rite an introductory letter/proposal to a UCSB research team.

Research is an important aspect of a well-rounded undergraduate career at a research university. Your coursework, internships, and participation in campus activities have hopefully triggered both your academic interests and prompted you to consider what research you might want to pursue. Some of you will have the opportunity to write a senior thesis that will require you to conduct your own research.

This assignment is your opportunity to develop a proposal as a way to experience the research core of UCSB. It is also an opportunity for you to reflect on previous or current courses in your major that have piqued your academic and professional interests.

Write an introductory letter/proposal to a UCSB research team. It does not have to be a team that relates in any way to your current major or college. If you are pre-economics but you have a keen interest in microfluidics, then write to one of the teams working in microfluidics.

How do you find a research team? Start with the “FRAP” Directory. Your objective is to convince the team that you can add value to their work and that you will be an eager and committed member of their team. Think of this as a modified cover letter. The reader should get to know who you are, why you are interested in their work, and what you can do to help them to get it done better.

If you are already the researching type, you can step this one up and write an original research proposal to conduct undergraduate research in your field (FYI; nearly 100% of undergraduate research proposals were funded last year?!!). This would entail creating your own independent research project and writing a proposal to a potential faculty advisor in the department of your interest. For more information on how to get that process started click here.

Do you seek fame and maybe a couple of extra points? In past classes, more than a dozen of our students actually sent the letter to a research team. A few let us know that they were hired into paid positions. If you ask us, we’ll find a unique way to celebrate you and your achievemnet.

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