Undergraduate Research

The faculty of the Department of Chemical Engineering is distinguished by their participation in externally funded research in novel areas, such as bioengineering, materials, separations, and nanotechnology. A unique environment within the department has been sustained for undergraduate students looking to gain additional and individualized educational experiences beyond the classroom.  Undergraduate research provides a platform where students can apply chemical engineering fundamentals to cutting-edge research projects in one of our faculty’s laboratories and receive credits for their work. Additionally, they provide an opportunity to further develop the student’s professional skills, such as teamwork and critical thinking, in a non-traditional learning setting. As such, participation in undergraduate research improved students’ prospects, even when they are inclined to an industrial job after graduation. While participation in these experiences is optional, over half of our recent graduates have participated in undergraduate research in our department.

Students enrolling in Undergraduate Research (INQU4998) can opt to receive from one (1) up to three (3) credit-hours per academic period, until a maximum of six (6) credit-hours. There is no limitation on the number of periods, as long as the maximum six (6) credit hours is not exceeded. Students are expected to work three hours per week per credit (similar to a laboratory course). Students must be aware that enrolling in Undergraduate Research requires the inclusion of Laboratory Fees (per academic period) in their tuition costs.

Interested students are encouraged to obtain information about the faculty’s research areas and request to meet with them, preferably ahead of the registration process, to discuss the opportunities for students in their labs. Students can also obtain information from faculty’s webpages, publications, presentations and displayed posters, or meeting their graduate students. If a professor agrees to host the student in his/her lab, an Authorization to Enroll in Undergraduate Research or Special Problems Form must be filled by the student and faculty member. You can download the form here or obtain a copy in the departmental administrative office and your Academic Advisor’s office. During the registration process, the completed form must be handed-in in order to enroll the student in the appropriate course and section.

For information on current summer Research Experiences for Undergraduates in our department visit the Research Centers section or contact faculty directly.