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Undergraduate Research Assistants

Thank you for your interest in our lab! To express your interest in joining us as a research assistant, please review the material on this page and complete our online application. Students may apply on a rolling basis, but typically applications will be reviewed in alignment with course registrations schedules.

Overview & Expectations

Upon being formally accepted into the lab, students will enroll in KIN 395C and are expected to dedicate approximately 9 hours/week to lab related activities for this 3-credit course. It is preferred that students anticipate participating in the lab for at least two semesters.


All lab members will be required to attend a full lab meeting each week and there will be additional small group lab training sessions that research assistants will attend. Additionally, at the start of the semester, all students involved in research will need to complete some online research ethics and code of conduct training. Students will most likely be assigned to work primarily on one research project, although opportunities to cross-train may be provided and students that stay on for multiple semesters may also rotate. Occasionally throughout the semester, there will be assigned readings that will be discussed either in our full lab meeting or in project specific subgroups.


Research related tasks may include, but are not limited to: protocol training (e.g., measurements, data entry, etc.), data collection and materials preparation, data collection, data processing, scoring, and cleaning, preparing datasets, recruitment activities, and assistance with community outreach programs.


At the start of each semester, each student will meet with Dr. St. Laurent to develop a professional development plan for the semester. Additionally, a research related project will be completed each semester that will provide students with experience in science communications and  dissemination of our research findings. 


To complete an honors thesis project within the lab, typically students should have at least one semester completed in the lab and an agreement with Dr. St. Laurent that will be based on performance and fit. The topic and research should be at level that could be submitted for publication in a peer-reviewed, professional research journal. Students will have the option at the end of the project to serve as first author and work toward publication after graduation. Proposal preparation should begin in the spring prior of the student’s junior year so we can apply for funding at first opportunity.


Potential project options may include:

  • Secondary data analysis (with data from one of our projects or a publicly available health dataset)

  • Adding a component to a current project (e.g., a task or measurement)

  • Exploring a research question from current project that was not already directly identified as the part if the study’s primary aims.

  • Developing a small, independent study (if it aligns with the work in our lab and is feasible at that particular time)

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