research into a course or curriculum. It will be helpful for participants to come to the workshop with course/curriculum materials, such as syllabi, departmental learning goals, course catalogue, etc.

1:30 pm – Welcome and Introductions

1:40 pm – Discussion – To help frame the workshop, we'll begin with a conversation about the motivation for and challenges of integrating research into courses and the curriculum.

2:00 pm – Presentation – This short presentation will cover examples of research-centered curricula and course-based research. We will briefly present strategies for success and resources for using undergraduate research as pedagogy. Undergraduate Research Workshop Slides (Acrobat (PDF) 3.9MB Jul18 16)

2:30 pm – Individual Work – Participants will identify goals for the remainder of the workshop. During this time, they will define the context of their course/curriculum and begin to develop and/or identify learning goals that are supported by research. Undergraduate Research Action Plan Worksheet (Microsoft Word 30kB Jul18 16)

2:50 pm – Small Group Work – Participants with similar interests will work in small groups to develop an action plan for integrating research into their courses/curriculum.

3:30 pm – Discussion – Groups will share the outcomes of their work. In our concluding discussion, we will reflect on undergraduate research as pedagogy and identify the take-home points from the workshop. Workshop Notes (Acrobat (PDF) 54kB Jul22 16)

3:55 pm – Workshop evaluation

4:00 pm – Adjourn

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