Course-Based Undergraduate Research Experience (CURE)

What is a CURE?

On campuses with high enrollment such as UF, it can be problematic to place large numbers of students in one-on-one faculty mentored research. Course Based Undergraduate Research Experience (CURE) classes have been developed nationally to provide more students with the opportunity to acquire research experience. As well as giving students an insight into what authentic research involves, CURE classes also offer you the opportunity to accomplish goals in your active research program.

What exactly is a CURE class and how does it differ from a traditional class?

There is no one specific template for a CURE class- instead CURE classes will typically take shape around proposed research and data collection. The syllabus and course can then be built around this data collection core. While the research is likely to be highly specific, the context provided by the rest of the course should generalize the experience, providing students with wider insights into the research process, ways of thinking and access to future research opportunities.  CURE classes can cover broad topics such as ethics, objectivity, bias and research in society, ideally using flipped classroom and team based learning techniques in place of traditional lectures.

Click Access Canvas Course below for detailed information for Faculty

Canvas CURE Course Resources

In this Canvas course, you will find all the information you may need to embark on your CURE journey.  Each CURE instructor can adapt the format to meet their individual project and capacity. This site provides guidelines, examples, and resources but faculty have creative freedom over the course.  The course resources were developed by Dr. Christine Miller Dept. of Entomology, Dr. Ginny Greenway, Imperial College of London, and the Center for Undergraduate Research.

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CURE Course Summary

In 2021, 31 CURE courses were offered to provide 300 first year URSP students with authentic research experiences. While research looks very different across disciplines, we share a general framework with instructors in which broad general concepts and skills are incorporated around the central research or data collection project. CUR offers a shared Canvas CURE space as a resource for faculty and works with those who would like to develop a CURE class.

2021 CURE Course List

The ABCs of Research Outside the Classroom: Ambiguity, Behavior, and Complexity with Data

Explore and research the rich and complex culture of a foreign country in this hands-on research experience. In this course, you will learn how to conduct surveys of locals and collect and organize data in the field. Working alongside your peers, you will participate in student-led research based on surveys of local communities and neighborhoods. Gain experience in creating and presenting powerful presentations to effectively communicate your research. Finally create a finalized research poster for the Undergraduate Research Symposium and write a research paper to be published in the University of Florida Undergraduate Research Journal.

ALS4932: Foodomics - What is in the Food we eat and use to Treat Patients?

In this course, you will collect data on specific brands of food in food stores and enter the data into our foodomics database used to treat patients. You will learn about nutrition facts labels, the different nutrient databases available to researchers, and some of the reasons why it is important that we know more than the family of fatty acids present. You will use the foodomics database to create recipes which the family can use to administer the diet prescription. You will be among the pioneers of foodomics enabling its use in patient care. You will also be able to calculate the chemical composition of your own dinner.

BCN4905: Studies in Advanced Construction Information Systems

The course will cover the fundamental principles and practices of Building Information Modeling (BIM), as well as connected BIM (BIM plus the power of the cloud). The course will also expose students to Virtual Design and Construction (VDC) and advanced construction technologies. The course will also introduce virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR), game engines and their applications in construction.

BSC2930: Ants and Microbes

Microbiome sequencing is an important aspect in all areas of sciences, from human health, to agricultural and environment. Thus, with this course, our goal is to introduce students to this new wealth of information and provide them with tools for using microbiome data. In particular, we are focusing on our own research on ants and microbes, as a way for the students to join an ongoing project and all the benefits of being in a research laboratory. Because ants are a non-traditional study group, this will provide the students the opportunity to think broadly as how these tools could be use and hopefully foster in them an unlimited way of approach scientific questions. As one of the University of Florida statements says: “We see things not as they are, but as they could be.”

CHM4910: Theoretical Chemistry at the Frontiers of Science

Students were able to join five different groups focusing on different areas of research in chemistry: the Stanton, Li, Perez, Roitberg, or Quintana group. The Stanton group will work on quantum chemical calculations relevant to the field of molecular spectroscopy. The Li group will learn how to visualize proteins and operate modern software to model the binding of small molecules to the SH2 domain of STAT3. The Perez group will learn how to operate modern theoretical chemistry software designed to investigate how molecules react. The Roitberg group will learn how to operate modern theoretical chemistry software and apply it in two different areas, i.e, molecular modeling of large biomolecules or deep neural network analysis of small organic molecules and their structure and bonding. The Quintana group can choose between five different areas of research in theoretical chemistry that focused on novel data- analysis techniques and computer science.

EDF3935: Undergraduate Experience in Educational Measurement Research and Development

Project DIMES (Diagnostic Instrument for Morphology of Elementary Students) is a large grant funded by the US Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences. The research team is developing a computer adaptive, diagnostic assessment for teachers of elementary students. The assessment is designed to validly and reliably measure a particular set of reading skills of students in grades 3-5, and to feedback useful data reports to teachers that can assist with their classroom reading instruction. The development of this assessment has broad impacts on research in reading education and reading instruction for young students around the nation. In the Spring of 2021, the research team is developing a large item bank to prepare for a large data collection. The development involves populating the content of the assessment items and building them to technological specifications in an online testing platform. Students in this course will therefore be tasked with building this large bank of assessment items that appeal to elementary level students.

EGN4912: Engineering Undergraduate Research

There are 12 separate courses offered for engineering research which students can choose from. Courses are offered from almost all departments within the Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering.

ENV4932: Special Problems in Environmental Engineering Sciences

In this course, students will join Dr. Deliz’s lab to work on a research focused on building resilience to Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) exposure on vulnerable coastal communities prone to extreme weather floods. The study aims to investigate:
• Occurrence, source, fate and transport of PFAS in environmental and biological media
• Sorption, desorption and partition coefficient of selected PFAS
• Risk exposure and exposure pathways for PFAS in vulnerable communities

ENY2890: Scientific Engagement through Honeybee Research

During this course students will be introduced to important topics in science and provided with an opportunity to conduct publishable research in the field of honeybee health. We want students to go forth prepared to join other research teams at UF and feel confident in their abilities to contribute in their desired scientific fields. To achieve this goal, this class is organized as a flipped classroom, offering both online and in-classroom learning experiences. Motivated students will learn to describe how scientists conduct research, identify the challenges associated with conveying scientific findings to general audiences, design a simple experiment and interpret and communicate the results.

HUM2930: Cultural Programming and Addiction in America

In this course, students will learn how to conduct research on population centers and civic authorities concerned with the opioid epidemic in the United States. Students will be involved in collecting, inputting, creatively diagramming, and discussing research models and data collected. The course will consider unique methods of utilizing research dates to build creative programming of ‘cultural’ activities. This will include the creation of sonic environments, bespoke spa-like treatment centers, as well as printed diagrams and heat maps.

HUN4936: Research in Nutrition and Food Security

This course allows students to become part of a diverse research team focused on food access, culinary and gardening interventions, and associated nutrition, health, and behavioral outcomes. While research priorities shift from semester to semester, students should expect to be introduced to technologies and research practices in community and medical nutrition. Current projects include a partnership with four high school culinary and agricultural science programs to address access to fresh food in their communities and a whole food plant based culinary intervention for adults with cardiovascular disease. In addition to actively participating in data collection and intervention delivery, students will also gain skills in communicating and educating others regarding food security and nutrition and wellness. This course will prepare students for advanced opportunities in many aspects of applied nutrition research. Course activities will be held in the classroom, the FSHN teaching kitchen, on local high school campus gardens/farms, and via zoom.

IDS2935: An Ounce of Prevention: Building Resilience Communities

We have become a “band-aid” society—when a social problem crops up like the opioid crisis, the obesity epidemic, or increases in human trafficking, we try to patch it up on the back end instead of heading off the problem from the start. Prevention science seeks to improve the health and well-being of individuals, families, and communities through empirical approaches to prevention and intervention. By looking at root causes of social problems early on, we can leverage prevention science to improve the health and well-being of individuals, families, and communities. This interdisciplinary Quest 2 course will provide you with foundational knowledge in prevention science, and each student will apply what they learn in this class in one of three laboratories focusing on Bullying, Teen Health, Obesity among diverse populations of youth.

IDS4930: Explorations in Business Research 1 & 2

This will be a group-based class where students learn fundamental business research techniques and then apply them to a research question of interest. Teams will include students of different subfields and will identify, develop, and execute a research project. Ethics and responsible conduct of research will be discussed. Students will present their research at the spring undergraduate research symposium, and prepare a research report.

IDS4930-1AD4: Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Research

This course takes off where Research and Creativity leaves off. It is for all majors looking to see a research project to completion. Students will have the experience of proposing a topic for exploration, sell your idea to your peers, recruit a team to attack you question, and using secondary sources seek to answer it. You will present a team poster at the UF Undergraduate Research Symposium and submit a team paper to the UF Journal of Undergraduate Research.

REL3082: Global Ethics

Global Ethics will explore the ethical dimensions of global social, political, and environmental issues. Students will learn about diverse theoretical approaches in philosophical and religious ethics and then use those approaches to understand and evaluate the moral issues involved in contemporary global issues, including human rights, war and peace, climate change, and public health. In examining these case studies, students will learn to “do ethics” in a rigorous way, identifying the moral aspects of a social, political, economic, or environmental problem; defining and analyzing the issues clearly; and evaluating the ways different theoretical and methodological approaches help clarify and address the problems.

VME4906: Undergraduate Research Experience in the College of Veterinary Medicine

Students who participate in this class will learn the fundamentals of mass spectrometry, as it pertains to both human and environmental health and environmental monitoring. The first half of the course will focus on both basic and advanced analytical techniques and instrumentation. The students will learn about and get hands-on experience with a variety of analytical approaches utilized in analytical toxicology, health assessments, and environmental monitoring, broadly covering sample extraction, chromatography, and mass spectrometry. In addition, we will cover other critical aspects of analysis, including experimental design, quality control, data analysis and data interpretation.
The second half of the course will focus on mass spectrometric applications. More specifically, there will be a combination of discussion (of the various types of environmental and health studies) and hands-on analyses via several pilot-sized projects, which will serve as case studies to both discuss the concepts but also to put the concepts in action.

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CURE Courses

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