The mission of the Office of Undergraduate Research (OUR) is to promote, enhance, and expand undergraduate research opportunities at Virginia Tech. The Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) defines undergraduate research as “… an inquiry or investigation conducted by an undergraduate student that makes an original intellectual or creative contribution to the discipline,” (CUR, 2014).
At Virginia Tech, research is broadly conceived to include discovery-based and creative activities.
"As an experiential learning activity that synthesizes knowledge and skills acquired in the classroom, research provides a unique opportunity for students to contribute to knowledge creation. All students can benefit from research experiences, such as the collection and analysis of data, connecting a basic research question to the solution of an applied problem, or interpreting art, society, and culture in new and provocative ways. At Virginia Tech, students will analyze, interpret, and synthesize information from a variety of sources; practice holistic reasoning; improve verbal, visual, and written communications skills; organize and contribute to team efforts; gain global perspective; and enhance self-confidence and preparation for a career and/or post-baccalaureate education," (VT Mission Statement, 2013).
The Office of Undergraduate Research serves the Virginia Tech community by facilitating the engagement of undergraduates in authentic research experiences in all areas of scholarship, especially those mentored by Virginia Tech faculty. The office offers services and support to enhance the undergraduate research experience by helping students find research opportunities, promoting dissemination of student research, providing data and programmatic support for grant-sponsored undergraduate research programs, and ensuring compliance with university and federal regulations and policies.