CSci 450: Research in CSci
General Course Information

Mary Lynn Manns Robinson 021 232-5020

Don’t be just a consumer of knowledge.
Be a creator of knowledge!

Research involves much more than looking up facts in a library and then summarizing what others have written. In this course, each Student will propose a research idea, design a research plan and method, and collect, collate, and analyze data. During t his process each student will be expected to meet with the instructor at length at least once a week; however, during most weeks, two or three meetings will be needed in order to keep the pace of the project moving towards completion.

Because of the complex and involved nature of this process, it is highly unlikely that a research project can be completed in only a few months (one semester). Therefore, students should expect to take a grade of “in progress,” and finish the p roject in the months that follow. However, this does not imply that effort during this semester can be anything less than 100%. Those who do not work consistently and efficiently, and meet all deadlines throughout the semester, will not be given the privilege of completing their project. These students will receive a grade (most likely a low grade) commensurate with the work completed to that point.

To pass this course with a “B”, a student must, at minimum, complete his/her research, present it to a group, and submit a well-written research paper. A final letter grade of “A” can be earned only by those students who publish and formally present their papers. At UNCA, there are publication opportunities through the UNCA Journal of Undergraduate Research (published annually) and the Proceedings of the National Conference on Undergraduate Research. Form al presentation opportunities are available in the UNCA Undergraduate Research Symposium in the Fall and Spring, the North Carolina Undergraduate Research Conference in the Fall, and the National Conference on Undergraduate Research i n the Spring.

The National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR) began at UNCA in 1987. In the years that followed, it was held at various universities throughout the United States. It allows an excellent and unique opportunity to present research to a national audience. This will look great on a resume, and grants the credentials necessary to apply for graduation distinction as an “undergraduate research scholar.”

It is the goal of all students who take this course to graduate from UNCA as an Undergraduate Research Scholar. Each student who presents and publishes research is eligible for this important distinction. UNCA takes this very seriously and therefore notes this distinction on the student’s transcript and during graduation when the student's name is announced by the Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs.

Funding is available to defray the costs of conducting research. Grant applications are available in the UNCA Undergraduate Research Office.