How to Get Involved in Undergraduate Research Opportunities at Grady

By Mimi Cooper

For many students, the image of white lab coats, safety goggles and science experiments come to mind when they think of research. Research is often viewed as an opportunity more suited for STEM majors, but this is a misconception. There are many research opportunities in various fields. 

For students in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication, there are three main undergraduate research opportunities.

1. Center for Undergraduate Research Opportunities

CURO offers UGA undergrad students the opportunity to participate in faculty-mentored research or independent studies.

All undergraduate students are eligible to participate in research through CURO, regardless of major. Some of CURO’s programs do have specific requirements for credit hours or course prerequisites, but each program lists the requirements here.

For students interested in learning more about CURO, there are walk-in hours each Tuesday during fall and spring semesters from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Moore College.

2. Grady Research Participation System

Most students, especially within Grady, are familiar with Grady College Research Participation System, also known as SONA Systems.

Students can sign up on SONA and choose to be a participant in different research studies throughout the entire academic year. Time slots are available every day for different types of research studies.

Professors, especially in Grady, often require students to participate in a minimum number of research studies as part of their coursework. In some classes, participating in these studies can count as extra credit.

For more information about SONA, students can email questions to

3. Asking your professor/mentor directly about research opportunities

Simply asking a professor or mentor about research opportunities is another great way for students to gain research experience. 

Glenna Read, researcher and assistant advertising professor at UGA, says she typically has about five active research studies in different stages of the research process at any given time. This means students have a wide range of available studies in which they can get involved. 

If interested in participating in research, Read recommends identifying a faculty mentor who conducts research that excites you and offering to help with some of their projects. Professors are invested in student success and are more than willing to involve students in research or simply talk about their past research studies and experiences. 

Overall, research is available for undergraduate students at Grady who show initiative and are passionate about getting involved.