The purpose of the Kay and Jerry Cox Undergraduate Research Scholars Program is to expand research opportunities for SEHD students. They will be introduced to and be able to engage in various elements of the research process, including developing research questions and hypotheses; engaging in data collection and analysis; and drawing conclusions based on the findings of the research. Through these experiences, the students should develop their critical thinking and communication skills.
Ten faculty members will each recruit one student to work on a project. The collaboration takes place over one year. The first element begins in the summer, where students and faculty members meet for an intensive seminar over the first two weeks of a summer session (5 or 10 weeks). This allows the faculty member mentor and student mentees to discuss the research project, develop research questions and hypotheses, and determine the scope of the project. For the remainder of the term, students will write the proposal for the Undergraduate Research Scholars program. Faculty members will meet on a regular basis with the students to discuss the proposal and provide feedback. Writing Center staff will also help facilitate this process. Students must also enroll in a zero-credit course where the faculty mentor is the instructor of record, and this must be negotiated with and approved by the Division/Program Chair and the Department Head.
1. Faculty applicants should be SEHD faculty members.
2. Faculty members should recruit at least one qualified student to participate in the research project. Consistent with the Undergraduate Research Scholars eligibility criteria, students should:
a. Have completed at least 60 credit hours of undergraduate course work;
b. Have at least 24 credit hours at Texas A&M University;
c. Have and maintain at least a cumulative GPR of 3.0;
d. Be currently involved in or planning to start a suitable undergraduate project;
e. Submit a copy of their thesis to the Assistant Dean for Undergraduate Academic Affairs; and
f. Be ready to graduate by mid-April.
Faculty members are encouraged to recruit and support a diverse population of undergraduate students.
3. Selected faculty members will attend an orientation session.
4. This experience is conceived as a gateway to the Undergraduate Research Scholars (URS) program. The summer experience should lead to a proposal for the URS program prior to the posted deadline. Students may enroll in 291, 285, 491, or 485 coursework, or engage in the research independent of formal coursework. Learn more about the TAMU URS Program.
5. The URS culminates in at least one public presentation—either in the department, student research week, or a presentation at an academic meeting—and a written thesis.
6. Faculty members should be actively engaged in the mentoring process, working closely with the undergraduate research scholars. They should be in residence during the two week intensive summer meetings; correspond on a weekly basis with the students during the remainder of the summer; and correspondence on at least a bi-weekly basis during the Fall and Spring terms.
Faculty members will receive $1500 in professional development monies for guiding the research team. Students who participate in the program will receive a $500 scholarship in the summer, $500 in the Fall, and $500 in the Spring terms, contingent upon their active participation in the process.
Faculty members interested in pursuing this opportunity should submit an application to Kristy Anderson by mid-April. The application should be no more than three pages and include the following information:
- Faculty information: Name, rank, department, and contact information.
- Student information for the undergraduate student: Name, major, UIN, GPR, and contact information.
- Project information: title, lay abstract of no more than 1000 words explaining the purpose, scope, and impact of the project. Research compliance information should also be included.
- Student engagement: Outline the anticipated plan for engaging the undergraduates in the research process, including meetings, mentoring plan, feedback process, and the like. Also include a tentative syllabus for the two-week intensive summer session.
- Other: include other relevant information, including the mentoring of other students, and research accomplishments.