Emerging Scholars REUW

Experience real research in a supportive, collaborative environment

First year and sophomore women of all majors are paired with IU faculty mentors from across campus to conduct research in all disciplines in this year-long program. All projects actively use technology and/or computing and require NO previous experience. Together with other students in the cohort, students enroll in a spring class, and participate in a research hackathon and a poster competition.

PLEASE NOTE: the application period for the 2020-21 academic year has closed. We will open applications again for the next academic year in the summer of 2021.

Frequently Asked Questions

See below for frequently asked questions about the REUW program.  If you have a question that is not answered here, please email us at cewit@indiana.edu.

Research enhances:

  • Critical thinking skills
  • Intellectual engagement
  • Communications skills
  • Ability to manage projects
  • Overall academic ability

Student researchers report the following benefits:

  • Better understanding of skills, abilities, and interests
  • Better preparation for a career or graduate school
  • Intellectual growth and interest in ideas
  • Personal growth in attitudes and values

The program begins October 5, 2020 and continues through May 7, 2021. 

Students receive 5 hours of research course credit for the entire program (3 credits in the fall and 2 credits in the spring, which includes an undergraduate research methods class).

  • Attend Fall REU Orientation, September 27, 2020
  • Attend Fall Meeting, Sunday, November 1, 2020
  • Conduct 8-10 hours of research per week
  • Take a spring Research Methods Course
  • Participate in our Research Hackathon, February 12 - 14, 2021
  • Participate in our Women's Research Poster Competition, April 16, 2021

The following are examples of strong answers to the question, Why are you interested in participating in this program and what do you hope to experience?

Answers from first-year students

  • “It is no secret that our world is becoming more technology dependent every day. It is clear to me that if one wants to be successful in the twenty first century they must utilize and understand technology or risk being left behind. However, my interest in technology does not stem from a place of necessity, rather I want to learn skills like programming and data modeling so that I can begin to understand how our world and the many devices we use every day work. Many of the REU-W projects will allow me to explore both my passions for learning and drawing conclusions from data alongside my interest in business. For example, while researching Project 6: The effect of augmented reality on consumer decision-making I have the potential to learn what drives consumers make choices and whether or not I want to pursue a career in which I focus on consumer decision making in addition to, the technology and methods that are necessary to conduct meaningful research. Through my research I would hope to gain a new perspective of looking at my world. One where I can pay attention and learn from details in a way I never have before. Not only do I want to discover new ways to derive meaning from data, but I hope to gain programming experience as well. As an incoming freshman I do not have much experience with either, so a welcoming environment where I am encouraged to make mistakes--and learn from them-- is a privilege that I will not take for granted. Getting to combine this experience with my interest in business will help me to refine and crystalize what type of work I will pursue after graduation--an additional benefit that can only be obtained through experience.”
  • “I am eager to discover the unseen trends from data that have yet to be found using the technology, which has already revolutionized the research process. Since computing is becoming more and more prevalent in today's workforce, a clear knowledge and understanding about how these systems work is imperative to making new breakthroughs. At the end of this program, I hope both to be well-versed in the process of researching as an undergraduate and to better understand how technology continues to influence researching. Additionally, the relationships formed with my peers as well as with my research professors will contribute to having a more meaningful undergraduate experience.”
  • “I would like to one day research environmental issues as a career, so I was very excited when I saw the opportunity to conduct undergraduate research. Because this program requires little to no research experience, it seems like a great opportunity to get familiar with different research projects at IU and learn how research is conducted at the professional level. Not only is there a research project available through this program that intrigues and excites me, but I know being a part of a research team will develop skills I will need in my future career. Through this program I hope to gain connections with faculty, research experience in my field of interest, techniques and skills necessary to be a researcher, and opportunities to be involved with future research projects at IU.”
  • "I am interested in the computer science field, specifically artificial intelligence and how it may one day influence business such as finance and marketing. I have moderate experience studying technology but I am eager to expand my breadth of knowledge and potentially find that intersection between business and technology. Although I am pursuing a computer science minor, I am looking for a more experiential learning opportunity. I appreciate textbook learning and acknowledge its importance but I hope to supplement this learning with practical skills. I believe that undergraduate research will not only be a unique approach to my computer science education, but I also hope to gain a lifelong relationship through my faculty mentor. College is an incredible opportunity to explore your interests and absorb as much information as possible from those around you. I would be grateful to work alongside one of IU's great minds and deepen my passion for technology.”
  • "I was in the Malbeek metro station in Brussels in late February 2016 just a few weeks before suicide bombers Khalid El Bakroui and Osama Krayem blew up the station in the name of the Islamic State.  But for the grace of God, I could have been one of the many victims.  As a result of this experience, I have become committed to a career in national security and defense.  Moreover, as one blessed with science and math skills, I would like to do what I can to pursue such cowardly terrorists in the cyber arena. With that, I feel that my goals cannot be reached in the classroom alone. My exposure to STEM has been limited to learning the tool kits and programming languages needed for success. I would like to implement my knowledge on a real-world issue. In turn, I feel that research will help in my goal of defending our nation’s security by being exposed to those real-world problems. Furthermore, I possess traits critical to being a successful research scholar; I am curious, fearless, and passionate. I would like to be involved in research to bridge the realms of the known and unknown. I get excited when answers become sparse because that means that I am approaching that bridge and the limits of the known. I would rather find the right questions than give the “right” and expected answers. I am also not afraid to fail or traverse the unknown territory. Realizing that “failure” is an inevitable part of science reveals the necessity of passion. My passion will sustain me through dark times when research is fruitless. Without passion, quitting is all too easy. I hope to gain new skills by learning from the unknown and strengthening my current traits of curiosity, fearlessness, and passion. My characteristics and area of technical focus are what make me interested in participating in this program."

Answers from incoming sophomores

  • “I’m interested in gaining tangible skills I can apply to my own development as a professional, as a researcher, and as a student. I am not and do not expect to ever be in a position where taking a summer unpaid internship, as most internships are, is an option. The chance to gain the skills that being part of your program will afford me is truly invaluable. I want to work hard with your researchers to challenge myself academically, so that I have exponential chances to succeed later on.  I hope to come out of the program with a close relationship with my mentor, a firm grasp on the reality of research in the academic world, and an array of practical skills meant to further my own career goals. There are many research projects I find deeply interesting and I hope that I can take that interest and plant it into my life by committing myself to learning a new set of skills that will serve me well both as a student and later on as a professional.”
  • “I do not have any background in research and have always been nervous to apply for positions in labs or studies because of my lack of experience. I hope that this program will give me an opportunity to learn about an interesting topic and participate in gathering and analyzing more information. I think it would be a valuable experience to build my own skills and also to gain more knowledge and expertise in subjects I might not otherwise know much about. I also enjoy being challenged and I hope that if I were able to participate in this program, I would be pushed to grow and work outside of my comfort zone.”
  • “I am interested in joining this program because I would be proud to be in a community that empowers women to gain research skills, to become familiar with modern technology, and to aid in projects that support and advocate for women. I hope to gain more research skills, especially technical skills, to better help the women I hope to serve someday. Currently, my technical skills are not my strong suit, and my lack of confidence with technology often acts an obstacle. Therefore, I hope the experience with technology entailed with the program will enhance my long-term research goals and grant me the confidence to continue holistic research. Most importantly, I hope to be a part of a project that steps toward positive and sustainable change for women, whether it creates a base for an applied program, further research, or inspire a new prototype of technology.”
  • “I am profoundly interested in getting involved in research. I am particularly interested in being a part of this program, because I would like the opportunity to be a part of a project and learn about various things such as experimental design, research techniques, or specific information about a topic that cannot be obtained in a traditional classroom setting.  I think doing research has a lot to offer in terms of actually learning intellectually about a topic, but also developing other skills such as critical thinking, working within a team, etc. Thus, I am hoping to not only learn academically, but gaining experience working in a research setting and honing some of those key teamwork and communication related skills.  I like how this program has clearly designed goals/parameters about projects, but seems to be flexible to adjust to an individual student needs based on what their strengths and interests are.  I really like learning about biology and science, but I want to get involved in a deeper level and actually conduct research that expands and/or connects to the knowledge I have gained in the classroom.”
  • “I've always been a person who's always dug deep into a topic and find out more information than what was initially required. I like connecting concepts to other concepts, finding the missing information and create my own concepts based on my own understanding and present it to people to enhance their understanding and also provide them a new perspective on that topic. I have a large interest in learning Robotics and how they will fit into the world without disrupting the usual cycle of living. I am interested in learning how the world might be in the future with all the new research that is taking place as I am typing this. However, being an international student coming from a high school that did not have the facilities required for research and the platform to express my findings, I was not able to discover that side of mine completely. I believe that REUW has that platform for me to use my research skills and put them to test and actually end up finding something new or gaining a different perspective. I have always believed that there is more to a person than what they think they are, and I believe REUW will let me discover myself by allowing me to dive into the various aspects of a project and help me gain new insights and help me look at things differently.”