Aresty Research Assistant Program: Details and Requirements

PROJECT PLAN

You will spend the full 2014 – 2015 academic year, approximately five hours per week, working with your faculty mentor. You and your mentor will draw up and sign a project plan outlining your mutual expectations for the year and outlining the project in detail. Bring the signed hard copy to your first peer group meeting in September.  You need to be comfortable with the project description so that you understand what next year will entail for you. The project plan you will create is based upon a sample document. Please click here to download the sample project plan. Please contact your faculty mentor soon to begin drafting the project plan for your project.

COMMUNITY

The Aresty Center offers a vibrant community. As an RA, you will be working alongside some of the best minds--both undergraduate and faculty--at Rutgers. Our community is unique not just at Rutgers, but across higher education. We ask all RAs to take seriously their commitment to their research, to their peers, and to the broader research community at Rutgers. The RA program is extemely competitive. By accepting this position, you agree to adhere to and promote the values of the Aresty Center community.

PEER GROUP MEETINGS

As an RA, you will be a member of one of the strongest research communities on campus. You will meet twice each month in the Aresty Research Center for a peer group meeting, led by an Aresty Peer Instructor, with other RAs working on related projects. In these meetings you will discuss your progress along with relevant topics such as research ethics, literature reviews, abstract writing, research presentations, academic resources, and more. There will be dedicated time to discuss questions and concerns about your research projects. We will inform you in late August when these meetings will be held for the fall semester. We schedule around the courses you are officially enrolled in, so we ask that you not change your class schedule after August 1. We cannot take other extracurricular activities or jobs into account when setting these times, so please do not submit requests of this nature.

This RA position is a professional engagement, and we expect you to make the group time we assign to you work in your schedule. The Aresty Program maintains professional expectations: conscientious participation in your research and peer group meetings, etiquette to alert your peer instructor if you are going to be late or absent, and respect for your peers and their views. Missing more than three meetings, or being consistently late to meetings, will be grounds for removal from the Aresty RA program.

ARESTY ASSIGNMENTS

Aresty assignments are designed to strengthen your abilities as a researcher and prepare you for graduate school or professional life. You will be required to submit work each month to an online portfolio on Sakai and to reflect on your progress. Some major assignments in the program include a final literature review, a short abstract about your research project, and your presentation for the annual, university-wide, Undergraduate Research Symposium on April 24, 2015.

HOURS REQUIREMENTS

Research takes time and you must be committed. Students in the RA Program should not enroll in more than 16 credits for the fall term, or plan to work outside of the Aresty program for more than 10 hours/week, unless this is first discussed and approved by the Aresty staff.

COMPENSATION

Students who participate in the program are paid by the Aresty Center and receive $1,000 in two installments: one at the end of the fall semester, pending successful completion of the first semester; and one in early May, pending successful completion of the program.