Autumn 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 Autumn Semester 2020.  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.

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.

ALL POSITIONS FILLED: 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.

ALL POSITIONS FILLED: Lingering Questions: Health in Ohio and the role of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs)
(Christina Bijou
 and Coralia Balasca

This is a quantitative research project focusing on various health outcomes in Ohio. The goal of this project is to examine racial differences in self-reported health and delay in needed treatment among Ohio residents. Furthermore, we are interested in the role that Non-Governmental Organizations (i.e. non-profit organizations) may play in shaping health outcomes throughout Ohio. Research assistants will help identify and classify NGOs in Ohio and will gain experience working with quantitative data, as well as conducting online research, and information seeking phone calls during their time on the project. This is a great opportunity for students interested in health, racial/ethnic inequality, and/or community organizations.

We are looking for multiple research assistants. Familiarity with Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Word is required. Students must have a GPA of at least 2.5. Non-majors are welcome to apply. Research assistants must be comfortable with online research and making phone calls when necessary.

ALL POSITIONS FILLED: 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.

ALL POSITIONS FILLED: Economic Consequences of Medical Problems
Email applications to Elizabeth Martin (

I am seeking two or three undergraduate research assistants interested in the financial consequences of illness and medical shocks. Research assistants will perform short interviews via phone or Zoom, transcribe interviews, and engage in weekly meetings with other members of the team to discuss emerging themes and troubleshoot any issues. Students will receive training and guidance throughout the semester. This is a great fit for students hoping to gain experience in conducting interviews and learn more about the research process.

Students must be comfortable conducting interviews. Any major welcome, though this will likely be most of interest to sociology, public health, and public policy students. To apply, please email Elizabeth with a resume and a brief description of why you are interested in the position, as well as how many research hours you are looking to sign up for.

Police Misconduct in Argentina
Email application to Dr. Leslie MacColman at

This is a quantitative project focusing on patterns of police misconduct in the Buenos Aires metropolitan region of Argentina. The goal of the project is to explore whether municipal-level characteristics – like crime, poverty rates, the party affiliation of the Mayor – have any effect on patterns of police misconduct, including corruption and excessive use of force. The research assistant (RA) will be responsible for constructing a database in Stata or SPSS using records of police firings published by the Government of Argentina and other publicly-available statistics. Once the database is complete, the RA will help with preliminary data analysis, generating descriptive graphs, charts, and tables. The RA may also be asked to read and summarize written documents about police misconduct in greater Buenos Aires. This is a great opportunity for students interested in policing and/or crime in Latin America.

Looking for one research assistant for Fall 2021. The RA must have basic proficiency in Stata or SPSS and be interested in learning more. Prior completion of research methods is preferred. The RA must also have an intermediate or advanced level of Spanish (reading), since all documents will be in this language. Knowledge of Latin America is advantageous but not required. Non-Sociology majors are welcome to apply.

ALL POSITIONS FILLED: NFL Players, Criminal Justice Contact, and Organizational Sanctions
Email application to Lesley Schneider at

I am looking for 2 to 3 undergraduate research assistants interested in collecting data on past and current National Football League (NFL) players, including their position, team affiliations, contract salaries, and more. Research assistants will primarily be scraping data from websites and working in Microsoft Excel and Google Sheets. They will need to be available for biweekly (AKA every other week) meetings. This research will likely be fascinating or exciting to students interested in sociology of sports, criminology, and sociology of deviance and punishment.

Students must have a GPA of 2.5 and above. Email 3-5 sentences about your interest and skills to Lesley Schneider at

Who Cares: State Care Appropriations Variation in the United States
Email application to Tori Coan at

This is a quantitative research project seeking to explore why some US states allocate more money in their state budgets for care goods/services. Care goods and services include any money appropriated to primary and secondary education, care of children, chronically ill/disabled adults, and the elderly. Because of the variation in state budget layouts and processes – this project will collect state budget data to compile into a central dataset. Research Assistants will read state budget documents and collect relevant department/agency level data that will be used to conduct analysis at a later time. This is a great opportunity for students interested in sociology, public policy, political sociology, and/or care work.

This project needs multiple research assistants. There are no major restrictions for this project though we especially encourage students in public affairs, economics, political science, or a related field to apply. Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite and OneDrive required. Meticulous attention to detail and willingness to check and double check data collected will be critical for the success of this project. Students who assist in data collection may also be eligible for future research opportunities on this project once data collection is complete.  To apply, please email Tori Coan at with your name, year, major, time commitment availability per week, and a short paragraph describing an instance when you showed exceptional attention to detail.