Undergraduate Research

Ailie Posillico at AASLD

Ailie Posillico, Class of 2016, presenting her research at a conference in Boston, MA

Undergraduate Research at FCRH is a voluntary, encouraged experience that allows students of all disciplines to engage in faculty-mentored research projects. In the past decade, Undergraduate Research has become part of the culture of FCRH.

Research is the process of gathering information to answer a focused inquiry. This process allows students to take ownership of their learning by contributing new knowledge to their disciplines while developing deeper relationships with their faculty and peers. In this way, classroom learning is enhanced by enabling students to work one-on-one with faculty members (and, in some areas, also with highly trained postdoctoral fellows and graduate students).

Undergraduate Research at FCRH Statistics

  • ~$1.5 million in funding has been awarded to students since 2008.
  • Over 600 students have received grant funding.
  • FCRH students are co-authors on over 100 published papers.
    • In 2016 alone, 35 students earned co-authorships on published work.
  • Over 150 students are first or second author on external conference presentations.

Program Features

The three main components of our Undergraduate Research program are:

  • Research/Travel Grants
  • Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium
  • The Fordham Undergraduate Research Journal

Research Grants

We offer three types of grants for eligible students interested in conducting research:

  • Undergraduate Research Grants: Financial support for students conducting research during the academic year.
  • Summer Research Grants: Financial support for students conducting research during the summer.
  • Travel Grants: Financial support for students presenting their research at a professional conference.

The Undergraduate Research Symposium

Undergraduates from all majors and programs are invited to present their original work through poster presentations, oral presentations, and artwork at the Undergraduate Research Symposium. The Undergraduate Research Symposium also provides a great opportunity for students across the disciplines to share their academic projects.

The Fordham Undergraduate Research Journal

The Fordham Undergraduate Research Journal (FURJ) is a student-run journal that features high quality, peer-reviewed, original research conducted by undergraduate students in the sciences, humanities, and social sciences. FURJ also includes scholarly book reviews, review essays, and feature articles. All research articles undergo a rigorous double-blind peer and faculty review process. FURJ is published annually – in print and online – in the spring semester. FURJ welcomes submissions from current Fordham students and recent graduates as well as students from other universities who conducted research at Fordham.

Connect with Undergraduate Research at FCRH

Join the Undergraduate Research Mailing List.

Ways of Engaging in Undergraduate Research

  • Pursuing your own focused question: perform self-initiated research under the guidance of a faculty mentor in that field of research.
  • Participate in the on-going research of a faculty member: work collaboratively with that faculty member on his or her professional research.
  • Enroll in a course with a research component.

Developing a Research Question

The goal of research is to help solve a problem and not simply to rehash what has been discovered.

In research, solving a problem is answering an important question. While a faculty mentor is a great resource to help develop a focused and feasible research question, you should consider the following points before meeting with a faculty member about research:

  • What topics are you interested in and what questions need to be answered in that field? Remember that the key to good research is contributing novel (new) perspectives and answers.
  • Is your topic too broad? You need to be able to assemble evidence in support of your answer—is the scope of your ambition manageable from a data collection standpoint? Can you complete the project within a specified time period for your research?
  • Is there a feasible methodology to answer your question? In other words, how will you go about answering this question? What resources are available?
  • Is it ethical to ask and answer this question? (Unacceptable physical risks or invasion of privacy?)

Remember, faculty are often looking for students to aid them with their own research where focused, feasible questions have already been determined. Your role may be a more narrow scope of a broader project. Nonetheless, when aiding faculty, these primary questions should always be at the forefront of your participation.