Tools for Undergraduate Research

Note to Undergraduate Research Mentors:

These modules were created to introduce undergraduates participating in research to supporting concepts, tips for navigating the research process, and practice in interacting with other researchers. The modules can be delivered as part of a semester-long curriculum, or leveraged on an a-la-carte basis by mentors who wish to help their mentees improve specific skills. The modules support the Research Preparation component of researcher training and should utimately enhance your efforts toward instilling Research Confidence. Start with the Mentor Guide which explains the background and other resoruces to design your program: Mentor Guide REM Modules.docx.

Mentor resources

Note to Undergraduate Researchers:

All of the modules for a semester-long, fused introduction to research and professional development program are provided in the table below. You will work with your mentor on specific modules. The main components are provided as individual files for you to download and use. Feel free to browse and review any of the modules.

Modules Information

Original funding provided by the National Science Foundation (NSF) Grant: EAGER CBET 1451319

All material created for this project is meant to be used, improved and shared:

Creative Commons License Site

Site maintained by Timothy Burg, PhD, Professor, Email: tburg@uga.edu

Table of Modules

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Topic

Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of this module, you will be able to:

Student Resources

Faculty Resources
Expectations and Program Overview
  • Interpretation: Define the expectations for mentors and mentees in this program
  • Interpretation: Identify general lab safety guidelines
  • Interpretation: Discuss the methods used in a ‘flipped classroom’ setting
  • Evaluation: Evaluate examples of email etiquette to identify ‘good’ and ‘bad’ practices
  • Evaluation: Generate a schedule of how you manage your time during an average day and evaluate the efficiency of how your time is used.
  • Expectations Mentor Guide
    .docx | .pdf
  • Supplements:
    1. Presentation on Email and Social Media Etiquette
      .pptx
Laboratory Readiness
  • Interpretation: State the importance of Laboratory Safety to the process of research
  • Interpretation: Explain the importance of keeping a Laboratory Notebook; Identify elements that should be included, and discuss when and how entries should be made
  • Application: Review a sample laboratory notebook entry for proper formatting and completeness
  • Laboratory Readiness Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials:
  • Handout 1: Laboratory Notebook
    .docx | .pdf
  • Handout 2: Laboratory Notebook Exercise
    .pdf
  • Handout 3: General Safety
    .docx | .pdf
  • Laboratory Readiness Mentor Guide
    .docx | .pdf
  • Supplements:
    1. Handout 2: Laboratory Notebook Exercise Key
      .pptx | .pdf
    2. Sample Saftey Presentation - No Gum .pptx
Standard Operating Procedure (SOP)
  • Interpretation: Define what Standard Operating Procedures are
  • Interpretation: Identify elements that appear on an SOP
  • Interpretation: Identify the importance of SOPs to research
  • Application: Write an SOP for a non-scientific procedure
  • Evaluation: Evalluate an SOP for a scientific procedure
  • Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials:
    1. Handout 1: SOP Template
      .docx | .pdf
    2. Handout 2 :Weighing Sample
      .docx | .pdf
  • Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) Mentor Guide
    .docx | .pdf
  • Supplements:
    1. PB&J SOP Exercise
      .docx | .pdf
Article Perspectives
  • Interpretation: Discuss characteristics of articles that appear in different types of publications (popular magazines, scientific journals, government reports)
  • Interpretation: Define 'Lay Audience'
  • Analysis: Examine articles to determine intended audiences
  • Evaluation: Evaluate the effectiveness and appropriateness of an article considering its intended audience
  • Article Perspectives Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials:
    1. Handout 1 : Article Perspectives Handout 1
      .pdf
  • Article Perspectives Mentor Guide
    .docx | .pdf
Finding Research Articles
  • Interpretation: Describe different types of research articles, including Experimental Articles, Meta-Analysis, and Review Articles
  • Evaluation: Choose and article to satisfy research needs identified by your mentor
  • Analysis: Compare different types of articles to determine which is appropriate for various needs
  • Analysis: Compare and contrast different types of sources and explain which sources are appropriate in different contexts
  • Evaluation: Evaluate various articles in terms of type, trustworthiness, freshness, and cost. Explain the pros and cons associated with different sources
  • Application: Locate library resources at your school
  • Application: Interview a librarian at your school to determine valulable methods for your research needs
  • Finding Research Articles Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials:
    1. Handout 1: Types and Sources of Research Articles
      .docx | .pdf
  • Finding Research Articles Mentor Guide
    .docx | .pdf
  • Supplements:
    1. Finding Research Articles Presentation
      .pptx
Abstract Critique
  • Interpretation: Identify elements that should be found in an abstract
  • Interpretation: Define the importance  and purpose of abstracts and the role they play in research
  • Evaluation: Critique an abstract for completeness and clarity
  • Abstract Critique Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials:
    1. Handout 1: Abstract Guidelines and Examples
      .docx | .pdf
  • Abstract Critique Mentor Guide
    .docx | .pdf
Experimental Design
  • Interpretation: Define independent, dependent, and controlled variables
  • Interpretation: Define quantitative and qualitative data
  • Interpretation: List the steps of the scientific method. List the steps of the engineering design process
  • Analysis: Compare and contrast the scientific method with the engineering method
  • Evaluation: Explain how researchers select an appropriate experimentation method
  • Deduction: Explain how statistical tests afre used to evaluate experimental results (data) and arrive at conclusions
  • Application: Given a research scenario, state a hypothesis, identify variables, and come up with an experimental plan using the engineering design  method and scientific method
  • Experimental Design Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials:
    1. Handout 1: Experimental Design Definitions
      .docx | .pdf
    2. Handout 2: Engineering Design Vs. Scientific Method
      .docx | .pdf
    3. Handout 3: Experimental Design Activity
      .docx | .pdf
  • Experimental Design Mentor Guide
    .docx | .pdf
SWOT Analysis
  • Interpretation: Define the elements that make up a SWOT anlysis
  • Interpretation: Review a sample publication and its related sample SWOT analysis
  • Analysis / Application: Conduct a SWOT Analysis on the research article you are studying
  • Evaluation: Create suggestions for future research based on your SWOT analysis
  • SWOT Analysis Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials:
    1. Handout 1: Sample Publication
    .docx | .pdf
    2. Handout 2: Sample SWOT Analysis
    .docx | .pdf
    3. Handout 3: SWOT Worksheet
    .docx | .pdf
  • SWOT Analysis Mentor Guide
    .docx | .pdf
Presentation Skills - Podium
  • Interpretation: Define categories that can be used to evaluate different types of presentations
  • Interpretation: Identify strategies that can be used to deliver an effective podium presentation
  • Application: Deliver a strong podium presentation on a chosen research article
  • Evaluation: Critique your own presentation and those of your mentee cohorts
  • Presentation Skills - Podium Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials
    1. Handout 1: Podium Presentaion Rubric
      .docx | .pdf
    2. Handout 2: Presentation Template
      .pptx
  • Presentation Skills Podium Mentor Guide
    .docx | .pdf
Presentation Skills - Interactive
  • Interpretaion: Define categories that can be used to evaluate different types of presentations
  • Interpretation: Identify strategies that can be used to deliver an effective interactive presentation
  • Application: Deliver a strong interactive presentation on a chosen topic
  • Evaluation: Critique your own presentation and those of your mentee cohorts
  • Presentation Skills - Interactive Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials
    1. Handout 1: Interactive Table Template
      .docx | .pdf
    2. Handout 2: Interactive Presentation Rubric
      .docx | .pdf
  • Presentation Skills - Interactive Mentor Guide
    .docx | .pdf
Elevator Speech
  • Interpretation: Identify topics that are appropriate to include in an Elevator Speech
  • Interpretation: Explain the importance of an Elevator Speech
  • Application: Prepare an Elevator Speech based on your own experience, knowledge, and goals
  • Evaluation: Predict how you should revise your Elevator Speech based on your audience (i.e., are you talking with a business manager, a lab technician, a recruiter, the CEO of the company?)
  • Elevator Speech Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials
    1. Handout 1: Job Seekers, too, Need an 'Elevator Pitch'
      .pdf
    2. Handout 2: My 30 Second Commercial
      .docx | .pdf
    3. Handout 3: Evaluation Rubric
      .docx | .pdf
Resume Writing
  • Interpretation: Define the purpose of a resume
  • Interpretation: Identify elements that should appear on a resume
  • Analysis: Discuss the differences, if any, between a resume and a curriculum vitae
  • Application: Locate resources on your campus for assistance with resume writing
  • Evaluation: Identify strengths and weaknesses in sample resumes
  • Resume Writing Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials:
    1. Handout 1: Sample Resume
      .docx | .pdf
Career Panel
  • Interpretation: Describe the purpose and importance of an Individual Development Plan (IDP)
  • Interpretation: Review interviews from expert researchers to determine skills and strategies to developing skills as a researcher within the scientific and engineering communities
  • Analysis: Appraise strenghts and weaknesses in your skills as a young researcher
  • Analysis: Examine interviews of expert researchers and relate their responses to your own goals as applicable
  • Application: Draft your own IDP
  • Career Panel Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials:
    1. Handout 1: Building Your Own IDP
      .docx | .pdf
    2. Handout 2: Expert Researcher Video Interviews
      .docx | .pdf

  • Supplementary Interviews
    .docx | .pdf
Requesting Letters of Recommendation
  • Interpretation: Explain the purpose of a Letter of Reccomendation
  • Interpretation: Identify best practices for securing a Letter of Recommendation
  • Application: Select potential references you might approach to seek a Letter of Recommendation
  • Requesting Letters of Recommendation Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials:
    1. Handout 1: Peer Review
    .docx | .pdf
  • Requesting Letters of Recommendation Mentor Guide
    .docx | .pdf
Scientific Community
  • Interpretation: Identify appropriate strategies for interacting with other members of your scientific community as gatherings such as conferences and meetings
  • Interpretation: Identify the elements of the peer review process and the benefits of this process to researchers and the larger scientific community
  • Interpretation: Describe the nature of research funding, including sources of research sponsorship and the expected outcomes of research
  • Application: Prepare a list of questions or other interactions you might be able to use at a conference related to your research area
  • Evaluation: Review a research article and evaluate its strengths and weaknesses as well as completeness
  • Interpretation: Describe the importance of funding to the research process
  • Scientific Community Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials:
    1. Handout 1: Peer Review
    .docx | .pdf
    2. Handout 2: Participation
    .docx | .pdf
    3. Handout 3: Research Funding
    .docx | .pdf
  • Scientific Community Mentor Guide
    .docx | .pdf
  • Supplements:
    1. Research Funding Presentation .pptx

 

Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU)
  • Interpretation: Explain what the National Science Foundation (NSF) Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program is
  • Interpretation: Discuss the benefits of participating in a program such as NSF REU
  • Application: Navigate the NSF REU website and locate potential opportunities based on your interests or research
  • Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Module Overview
    .docx | .pdf
  • Materials:
    1. Handout 1: Getting an REU
    .docx | .pdf
  • Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Mentor Guide
    .docx | .pdf

Modules Under Development

  • Patents and Intellectual Property
  • Innovation
  • Listening using the Lean Startup approach

Navigation: REM Home Page
History: Updated 10/1/2019