UChicago Undergraduates

The next application cycle opens in January 2025

UChicago Undergraduates

UChicago undergraduates who wish to participate in the Summer Institute in Social Research Methods paid Research Assistantship program must register for a SISRM methodology course and participate in the 5-week Practice of Social Science Research Workshop series.

 

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Eligibility and Participation Requirements

Eligibility

  • Rising second-, third-, and fourth-year UChicago students may apply to participate in the RA program
  • Fourth-year UChicago students who will graduate and pursue a UChicago MA program in the next academic year may apply to the RA program

Participation

Students in the RA program should expect to commit 315–365 hours for the 10-week summer program:

  • 100–150 hours for coursework
    Courses are condensed 10-week courses and meet all requirements for a standard 100 unit class. As such, students participating in SISRM coursework should expect to dedicate 6–10 hours per week to class time. In addition, we recommend allocating 2–4 hours per day to homework/study time. This time commitment will vary student by student.

 

  • 55 hours for workshops and excursions
    Workshops meet for the first 5 weeks of Summer Quarter for 75–90 minutes during the lunch hour (lunch is provided). Field trips typically take 2–4 hours and occur on Fridays.

 

  • 160 hours for the RAship
    RAships require a 160 hour commitment and can be divided up throughout the Summer according to the project’s needs and the RA’s schedule.

Application Guidelines

Application Timeline

Students who wish to participate in the paid RA program will:

January-February

  • Submit an application to participate in the program

March

  • Receive notification of RA awards (matches are made by SISRM)

April-May

June-August

  • Participate in the Practice of Social Scientific Research;
  • Complete the summer methodologies course;
  • Work on the Summer RA project

Starting Your Application

Please select “UGrad SISRM” as your program Name

You must provide:

  • A CV or Resume;
  • A transcript. Please note: We will accept an unofficial transcript from your my.uchicago.edu portal 
  • The contact information for one recommender

In addition, you will be asked to:

  • Answer a series of short answer questions (100-300 words)
  • Select 3 courses you are interested in taking during the summer

Applicant Questions

All applicants must answer the following questions in 100-300 words:

  • Describe your interest in participating in SISRM and in pursuing a research experience with a faculty mentor in the social sciences. What kinds of things do you hope to learn through this experience?

 

  • What are your academic and professional interests and aspirations? How does your current or planned major and interest in that field influence your reasons for pursuing an RAship?  If you have not yet declared a major, how do you anticipate that participation in SISRM will influence your future academic decisions?

 

  • Describe your previous experiences with faculty research (if any) and/or any existing skill set that you believe will be valuable in your role as a SISRM RA.

 

  • What kinds of skills do you hope to develop through this experience?

Guidelines for Resumes and CVs

Your resume or CV should detail honors, awards, research, leadership/service, and other co- and extra-curricular activities you have pursued since beginning your undergraduate studies at Chicago State University.

If you possess proficiency in a language other than English, please make note of it. Please do not include  details from high school—we’re interested in getting to know about you in this phase of your academic and professional development.

Need inspiration? Check out UChicago Career Advancement’s tips for resume writing.

Recommenders

Please be prepared to provide the name and email address of somebody with whom you have a professional relationship. This person should be able to provide you with a recommendation for participation in this program.

Once you enter their email address into the application portal, your recommender will receive an email with further instructions.

Possible recommenders may include: your College adviser; your campus work supervisor; an instructor or TA from a course; a degree program representative. The College Center for Research and Fellowships has a helpful and in-depth guide available to help you as you choose a recommender.

Recommenders will be asked to answer the following questions:

  1. Please explain how you know and interact with the applicant;
  2. What makes this applicant a good candidate for our program?
  3. A successful fellow is a strong, thoughtful communicator.  Please describe the applicant’s communication strengths and/or weaknesses;
  4. A successful fellow is able to meet deadlines in a timely manner, both in their coursework and with their RA position. Please describe your experience(s) with this applicant’s strengths and/or weaknesses in managing deadlines;
  5. Is there anything else—positive or negative—that we should know about the applicant?