Oregon State University

College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences

Undergraduate Research & Thesis

Undergraduate research is "An inquiry or investigation conducted by an undergraduate student that makes an original, intellectual, or creative contribution to the discipline..." (Council on Undergraduate Research).

In the College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences, undergraduates have access to world-class faculty conducting research in a variety of fields. As a student in CEOAS, you have an opportunity to engage in scholarly pursuits by contributing your creativity, elbow grease, and enthusiasm. You can also choose to develop a research project into a Senior Thesis, and/or earn transcript notation as a Research Fellow. Research can take many forms, including field work, laboratory work, literature investigations, cultural inquiries, or a combination of these and other approaches. The underlying principle is simply that you develop your skills for independent inquiry in partnership with your faculty mentor.

Get Involved in Undergraduate Research

The one thing that is absolutely essential for engaging in undergraduate research is cultivating a relationship and a developing a project with a faculty mentor. To start this process:

  • Use CEOAS faculty web pages to learn about faculty members' research. Take the time to read their research publications.
  • Take classes taught by faculty members who conduct research that interests you. Engage in the class and attend office hours.
  • Contact the faculty member. Be prepared to explain WHY you are interested in their research.
  • Be prepared to participate in research as a volunteer in order to demonstrate competency and build rapport before expecting a full-fledged research project of your own.
  • Develop the relationship by being diligent, inquisitive, honest, and thorough in your work.

Additional general information can be found at Undergraduate Research, Scholarship, and the Arts (URSA), OSU's portal for information on undergraduate research.

Funding Undergraduate Research
Earn Undergraduate Research Credit (401)
Earn Undergraduate Thesis Credit (403)
Transcript Notation