Evaluation of undergraduate students' involvement in research projects

Isabel Huet, Ana Vitória Baptista, Nilza Costa, Alan Jenkins, Marta Abelha

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Major changes have been taking place in Higher Education (HE) systems, part of them emerging to face the demands of the so-called Bologna Process. Within this context, researchers show a great concern with issues that may promote the quality of students' learning. One of these concerns focuses on the importance of linking teaching and research in undergraduate studies since year one. A recent initiative of the Portuguese Ministry of Science, Technology and Higher Education is the creation of conditions to straighten this link by creating a set of research grants to undergraduate students, the so called BII ("Bolsas de Integração na Investigação"). The students can apply to these grants and get involved in research projects coordinated by senior researchers. At the University of Aveiro (Portugal), and in particular at the Department of Education, there are already undergraduate students engaged in several research projects, starting in the academic year 2008/09. Due to the novelty of these grants at Portuguese universities it is urgent to proceed to an evaluation process aiming to improve this initiative in subsequent years. Thus, the ultimate goal of this study is to (i) evaluate student outcomes of undergraduate research experience in Education; (ii) understand how the work developed is translated to European Credit Transfer System (ECTS), and (iii) identify the advantages and possible constrains of undergraduate students' involvement in research activities. In this paper the authors will explore in detail phase one of the study, more specifically how this initiative is taking place at the Department of Education, and the data referred to a questionnaire delivered at the beginning of the research process.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)575-588
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Learning
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Evaluation
  • Higher education
  • Linking teaching and research


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