Undergraduate research can be broadly defined as “active participation by faculty and students in the creation, discovery and examination of knowledge through various methods of inquiry and analysis, as established by the respective disciplines.”
(Hakim, T. M. (1996). Undergraduate Research Defined. CUR Quarterly, 15, 187.)

Mount Aloysius College is committed to promoting this type of collaborative education through the continual development of a supportive network of individuals, courses, presentation venues, and funding opportunities.

Mount Aloysius College is a member of The Council on Undergraduate Research, Learning through Research.

Learn more:
Grant Application
Students Presenting at Research Symposium

Why Research?

Learn the reasons why these experts feel that undergraduate research is so important.

The Chronicle of Higher Education
National Science Foundation

Resources for Undergraduate Research

The websites listed below will provide you with good advice about the process of undergraduate research as well as ideas for possible research topics. Although some of the information will be specific to the particular university or college which hosts the website, you will find information on these pages that is applicable and useful in any undergraduate research setting.

list of research projects that have been worked on by undergraduates at a variety of universities and colleges

Sample Proposals for a variety of proposals that received funding in a range of disciplines, including Computer Science and Psychology (Interdisciplinary), Nursing, Theater and Dance, Historical Studies, Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Anthropology, Philosophy, Art and Design, Physics, and Speech-Language Pathology (Special Education and Communication Disorders)

Profiles of students and their research projects

Developed at and hosted by Northeastern University, The Web Guide to Research for Undergraduates (WebGURU) is an interactive web-based tool intended to assist undergraduates navigate the hurdles of an undergraduate research experience. The Web-GURU project was originally funded by the National Science Foundation Division of Undergraduate Educations Educational Materials Development Program under award DUE-0341080. It currently enjoys funding provided by The Camille & Henry Dreyfus Foundation, Inc.

Funding & Grants

The Undergraduate Research Grant Program was established in 2005 to encourage Mount Aloysius College undergraduate students and faculty mentors to engage in research by defraying some of the cost associated with such endeavors. Research, in this context, is broadly defined and will include projects from all disciplines. Students, under direction of department faculty, should develop research projects that contribute new or supportive knowledge with content in their discipline.


Students must be enrolled in an undergraduate program at Mount Aloysius College. Faculty mentors must be faculty of Mount Aloysius College.

Use of Funds

Funds may be used for supplies, equipment, software, fees and travel to and from a research site (travel will be covered at $0.40/mile). Such items purchased with these funds will remain property of Mount Aloysius College. Funds may not be used for stipends or reimbursement for services.

Funding Amounts

Individual grants for original research of up to $200 and Conference Attendance Grants (not presenting research) of up to $100 will be issued.  Awarded monies will be distributed on a reimbursement basis. Students presenting research must show proof of presentation (e.g., presentation with student name is printed in conference proceedings, etc.) to qualify for the $200 grant. Upon approval of the project by the Student Research Committee (SRC), the student or faculty member pays for the items, and then submits receipts to the Committee chair. The exception to this is items that cannot be purchased directly but require departmental purchase, in which case the faculty member should follow typical purchase procedure, then contact the SRC committee chair.

Typically, each student doing research in one course would not apply individually, but rather the class would develop one funding proposal for consideration. In such cases, merit for awards above $200 would be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Undergraduate Research Grants

This program is designed to defray some of the cost associated with doing undergraduate research. Student-faculty teams in all disciplines are encouraged to apply for these small grants of up to $200. These grants will be awarded as applications are received until all funds have been allocated.

National Science Foundation

The NSF offers many funding opportunities for projects in mathematics, science, and engineering.


Students must

  • Complete the project as described

  • Submit a project summary including the final outcomes and expenditures of the project after completion

  • Submit the completed project at the next Undergraduate Research symposium at Mount Aloysius College, held each April

Faculty Mentors must

  • Supervise all aspects of the project

  • Guarantee compliance with established human participant and biosafety requirements

  • Certify that students are adequately trained to complete the project as described

  • Assure completion of all required documents

Are you using human participants in a research project?

Research involving human participants should be reviewed by the Institutional Review Board (IRB). The Mount Aloysius College IRB reviews all requests to conduct research involving human participants. Students and Faculty/Staff using human participants in their research need to complete an IRB application and submit it to the chair of the IRB.

If the principal investigator is a student, the application must be approved and signed by the applicant’s faculty sponsor and the Department Chair. Most students’ work will be exempt from IRB review and responsibility falls to the faculty and department chair to ensure appropriate research approaches are used. Nonetheless, the researcher still needs to go through the application process. Students need to allow time for this process when designing their research projects. Exempt applications are typically processed within a week but projects requiring IRB review may take up to a month for review.

IRB documents have been posted to the portal site. Choose “Documents, Forms & Policies”, then “College Documents” and then the link to the “Institutional Review Board”. If you are asked for a user name and password, use the same one that you use to access your email account.

Student accepting award

Resources for Faculty

  • Undergraduate Research at Mount Aloysius College
  • “The Undergraduate Research Plan”
  • Download this PDF.
  • Resources on the Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) from the National Science Foundation
  • This page provides resources on NSF’s implementation of Section 7009 of the America Creating Opportunities to Meaningfully Promote Excellence in Technology, Education, and Science (COMPETES) Act. The responsible and ethical conduct of research (RCR) is critical for excellence, as well as public trust, in science and engineering. Consequently, education in RCR is considered essential in the preparation of future scientists and engineers.

If you wish to have other documents or links added to this page, please contact Shamim Rajpar at either 886-6442 or srajpar@mtaloy.edu.

Committee & Mission

The committee promotes, supports, and recognizes both primary and secondary research by students at Mount Aloysius College.  The committee is responsible for organizing and implementing a Research Symposium to highlight the work of undergraduate and graduate students at least once during the academic year.  In addition, the committee evaluates and awards small research grants to defray costs of research and travel grants for students to present their research at appropriate meetings.  The members are available to answer questions and receive comments regarding any facet of undergraduate research.

Name Department Email
Dr. Crystal Goldyn (co-chair) Science and Mathematics cgoldyn@mtaloy.edu
Dr. Matthew Arsenault (co-chair) Political Science/History marsenault@mtaloy.edu
Dr. Virginia Gonsman Psychology & Religious Studies VGonsman@mtaloy.edu
Helen Ritchey Medical Imaging hritchey@mtaloy.edu
Dr. J. Michael Engle Science and Mathematics jengle@mtaloy.edu
Sue Clark Nursing sclark@mtaloy.edu
Robert Stere Library rstere@mtaloy.edu
Dr. Daniel Anderson English/Fine Arts danderson@mtaloy.edu

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