by Jessie L. Moore
In the 2012 Council on Undergraduate Research publication on Characteristics of Excellence in Undergraduate Research (COEUR), Roger S. Rowlett, Linda Blockus, and Susan Larson summarize best practices for supporting undergraduate research. Based on “a compilation of the experiences of CUR in building and evaluating undergraduate research programs at all types of institutions,” COEUR emphasizes the need for:

  • Campus cultures that demonstrate an institutional commitment to undergraduate research, with scholarly faculty participating from a range of disciplines;
  • Early and sustained undergraduate research opportunities for a broad range of students;
  • Clear communication between faculty mentors and students about their expectations for undergraduate research experiences;
  • Students’ intellectual ownership of their undergraduate research projects; and
  • Accessible faculty mentors who work in collaboration with undergraduate researchers.

COEUR also covers an extensive list of institutional structures that facilitate these characteristics of high-impact undergraduate research and shares snapshots of a range of undergraduate research programs from varied higher education contexts.
To complement this institutional and faculty perspective on undergraduate research, the Center for Engaged Learning’s latest video series offers Student Perspectives on Undergraduate Research. Five Elon University undergraduate researchers discuss:

Special thanks to Rachel Fishman, Claire Lockhard, Rachel Mehaffey, Desiree Porter, and Mary Rouse for sharing their undergraduate research experiences. Four of the videos in this series were first presented at the 2014 Naylor Undergraduate Writing Research Workshop at York College of Pennsylvania.

Jessie L. Moore (@jessielmoore) is the Associate Director of the Center for Engaged Learning at Elon University and associate professor of Professional Writing & Rhetoric in the Department of English.

How to cite this post:

Moore, Jessie L. 2014, November 18. Student Perspectives on Undergraduate Research. [Blog Post]. Retrieved from