Undergraduate Research

Find Research Opportunities

The Center for Undergraduate Excellence encourages students to make research a fundamental part of their academic experience at the University of Virginia.  We use the term “undergraduate research” to encompass research, scholarship, and creative endeavors, recognizing that examples may range from literary scholarship and chemistry experimentation to architectural design and fiction writing.  

Students in any field can benefit from learning how to design a research question or a scholarly or creative inquiry, and from developing the skills necessary to seek answers.  The experience of seeing a significant research project through to completion and presenting your conclusions can be one of the most intellectually rewarding experiences of your undergraduate years.   Moreover, undergraduates who have conducted independent research projects are well prepared for graduate study and other endeavors, and they can be strong candidates for prestigious scholarships and fellowships, such as the Fulbright, Churchill, Goldwater, and Rhodes.

There are many opportunities for students to participate in research at U.Va., whether by contributing to ongoing research efforts or carrying out independent work.  The Undergraduate Research Network offers workshops on getting involved in research, holds drop-in peer advising hours in Clemons Library, organizes research symposiums, and publishes the Oculus, The Virginia Journal of Undergraduate Research.

 We encourage you to explore the Center’s extensive database of research opportunities, which include funding opportunities as well as summer research programs in the U.S. and abroad.  Take a look at the links below for information on getting involved in research, applying for research grants, and presenting your work. 

Useful Sites with Information on Undergraduate Research

  • UVA Undergraduate Biology Independant Research
    Students are encouraged to consider Independent Research experiences as part of their Biology major. Research opportunities are available in many faculty laboratories at the University of Virginia, and course credit may be obtained for work in laboratories within the Biology Department, in some research laboratories in other departments in the College or in many research laboratories in the basic science departments in the Medical School.

  • UVA Biomedical Engineering Department
    Take a look at the BME Research and Shadowing Guide—there’s good advice here even for non-BME majors on how to contact a faculty member about research. 

  • UVA Chemistry Department
    This site has information about getting involved in research in the Chemistry Department as well as more broadly applicable guidance on presenting your work through posters or oral presentations.

  • UVA Undergraduate Neuroscience Research
    The goal of a neuroscience research experience for undergraduates is to build upon the basic neuroscience knowledge obtained in the introductory prerequisite courses.

  • Council on Undergraduate Research’s Registry of Undergraduate Researchers
    The purpose of this registry is to facilitate matching between undergraduates and graduate schools seeking high quality students who are well prepared for research. Currently the registry is open to students and graduate schools/employers in the fields of Anthropology/Archaeology, Arts/Humanities, Biology/Biochemistry, Business, Chemistry/Biochemistry, Economics, Education, Engineering, English and Linguistics, Environmental Studies, Geosciences, Health Professions, History, Journalism and Communications, Mathematics/Computer Science, Physics/ Astronomy, Political Science, Psychology, Social Work, and Sociology.