Office of Undergraduate Research

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Course Development for Research-Intensive Courses

The Office of Undergraduate Research supports faculty in developing and assessing research-intensive courses. In addition to the office's Research Course Development Grant Program (see below), we also work with individuals and departments to identify and strengthen the research-related learning outcomes of particular classes and degree programs.

Research-Related Learning Outcomes

Research-related learning outcomes can fall into a number of different categories. Below are some examples of research-related learning outcomes from a variety of disciplines, programs, and courses. Note that some learning outcomes are stated in very general terms, while others are more specific to a particular discipline or course content.


Upon completing this course/program, students will be able to:

  • Cite primary literature to support or refute an argument
  • Identify and gather information from credible primary and secondary sources
  • Describe key examples of the archaeological data relevant to the biblical literature of the Greco-Roman period

  • Analyze the biblical literature and manuscript history of the Greco-Roman period (333BCE – 350 CE) with reference to the contemporaneous historical, political, social and cultural context.

Methods and Design

Upon completing this course/program, students will be able to:

  • Design an experiment that tests a valid hypothesis
  • Recognize and understand the diverse vocabulary of literary and cultural theory
  • Recognize assumptions and devise basic research designs, test questions, arguments, and hypotheses with qualitative and/or quantitative methods

Measurement, Statistics, and Equipment

Upon completing this course/program, students will be able to:

  • Interpret basic statistical analyses

Writing and Communicating Research

Upon completing this course/program, students will be able to:

  • Write a scientific paper that evaluates data and constructs a cogent argument
  • Correctly cite literature in APA format


Research Course Development Grant Program

USD aims to establish faculty/student research and creative inquiry as a distinguishing feature of an undergraduate education at USD. With generous support from a W. M. Keck Foundation grant, the Course Development Grants are available to support the incorporation of undergraduate research into the curriculum.  Proposals from individual faculty members and from teams of faculty members in departments that have developed undergraduate research programs will be considered. 

2014 Research Course Development Grant applications are now being accepted.

Please read the Call for Applications for eligibility criteria and information on the application process. Applications are due February 14, 2014 by 5pm.


2013-2014 Course Development Grant Recipients

Dr. Michelle Camacho Walter, Sociology 494: Special Topics – Capstone Course

Dr. Julia Miller Cantzler, Sociology 315W: Environmental Inequality and Justice

Dr. Michelle Jacob, Ethnic Studies 332: American Indian Health and Spirituality

Dr. Susannah Stern, Communications 265: Introduction to Research Methods


2012-2013 Course Development Grant Recipients

Dr. Emily Edmonds-Poli, Political Science 494W: Latin America

Dr. Casey Dominguez, Political Science 494W: American Politics

Dr. Mike Williams, Political Science 494W: Africa

Dr. Atreyee Phukan, English 380: Literary and Cultural Theory

Dr. Florence Gillman, Theology and Religious Studies 388: The World of the Bible

Dr. Bradley Bond, Communication Studies 265: Introduction to Communication Research

Dr. Adina Batnizsky, Sociology 225: Quantitative Methods

Dr. Alejandro Meter, Spanish 458: Jewish Latin America