The Research Endorsement is a new opportunity for USAO students to undertake an intensive research experience in a liberal arts environment. The 10-hour sequence of courses guides students through all phases of research—from learning research methods and tools across academic disciplines, to working one-on-one with a faculty research supervisor, to presenting their work at conferences. Students who complete the project will earn a “Research Endorsement” credential on their transcripts. This credential, signaling a more rigorous experience than a capstone class or senior project, will give students a distinct advantage when applying for graduate school and for jobs that value critical thinking skills. The Endorsement is open to all majors, and satisfies the IDS Senior Seminar Requirement.

The following courses will be taken in sequence:

           IDS 3415 Research Endorsement: Introduction to Research Methods and Design

Introduction to Research Methods and Design is the initial course in the sequence that leads to the Research Endorsement.  This course introduces the concepts and skills involved in understanding and analyzing the broad range of research methodologies to be found across the spectrum of academic disciplines.  While students should expect to study much of this material in greater depth through additional course work before being fully prepared to conduct independent research, this course should enhance the ability to locate, read, comprehend, and begin to analyze critically research articles and reports.  As such, the goals of this course are twofold:  1) To gain an introductory level of familiarity with the principles and methods of various forms of research and 2) to become better “consumers” of published research.  Prerequisite: junior class standing.

IDS 3421 Research Endorsement: Research Project I (Design)

In consultation with a faculty supervisor, the student will prepare a research proposal to be completed in IDS 4552 Research Project II (Implementation) and IDS 4462 Research Project III (Presentation).  The proposal will be informed by the research design and literature search elements of IDS 3xx5 Introduction to Research Methods and Design.  The proposal must be sufficiently complete that implementation can begin in the following courses.  Prerequisite: IDS 3415 Introduction to Research Methods and Design.

IDS 4552 Research Endorsement: Research Project II (Implementation)

In consultation with the faculty supervisor, the student will arrange a schedule to implement the research proposal completed in IDS 34211 Research Project I (Design).

IDS 4462 Research Endorsement: Research Project III (Presentation)

Research Project III completes the sequence of courses necessary for receiving the Research Endorsement.  The student will meet with the faculty supervisor to prepare the research project for presentation.  The presentation requirement allows for flexible options including the presentation before undergraduate research conferences, discipline meetings, or a faculty committee.  The student will forward the presentation plan to the Director of Undergraduate Research for approval.  If required, the Director will arrange a faculty committee to hear the presentation.  The committee will send an evaluation of the project to the Director who will forward the recommendations to the faculty supervisor for final evaluation.  Upon successful completion of IDS 4462 and the recommendation of the Director of Undergraduate Research, the student will have the Research Endorsement added to the transcript.


For more information, contact Dr. Jennifer Long.