Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP)
By participating in UROP, a student will:
- Receive a $1,000 award;
- Devote at least 50 hours in an academic year to working on the research project with a faculty sponsor chosen by the student;
- Prepare a poster on the results of the research;
- Participate in the annual UROP poster symposium; and
- Write a research abstract.
Faculty sponsors receive $500 in research funds to support their involvement in the program.
By participating in UROP, students will benefit from:
- An enriched student university experience
- Research opportunities at the undergraduate level
- A one-on-one relationship with faculty
- Hands-on experience in their field of study
- Greater preparation for graduate studies
- Increased engagement in their studies
- Assistance making career decisions
- Recognition of scholarship received on official transcripts
NOTE: Applications are to be submitted jointly by the student and the faculty sponsor.
- Students identify and contact potential faculty sponsors in the field of their choice (they can contact more than one professor; they do not have to be in the student’s faculty).
- Professors interview interested students.
- If the professor agrees to sponsor the student, the student and faculty sponsor decide on a research project to be submitted for UROP funding (students can submit one application per academic year; professors can submit up to four applications per academic year).
- The faculty sponsor and student complete and submit a joint UROP application.
UROP is open to third- and fourth-year students, including students in a CO-OP program.
- Have a cumulative grade point average (CGPA) of at least 7.5 (or 75% admission average for students transferring from another institution who do not have a University of Ottawa CGPA);
- Be registered in an undergraduate program at the University of Ottawa (exchange students are not eligible);
- Be in the third or fourth year of their program at the time of application;
- Have never received a UROP award; and
- Have never completed a master’s degree or equivalent.
Students enrolled in a CO-OP program, at the Faculty of Law or at the Faculty of Education must meet additional criteria:
- CO-OP program: Students cannot submit an application for UROP with any professor the student has worked for during a CO-OP research placement or on any other occasion. We do not recommended that CO-OP students take additional courses during a CO-OP placement at the same time as they are completing the UROP.
- Faculty of Law: Undergraduate students are eligible for UROP only during the first or second year of their program.
- Faculty of Education: Only students registered full time in the two-year, full-time BEd program (teacher education) are eligible.
NOTE: Priority is given to students that have demonstrated academic excellence, as shown by their cumulative grade point average (CGPA).
All full-time regular University of Ottawa faculty members are eligible to be UROP faculty sponsors. This normally includes assistant, associate and full professors. UROP is not open to replacement, visiting, adjunct or part-time professors.
Steps for finding a University of Ottawa faculty supervisor
- Talk to eligible professors you know who are conducting the type of research you’re interested in. If you’re unsure about the eligibility of a professor, please send an email to urop@uOttawa.ca.
- If you don’t know any professors in your field of interest or would like to find others in the field, read the profiles on personal research sites of potential faculty to gain a sense of the research they do. It’s a good idea to read a couple of their recent publications as well. You can also browse the uOttawa experts websites or check academic unit websites for the profiles of their faculty members.
- Send an email to potential faculty sponsors requesting an appointment to discuss the possibility of working with them as part of UROP. We strongly suggest that you avoid generic emails when contacting a faculty member. Instead, describe why you’re interested in working with the professor and why you feel you would be a good fit for their research team (including relevant academic or professional experience and any applicable skills you possess). Once you secure an appointment, you can then bring your resume and transcript and prepare a convincing pitch as to how you would be a good fit to work with him or her.
- Gather the documents to bring to your appointment, such as your transcripts and resumé and prepare what you will say to convince the potential sponsor that you are a good fit and are interested in applying for a UROP award to work with the sponsor on a joint research project.
- Once a professor has agreed to be your faculty sponsor, complete a joint application for UROP.
Responsibilities of the faculty sponsor
- Supervise no more than four students per academic year and provide them with guidance on the research project objectives and outcomes;
- Set a week-by-week progress schedule (Please see the Important dates section);
- Oversee student research activities, which include preparation of a poster and an abstract;
- Meet with the student at least every two weeks to review progress; and
- Fulfil all commitments in the UROP collaboration agreement.
- Go to Online Scholarships and Bursaries and sign into uoZone.
- Search for UROP, complete the online form and attach all required documents to the request (only applications that include all required information and documents will be considered).
- Completed UROP collaboration agreement.
- One-page clear and coherent description of research project (written by faculty sponsor) with the following items, one paragraph per topic (1.5 line spacing, 12 point font):
- Complete description of research question or working hypothesis and objectives;
- Relevance to the student’s academic program or research interests;
- Research approaches and methods student will use;
- Compatibility of the research question or working hypothesis with the approaches and methods to be used;
- Proposed learning activities and skills or competencies they will help the student develop;
- How the learning activities will allow the student to develop the skills or competencies;
- Week-by-week breakdown of the 50 hours of learning activities and details on how student will be supervised; and
- How your participation in UROP will enrich your own experience as a professor–researcher.
- Statement of purpose (written by student) explaining why the student wants to participate in UROP, why they chose the specific research project, how the experience would tie in with their academic and professional goals and how UROP can help you attain these goals (one page, 1.5 line spacing, 12 point font).
Applications are assessed on the basis of academic excellence, demonstrated by the student’s cumulative grade point average (CGPA) in addition to the overall quality of their application.
Once you're accepted
Congratulations! You will now join hundreds of other students that have benefitted from UROP. The following sections provide key information that will help make your undergraduate research experience rewarding and successful.
The next step, before going any further, is to determine whether your research project needs ethics approval by consulting the responsible conduct of research checklist.
Responsible conduct of research checklist
A team of three UROP student mentors are available to help support and guide UROP participants. They will track your progress and help make sure you have the best learning experience possible. In order to provide relevant expertise to UROP participants, each mentor is assigned to a group of several disciplines based on their experience and academic background. These groups are:
- Arts, education, law and the social sciences;
- Health sciences and medicine;
- Engineering and science.
Workshops and other resources
A UROP orientation session and various workshops are held to provide students with the information they need for a successful research experience. Workshops cover abstract writing and poster writing. Workshop dates are published on September 1 of each year.
How to write a good abstract:
- Abstract Writing: Guidelines and Samples
- Conference Prep: How To Write a Winning Abstract
- How to write an undergraduate research abstract
How to create a good quality poster:
Annual UROP symposium
The Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program’s annual symposium is a major event organized each year by the Centre for Research Opportunities. It provides UROP participants with an opportunity to present the projects they worked on during the academic year. It’s also a great networking opportunity for participants and attendees.
The event includes a poster exhibit followed by presentations of finalists for best poster and concludes with award presentations.