Undergraduate Research Assistantships

Info for faculty Info for students

Info for students

What are Undergraduate Research Assistantships?

  • Part-time campus jobs working with faculty members in their labs or research projects
  • Hands-on research opportunities for students in all disciplines
  • A chance to pursue research milestones such as conference presentations and publications
  • A community of approximately 100 students each academic year

How do I find a position?

URAs are recruited directly by faculty members. You can find opportunities on our new job board below, and if you are seeking a long-term mentor, consider joining our Mustang Mentors program.

How do I apply?

You do not need to complete an application for us. If your professor has been accepted for URA positions, they simply inform us and we will start your paperwork.

What are the requirements?

Undergraduate Research Assistants work on a schedule agreed upon with their faculty mentor/supervisor. URAs are also expected to complete an online Reflection form at the end of each semester, and a Research Report at the end of Spring* and Summer. Report guidelines.

*Fall URA reports are required only for URAs not continuing in the spring. If you are a URA for both Fall and Spring, submit one (1) report by May 15.

Open URA positions

 Hover over the Research Opportunity and click the blue arrows that appear to read each listing. Each has a brief description of the research and duties.


Info for faculty

The Office of Engaged Learning provides matching funds to a department, school, or research grant. We also match selected SMU scholarships, including Hamilton and McNair.

  • URAs (Fall & Spring semesters) work up to 10 hours a week, at wages up to $15.00 per hour (50% paid by you, 50% paid by us).

  • Up to $1500 is available for each student for the year (they can be paid up to $3000 total)

    • This comes to:
    • @ $10/hr = 300 hours per year
    • @ $11/hr = 272 hours
    • @ $12/hr = 250 hours
    • @ $13/hr = 230 hours
    • @ $14/hr = 214 hours
    • @ $15/hr = 200 hours
  • Faculty members may apply to fund up to four (4) URAs at a time

  • Our office coordinates paperwork and payroll for the students

  • All URAs submit a final report and survey

To apply for funding, please visit the link below. If selected, the Office of Engaged Learning will send a Docusign agreement to the Faculty Mentor and URA. Our office will then complete the hiring forms in My.SMU. (Link to Docusign template). Students may not begin work until the Hire forms are completed and approved in My.SMU!

URA Funding Application

Summer funding

For Summer funding, see our new Summer Research Intensive.

Recruiting students

Have a research opportunity for an undergraduate student? Submit it here, and it will be accessible to students in the table above. Seeking long-term mentoring relationships? Become a mentor on our Mustang Mentors platform.