School of Business
College of the Arts
- Creation or analysis of works of art, theatre, music, and design
- Performance of musical or theatrical works
- Research, scholarship, and criticism of musical, theatrical, artistic, or design endeavors
- Research and scholarship in the education and pedagogy of the disciplines included in the college.
Each field of study within the college defines what it means to engage in “hands-on learning.” For some departments, a student might have direct immersion in a studio, while for other departments, the student might be involved in a research project using historical documents or case studies.
The Caine College of the Arts includes the departments of art, music, and theatre arts and the interior design program.
Undergraduate researchers in the arts could concentrate on:
- production of the arts (as with studio arts such as printmaking or sculpture)
- performance of the arts (as with the performance arts such as music or theatre)
- interpretation and analysis of the arts (as with scholarship in the arts such as art, design, music or theatre history)
- pedagogy education in the arts (as with piano pedagogy or art, music, or theatre education).
The above listing is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather to get Fellows thinking about the wide range of possibilities.
Advice on Undergraduate Research in the Arts
The traditional model of scholarship and creative activity in the arts typically features the lone artist or scholar. In considering how undergraduate researchers might be incorporated into artistic projects when feasible, we developed a list of suggestions taken from the experience of faculty who have worked with undergraduate researchers. In general, we expect the student to arrive on campus as a novice and to develop an apprentice relationship with a faculty mentor, learning from that mentor’s experience and expertise, and then moving into more independent research projects.
Can a student undertake some of the foundational work for a project, particularly the bibliographic or historical area?
Are there meaningful supportive tasks that a student might take on, such as super titles for an operatic production or program notes for a performance?
Does the student have a particular skill that the scholar does not, such as a foreign or classical language that might contribute to the project? Or perhaps a student has a skill in technology that would be helpful in design or delivery of the project as in designing a webpage.
College of Agriculture and Applied Science
- Testing antiviral substances that are components of biomedical drugs
- Identifying genetic markers for economically important traits in livestock animals
- Learning to apply water intelligently (data-based water application)
- Examining the impact of production agriculture and food processing on the state’s economy
- Testing food products for acceptability by consumers
College of Humanities and Social Sciences
The humanities division of CHaSS includes:
Research and Creative Activity Fellows in the humanities division could concentrate on written production (such as plays, stories, essays, poems, and articles), professional work documents, multimedia productions, interpretation and analysis, studies of folklore and folklife, or research about women and gender or cultural studies.
The social science division of CHaSS includes:
- journalism and communication
- military science and aerospace studies
- political science
- social work
- speech communication.
Research Fellows in the social science division could concentrate on either primary or secondary research, including interviews and surveys, field research, analyses of quantitative or qualitative data related to human behavior and human societies, and the interpretation and production of media and mass communications such as newspapers or television.
The above listing is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather to get Fellows thinking about the wide range of possibilities. Common to all research in CHaSS is some kind of systematic inquiry or practice that is designed to further our knowledge, understanding, or appreciation.
Advice about Undergraduate Research in the Humanities
The traditional model of scholarship in humanities features the lone researcher. In considering how undergraduate researchers might be incorporated into humanities projects when feasible, we expect the student to arrive on campus as a novice and to develop an apprentice relationship with a faculty mentor, learning from that mentor’s experience and expertise, and then moving into more independent research projects.
College of Natural Resources
- Assisting with soil sampling and analysis in the wildland soils laboratory.
- Testing wildlife DNA in the conservation genetics laboratory.
- Interviewing and entering data from hikers, ATV riders, and other outdoor enthusiasts for studies done by the Institute of Outdoor Recreation and Tourism.
- Making field measurements of forest and rangeland plants.
- Sampling streams and ponds for chemical analyses or invertebrate population sampling.
- Gathering the latest published scientific information about a broad spectrum of topics, from geographic and environmental education to stream flow dynamics to behavior and habitat needs of endangered North American and tropical wildlife.
Refer to the website at http://www.cnr.usu.edu/htm/students/current-students/undergrad-research for more information.
College of Education and Human Services
- Internet access and assistive technologies for people with disabilities
- Advanced readers at risk in elementary schools
- Gender and play among children
- Special needs infants and toddlers
- Math virtual manipulatives
- Drug dependency
- Childhood obesity
The College is home to the Center for Persons with Disabilities, a leading research institution in the nation, the National Center for Hearing Assessment and Management, the Center for the School of the Future, and the Emma Eccles Jones Early Childhood Center.
College of Engineering
- Civil and Environmental
- Electrical and Computer Engineering
- Computer Science
- Engineering and Technology Education
- Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
All departments have Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) accredited undergraduate engineering programs. Researchers can work on real-life research projects with a faculty mentor and his or her team of researchers. Undergraduate research department coordinators match student interests with a faculty member engaged in that specific area of research: One may find converting algae to biofuel of interest and work with a faculty mentor in the Biological Engineering Department. Another, concerned about water quality and the environment, may work with a faculty mentor in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department to study water resources and ways to improve water quality, both nationally and internationally. An Electrical and Computer Engineering Department faculty member might mentor a student to investigate very low power communications devices for possible future implantation in the human body. The latest research in engineering education and training technology in the Engineering and Technology Education Department may be fascinating a student. Another may find the potential of thermal fluids or material sciences in nuclear engineering of great interest and get matched up with a faculty mentor in the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department.
The Office of Research and Graduate Studies makes several Undergraduate Research Fellowships available to engineering undergraduates. In addition, the College of Engineering awards 10 fellowships each year to qualified juniors to engage in engineering research activities, and many other undergraduates are funded by faculty research projects.
Research programs in the college are extensive and varied:
- Bioprocess and bioenergy
- Structural design and water quality
- Highway technology
- Networks and concurrent systems
- Space science, signal and image processing
- Aircraft operation and maintenance
- Manufacturing and aerospace engineering, and more.
For more information on undergraduate research opportunities in the College of Engineering at Utah State, contact Undergraduate Research Coordinators Dr. Barton Smith or Dr. Laurie McNeill. Find the college online at: http://www.engineering.usu.edu