The JMU College of Business Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Program

As a future business leader, you’ll need to know how to gather and analyze data to help make the best possible decisions for your company. Our Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program will help you learn the process of conducting independent research in the business disciplines. 

As an undergraduate research assistant (RA), you’ll work alongside a faculty mentor on an in-depth project, learning a wide range of research skills such as reviewing literature, developing surveys, collecting and cleaning data, and analyzing results. At the same time, you’ll make valuable connections with JMU faculty as you collaborate on research topics of mutual interest. 

The REU program will give you a chance to build your professional skills or prepare for graduate school. These experiences also may give you a competitive edge in applying for prestigious national scholarships or Hillcrest scholarships, which often provide the opportunity for international travel and study.

FAQs for Students
How do I participate in the REU Program?          

You must submit an application to participate in the REU Program. If you and a particular faculty member already have discussed working together, you are encouraged to submit applications together noting your mutual request. If you do not apply with a faculty collaborator in mind, you may be matched with a partner with similar research interests. Submit a student application

Who’s eligible to participate?

Students applying to the RA program must be in good academic standing and have a 2.75 GPA to be accepted into the program, as well as to reapply for future assignments. You are not required to be enrolled in the Honors College or to be admitted to the CoB at the time a project begins. However, preference will be given to underclassmen demonstrating a high likelihood of ultimately gaining entry to the CoB. Upperclassmen are also eligible for awards. 

What type of work would I be doing?

You will be conducting academic research that meets definitive benchmarks or guidelines—not simple or menial tasks. Through this experience, you should develop a wide range of skills, from reviewing literature, developing surveys and collecting data to conducting statistical and qualitative analysis and writing results. 

How long does the program last? May I reapply if I enjoyed my first assignment?

Your first assignment will last for one semester. However, you may apply to continue your project into a second semester or apply for a totally new project after completing the first. Projects also may be initiated and completed over the summer. Each new assignment or renewal requires an application. 

How many hours will I be expected to work each week?

Work should range between five and 10 hours per week. Research assignments offer a flexible schedule, with hours to be negotiated between the student and faculty adviser. 

Does the RA position pay? 

RAs will receive an hourly rate for time worked up to $1,000 per semester. Two-semester or summer assignments may qualify for payment up to $2,000. 

Can I receive course credit for participating in the REU Program?

No. If you are interested in completing a research project for course credit, talk to your academic adviser about the possibility of completing an independent study project.                        

Do I need to publish a paper or present my research in some other way at the end of the project?

You do not need to complete work that would be submitted for publication, but faculty-RA pairings must collaborate on a brief presentation and/or reflection of the work completed. Students are encouraged to present their work at either the Honors Symposium (if applicable) or through departmental poster presentations. 

Pending a recommendation from faculty mentors, funds may also be made available for student travel to present their joint work at professional conferences (e.g., Council on Undergraduate Research Poster Session on the Hill,  the National Conferences on Undergraduate Research (NCUR), Colonial Academic Alliance (CAA) Undergraduate Research Conference, or other discipline specific professional conferences). Completion standards for the faculty-RA pairings may be used in helping determine future awards of undergraduate RAs.

Information for Faculty
Do faculty members need to submit an application to participate in the REU Program?

Yes. If you and a student already have discussed working together, you are encouraged to submit applications together, noting your mutual request. However, students and faculty who do not apply with a collaborator in mind may be paired with a partner with similar interests. Submit a faculty application.

Who’s eligible to participate as a faculty mentor?

The program is open to all JMU faculty, with preference being given to CoB faculty. 

Do faculty members receive compensation for participating in the REU program?

This program does not provide direct financial support for faculty. 

What type of work are students expected to do?

Research tasks should be substantive with definitive benchmarks or guidelines, and not simple or menial tasks. Students should learn a wide range of research skills such as reviewing literature, developing surveys, collecting and cleaning data, and analyzing results. 

Faculty should expect to spend time helping develop students' skills and knowledge. The program is initially focused on helping students start taking part in research projects early in their academic careers (ideally the sophomore year). These students are interested in research, but may not yet possess the raw knowledge or skills necessary to conduct high quality independent study. Positions are renewable, making the time spent with these students increasingly useful over time. 

How many hours are students expected to work each week?

Work should range between five and 10 hours per week. Summer research assignments allow for more flexible hours, to be negotiated between the student and faculty adviser. 

What completion standards are students expected to meet?

The faculty-led project does not need to be concluded (e.g., submitted for publication) within the RA’s term of assignment, but faculty-RA pairings must collaborate on a brief presentation and/or reflection of the work completed. Students are encouraged to present their work at either the Honors Symposium (if applicable) or through departmental poster presentations. Completion standards for the faculty-RA pairings may be used in helping determine future awards of undergraduate RAs. 

May I continue working with a student beyond one semester?

Students and faculty completing a one-semester RA position may reapply to continue working together in subsequent semesters, pending acceptance of a follow-up faculty-RA application. Subsequent research awards may be granted, contingent upon the faculty-RA team successfully meeting their project’s “completion standards” as described above.

Apply for the REU Program
Deadlines:
  • March 31, 2017(for Summer term or Fall appointments)
  • April 15, 2017(for Summer continuations)

Student Application Form 

Faculty Application Form 

Faculty and students are advised—but not required—to apply in pairs, indicating their preference on their application. Those students and faculty accepted into the program and who indicate no preference will be matched through a screening and interview process. 

Continuation Application

Requests for continuation of RA funding into the following term should be made as soon as possible. Please note that continuation funding cannot be granted until separate applications and evaluation forms have been completed by both the student RA and the faculty advisor.

Faculty evaluation

Student evaluation

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