Undergraduate Research

Undergraduate students may need to complete research for a specific class, for graduation, or as part of a departmental honors program. Each of these areas has different requirements, but here is some general information to get you started.

There are also opportunities outside the University for undergraduate research. Try looking for summer internships/jobs, grants, and educational programs in a field that interests you. Some sponsors include the National Science Foundation and the American Psychological Association. A quick internet search will bring up other options for many different disciplines.

1. Get the Required Training

You already have all of the education you need, the plans for your research all lined out, and a sponsor.  If you are doing research with human or animal subjects, additional training is required to protect both you and your subjects.  Check with the Office of Research Administration for more information on training in HIPAA, CITI, and more.

2. Complete an IRB Application

It's possible your research sponsor may do this step for you, but if not it's something you will need to complete.  IRB instructions are available from the Office of Research Administration. If you are doing research on human or animal subjects, even a survey, chances are you need to have an IRB on filed. Note that the primary investigator will always be your supervisor/sponsor.

3. Look for Possible Funding

If your project is going to cost you money, there are grants and other funding opportunities available to you. For departmental honors funding, visit the departmental honors page. Be sure to check with your supervising professor, department, college, and financial aid for possible funding options.

4. Start Your Research

Once your IRB and training is completed, and your sponsor gives you the okay, it's time to collect your data. Stick with the same procedure for all participants so your data will not be skewed.

If you are needing to work with data on students or faculty members, please have your faculty sponsor send your completed and approved IRB application, along with the letter of approval, to InstitutionalResearch@MissouriState.edu. In your email, please include the information you need and what it will be used for.

5. Finish Your Research

Finish your data collection and complete any data analysis you need.  RStats is available to assist with analysis. Some courses and programs require a formal written document or presentation. Be sure to check with your supervisor for your requirements.

 6. Present Your Research 

After all the work you've put into your project, it's time to let other people see it. Missouri State offers different places to present your research, including the MCHHS Student Research Symposium, CNAS Undergraduate Research Day, and the undergraduate peer reviewed journal LOGOS. There are many other opportunities so keep an eye out for announcements.