FAQs Prospective Applicants

Contact information for the Undergraduate Research Center
Program Manager: Jamie Burriss, Ph.D. (Jamie.Burriss@mtsu.edu)

When are URECA proposals due?
There are three deadlines: September (intended for projects starting in fall), January (intended for projects starting in spring), and March (intended for projects starting in summer). Please check the homepage for specific due dates. All proposals are due by 3:00 PM of the deadline date. Completed applications must be submitted electronically as PDF documents to the URECA submissions website.

What is necessary for a successful URECA proposal?
Follow the guidelines carefully and give yourself enough to time to pay attention to details. The checklist must be complete or the proposal will not be considered.

What is a reasonable budget request?
Budget items beyond the stipend are allowed up to $300. Consult with your mentor to request what you need to complete the project, but whatever you request must be justified in detail.

Do I need IRB approval before I start my project?
If your project requires IRB or IACUC approval, the URECA Committee strongly recommends that you begin the approval process before you begin your proposal. Please visit MTSU's IRB website to find out if your project will require IRB approval. If your project involves animals, please visit the MTSU IACUC website to learn about filing your protocol.

What is the difference between the Assistant and the Scholar application?
A scholar must have research experience. The scholar's application is longer and will include more detail than an assistant application. Generally, a scholar is seeking more support than an assistant because there is more ownership to the project.

Can research teams be funded?
Yes. Each student should submit a separate proposal and mentor should indicate that they are part of a group project. Make sure that the role of each student is clear and that each student has written his/her proposal. Individuals within the group may be declined for funding.

Can a student be on a summer teams and receive an individual URECA award?

No. A student can only hold one (1) URECA grant at a time. If you are part of a summer team, you cannot also have an individual summer award.

Can I travel as part of a URECA Grant?
Yes. If travel is required to perform the project, it is eligible for funding. The cost limit is $400 for domestic and $500 for international travel. Travel must be justified using a travel form and details about why it is necessary. Do NOT request travel for presentation as part of a URECA research/creative project.

Why do I need a mentor?
Generally, undergraduate students are novices at doing research or creative work. Therefore, you need to learn the process of scholarship from an experienced scholar. A member of the faculty (tenured or tenure-track) will be able to guide an undergraduate student through this learning experience.

How do I find a mentor?
Start by talking to your major advisor and professors in your major from whom you have taken a class. Also speak with students who are doing or have done research.