The Russell Group Research Experience

The motivation for pursuing research

Participating in a PhD project at Sheffield Institute of Translational Research in Neuroscience

Research. Innovate. Discover. These are the three words that best describe my journey with regards to research experience and exposure at The University of Sheffield. Being among the Russell Group universities, The University of Sheffield has offered me the best undergraduate research experience, something I was looking for in my undergraduate degree. 

 What is a Russell Group University?

The Russell Group is a group of 24 leading UK Universities committed to maintaining the very best research, an outstanding teaching, learning experience and unrivalled links with business and the public sector.

My research experience while studying at Sheffield
The University of Sheffield offered me research experience right from my first year in the form of training us with modules focusing on developing critical research skills, helping develop the ability to write scientific papers or general scientific writing and the required statistical knowledge to interpret findings and methods to designing research, all essential skills that helped me build the solid foundation required for pursuing a career in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Medicine). In fact, I started writing my first research paper right from my first year itself, which was an amazing feeling.

In my second year I gained even more exposure to research experience, with a chance to conduct two group-led research projects in an area of my own interest. The Department of Psychology, my home department, also arranged for a department specific Research Conference, so students gained exposure at presenting research in professional scientific conference spaces.

Not only did the University provide me with research experience as a part of the departmental modules, but there were many other opportunities that came my way. I was grateful to be selected to present my research at the UK's biggest National Conference, the British Conference of Undergraduate Research (BCUR), 2018, held at The University of Sheffield, which had over 600 student and faculty presenters from around the UK universities. Out of the nine years of BCUR, this year which was hosted by University of Sheffield, was the biggest turn out in the history of BCUR.

The opening plenary session at BCUR, 2018

Presenting my research at BCUR, 2018
Sheffield Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) Scheme 

And participation in national conferences is not all which is on offer, The University of Sheffield runs fully funded undergraduate research schemes like SURE for students interested in pursuing careers in academia and research or for students looking to gain summer research placement experiences. 

Ranging from six to eight weeks, SURE Undergraduate Researchers get an opportunity to work closely with a faculty member in their area of research interest and get paid a bursary under this scheme. This scheme is highly regarded across the Undergraduate Research Fraternity in the UK.
Although, a highly competitive scheme it was worth sending across my research proposal which amounted in a six-week SURE Scheme Project to work on this summer.

I had the opportunity to gain experience in inter-disciplinary research skills, ranging from Cognitive Psychology to Cognitive Computing. This project inspired me so much that it has now translated into my final year dissertation project. I am looking forward to publishing work in undergraduate research student journals.

Experience through research participation

Not only did I get a chance to undertake my own research, but have been actively participating and contributing my time by taking part in on going research  projects at different  levels at the university.
Participating in a PhD project at Sheffield Institute of Translational Research in Neuroscience
The Faculty Of Sciences Exhibitions
And finally, the university encourages any science and research enthusiast considering a degree at the university level to get a taster of what science and research at The University of Sheffield is like by organising faculty led exhibitions like the Faculty of Sciences exhibitions.

I hope this gives you a quick peek into what The Russell Group Research Experience is like at The University of Sheffield. And I hope that you have a great time exploring even more opportunities during your time at the University!


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