Undergraduate Research

Undergraduate students are encouraged to apply for an Undergraduate Research Grant administered by the Undergraduate Studies Office in collaboration with Associated Students, Inc. Students are able to apply for funding each spring semester for the following academic year and each fall semester for the following spring semester. These grants provide up to $1,000 in financial support to undergraduate students who work closely with a faculty member to conduct research, engage in field studies, create projects in their discipline, or participate in similar scholarly/creative activities. Students are encouraged to design their own projects but may also work on a professor's project. Either way, students must work closely with a faculty mentor in preparation for making an Undergraduate Research Grant proposal.

Undergraduate Research Grant Application

For 2017-2018 Award (spring applicants): DEADLINE EXTENDED - Completed online applications are due FRIDAY, APRIL 28, 2017.

For Spring 2018 Award (fall applicants):
The Undergraduate Research spring award application will be available to students beginning August 22, 2017 (first day of instruction in fall). Completed online applications are due Sunday, October 1, 2017.

Example Undergraduate Research Grant Application (pdf)

**For questions or issues regarding the application, please call Undergraduate Studies at 559.278.4468.**

Important Undergraduate Research Program Information:

Benefits of participating in the Undergraduate Research Grant Program

In addition to building a relationship with a faculty mentor and gaining valuable experience, students may get a jump on preparing for graduate school or their career, publish or present their work and establish contacts which will improve their prospects for success. The funding can defray the costs associated with working on a project. However, since any part of the grant taken as a student assistant payment ($500 max.) is considered income, it could affect financial aid. You can check with the Financial Aid office (559) 278-2182 for more information.

Undergraduate Research Grant Eligibility - Spring Applicants

(funds for the 2017-2018 academic year)

  • Students must be enrolled as full-time or part-time undergraduate students with at least two semesters remaining before they will graduate,
  • be in good academic standing (minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher),
  • show substantial initiative in the project, and
  • have a faculty mentor who is willing to work with the student.
  • Projects from all majors are eligible for the Undergraduate Research Grant.
  • Funds from the grant must be spent and receipts submitted by March 31 of the funding academic year.

Undergraduate Research Grant Eligibility - Fall Applicants

(funds for spring 2018)

  • Students must be enrolled as full-time or part-time undergraduate students with at least one semester remaining before they will graduate, 
  • be in good academic standing (minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher), 
  • show substantial initiative in the project, and
  • have a faculty mentor who is willing to work with the student.
  • Projects from all majors are eligible for the Undergraduate Research Grant.
  • Funds from the grant must be spent and receipts submitted by March 31 of the funding academic year.

Faculty Mentor Eligibility & Information

  • Faculty member must be tenured or tenure-track faculty,
  • willing to work closely with the undergraduate student on the project,
  • have knowledge/expertise in the area of project to be completed, and
  • demonstrate the ability to effectively mentor an undergraduate student.

Finding a faculty mentor: Talk to your instructors and your adviser about the activities in which they will be involved. Share your interests with them. Ask them for suggestions of faculty who may have similar interests. Use the University Experts website.

Selection of Undergraduate Research Grant Recipients

Research proposals are reviewed by a specifically designated committee from the Undergraduate Studies Office and Associated Students, Inc. Each proposal is carefully rated on:

  • overall quality of the research proposal,
  • if multiple students apply but work on the same project with one faculty member, each applicant must have their individual role, unique research question and/or separate assignments for the given project;
  • significance of the project and merit of the work involved toward the student's area of study;
  • appropriateness of the methodology/creative focus; 
  • if the proposed project can be completed by project deadline, especially grant funds expenditure deadline, and
  • strength of proposed mentoring relationship.

Students initially applying for the Spring 2018 semester will have priority over those awarded the Undergraduate Research Grant in fall 2017.

Applying for an Undergraduate Research Grant

  • Establish a faculty mentor and submit a research proposal.
  • Describe the project, how you expect to carry it out, your level of involvement, expected outcomes, provide a detailed budget by item, and a timeline for completion.
  • Students must have individualized roles, unique research questions and/or separate assignments if applying for grants on the same project; or students can apply as "co-applicants" in one application on the same project with identical research questions and assignments. If awarded, the co-applicants share the $1,000 grant.
  • Students will likely want to edit several drafts of their proposal and meet with their faculty mentor before submitting it online.

Using Undergraduate Research Grants Funds

Undergraduate Research Grant funds can be used to:

  • cover project-related software,
  • purchase equipment, materials, and supplies,
  • travel, 
  • data collection and analysis, and
  • other project-related expenses.
  • Funds may not be used for faculty compensation of any kind.

Undergraduate Research Grant Recipient Requirements

  • Students must work closely with their faculty mentor. 
  • complete their project by the specified deadline,
  • submit a final report to the Undergraduate Studies Office by March 31, 2018, and
  • spend funds by March 31, 2018.

Use of Human or Animal Subjects

The use of people and animals in research is federally regulated. To use people in your research, you may have to get approval from the University's Institutional Review Board (IRB). Your faculty mentor can help you determine whether or not you will need approval and can also assist you with the approval process. More information is available on the Human Subjects website; click on The Institutional Review Board link under "Contact Information."

If you plan to use animals in your project, you will need to work with the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC). Again, your faculty mentor can assist you with this process.

Important Undergraduate Research Grant Documents

Online Application Instructions Word / PDF

Evaluation Rubric

IMPORTANT DEADLINES:

For 2017-2018 Award: DEADLINE EXTENDED - Completed online applications are due FRIDAY, APRIL 28, 2017. Students and faculty will be notified of award by June 14, 2017. 

For Spring 2018 Award: The Undergraduate Research spring award application will be available to students beginning August 22, 2017 (first day of instruction in fall). Completed online applications are due SUNDAY, October 1, 2017. Students and faculty will be notified of award by November 10, 2017.

**ALL AWARDED STUDENTS IN THE 2017-2018 ACADEMIC YEAR MUST SUBMIT A FINAL REPORT TO THE UNDERGRADUATE STUDIES OFFICE BY MARCH 31, 2018 AND UTILIZE THEIR FUNDS BY MARCH 31, 2018.**

Past Undergraduate Research Awardees

Legend

  • CAH - College of Arts and Humanities
  • CSB - Craig School of Business
  • CHHS - College of Health and Human Services
  • CSM - College of Science and Mathematics
  • LCOE - Lyles College of Engineering
  • JCAST - Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology
  • KSOEHD - Kremen School of Education and Human Development 
  • COSS - College of Social Sciences

Archive

 

Fall 2017 Undergraduate Research Awardees
Student, Department, and College
Faculty Mentor and Department    Project Title
Ryan Alvarez

Kinesiology, CHHS

Dr. Nicole Smith

Kinesiology
Similarities of Scosche armband heart rate monitors and Polar E600 Chest Strap Monitors
Jasmine De La Torre

Child Development, JCAST
Dr. Aimee Rickman

Child, Family, and Consumer Services
Examining Young People's Social Media Use
William Diaz

Biology, CSM
Dr. Qiao-Hong Chen

Chemistry
Synthesis and Biological Evaluation of 3-O-alkylamino-5,7,20-O-trimethyl-2,3-dehydrosilibinins
Lemuel Rivera

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Joy Goto

Chemistry
The role of beta-Methylamino-L-alanine and L-serine on the circadian rhythm of Drosophila melanogaster
Jesus Velasquez

Physics, CSM
Dr. Pei-Chun Ho

Physics
Measurement of the Seebeck Coefficient for Filled-Skutterudite Compounds
Angham Ahmed

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Krish Krishnan

Chemistry
Investigation of a model nucleoporin peptide (Nup 159) using experimental nuclear Overhauser effect Spectroscopy (NOESY)
Tahrima Alam

Civil & Geomatics Engineering, LCOE
Dr. Lalita Oka

Civil & Geomatics Engineering
Soil Liquefaction and Counteractive Solutions 
Juan Alejandre

Civil & Geomatics Engineering, LCOE
Dr. Aly Tawfik

Civil & Geomatics Engineering
Using Isochrone Travel Time Maps to Assess the Impact of HSR on Regional Travel Accessibility in California 
Rebecca Alves

Biology, CSM
Dr. Laurent Dejean

Chemistry
Study of the effects of Bcl-2 overexpression on lactate fermentation using 13C-NMR
Patricia Brito

Chicano Studies, COSS
Dr. Maria-Aparecida Lopes

Chicano & Latin American Studies
The Environmental Impact of Beef on Brazil's Landscape 1850-1950
Emily Burbulys

Kinesiology, CHHS
Dr. Luke Pryor

Kinesiology
Effect of Fatigue in a Tournament Setting on Movement Technique in Youth Soccer Athletes
Ariana Cavazos

Mathematics, CSM
Dr. Carmen Caprau

Mathematics
Invariants of Virtual and Singular Colored Links
Haley Chapman

Biology, CSM
Dr. David Lent

Biology
Determining the relationship between Alzheimer's disease and aggression in male Drosophila melanogaster 
Gustavo Hernandez

Mechanical Engineering, LCOE
Dr. Ajith Weerasinghe

Mechanical Engineering
Fabrication of low-cost solar cell from non-toxic and earth abundant semiconductors
Ryan Juan

Criminology, COSS
Dr. Jenna Kieckhaefer

Criminology
Rapport and witness interviewing: Examining officer stated verbal and nonverbal techniques 
Megan Kalomaris

Biology, CSM
Dr. Jason Bush

Biology
Identifying protein expression changes in zoledronic acid-treated metastatic breast cancer cell spheroids
Lucineh Kasnakjian

Biology, CSM
Dr. Laurent Dejean

Chemistry 
Cytotoxicity Effects of Oxamic Acid
Parveen Kaur

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Hubert Muchalski

Chemistry
Synthesis and evaluation of saturated gold-NHC catalysts for hydrocarboxylation of internal alkynes
Maizie Lee

Chemistry, CSM
Dr. Qiao-Hong Chen

Chemistry
Synthesis of 7-O-substitutedflavonols as anti-prostate cancer agents
Linda Lim

Civil & Geomatics Engineering, LCOE
Dr. Aly Tawfik

Civil & Geomatics Engineering
Estimating Future Travel Cost using Shared Autonomous Vehicle (SAV) Systems
Tanner Melton

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Alam Hasson

College of Science and Math
Third hand smoke
Catherine Mueller

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Joy Goto

Chemistry
Neurotoxic Effects of Non-Protein Amino Acid BMAA and the Impact of NMDA receptor antagonist MK-801 on Drosophila melanogaster
Amanda Olvera

Biology, CSM
Dr. Hubert Muchalski

Chemistry
Preparation of mesityl-NHC ligands for gold-catalyzed hydrocarboxylation
Diana Onofre

Plant Science, JCAST
Dr. Anil Shrestha

Plant Science
Drought and salinity stress tolerance of Mexican sprangletop (Leptochloa fusca ssp. Uninervia) seeds during germination and glyphosate tolerance of seedlings
Shyam Patel

Biology, CSM
Dr. Jason Bush

Biology
Evaluating the Impact of E-Cigarette Vapor Elements and Cytotoxicity
Isidro Perez

Civil & Geomatics Engineering, LCOE
Dr. Maryam Nazari

Civil & Geomatics Engineering
Analytical Study of the Structural Response to Near-Field Earthquakes
Carly Robinson

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Kalyani Maitra

Chemistry
Synthesis and Characterization of Ferrocenyl-peptidomimetics
Jaklin Rowley

Civil & Geomatics Engineering, LCOE
Dr. Wei Wu

Construction Management
Exploration of Optimized Materials and Structural Forms for Low-Cost Homeless Shelter using 3-D Printing
Melissa Sanchez

Chemistry, CSM
Dr. Hubert Muchalski

Chemistry
Synthesis of Precursors to Electron-Deficient Oxazolidine-Based Sulfenic Acids
Harmala Singh

Biology, CSM
Dr. Joy Goto

Chemistry
Novel NMDA Receptor-Specific Desensitization/Inactivation Produced By Ingestion of the Neurotoxins BOAA or BMAA
Abu Tahir Taha

Biology, CSM
Dr. David Lent

Biology
Characterization of Symptoms Associated with Expression of Alpha-synuclein in Entire Nervous System of Drosophila and Effects of Dietary Caffeine Affiliated
Maineng Thao

Animal Sciences, JCAST
Dr. David Lent


Biology
Analyzing the effects of Coenzyme Q10 on Parkinson's Disease model Drosophila Melanogaster
Milagros Verduzco

Civil & Geomatics Engineering, LCOE
Dr. Arezoo Sadrinezhad

Civil & Geomatics Engineering
The Effects of Seismic Activity on Dome Homes
Reina Warnet

Biology, CSM
Dr. David Lent

Biology
A Study of Navigational Mechanisms in Wood Ants
Ryan Watters

Chemistry, CSM
Dr. Hubert Muchalski

Chemistry
Synthesis of precursors to substituted quinoline sulfenic acids
Matthew Mendoza

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Cory Brooks

Chemistry
Characterization of the Interloop Disulfide Bond and a Hydrophobic Cluster in High Affinity Binding of Camel VHH to Listeria monocytogenes
Matthew Lansman

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Qiao-Hong Chen

Chemistry
5-O-Substituted-3,3',4',7-Otetramethylquercetins as anti-prostate cancer agents
Janay Mommer

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Hubert Muchalski

Chemistry
Preparation of bulky Ipr-NHC ligands for gold-catalyzed hydrocarboxylation
Max Aguiniga

Mechanical Engineering, LCOE
Dr. Deify Law

Mechanical Engineering  
Drag Force Study of Airflow over Several Physical Objects in a Wind Tunnel: Experiments and Simulations
Demi Ayala

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Cory Brooks

Chemistry
Production of 1.2TR Protein from MUC16
Tyler Caffee

History, COSS
Dr. Romeo Guzman

History
The History of San Joaquin Valley Soccer: Archive Project
Joel Castillo

Chemistry, CSM
Dr. Laurent Dejean

Chemistry
Determination of the Effects of Particulate Matter on ROS Production in Alveolar Macrophage Cells Using Flow Cytometry
Christian Cunningham

Biology, CSM
Dr. Tricia Van Laar

Biology
Analysis of chaperone protein spy in Klebsiella pneumoniae and its relation to antibiotic tolerance within the biofilm
Katlyn Grootendorst

Biology, CSM
Dr. David Lent

Biology
Beta-amyloid's effect on the sleep/wake cycle in Drosophila melanogaster
Ravinder Kang

Chemistry, CSM
Dr. Kalyani Maitra

Chemistry
Waste Water Quality Improvement by Algae Treatment
Prathana Kumar

Biology, CSM
Dr. Santanu Maitra

Chemistry
Synthesis of ApoE Down Regulation Molecules for Alzheimer's Disease Drug Therapy
Itzel Lopez

Biology, CSM
Dr. Laurent Dejean

Chemistry
Identification of complex proteins and their interaction with Bax
Pravien Rajaram

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Qiao-Hong Chen

Chemistry
Studies on the potential of 3-0-substituted-Quercetins as Anti-prostate cancer agent
Emily Ramirez

Biology, CSM
Dr. Steve Blumenshine

Biology
The Role of Disturbance on San Joaquin River Macroinvertebrate Assemblages; Implication for Chinook Salmon Survival and Growth
Victor Rasgado

Geomatics Engineering, LCOE
Dr. Scott Peterson

Civil & Geomatics Engineering
Relative comparison of Drone Photogrammetry and LiDAR 3D Point Cloud
Scott Thompson

Chemistry, CSM
Dr. Santanu Maitra

Chemistry
Amide Bond Modulation: Manipulating Energy Landscapes for Conformational Preferences
Pedro Valencia

Computer Engineering, LCOE
Dr. Hovannes Kulhandjian

Electrical & Computer Engineering
Binary Communication using the Visible Light Spectrum
Der Xiong

Chemistry, CSM
Dr. Jai-Pil Choi

Chemistry
Electron hopping of alkylthiolated silver nanoparticles
Elaine Youssef

Biology, CSM
Dr. Laurent Dejean

Chemistry
Study of the effects of Bcl-2 overexpression on the efficiency of pro-lymphocyte mitochodrial oxidative phosphorylation
Shoji Hishida

Physics, CSM
Dr. Pei-Chun Ho

Physics
Characterization of Normal-State Thermal Properties of Filled-Skutterudite Samples
Scott Harbour

Mathematics, CSM
Dr. Steve Chung

Mathematics
Fantasy Football Points Prediction Using Bayesian Statistics
Timmy Lee

Chemistry, CSM
Dr. Qiao-Hong Chen

Chemistry
Synthesis of 5-O-substituted-2,3-dehydrosilibinins as anti-prostate cancer agents
Ruby Martinez


Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Joy Goto

Chemistry
Spotted Wing Drosophila and the Effects of Cyt P450
Brandi Mason

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Santanu Maitra

Chemistry
Directing Electrons Around the Amide Bond to Regulate Conformation
Shelby Moshier

Biology, CSM
Dr. Joshua Reece

Biology
The phylogenetic distribution of climate change vulnerability in California's birds
Vanna Nauk

History, COSS
Dr. Romeo Guzman

History
Visibility, Liberation and Integreation of Fresno LGBTQ Millennials
Micah Olivas

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Laurent Dejean

Chemistry
Determining the Effects of PM 2.5 Species on ROS Production in Alveolar Macrophage Cells
Michael Castro

Biology, CSM
Dr. Tricia Van Laar

Biology
Characterizing the Microbiome of the Avian Nest
Cynthia Sanchez

Biology, CSM
Dr. Kalyani Maitra

Chemistry
Applying Algae as an Alternative to Fossil Fuels
Daniel Ashley

Biology, CSM
Dr. Jason Bush

Biology
Relationship Between E-Cigarette Vapor Elements and Cytotoxicity
Jasdeep Sangha

Civil & Geomatics Engineering, LCOE
Dr. Arezoo Sadrinezhad

Civil & Geomatics Engineering
Recreating the Modified Proctor for On-The-Field Applications
Dakota Daffron

Mechanical Engineering, LCOE
Dr. Ajith Weerasinghe

Mechanical Engineering
Binary semiconductors project
Ahmed Mohamed

Biochemistry, CSM
Dr. Jai-Pil Choi

Chemistry
Recycling of Si PV Solar Panels