Graduate Research Consultant Program
Graduate Research Consultant Program
The Graduate Research Consultant Program helps faculty integrate a research project/assignment into an undergraduate course by providing support for an advanced graduate student who guides students through their research projects from beginning to end. The Graduate Research Consultant (GRC) can help students design, carry out, and communicate their research. They can also help students learn particular research methodologies and be available for consultation throughout the semester. GRCs are expected to work 30 hours over the course of the semester.
What can a GRC do?
A GRC can provide faculty and classes invaluable support by guiding students through their research projects from beginning to end. They use their knowledge of research methodology to coach students, including helping students learn particular research methodologies. Depending on faculty preferences, GRCs can be available for individual or group consultation outside of class hours, or they might attend selected classes. Some faculty also choose to involve their GRC in the planning/designing of the research project.
Unlike TAs, GRCs are not expected to attend all class sessions and do not grade student work. In rare instances, a graduate student might serve as both a GRC and a TA, if the different roles in the course are clearly defined.
How are GRCs selected?
Faculty members select GRCs based on their assessment of the needs of the course. The Office for Undergraduate Research does not assign or approve the selection other than confirming that the graduate student is eligible to be paid. Many faculty members choose a GRC outside their own department to provide complementary expertise. If you are seeking a GRC, you can review this database (password-protected) of graduate students who are interested in serving as GRCs.
If you are a graduate student interested in being a GRC, please complete this form, and your information will be available in a database for faculty to search.
How are GRCs compensated?
Fall and Spring semester GRCs are paid $1000 in two installments of $500 (November and December or April and May) through the Office for Undergraduate Research. Maymester and summer GRCs receive a stipend of $1000 at the end of the summer through the summer school.
Some fellowships and other funding sources do not permit recipients to engage in additional paid work; it is a graduate student’s responsibility to determine if they are able to receive funding as a GRC.
How to Apply for GRC Funding (Faculty)
Online Faculty Proposal
To request OUR funding for a GRC for your course, please submit an online proposal. The proposal form asks for brief descriptions of the course, the research project students will complete, the ways the GRC will interact with students, and the ways students will communicate their research findings.
Only faculty can receive funding for a GRC; graduate student instructors cannot apply. Please note that generally only one application per instructor will be funded, but you may submit more than one application for consideration.
The turnaround time for a decision on the proposal is approximately two weeks after the application deadline. If your proposal is funded, we will ask you to select a graduate student as a GRC for your course. If you need helping finding a GRC, you can search the GRC database.
Applications received by these deadlines will receive full consideration. Applications received after these deadlines will not be considered.
- For fall courses: July 15
- For spring courses: November 1
- For summer courses: March 15
How to Apply to be a GRC (Grad Students)
If you are a graduate student interested in serving as a GRC, you can indicate your interest with OUR and the GRC program by submitting the online GRC Interest Form. Your name and information will be available in a password-protected database for faculty to search.
Faculty members select GRCs based on their assessment of the needs of the course. The Office for Undergraduate Research does not assign or approve the selection other than confirming that the graduate student is eligible to be paid.
Many faculty members choose a GRC outside their own department to provide complementary expertise. Others select GRCs from their own department, so you can encourage a faculty member in your department to submit a GRC course proposal for a new or existing course, and offer to be the course GRC if the proposal is funded.
If a faculty member selects you to serve as a GRC, the faculty member will communicate your name to OUR staff.
Feedback from Past GRCs and Instructors
- My experience as a GRC was exciting—to have a role in allowing students to develop their own field work…for me it was exciting to see how that might work and to see what kind of support you might need for that to be successful…it was rewarding for me. It was also challenging. It helped me to know, if I were to implement [a research component] in my own course in the future how I might go about structuring it.
- It was a great experience to work with undergrad students. It was fantastic to be able to see how the professor set up his class to include these group research projects. More than anything else, I saw how to get undergrads involved in and excited about research.
- I was really drawing on her [the GRC’s] expertise with having worked in this kind of project. Because I’m trained as a historian, I’m aware of a lot of methodologies, but I haven’t actually participated in [all of them]—especially things that kind of bordered on empirical. She knows the literature a lot more in that regard. So it was invaluable to me to have somebody like that.
- I think there’s always an advantage of having that graduate student/faculty collaboration on a class both for the role model potential and for the students to feel there’s somebody else to go to besides the faculty member.