LASURI: Undergraduate research at las

  • The Liberal Arts & Sciences Undergraduate Research Initiative (LASURI) encourages students to develop their research skills by providing financial support to undergraduates in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and their faculty mentors for one- or two-semester research projects. Students work closely with a faculty member, develop research skills, and learn to use appropriate methods for inquiry and analysis in their chosen field of study. The LASURI award is open to undergraduate students in all the fields of study available in LAS. Depending on the field and project, LASURI research may include assisting in laboratories, literature reviews, experiments, fieldwork, archival searches, document review, mapping, statistical analysis, creative projects, etc. Students do not need an established record of advanced research experience to apply.

    LASURI undergraduate recipients receive an award of up to $1250 per semester. Most participants are approved for two-semester projects, receiving up to $2500 for the full year. LASURI faculty mentors receive a fixed amount to cover direct costs associated with the project.


LASURI aims to

  • develop the research, communication, and leadership skills of undergraduate researchers.
  • facilitate the development of mutually beneficial research partnerships between undergraduates and faculty members.
  • improve undergraduates’ awareness of research opportunities within LAS.
  • prepare undergraduate students for post-baccalaureate academic and professional opportunities.
  • encourage faculty to incorporate undergraduate research into their scholarly activities.
  • foster intellectual and social community among UIC undergraduates.

What is Undergraduate Research?

Undergraduate research is often defined as mentored, self-directed work through which students explore a topic of interest and share the results of their work in accordance with disciplinary standards. This definition, endorsed by LAS, allows for research projects to include a wide range of activities, including systematic inquiry and creative activity.*

The LASURI program has funded a wide variety of research projects, as evident in the sample of LASURI abstracts available here.

How LASURI works

  1. Faculty members and undergraduate students interested in working on a student research project connect. Faculty interested in working with an undergraduate research assistant can create a research profile on the Undergraduate Research Experience (URE) website, describing their work and what they expect from their URA.  Students may search for potential mentors there, but faculty and students may also reach out to each other directly.
  2. Faculty mentors and students meet, determine if they would like to work together, design a specific student project and establish the expectations for the project.  You may explore the type of questions included on the LASURI application to guide your discussions. Faculty mentors should help the student design the project and may help them prepare their application.
  3. Students fill out an application on SnAP by the March 15, 2019 deadline. As part of the application, they will submit the faculty mentor's name and email address. The faculty mentor will receive an email with some additional questions to complete. Both the student application and faculty questions must be completed before the deadline.
  4. If a project is selected, the LASURI undergraduate recipient and their Faculty Mentor are expected to work together throughout the award period. Students will receive an award of up to $1250 per semester to facilitate this research. Most participants are approved for two-semester projects, receiving up to $2500 for the full year. The Faculty Mentors associated with these projects will be awarded a fixed amount to cover related project costs, including materials, travel, and equipment for student use. The funds will be submitted to the mentors' departments for disbursal to the mentors.

  5. At the end of the academic year, students are expected to present their research projects at the UIC Student Research Forum and submit their abstracts to the LASURI Abstract Archive.

Important Dates

early December 2018 - Application available on SnAP.
Fri. March 15, 2019 - Application due
early April 2019 - Decisions announced