Undergraduate Research

Undergrads discussing research project

Research is more broadly defined than many students realize. It's generally understood that biology majors working in labs "do research." But so do psychology majors interning at hospitals, English majors plowing through archival documents, business majors examining market trends, and communications majors analyzing broadcast television. Any academic interest holds potential for research, and there are ample funds out there to help you carry out your project.

Research provides a plethora of intrinsic benefits: gathering and creating new knowledge, learning the methods of your field, exploring new ways of thinking, and entering your field's professional dialogue. But undergraduate research merits external rewards as well. It may make you more attractive to graduate schools, employers, and national fellowship committees, and it may provide you with professional and academic connections that last a lifetime.

Villanova University has an extensive community of researchers who have published various bodies of work across the disciplines that can be found in the Villanova Community Bibliography. A database of the entire published output of Villanova University's authors and researchers, the Community Bibliography is a great tool for undergraduate research students to search for faculty who are researching and publishing in their fields. In addition, it is a great celebration of the scholarship of Villanova University from 1842 to the present.

Keep this thought in mind as well: after you complete your research, there are abundant opportunities to share it with others. Publish your findings in an undergraduate journal, present them at a conference (the Honors Program sponsors trips to two such conferences each year), or submit them to a writing competition.


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