Undergraduate Research Opportunities Database

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Title Description Research Area(s) Position Type(s) Work Setting(s) Updated Date Posting Date
The Child Health Study

Study Purpose:

The primary purpose of this study is to learn more about the different ways in which the environment and biology can affect a person's health over their lifetime. Children beginning at the age of 8 along with one of their caregivers spends a day visiting The Center for Healthy Children at Penn State to help us learn about their different life experiences and environments and how these shapes human development. The information we gather during these visits will help us achieve our long-range goal of understanding more about children, adolescents, and their families to improve health outcomes.

Research Assistant Benefits:

  • Independent research credit
  • Valuable, cutting edge research experience
  • Opportunity for a senior honors thesis (...
Communications and Journalism, Life Sciences, Social and Behavioral Sciences
Credit, Variable, Volunteer, Work Study
On campus
September 21, 2021 May 6, 2021
Human-Computer Interaction

My research group addresses a wide range of challenge areas in which people collectively and individually use information technology to solve problems, to learn, to be healthier and more active, and even to be better citizens. Our work involves investigating innovative activities and projects that are or can be transformed with information technology, developing new systems and applications to support human activity, and directly studying the appropriation and use of technology by people in lab and field studies. We are especially interested in how people use technology to share and collaborate, to stay aware of news and activity, and to make sense and make decisions in complex and dynamic circumstances. Current focus areas include designs to support community activity and projects,...

Communications and Journalism, Education, Engineering, Information Technology and Computer Science, Social and Behavioral Sciences
Credit, Volunteer
Community-based, On campus, Remote
September 20, 2021 September 20, 2021
Ethical, Legal, and Social Implications (ELSI) of Facial Analytics

There is an immediate opening for an ambitious 3rd or 4th year undergraduate student in engineering (or a related major) to join the research team of Jennifer Wagner, JD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Law, Policy, and Engineering. This project is an extension of the study examining the ethical, legal, and social implications of research involving human facial images, which was funded by the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR). This project's aim is to identify and assess biometric data protections laws, ordinances, and policies that would affect the use of facial analytics (e.g., facial recognition technologies) across the United States in diverse settings.

Engineering, Humanities, Information Technology and Computer Science, International Relations, Political Science, and Law, Life Sciences, Social and Behavioral Sciences
On campus, Remote, Variable
September 20, 2021 September 20, 2021
Human Language Technologies Lab

Natural language is crucial to how humanity communicates, synthesizes, and stores information. Our lab solves problems to enable computers to do meaningful work with large volumes of text. We develop methods for natural language processing (NLP) and apply them to a variety of domains in privacy, online social media, and computational social science.

Information Technology and Computer Science
On campus
September 17, 2021 September 17, 2021
Astronomy & Astrophysics Research on Active Galaxies and Cosmic Surveys

Professor Brandt's interests largely focus on observational studies of supermassive black holes (SMBHs) and cosmological X-ray surveys. Specific objects investigated include actively accreting SMBHs (i.e., active galactic nuclei: AGNs), starburst galaxies, and normal galaxies. The work utilizes data from facilities at the forefront of astrophysical discovery, including the Chandra X-ray Observatory, the XMM-Newton satellite, the NuSTAR satellite, and the Hubble Space Telescope.

For further details, I would suggest you watch the following YouTube videos:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YLOAgQANVAA (Weak-Line Quasars)


Physical Sciences
Credit, Paid, Variable
On campus, Remote, Variable
September 17, 2021 September 17, 2021
Neuroscience of Language & Aging

Dr. Diaz and the Language and Aging lab are interested in how language changes across adulthood.
Most recently we have been examining age-related differences in language. Specifically, we want to
understand how the brain contributes to language behaviors that are stable across adulthood (e.g.,
vocabulary, knowledge, comprehension) as well as how the brain contributes to language behaviors
that decline with age (e.g., difficulties speaking, dysfluencies). We investigate these questions using
computer-based tasks, electrophysiology, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Life Sciences, Social and Behavioral Sciences
Credit, Volunteer
On campus, Remote
September 17, 2021 January 3, 2022
Effects of non-natural morphology on ctenophore swimming 

Effects of non-natural morphology on ctenophore swimming

Ctenophores are, evolutionary speaking, among the oldest animals on the planet; they have been swimming in the oceans for the last 350 million years. In this project, we are interested in exploring potential physical-mechanical constraints on the evolution and development of their ancient rowing system. Morphological data from ctenophores ranging from 7 to 40 mm in size will be used to inform a reduced-order analytical swimming model previously developed on our research group. The student will use the analytical model to explore the effects of non-natural...

Engineering, Life Sciences
September 10, 2021 September 9, 2021
Research Opportunities at the Aerospace multi-Physical and Unconventional System Lab

The research activities in the APUS Lab (apus.psu.edu) are motivated by the desire to expand the last frontier of aerospace engineering, represented by hypersonic vehicles and high-speed vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) aircraft. The development of these advanced aerospace systems has been constrained by their inherent complex multi-physics nature and the adverse uncertain working environment. While there are relatively mature solutions for each single disciplinary involved in multi-physics problems, these problems cannot be completely understood and solved without integrating the multi-disciplinary tools for the modeling, testing, and robust design of future unconventional aircraft.

The following undergraduate research project opportunities are available:

  1. ...
Engineering, Information Technology and Computer Science, Mathematics
Credit, Volunteer
On campus, Remote, Variable
September 9, 2021 August 26, 2019
Research Assistants Needed for iPRACTISE Project to Develop and Test Innovative Digital Educational Tools

Motivated undergraduate students are encouraged to apply research positions with the Individualized Pathways and Resources to Adaptive Control Theory-Inspired Scientific Education (iPRACTISE) project under the supervision of Dr. Sy-Miin Chow (Department of Human Development and Family Studies) and Dr. Dennis Pearl (Department of Statistics) on Penn State University Park campus.

We are seeking undergraduate research assistants to contribute to the work in the iPRACTISE team and gain valuable research experience in the process. Students who are interested in development and testing of innovative digital solutions to education, and working with an interdisciplinary team are encouraged to contact us. Research assistants will receive academic independent study credits and are...

Credit, Volunteer
On campus, Remote
September 3, 2021 September 3, 2021
Melancholia and the Earth - The dance of death

This project is inspired by the 2011 movie "Melancholia". The premise of the movie is a great blue planet (seemingly a super earth) emerges from behind the Sun, on a collision course with the Earth. In the "dance of death", the planet first swings by the Earth and then spirals back straight toward the Earth. There is a graphic of the planet in the movie. In addition, velocity and timing info may be gathered from the movie.

The goal of the project is to plot out possible orbits of the Earth and Melancholia given different starting scenarios. To do the calculations, there is this Python code on Github (no doubt lots more out there!)


Physical Sciences
Credit, Volunteer
September 2, 2021 September 2, 2021