Rice University

Rice University Center for Civic Leadership

Undergraduate Research

Participating in research, design, and creative projects with distinguished faculty on and off-campus can be a valuable component of your Rice education. Imagine the thrill of exploring answers to open-ended questions, the benefits of close mentorship from a faculty member, and the satisfaction of your first publication!

Ways to Identify Research Opportunities

Our office works with departments and programs on and off-campus to help you idenitfy undergraduate research opportunities. Through research fairs (such as the Discover Research Fair) and individual consultation, we help you identify formative and substantive research experiences at Rice and beyond, and advise you how to approach a faculty member and develop a research proposal. We make sure you are aware of internal and external funding to support institutional, domestic, and international research, and we offer a 0 credit course that enables your research experience to be recorded on your transcript. 

Sponsored Programs

The CCL sponsors two undergraduate research programs: Century Scholars, which introduces freshmen and sophomores to inquiry through a faculty-mentored research experience, and the Rice Undergraduate Scholars Program, which provides in-depth guidance to juniors and seniors intending to pursue a research career after college. Both programs teach you how to communicate your results and expose you to the expectations of a research career.

Students who wish to make research a focal point of their undergraduate career should also apply for Distinction in Research and Creative Works in their home department. 

Sharing Research

The CCL facilitates opportunities for students to share their research. One is by hosting the Rice Undergraduate Research Symposium (RURS), which is open to undergraduates in all disciplines. Participants present their research via poster or oral presentation and receive feedback from a panel of judges comprised of faculty, community leaders, and graduate students. This event draws a large audience from Rice and the community. 

Our office also provides funding for undergraduate students attending conferences to present original research or design. Please visit this page to learn more about conference funding.

Additionally, we support two Rice undergraduate publications: Catalyst, which is dedicated to fostering discussion of the sciences at Rice University, and the Rice Historical Review, which is designed to showcase outstanding scholarly works produced by Rice undergraduates. Both journals provide an avenue for students to present original research findings while learning the peer review process.