ASHA journals
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Mentored research undergraduate experiences (Speights Atkins et al., 2021)

journal contribution
posted on 2021-03-26, 21:01 authored by Marisha Speights Atkins, Lauren H. Allison, Mary J. Sandage
Purpose: There is a growing trend toward the provision of undergraduate research experiences as a high impact educational practice that promotes the development of critical thinking and problem-solving skills. This tutorial aims to provide mentoring pathways and resources to faculty mentors who may be unaware of the benefits of undergraduate student participation in research or faculty researchers who are interested in developing meaningful mentored undergraduate research experiences (MUREs). Faculty and student perspectives shared from two research labs at Auburn University illustrate an applied framework for implementation of MUREs. The observed benefits and potential barriers related to the development of MUREs in these laboratories as well as specific recommendations for a structured mentoring approach to optimize student training and research deliverables are described.
Conclusions: Key elements for developing successful MUREs include relationship building between the mentor and the student, identifying the benefits for both the students and mentor, and persevering beyond barriers to implementation. The utilization of practical guides, theoretical approaches, and collaborative efforts yielded benefits for both students and mentoring faculty in two research labs at Auburn University. Practical guides for obtaining funding for MUREs and accompanying supplemental materials (a lab manual template and manuscript-writing guide) that have supported success in our labs are provided.

Supplemental Material S1. Faculty perspectives.

Supplemental Material S2. Student perspectives

Supplemental Material S3. Research lab manual template.

Supplemental Material S4. Paper sketch outline for manuscript writing.

Speights Atkins, M., Allison, L. H., & Sandage, M. J. (2021). Enhanced mentored undergraduate research experiences: Successful strategies used in two laboratories at Auburn University. Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups. Advance online publication.


Undergraduate research conducted in our labs has been funded in part by the Auburn University Undergraduate Research Fellowship Program, the Breeden Endowed Grant, and the College of Liberal Arts Steven Research Fund.