Dietrich College Undergraduate Research

When it comes to preparing its students for the future, few universities can match the opportunities that Carnegie Mellon University offers its undergraduates for research and training. Dietrich College contributes to this program in two important ways. One, we support students financially through research and study abroad grants. Two, through an active mentoring program called Research Training for Undergraduates, students work with professors on topics of mutual interest. Students are encouraged to engage in research as early as their freshman year.

Through a research skills course option, academically qualified first- and second-year Dietrich College students have the chance to work side by side with a faculty member in a research project. Many undergraduate students, at all levels, participate in independent research projects and some can receive funding from the university for these activities (see the Small Undergraduate Research Grant (SURG) program website for more information). These opportunities allow some students to complete portions of published research projects.

Research grants have provided funding for studies in the following areas, among others: exploring gender differences in nonverbal communication, filming a documentary about life on a submarine, creating a speech synthesizer for Vietnamese, how children acquire language. Faculty advisors believe student researchers are valuable contributors to these efforts.

Dietrich College and its departments offer a variety of travel and research awards to students interested in exploring their world and their interests. Research and project work play an important role in nearly all Dietrich College departments. Courses often involve work on 'real world' projects, such as designing computer kiosks for the disabled, or designing electronic voting systems.

Dietrich College believes research experience builds your skills in analysis as well as creative and critical thinking. This training has obvious value no matter whether you are planning in the private or public sector, or continuing on to graduate school.


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