Office for Undergraduate Research and Artistry

CLA Undergraduate Research Academies


The College of Liberal Arts Undergraduate research academies are faculty/staff-led cohorts of students that work collaboratively on a common problem or theme throughout the academic year and/or summer. The purpose of Academies is to provide interdisciplinary research and/or engaged learning opportunities for undergraduate students across a range of disciplines. The CLA URAs are intended to provide interdisciplinary research opportunities for undergraduates across a range of disciplines. Each academy allows groups of undergraduates to address a common problem or theme from their unique disciplinary perspectives.

Participating students are guided in this inquiry-driven process by at least one faculty mentor. Each academy is provided with a budget of up to $5,000. This funding can be used to support research costs, site/conference travel costs, mentor stipends, departmental contributions, etc. In addition, logistical support and advertising are provided by the Office for Undergraduate Research and Artistry.


Educational research indicates that undergraduates who are engaged in faculty mentored research achieve higher:

  1. academic performance
  2. rates of retention
  3. rates of entry into graduate and professional programs; and
  4. performance ratings from employers.


News about Calls for Proposals and Undergraduate Research Academy Events Will Be Here. Check again later for updates 

Contact Info:

Students in the IDEA 210 Intro to Design Thinking class working individually and in groups to finalize projects

Frequently Asked Questions

This varies. Past academies have ranged in numbers of participants from as few as 8 to as many as 35 in a single academic year. However, it is recommended that a minimum of 15–20 students participate in each academy per academic year.

Absolutely! But there must be at least one supervising faculty/staff mentor assigned to the academy as well.

Funds can be used to support research costs, travel and transportation costs, mentor or student stipends, and administrative costs.

Though the applicant pool is limited, applications will still be competitive, and so full funding is not guaranteed to all applicants.  Preference will be given to projects that can demonstrate the potential to become sustainable, multi-year projects that can engage multiple cohorts of student participants. The type and level of departmental support will be considered.

Supervising faculty will be expected to meet as a group with their Dean’s Office and OURA to ensure progress and share best practices, ideally once a month throughout the academic year. Faculty also are expected to strongly encourage students to participate in MURALS and/or CURC or another venue for showcasing student work (see OURA’s showcase webpage).  Faculty will also be expected to complete an annual report.