Research Opportunities Database

Search to find Penn State faculty members looking to fill open undergraduate researcher positions.

A form for faculty members interested in creating an account to post an opportunity can be found at Apply for an Account.

Title Number of opportunities Posted Last Updated
Family Foundations


The Family Foundations project is seeking perceptive undergraduates to help code videotaped family interactions with parents and their children.

Coders will

  • Receive training in coding parent-child interactions.
  • Make a commitment of a minimum of 9 hours per week, and for 2 semesters (Fall 2019 and Spring 2020).
  • Code cases on a flexible basis that fits your schedule.
  • ...

    Mentor: Michelle Hostetler

6 March 18, 2019 March 18, 2019
Dynamics of Plant Cell Walls

Research opportunities are available in the Anderson Lab to study the dynamics of plant cell walls, with applicability to the sustainable production of food and bioenergy from plants. Our group uses a combination of molecular genetics, microscopy, and biochemistry to study how plants assemble, modify, and degrade their cell walls.

Mentor: Charles Anderson

2 March 12, 2019 March 12, 2019
Child Health Study

The primary purpose of this study is to learn more about the different ways in which the environment and biology can affect a child’s health.  The information we learn will help us to understand more about children, adolescents and their families. We are looking at the ways in which boys and girls between the ages of 8 and 13 have different life experiences based on the different environments they live in and how these experiences shape child development.

Research assistant applicants...

Mentor: Jennie Noll

4 per semester August 23, 2017 February 27, 2019
Ag Ed Curriculum Design and Assessment Assistants

This is an opportunity for two students to participate in the design of a new course by creating short video clips of guest speakers, research facilities, and instruction. Active research will be done in the areas of assessment. Stellar assistance could lead to documented experience, publications, and attendance at outreach or a professional conference.

Students must enjoy working with plants, be familiar with basic biology, seek to improve in the areas of pedagogy, education,...

Mentor: Christina Call

2 February 12, 2019 February 12, 2019
Using toad diets to understand arthropod declines

Toads (Bufonidae) are voracious and almost indiscriminate consumers of insects and other arthropods. Recent high-profile studies have revealed extraordinary and alarming declines in the diversity and total biomass of arthropods. Can we detect signatures of these declines in the guts of toads by studying changes in prey items through time? There is an urgent need to understand how widespread these declines are and if multiple trophic levels are affected. We are using historic data collected...

Mentor: Andrew Deans

3 January 29, 2019 January 29, 2019
Evolutionary Genetics, Behavior, and Conservation of Bees

Our lab team performs research on the ecology, evolution, genetics, and behavior of bees, with a special focus on bumble bees. Projects in the lab are integrative and cover numerous facets of science, with recent undergraduates pursuing projects spanning topics such as molecular genetics, field ecology, behavior, chemical ecology, geography, thermal biology, pigment research, and toxicology, all as they relate to aspects of the evolution and health of these bees.

Currently we are...

Mentor: Heather Hines

2-3 January 25, 2019 January 25, 2019
Molecular Mechanisms of Memory

We are looking for enthusiastic, motivated undergraduates interested in neuroscience to get involved with our research on the molecular mechanisms underlying memory formation and age-related memory impairments. We use a combination of behavioral techniques (memory tasks), molecular assays (qPCR, western blotting, immunofluorescence), microscopy, cloning, and data analysis to understand how memories are made and why they are impaired in aging individuals. Undergraduate researchers will help...

Mentor: Janine Kwapis

2-4 January 4, 2019 January 18, 2019
Metal-Organic Frameworks (MOFs) Based on Chromium Quadruply Bonded Oxalates

Our research interests involve the preparation of metal organic framework (MOF) type materials based on metal oxalate compounds having the empirical formula MC2O4, where M = Cr2+ and Mo2+ ions. Metal-metal bonded ions of a number of transition metals (Cr, Mo, W, Re, Rh, and Cu) are know to form an extensive series of diamagnetic compounds having strong metal-metal bonding interactions. It is now well accepted that these interactions represent...

Mentor: William Van Der Sluys

1 January 14, 2019 January 18, 2019
Engineering Leadership Development

Engineering Leadership Program seeks a passionate research assistant with excellent attention to detail to join our research team to support rigorous research and program evaluation. We are investigating on the engineering undergraduate students' leadership attributes such as self-awareness, global-view, ethical-awareness, creativity and teamwork skills, and their leadership competency. In addition, we are working on the case study project of Big 10 universities' engineering education...

Mentor: Jongho Park

2 August 1, 2018 January 14, 2019
Pitch Exploration Lab

You're invited! A new research group called the Pitch Exploration Lab will begin meeting in January. This space is intended for undergraduates or graduates from any major on campus to explore music/brain/psychology topics but we especially welcome research questions related to pitch processing and psycho-motor activity. Students from Acoustics, Psychology, Neuroscience and all other majors are welcome, as well as students with any background coursework or experience in statistics. Please...

Mentor: Bryan Nichols

10 December 6, 2018 December 6, 2018