Before you begin your UROP search, begin with some self-assessment – the questions below should help you think about your UROP options and the type of projects you want to pursue.
- When do you hope to start your UROP? Do you want to receive pay, credit, or research as a volunteer?
- How much time can you commit given your coursework and other activities?
- Fall and Spring UROPs generally require 6-12 hours/week.
- IAP and Summer UROPs are generally full-time 35-40 hours/week.
- Can you work on a project for more than one term or summer? Do you want a long-term project or a short-term one? What seems best for you?
- Faculty members often seek continuity in their research teams. One term may not be enough for both you and your faculty supervisor to benefit from research collaboration.
- But, there are definitely one-term only projects too!
- Which departments/research areas interest you?
- What aspect of a field or problem do you hope to investigate? Do you have an idea you wish to pursue, but need a faculty mentor?
- Why do you want to engage in research? Do you want to explore a major? Gain experience in an area of interest? Exercise your creativity? Are you hoping to publish, patent, join a start-up, etc. based on your UROP experiences? A combination? Something other?
- What are your future plans/goals? Are you planning toward grad school, med school, a career?
- What are your skills? What relevant courses have you taken? What programming languages do you know? What sort of lab research have you conducted? What are your hobbies and interests—your transferable skills?
You can also download and use the PDF format UROP Self-Assessment Worksheet to help formulate and describe your motivations for engaging in UROPs.