See below for links, tips, and resources that are relevant to undergraduate research at KU amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. Our office will update this page as new topics and resources arise. If you have a question that you would like to see addressed on this page, email us at email@example.com to let us know!
For the most current information about KU's response to the coronavirus outbreak, see the official KU Coronavirus Information page.>>
Last updated: August 11, 2020
Frequently Asked Questions:
There are still lots of research opportunities out there, some of them just might look a little different in an online or hybrid environment. Visit our getting started page to take the first steps!
- Undergraduate Research Awards: Continuing. We will be taking applications for Spring 2021 UGRAs in the fall.
- Presentation opportunities: We will be hosting an online Fall Undergraduate Research Showcase that will go live on November 30, 2020. The registration deadline for students wanting to present will be November 20, 2020.
- Travel Awards: TBD. Many professional conferences have switched to online formats, and some have waived student registration fees. Undergraduate students should talk with their research mentors about possible conferences they could present at, as the online format may actually make presenting at a professional conference more affordable and accessible for undergraduate students this year compared to other years.
- Emerging Scholars Program: Continuing, though students may be doing remote work instead of in-person.
- Computer/Internet access: If you need assistance to access a computer or reliable internet at home so you can carry out your research project remotely, check out this website for resources available to students to borrow laptops or hotspots>>
- KU Virtual Lab: Virtual Lab provides remote access to software commonly available in campus labs. Now you can also use Virtual Lab to directly access computers within specific department and campus public computer labs. For example, engineering students can remotely access computers within the Engineering school computer lab, including the specialized software installed on those machines. Log in at virtuallab.ku.edu and see our section at howto.ku.edu/virtuallab to learn more.
- Proactively communicate: maintaining good communication with your research mentor is always an important part of having a good undergraduate research experience, but it is especially important right now. Be proactive about setting up regular phone calls or Zoom meetings with your mentor to give updates about your research progress and get feedback. Filling out an Undergraduate Research Contract can help to establish clear expectations.
- Guidelines from the Office of Research for undergraduates who will be on-campus to do research during the COVID-19 pandemic>>
- List of online training courses offered by Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) office, including those related to COVID-19>>
- Take extra time to set expectations about how to communicate, goals for research, and any additional safety protocols or behavioral expectations that may be necessary for students who are doing research on-campus. Using or adapting the Undergraduate Research Contract through our office is one way to clearly set expectations.
Research in Classes
- Fall Undergraduate Research Showcase: The Center will be hosting an online poster session at the end of the Fall 2020 semester. You can have your students present their research projects virtually, and/or have your students view presentations online as a class assignment or extra credit opportunity. Registration deadlines and more details will be posted soon.
- Flexible Teaching Guide for Fall 2020 classes (CTE)>>
- KU Libraries instructor support resources>>
Tips for course-based research experiences this fall:
- Don’t take on too much: clearly identify the research-related learning outcomes you would like to focus on and backwards-design from there. You can use this visual of the Research Cycle and the corresponding learning outcomes (.doc) to generate ideas.
- Students new to research often need more explicit scaffolding of research skills than many faculty realize. Use this fall as an opportunity to create videos, modules, or online activities to build up students’ research skills. You can use them this fall, and continue to use them in future semesters for your classes and with undergraduate and graduate students you are mentoring in research.
- Think about what primary data sets you might be able to use to give students hands-on research experiences online. You can design assignments around interview transcripts, archival materials, large data sets, and raw data from experiments in order to give students exposure to the “messy” parts of the research process that facilitate deep learning.