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Undergraduate Research

The university’s undergraduate research program is the second oldest program in the country, following only behind MIT. Since 1975 the USU Undergraduate Research Program has enabled students to partner with faculty on path-breaking investigations that advances their field and address real-world problems. The program supports students involved with lab work, field study, archival investigation, and creative production. Many students hold research positions and often receive travel stipends to present their findings at professional conferences.

However, engaging in research is not simply the pursuit of new knowledge—it provides students the opportunity to connect one-on-one with faculty members and develop intellectual independence early on in their academic careers. Performing undergraduate research also helps students build a strong resume and marketable skillset for their professional careers.

Departmental Research

USU's program of Sociology has always been supportive of its student researchers, scholars, and writers. Under the mentorship of top faculty and scholars, our students have presented their research in prestigious national and regional undergraduate forums including the Population Association of America, American Sociological Association, Rural Sociological Society, Western Social Science Association, Pacific Sociological Association, and on Capitol Hill.

Our undergraduate researchers have examined Latino immigrant success in high school, studied the influence of Jimi Hendricks on Eric Clapton's music, as well as racial and ethnic influences on USU student life. Others have studied the health impacts of living in Utah among Mexican heritage immigrants and presented a paper at the American Sociological Association that examined prejudice against convicts and possible community-based methods of reducing that prejudice.

Through student-centered research programs, sociology undergraduates can select and personalize their research to best fit their educational and career goals. Undergraduate Researchers in Sociology have been accepted at top graduate and law schools throughout the country. Others have attained positions with the National Children's Study, Centers for Disease Control, U.S. Census Bureau, Microsoft, and other prestigious public and private firms.

How to Get Involved

If you have questions, please contact Dr. Christy Glass, Sociology Honors advisor at 435-797-1230 ( or Dr. Peggy Petrzelka at 435-797-0981 (