References and further reading

Articles Describing Examples of Student Research Projects in Economics

Elliott, C. (2004) A May American Economic Review Papers Seminar and an Analytic Project for Advanced Undergraduates, Journal of Economic Education, Vol. 35 (3), p. 232–242. DOI:10.3200/JECE.35.3.232-242

Elliott, D., Meisel, J. and Richards, W. (1998) ‘The Senior Project: Using the Literature of Distinguished Economists’, Journal of Economic Education, Vol. 29 (4), p. 312–320. DOI:10.1080/00220489809595923

McElroy, J. L. (1997) ‘The Mentor Demonstration Model: Writing with Students in the Senior Economics Seminar’, Journal of Economic Education, Vol. 28 (1), p. 31–35. DOI:10.1080/00220489709595903

Simpson, M. S. and Carroll, S.E. (1999) ‘Assignments for a Writing-Intensive Economics Course’, Journal of Economic Education, Vol. 30 (4), p. 402–410. DOI:10.1080/00220489909596097

Textbook for Undergraduate Students in Economics Embarking on Research

Greenlaw, S. A. (2006) Doing Economics: A Guide to Understanding and Carrying Out Economic Research, Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company.

Undergraduate Research Journals: Economics

Undergraduate Economics Review

The UER is a peer-reviewed journal aimed at promoting high-quality undergraduate research. It is supported by the Department of Economics at Illinois Wesleyan University. If you wish to promote the UER on your campus, a promotional flyer is available for distribution. Also, please note that this website is still under construction and will be updated frequently.

Issues in Political Economy: Undergraduate Student Research in Economics

Issues in Political Economy is committed to supporting and encouraging quality undergraduate research in all areas of economics. Now in its 14th volume, the journal was founded on the belief that the best way to learn economics is to do economics. Through the process of research, writing and peer review, students actively engage the discipline in a way not possible by simply listening to lectures and reading textbooks. In short, undergraduate research is a vital component in an economics education. The literature suggests that students take projects more seriously and learn more when the project is directed towards an external rather than an internal audience such as a class assignment. IPE is designed to provide an external audience for such research.

Undergraduate Research Journals, Other Disciplines and Interdisciplinary

Council on Undergraduate Research:

The Undergraduate Journals and Conferences Directory : (seems defunct as of Nov '12 - web editor)

Conferences for Undergraduate Students Conducting Research

National Conferences on Undergraduate Research (seems defunct as of Nov '12 but individual conferences appear in a web search - web editor)

Economics Research Cited

Becker, W. E. and Watts, M. (1996) ‘Chalk and Talk: A National Survey on Teaching Undergraduate Economics’, American Economic Review. Vol. 86 (2). pp. 448–53.

Berik, G. (1997) ‘The Need for Crossing the Method Boundaries in Economics Research’, Feminist Economics, Vol. 3(2), pp. 121–125. DOI:10.1080/135457097338735

‘Best Practices in Undergraduate Research’. Panel discussion at the 2006 Southern Economic Association meetings. Participants included Steven Greenlaw (University of Mary Washington), Jessica Holmes (Middlebury College), KimMarie McGoldrick (University of Richmond), John Siegfried (Vanderbilt University) and Dennis Sullivan (Miami University of Ohio).

Colander, D. and Holmes, J. (2006) ‘A Capstone Course in Economics: To What, and For Whom?’ in Colander, D. The Stories Economists Tell: Essays on the Art of Teaching Economics, New York: McGrawHill Irwin, pp. 71–78.

Hansen, W. L. (1986) ‘What Knowledge Is Most Worth Knowing For Economics Majors?’, American Economic Review, Vol. 76 (2), pp. 149–152.

Hansen, W. L. (1993) ‘Teaching a “Writing Intensive” Course in Economics: An Assessment’, Journal of Economic Education, Vol. 24 (3), pp. 213–218.

Hansen, W. L. (1998) ‘Integrating the Practice of Writing into Economics Instruction’, in W.E. Becker and M. Watts (eds), Teaching Economics to Undergraduates: Alternatives to Chalk and Talk, Cheltenham, UK and Northampton, Mass.: Edward Elgar, pp. 79–118.

Hansen, W. L. (2001) ‘Expected Proficiencies for Undergraduate Economics Majors’, Journal of Economic Education, Vol. 32 (3), pp. 231–242. DOI:10.1080/00220480109596105

Hansen, W. L. (2004) ‘A Proficiency-Based Economics Major: Its Architecture and Artistry’. Paper presented at the Midwest Conference on Student Learning, University of Akron, Ohio, 5 November 2004.

Hansen, W. L. (2005) ‘Designing and Implementing “Proficiency-Based” Economics Courses’, paper presented at the Midwest Economics Association Meeting, March 2005.

Hansen, W. L. (2006) ‘Proficiency-Based Economics Course Examinations’. Paper presented at the Midwest Economics Association Meeting, March 2006.

McGoldrick, KM. (1998) ‘Service-Learning in Economics: A Detailed Application’, Journal of Economic Education, Vol. 29 (4), pp. 365–376. DOI:10.1080/00220489809595929

McGoldrick, KM. (2006) ‘The Senior Experience for Economics Majors: Results from a Survey of Departmental Practices’. Presented at the American Economic Association meetings, January 2006.

McGoldrick, KM. (Under review) ‘Applying the Tools They Have Mastered: The Senior Research Course in Economics.’

McGoldrick, KM. and Ziegert, A. (eds) (2002) Putting the Invisible Hand to Work: Concepts and Models of Service Learning in Economics, Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan Press.

Russell, S. (2005) ‘Illuminating Cases: Understanding the Economic Burden of Illness through Case Study Household Research’, Health Policy and Planning, Vol. 20 (5), pp. 277–289 DOI:10.1093/heapol/czi035

Santos, J. and Lavin. A. M. (2004) ‘Do as I Do, Not as I Say: Assessing Outcomes When Students Think Like Economists’, Journal of Economic Education, Vol. 35(2), pp.148–161. DOI:10.3200/JECE.35.2.148-161

Siegfried, J. J. (2001) ‘Principles for a Successful Undergraduate Economics Honors Program’, Journal of Economic Education, Vol. 32(2), pp. 169–177. DOI:10.1080/00220480109595182

Siegfried, J., Bartlett, R. L., Hansen, W. L., Kelley, A. C., McCloskey, D. N. and Tietenberg, T. H. (1991) ‘The Status and Prospects of the Economics Major’, Journal of Economic Education, Vol. 22(3), pp. 197–224.

Siegfried, J. J. and Wilkinson. J.T. (1982) ‘The Economics Curriculum in the United States: 1980’, American Economic Review, Vol. 72(2), pp. 125–138.

Simpson, M.S. and Carroll, S.E. (1999) ‘Assignments for a Writing-Intensive Economics Course’, Journal of Economic Education, Vol. 30 (4), pp. 402–410 DOI:10.1080/00220489909596097

General Education and Other Disciplinary Research Cited

Adhikari, A. and Nolan, D. (2002) ‘But What Good Came of It at Last? How to Assess the Value of Undergraduate Research’, Notices of the AMS (American Mathematical Society), Vol. 49(10), pp. 1252–1257.

Baxter Magolda, M. B. (2001) ‘A Constructivist Revision of the Measure of Epistemological Reflection’, Journal of College Student Development, Vol. 42(6), pp. 1–15.

Boyer, E. L. (1990) Scholarship Reconsidered: Priorities for the Professoriate, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Boyer, E. L. (1997) ‘A Community of Scholars’. The Emory Symposium, Atlanta, Georgia, 14 April 1994, in Selected Speeches, 1979-1995, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, pp. 69–80.

Boyer Commission Reinventing Undergraduate Education: A Blueprint for US Universities. (1998)

Chickering, A. and Ehrmann, S.C. (1996) ‘Implementing the Seven Principles: Technology as Lever’, AAHE Bulletin, October, pp. 3–6.

Chickering, A. and Gamson, Z.F. (1991) ‘Applying the Seven Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education’, New Directions for Teaching and Learning, No. 47, pp. 1–3, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Inc.

Gamson, Z. (1991) ‘A Brief History of the Seven Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education’, New Directions for Teaching and Learning, No. 47, pp. 5–12, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Inc.

Geertz, C. (1973) The Interpretation of Cultures, New York: Basic Books.

Graham, C., Kursat C., Byung-Ro L., Craner, J. and Duffy, T. M. (2001) ‘Seven Principles of Effective Teaching: A Practical Lens for Evaluating Online Courses’, The Technology Source. Available online at

Hake, R.R. (1998) ‘Interactive Engagement v. Traditional Methods: A Six-Thousand-Student Survey of Mechanics Test Data for Introductory Physics Courses’, American Journal of Physics, Vol. 66, pp. 64–74.

Hathaway, R.S. et al. (2002) ‘The Relationship of Undergraduate Research Participation to Graduate and Professional Education Pursuit: An Empirical Study’,Journal of College Student Development, Vol. 43(5), pp. 614–631.

Hakim, T. M. (2000) ‘How to develop and administer institutional undergraduate research programs’, Washington, DC: Council on Undergraduate Research.

Hess, G. F. (1999) ‘Seven Principles for Good Practice in Legal Education: History and Overview’, Journal of Legal Education, Vol. 49(3), pp.367–370.

Jenkins, A. (2004) ‘Designing a curriculum that values a research-based approach to student learning’, Link 9, pp. 1–4.

Kardash, C. M. (2000) ‘Evaluation of an Undergraduate Research Experience: Perceptions of Undergraduate Interns and their Faculty Mentors’, Journal of Educational Psychology, Vol. 92(1), pp. 191–201.

Lehr, F. (1995) ‘Revision in the Writing Process’, Eric Digests online, ED#379664

Lopatto, D. (2003) ‘The Essentials of Undergraduate Research’, Council on Undergraduate Research Quarterly, March, pp. 139–142

Lopatto, D. (2006) ‘Undergraduate Research as a Catalyst for Liberal Learning’, Peer Review, Vol. 8(1), pp. 22–25.

Merkel, C. A. (2003) ‘Undergraduate Research at the Research Universities’, New Directions for Teaching and Learning, Vol. 93, pp. 39–54, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, Inc.

Nagda, B.A., Gregerman, S.R., Jonides, J., von Hippel, W. and Lerner, J.S. (1998) ‘Undergraduate Student-Faculty Research Partnerships Affect Student Retention’, The Review of Higher Education, Vol. 22 (1), pp. 55–72.

New Directions for Teaching and Learning (2003) Special Issue: Valuing and Supporting Undergraduate Research, Vol. 93, pp.1–92.

Prince, M. (2004) ‘Does Active Learning Work? A Review of the Research’, Journal of Engineering Education, Vol. 93(3), pp. 223–231.

Rueckert, L. (2002) ‘Assessment of Research’, CUR Quarterly, Sept., pp. 10–11.

Sorcinelli, M. D. (1991) ‘Research Findings on the Seven Principles’, New Directions for Teaching and Learning, Vol. 47, pp. 13–25, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, Inc.

Ward, C., Bennett, J.S. and Bauer, K. (2003) ‘Content Analysis of Undergraduate Research Student Evaluations’, unpublished report.

Van Maanen, J. (1988) Tales of the Field: On Writing Ethnography, Chicago: University of Chicago Press.


Council on Undergraduate Research: Learning Through Research

‘The Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) and its affiliated colleges, universities, and individuals share a focus on providing undergraduate research opportunities for faculty and students at predominantly undergraduate institutions. CUR believes that faculty members enhance their teaching and contribution to society by remaining active in research and by involving undergraduates in research. CUR’s leadership works with agencies and foundations to enhance research opportunities for faculty and students. CUR provides support for faculty development. Our publications and outreach activities are designed to share successful models and strategies for establishing and institutionalizing undergraduate research programs. We assist administrators and faculty members in improving and assessing the research environment at their institutions. CUR also provides information on the importance of undergraduate research to state legislatures, private foundations, government agencies, and the U.S. Congress. CUR welcomes faculty and administrators from all academic institutions. Our primary advocacy is in support of faculty and students at predominantly undergraduate institutions. CUR achieves its vision through efforts of its membership as organized in a divisional structure that includes biology, chemistry, geosciences, mathematics and computer science, physics and astronomy, psychology, social sciences, an at-large division that serves administrators and other disciplines, and a division for directors of undergraduate research programs.’

The Higher Education Academy

‘The Academy's mission is to help institutions, discipline groups and all staff to provide the best possible learning experience for their students.

Strategic aims and objectives are:
  • To be an authoritative and independent voice on policies that influence student learning experiences
  • To support institutions in their strategies for improving the student learning experience
  • To lead, support and inform the professional development and recognition of staff in higher education
  • To promote good practice in all aspects of support for the student learning experience
  • To lead the development of research and evaluation to improve the quality of the student learning experience
  • To be a responsive, efficient and accountable organisation.’

The Reinvention Centre: A Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning

‘The Reinvention Centre for Undergraduate Research aims to integrate research-based learning into the undergraduate curriculum. The purpose is not simply to teach undergraduates research skills but to enable undergraduates to become integrated into the research cultures of their departments.’ Website includes the key resources on programmes, funding, projects and reading references.

The USYD Project

‘The aim of this initiative is to enhance students’ learning experiences by progressing the ways in which undergraduate teaching is informed by research at all levels in the University of Sydney. It furthers the University's strategic objectives to provide curricula informed by research, scholarship and creative works and professional practice; to employ staff with a commitment to teaching informed by research; to assist the transition of students into research-based programs through opportunities provided within undergraduate staff programs to support the conduct of outstanding research by both staff and students.’