Getting Started...For Students and Faculty

How to Become an Undergraduate Researcher

REVIEW opportunities 

CURS manages the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Portal (UROP), an online database where students can find information about undergraduate research opportunities currently available at Augusta University. Spend some time reviewing the portal and try to identity projects you are interested in. Review the description AND qualifications to determine if you are a good fit for this research opportunity. Please note this portal is not a complete list of all the research opportunities available.  

PLAN your availability for the next term

Look over your schedule (academics, work, etc.) locate gaps that you could dedicate towards research.  Remember that research most often occurs in addition to your academic courses so time management is incredibly important. On average, undergraduate students dedicate 6-8 hours towards research each week. Time and scheduling is specific to each faculty mentor. Try not to schedule your research hours too close to your class schedule. Create buffers to avoid possible conflicts.

CONTACT potential mentors for interviews

After you find potential projects and availability, reach out to the faculty mentors you are most interested in working with. Try to select 1-3 projects and request a meeting. Students who successfully match into research take initiative by learning more about each research project and/or talk with potential mentors about they outcomes or experiences they hope to gain by being mentored in the discipline. CURS has created a list of sample questions to help you get started and we have some email templates to help you write those initial email requests. We are also happy to review any emails before you send them to faculty. 

email templates sample questions

ACCEPT a research opportunity 

After you have met with potential mentors and received an offer to work with someone, write a letter (email) to your new mentor verifying your role, timeline, begin date, schedule, and needed trainings.  Politely decline any remaining invitations from other faculty you have met with. Be professional and polite by letting them know that you have found a research opportunity that fits your interest and availability.

REGISTER your research experience with CURS

Once you are accepted onto a research team, REGISTER your experience with CURS. Sometimes you can receive credit for your research experience. CURS offers zero-credit courses and certain departments offer 1-10 credit hour courses. Please email with your name and mentor to learn more. 

CURS abides to the add/drop deadlines set forth by the Registrar each semester. If you are unable to register your research experience this semester, please contact us at the during your next registration period to get enrolled. 

START your safety and ethics trainings 

Most all research opportunities require initial training(s) to help protect yourself and others. It is your responsibility to ask your faculty mentor which trainings are required to participate in their research. Below are links to common trainings: 

Chemical Safety Trainings* Biological Safety Trainings CITI Training

Basic Awareness Right-to-Know Training with GHS

Biological Safety Training Modules

CITI Training Modules 

Hazardous Waste Awareness Training


EPA Training 


*Initial Chemical Safety Training: First-time undergraduate researchers handling chemicals are required to attend an in-person training. Please RSVP for the next training here. 

Best of luck with your research! 

CURS is thrilled you are now an undergraduate researcher. Our office is here to support you through your entire undergraduate experience and have student resources to help you be successful in this endeavor. Please keep in touch by sharing your experiences with our office at