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College of Arts and Sciences

Center for Research on Race and Ethnicity in Society

Center for Research on
Race and Ethnicity in Society

Frequently Asked Questions: Undergraduate Research Program in the Social Sciences and Humanities

For Potential Participants:

Why do you suggest a sophomore or junior for the target age of the student participant?

Based on student and faculty feedback, the ideal year for student participation is the junior year, with the sophomore year as a fine follow-up option. There are two reasons for this. Third-year students have sufficient experience to make the most out of the mentorship opportunity, as they have two years of university coursework behind them. Additionally, they have another year of school ahead of them, so they are able to put the skills they learn in the URP to work during their senior year. Lastly, the work they produce during the URP can benefit them during their upcoming senior year—when they are applying for graduate school or jobs. Relatedly, the relationships they form with their faculty mentor and the CRRES Liaison may provide letter of recommendation writers.

How may participation in the URP benefit my future?
Students: URP student alumni are now pursuing graduate degrees (Duke University) and attending medical school. The URP has also provided students the chance to develop projects that help them advance with their IU degrees. One student progressed on the required capstone project for an Individualized Major. Another student was able to utilize the skills she learned throughout the URP to conduct research on her family’s personal immigration history.
Faculty: Mentors will receive $500 toward their research accounts. Additionally, faculty mentors work with a dedicated research assistant to spend 10 hours a week on their projects.

“I felt like I truly had a stake in my university as I began to really see it as a place of such critical knowledge production.” – Abby McIntosh, 2016 Student Researcher

What’s the difference between the two project types?
Type A is a faculty-led research project. The student would work on particular components of the faculty mentor’s project, such as data compilation, coding, creating an annotated bibliography, etc.
Type B is a student-led research project that progresses under the faculty mentor’s guidance. The student would propose an academic project, such as an essay, a digital media project, etc. Do note that students should identify a faculty mentor whose research focus relates to the student’s proposed project.

For Funded Project Participants:

What activities count toward the 10 weekly work hours?
Students are expected to work 10 hours per week. This includes a weekly meeting with their faculty mentor, responsibilities for the research project, and any tasks related to the monthly meeting with the CRRES Liaison (including meeting times).

When are URP funds transferred?
Faculty funds are deposited to their research accounts early in the fall semester.
Student funds are disbursed in four monthly installations beginning in September. Funds disbursal is dependent on student participation in the Program. Student must regularly attend meetings with faculty mentors, complete assigned tasks in timely manner, and attend monthly meetings with CRRES Liaison.

What if the project timeline or objectives change?
CRRES understands that project timelines and needs change. If the tasks and objectives outlined in the proposal need to be revisited and adjusted throughout the course of the semester, we understand. We do ask that you please inform us in the monthly evaluation if a substantive change occurs.

“We didn’t accomplish all of our goals, but those goals were ambitious, and we adjusted our research project as we went along… this, I think, was a good thing: as researchers, we know that every project changes and most need significant adjustment, so it’s good for students to see this process too.” –Professor Sarah Imhoff, 2016 Faculty Mentor, Departments of Jewish Studies and Religious Studies


Center for Research on Race and Ethnicity in Society
Schuessler Institute for Social Research
1022 E. 3rd St., Room 209,
Bloomington, IN 47405
812-855-8016

Office Hours: Monday - Friday: 9:15 am – 12:15 pm