Q: What is research?

A: Research as an undergraduate student can take on many forms, but the most common path is doing research under the guidance of an established faculty member at the university. Depending on the subject you are doing research on, it can take on many forms, from laboratory and field work to historical studies to creative works. It allows you to gain a deeper understanding of the field you are interested in and even explore opportunities outside your major.


Q: What makes this program unique? What opportunities does it provide for participants?

A: This program is a community of undergraduate students who are preparing to be future leaders. This program exposes its participants first hand to the types of research going on at UF, as well as helping them every step of the way to finding research, giving guidance on everything from how to approach a professor once you are interested in research to what to do once you are actually in a research project. Additionally, there are many events URSP members can be a part of, such as research seminars and expos. 


Q: Why should I participate in research?                                                                                                                             

A: No matter what field of study you are pursuing, it provides an experiential learning opportunity that can  enhance your understanding of the field far beyond what you would learn in a classroom setting. It can better prepare you for your future career and help foster connections that others may not have access to. Research also helps students to learn how to think independently and develop new skill-sets. After all, thinking independently and navigating situations that are not straight-forward are key skills regardless of what you ultimately decide to do. These skills are extremely valued in all work environments.


Q: I am an art/music/business/education/etc. major. How can this program be useful for me?            

A: Research is fully integrated into every college and department on campus and can benefit all majors. This program aims to make its students aware of that by exposing them to every type of research conducted here in the one-semester research course, as well as helps to match up students with research in the field they are interested in.


Q: What are the benefits of beginning to work towards a research experience while still a freshman?  

A: By starting as a freshman, you can get a head-start and potentially be a more compelling applicant for any future position you may want to hold. Not only this, but many projects continue for years at a time; by jumping in early, you can set yourself up for the chance to play an even larger role in the research project, potentially even getting the chance to be published in a professional journal or present your research at an event.


Q: How was I selected for this organization?                                                                                                                

A: Congratulations! This program was offered to the top 2% of all UF applicants. 


Q: What does being a part of URSP look like?

A: URSP helps students find and excel in research positions. Students in URSP participate in a one credit course during their first semester at UF. In the following semester, they have priority to register for courses to do research in a group-setting under the guidance of a faculty member. Throughout the program, participants work on developing their online professional presence through an e-Portfolio, can develop their scientific communication skills by presenting their work to other students, and ultimately publish their research in a peer-reviewed journal. See the URSP program requirements page for more details. 


Q: I already have research lined up for the fall semester. Should I still participate?

A: Yes! Some students in the past found research opportunities before coming to UF. However, in addition to helping those students who do not have a research position, URSP helps all students develop professionally through opportunities to present their work and network with experts in all fields of study.


Q: Who can I contact if I have more questions?

A: You can email us at urspadvisoryboard@gmail.com, follow us on Facebook @UFURSPFamilies & @URSPStudents, follow us on Instagram @urspadvisoryboard, or reach out directly to Dr. Donnelly at adonn@ufl.edu.