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At Ohio State, undergraduate students generally seek out faculty mentors, not the other way around. In order to get started in research:

  1. Define a possible research area or topic of interest;
  2. Identify faculty who work in your area of interest;
  3. Contact faculty to request research mentorship.

Good news – our office is here to support students as they go through each step of this process. Here are some actions you can take to begin the process of becoming an undergraduate researcher:

  • Attend an information session. Check our calendar for the dates and times.
  • Contact one or more Peer Research Contacts. These are experienced undergraduate researchers available to advise you.
  • Contact the office at to schedule an undergraduate research advising appointment or stop by the office during walk-in hours.

Other ways to get involved in research include:

  • Talk to your faculty instructors to ask about their research and how you might get involved.
  • Respond to a recruitment email sent through the office listserv.
  • Apply for a formal research program at Ohio State or another institution.


  1. Undergraduate research occurs across all colleges, departments and disciplines, including the arts to zoology and everything in-between.
  2. Undergraduate research may be conducted in laboratories, the field, the library, an art studio, or on a computer. 
  3. The number of hours committed to undergraduate research varies by discipline, by faculty advisor, by project, and even over the course of a single project. 
  4. There is no one right time to start research, though the majority of students start in their sophomore or junior years.
  5. Compensation for undergraduate research may be in the form of voluntary experience, academic credit, scholarships, salary, or work study.
  6. Undergraduate research may be conducted outside of your major.
  7. There are federal requirements for research involving human or animal subjects.
  8. Students who complete a research thesis will earn "graduation with research distinction" on their diploma.
  9. Students who conduct undergraduate research include the experience in applications for graduate school, professional school or on their resume when seeking a job. 
  10. Undergraduate researchers have many opportunities to present or publish their research achievements on campus, in undergraduate research journals, at professional conferences or as co-authors in professional journals.


Students attending a regional campus are encouraged to engage in undergraduate research, and the process of getting involved is very similar for any student in any major on any Ohio State campus. Regional campus students are welcome to take advantage of any of the funding and presentation opportunities offered by the OURCI. There is also additional information on undergraduate research at specific campuses available for: Lima, Mansfield, Marion, and Newark. ATI/OARDC does not have a specific page on undergraduate research, but is highly focused on research and offers undergraduate funding and research internships.