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Step 1: Prepare


Consider details

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CONSIDER when it makes the most sense for YOU to begin a research opportunity.

  • Jump right in as a freshman or wait until later in your undergraduate career.
  • Limit your research commitment to breaks when you have no classes (summer, winter, etc).
  • Schedule your research around classes (obviously), sports, part-time jobs, or other commitments.
  • Research for a semester (although for many areas, a year minimum is more beneficial).
  • Participate in one opportunity or try different projects over your undergraduate career as your interests evolve.

CREATE a list of topics or areas that pique your curiosity (no matter how obscure they may seem). Include a few key words for each. These should be things that fascinate you, areas you feel driven to explore, problems you want to solve, or something mentioned in a class that you want to gain a deeper knowledge of!

The more excited you are about a topic, the more successful you will be!

SEARCH for researchers with similar interests and/ or open opportunities:

  • Use    and a search engine to narrow your search.
  • Always use ‘Hopkins’ or ‘JHU’ and ‘research’ along with your key words to refine your results when using a search engine.
  • Check out relevant department, research, lab or faculty websites.
  • Network with your friends and classmates.
  • Speak with your professors, TAs, advisors, departments, and research librarians.
  • Look for posted open positions on ForagerOne, Handshake, and Student Employment.
  • You can also find opportunities through Study Abroad, the Center for Social Concern and other Hopkins departments and offices.

THINK about your requirements.

It is up to YOU to find the balance that fits your life.

  • How many hours can you commit per week, balancing your other obligations (inc. classes, activities, sports, jobs, study time, relaxation)?
  • Are there days you cannot research because of other obligations?
  • Are you able to research on another campus (keep in mind travel time)?
  • Can you research for experience (volunteer) or do you need academic credit or pay?
    • Most undergraduates volunteer for research just to gain experience.
    • HOUR does NOT grant academic credit for research. We will help you find opportunities, but you must get approval from your advisor for the project to qualify for academic credit. The opportunity must meet specific and unique program/ major requirements.
    • In some cases you can be paid or even have your research position count as your federal work study job. These are not as common.
    • The average undergraduate participates in research for 8 – 10 hours per week during the academic year or full time over breaks (summer, winter, intersession) pursuing experiential opportunities.


Vice Provost for Research

265 Garland Hall
3400 North Charles Street
Baltimore, MD 21218

(410) 516-8094

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