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My Undergraduate Research Project

During my sophomore year, I completed my research project with the help of my partner, Austin Weinandt, and my faculty advisor Dr. Brittany Smith. The research was performed in the area of biology education. Please see my attached research paper, reflection, and research poster that was presented at the Undergraduate Research Symposium in Mankato, MN. 

The Many Struggles of Beginning Undergraduate Research

This is a reflection on my experiences as a first-year student trying to begin their undergraduate research. My undergraduate research did not go as I had intended this year, but valuable lessons can still be learned from them and applied to future experiences.

Primary Source Analysis - Honors European History to 1648 (HIST 180) with Dr. Christopher Corley

Included below is an analysis of primary documents from the renaissance era detailing the ideal renaissance man and woman. Inside I hypothesize that the renaissance entailed drastic changes when picturing the ideal man and what traits were desirable. Then using primary sources from the time period I back up my hypothesis. This assignment improved my research skills because I was required to find information within texts that were difficult to decipher, and then I had to utilize that information to create effective arguments that my hypothesis was true. 

Food History Project - Honors European History to 1648 (HIST 180) with Dr. Christopher Corley

 In my Honors European History to 1648 course taught by Dr. Corley we were assigned to develop a research question relating food to a facet of culture in Elizabethan England. This assignment required a variety of research skills, some of which I felt very comfortable with and others that I was completely unfamiliar with. From this assignment I was better able to understand how academic research is done and how to effectively present research. All of these skills will be helpful during my undergraduate education as the Honors Program at Minnesota State University, Mankato requires its students to conduct and present research within their chosen discipline. Included below is my presentation, the annotated bibliography for the project, and my reflection about the project and my research skills.

Sulfide Mining Problem Solution Essay - Honors Composition 101 with Justin Eells

For the largest paper in my composition class, we were asked to pick a topic and write a problem solution essay about it. We were required to use a minimum of two scholarly and peer-reviewed sources. This paper is written on the topic of sulfide mining in Northeastern Minnesota. In the essay I explain the topic, why it isaproblem,and its possible solutions. This assignment was a test of my research skills because the topic I chose was very specific, so I spent an extensive amount of time finding relevant and trustworthy sources whichwasa test of my information literacy skills. Then taking those facts and turning them into effective arguments to prove my points required creativity and practice of my information synthesis skills. This assignment was an introduction into research skills applied to a formal paper, which will be an invaluable skill in my academic career. 

Research Essay - Honors First Year Experience with Ginny Walters

As a student in the Honors First Year Experience course during my first semester at Minnesota State University, Mankato our class explored research and its role in our undergraduate education. Through readings, class discussions, and guest speakers we were able to better grasp what exactly research is and how to conduct it properly as an undergraduate student. I was able to determine the most imperative facets of research such as information literacy, information synthesis, and the ethics of research. From this I learned critical information about research, its place in my undergraduate education, and how I can perform research while at Minnesota State University, Mankato. I plan to conduct this research as an undergraduate student at Minnesota State University, Mankato by working on a research team for a biology professor and presenting my research at conferences. Undergraduate research will be incredibly helpful in my journey to medical school and in my understanding of the field in which I have chosen to study.

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