Summer Semester 2021 Research Positions


Please complete a research application and choose one of the research positions listed below (research applications available on the Undergraduate Research link or in Townshend Hall 141).  Please return your completed applications to the contact person listed for the project via email.

Below are the research projects that are available for students to work on for SOCIOL 4998 credit Summer Term 2021.  SOCIOL 4998 is one of the options that students can use to fulfill the major Experiential Learning Requirement - PLEASE NOTE, you may only count 3 hours total of internship or research credit towards the major.  Also, remember that research experience is especially important if you are planning on applying to graduate school!

Please read the requirements for each project carefully, as some require either specific coursework or specific GPA.

LGBTQ Finances Study
Email application to Emma Bosley-Smith at

The LGBTQ Finances Study is in the process of gathering interviews on LGBTQ young adults and their finances. These interviews will need to be organized, stored, and prepared for transcription. Undergraduate Research Assistants working on this project will help with recruitment of research participants, will help summarize interviews after each are completed, will help analyze interviews, and will otherwise assist in the research process.

1-3 students will be needed to work on this project. The student's GPA should be above 3.0 and the student should have taken research methods. We encourage students interested in class, sexuality, gender, and/or qualitative methods to apply.

Perceptions of Discrimination
Email application to Dr. Lauren Valentino at

This research project aims to understand how different people understand racism, classism, and sexism. It is a qualitative study in which we will be interviewing around 40 individuals from diverse backgrounds about their views on these types of -isms. The team is seeking two undergraduate students to help in recruiting, scheduling, and compensating interviewees, as well as reviewing the interview transcripts for data quality. Students will receive training and guidance on these tasks from project PI Valentino as well as a graduate student researcher. Undergraduate students will gain valuable experience working on a team and contributing to a research project with important implications for understanding diversity and inequality in the United States.

GPA of 3.0 or higher. Non-majors are welcome. Please email Dr. Valentino with your resume as well as a brief description of why you’re interested in the study and why you think you’d be a good fit for the project.

First-Generation College Students and Family Relationships
Email application to Kait Smeraldo at

This qualitative project is about first-generation college students and their relationships with their families. Using interview data with first-generation college students across four years, this project aims to study how family relationships evolve throughout the course of college, how the COVID-19 pandemic impacted students who were forced to move back home with family, and how first-gen students foresee their relationships with their parents changing over time. The role of gender in these family relationships will be a particular focus of analysis.

Research assistants' responsibilities will primarily be cleaning transcripts and coding interview data in NVivo. Students will gain an understanding of qualitative research, experience with qualitative analysis software, and practice working in a collaborative research team.

Looking for 1-3 research assistants. Completion of a research methods course is preferred, but not required. Non-majors are welcome to apply, particularly if students are interested in family, gender, and/or education. Familiarity with NVivo software is strongly preferred. Students can sign up for 1-3 credit hours as they choose.