Research Mentorship Program

Research Experience

Over six intensive weeks, students participating in the Research Mentorship Program are actively engaged in the pursuit of new knowledge alongside UC Santa Barbara researchers. Depending on the nature of their project, students will dedicate 30 to 40 hours a week to research. They are expected to utilize the library, participate in fieldwork, and may occasionally find themselves working into the night. Over the course of the program, students will learn to describe their research findings in professional style technical papers, present at a formal university symposium, and earn university credits which will become part of their permanent record at UC Santa Barbara. 

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pre-college students and mentor looking at plant in greenhouse

Research Project Selection

Our program is unique because it allows students to be exposed to a wide variety of interdisciplinary research topics, and then rank a selection of projects that they would prefer to work on. Students will be paired with a project and a research mentor (graduate student, postdoc, or faculty) to conduct hands-on, university-level research.

Research topics may change each summer depending on the available mentors, however the focus is always on recent research developments that demonstrate the use of university-level methods of investigation in departments across campus. Please feel free to inquire about any discipline that interests you. Research areas include, but are not limited to:

RMP student and mentor smiling



Anthropology Earth Science  Geography Music
Biochemistry Ecology Global Studies Neuroscience
Biology Economics History Physics
Chemistry Education Marine Biology Psychology
Chicana/o Studies Engineering Mathematics Sociology 
Computer Science Environmental Policy Media, Arts & Tech Statistics

Research Mentorship Program Courses

Students earn a total of 8 university credits by enrolling in two interdisciplinary research courses, described below. 

As students conduct research throughout the course of the program, this course prepares them to share their findings with varied audiences across different formats. Students will focus on oral presentation methods, poster presentation structure, and elevator pitch techniques. As part of this course, students will be exposed to high-level interdisciplinary research being conducted by UC Santa Barbara researchers who are seminal leaders in their fields through the evening lecture series, GRIT Talks.  

This course will introduce students to writing techniques specific to communicating research findings at a university level. Students will learn about the elements of a research paper, and hone their ability to author a formal paper. This includes constructing an abstract, introduction, research goals and methods, discussion and results, and references section. At the conclusion of this course, students will be able to translate their hands-on guided research experience in the field, library, or laboratory into a collection of findings that other researchers can build upon. 

Competitions and Further Research

After completing RMP, students may wish to share their research experience in a variety of contexts, including but not limited to competitions, college applications, and other academic activities. In order to reference the research conducted during the program, students must receive proper permission from involved parties — their mentor, the Principal Investigator of the research project, and the Director of Pre-College Programs. Failure to receive proper permission is subject to legal action. In some instances, it is possible for our students to continue their research remotely throughout the school year, though this must only be done with the guidance and consent of the research mentor and the director of the program.

For more information or to download the research consent form, please visit RMP Alumni Resources.


Previous RMP Symposium Programs

PDF icon 2021 Program

PDF icon 2020 Program

PDF icon 2019 Program

PDF icon 2018 Program

PDF icon 2017 Program