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Books with a Focus on Mentoring Undergraduate Researchers

I could not deprive you of the revelation of all that you could accomplish together, of a friendship that will define you both in ways you cannot yet realise.

~Senior Spock to Younger Spock and Kirk in Star Trek (2009)

Behling, L.L. (Ed.). (2012). Reading, writing, & research: Undergraduate students as scholars in literary studies. Washington, DC: Council for Undergraduate Research.

This publication discusses the place of undergraduate research in the curriculum and emphasizes mentoring undergraduate researchers in the humanities.

Boyd, M.K. & Wesemann, J.L. (2009). Broadening participation in undergraduate research: Fostering Excellence and Enhancing the Impact. Washington, DC: Council for Undergraduate Research.

This edited volume includes chapters with information dedicated to strengthening undergraduate research, scholarship, and creative activity at both two-year and four-year institutions. Chapters are included that consider aspects of these programs from their inception through their development and expansion.

Cejda, B. & Hensel, N. (2009). Undergraduate Research at Community Colleges. Washington, DC: Council for Undergraduate Research.

This publication focuses on undergraduate research in community colleges. Chapters highlight possibilities associated with advancing such research at this level.

Crawford, I., Orel, S., & Shanahan, J. (2014). "How to get started in arts and humanities research with undergraduates." Washington, DC: Council for Undergraduate Research.

This book is included in CUR's "How To" series and is written for faculty and administrators "develop opportunities for undergraduate research, scholarship, and creative work in the arts and humanities."  The authors consider the "distinct[ive]" norms, definitions,  and roles characteristic of the arts and humanities and "contributes new ideas for meaningful student participation in the scholarship of these disciplines and . . . ways in which that participation can connect effectively with faculty work" (CUR, 2014)

Clutterbuck, D., Lane, G., & ebrary, I. (2004). The situational mentor: An international review of competencies and capabilities inmentoring. Abingdon, Oxon, Great Britain: Ashgate Publishing.

Mentoring is considered a situational relationship between the mentor and mentee throughout this edited volume. Several topics related to mentoring are explored along with a consideration of the factors that contribute to a successful mentoring relationship, ethical/moral dimensions that impact this relationship, issues possibly contributing to failed mentoring relationships, virtual mentoring, personality factors as these relate to the mentoring journey, and what may happen when a formal mentoring journey concludes.

Cook-Sather, A., Bovill, C., & Felten, P. (2014). Engaging Students as Partners in Learning and Teaching: A Guide for Faculty. San Francisco, CA: Jossey Bass.

This text focuses on the faculty role in student-faculty partnerships with the goal of deepening faculty members' partnerships with students. It begins by characterizing these partnerships as ones where "respect, reciprocity, and shared responsibility exist between faculty and students" (p. 1). It provides examples of successful partnerships and suggestions for achieving these in higher education. Content includes helpful approaches for nurturing relationships with students during the mentoring journey.

Cooke, D. & Thorme, T. (2011). A practical handbook for supporting community-based research with undergraduate students. Washington, DC: Council for Undergraduate Research.

This handbook "lays out a process for conducting [community-based research (CBR)] with students, dealing with issues such as developing and maintaining partnerships, developing research questions, collecting and analyzing data, and reporting findings. Guiding questions and practical tips are featured throughout. The final section describes how to develop and put in place the human and financial resources needed to implement CBR across the campus" (CUR, 2011).

Detweiler-Bedell, J. & Detweiler-Bedell, D. (2013). Doing collaborative research in psychology: A team-based guide. Los Angeles, CA: Sage.

Collaboration is viewed as the common mode for research in psychology and other lab-based research following graduation in this text, written for undergraduate student researchers. The stated goal for this publication is to help a student "develop into a collaborator that [his/her] peers and mentors will find indispensable: one who brings vigor, insight, and considerable talent to every project" (p. 3). This document guides the undergraduate researcher and those who work with him/her through all stages of the research process, culminating with suggestions for presentation and publication of this research.

Frierson, H.T. (Ed.). (1998). Examining protégé-mentor experiences. Diversity in Higher Education. (Vol. 2).

This volume includes 11 research-based chapters focusing on the mentoring of faculty and students from a variety of ethnic and racial backgrounds in a variety of settings in higher education. The perspectives of students and faculty associated with their mentoring experiences are included in a few of these chapters. Suggestions are included to increase the participation of African American, Hispanic, and female students in mentoring programs.

Hensel, N. (2012). Characteristics of excellence in undergraduate research. Washington, DC: Council for Undergraduate Research.

This publication stems from "represents 30 years of the Council on Undergraduate Research's highly successful mission to assist and support faculty and institutions in bringing undergraduate research, scholarship, and creative activity to the heart —the core—of an excellent undergraduate education" (Baenninger in Hensel, 2012, p. 1). Applications of the Characteristics of Excellence in Undergraduate Research (COEUR) in a variety of settings are included.

Hensel, N.H. & Paul, E.L. (2012). Faculty support and undergraduate research: Innovations in faculty role definition, workload, and reward. Washington, DC: Council for Undergraduate Research.

This document considers "many aspects of providing support for faculty who involve undergraduates in research. It is the editors' hope that this book will provide inspiration and encouragement to administrators and faculty to design solutions to these challenges that can be integrated into campus practices and cultures" (CUR, 2011).

Johnson, W. B.  (2015, November)  On being a mentor: A guide for higher education faculty. (2nd Ed). New York, NY:  Routledge.

Following a discussion of mentoring and the "mentoring continuum" and a "mentoring constellation model," Johnson provides, an overview of competencies mentors tap into as they mentor.  Book includes "evidence-based advice on the rules of engagement for mentoring, mentor functions, qualities of good mentors, and methods for forming and managing these relationships," reflection questions, and case studies to illustrate the mentoring relationship.

Karukstis, K.K. & Elgren, T.E. (2007). Developing and sustaining a research-supportive curriculum: A compendium of successful practices. Washington, DC: Council for Undergraduate Research.

This "volume focuses on three broad areas [of undergraduate research]: curricular elements and teaching and learning strategies that develop critical research skills, curricular infrastructure that enhances a research-supportive curriculum, and administrative contributions that initiate and sustain a research-supportive curriculum" (CUR, 2011).

Karukstis, K. & Hensel, N. (2010). Transformative Research at Predominately Undergraduate Institutions. Washington, DC: Council for Undergraduate Research.

This document discusses involving undergraduates in transformative research. According to the National Science Foundation, "transformative research involves ideas, discoveries, or tools that radically change our understanding of an important existing scientific or engineering concept or educational practice or leads to the creation of a new paradigm or field of science, engineering, or education" (NSF, n.d.)

Kenney, S.S. (Chair). (1998). Reinventing Undergraduate Education: A Blueprint for America's Research Universities. Stonybrook, NY: SUNY.

This seminal report sought to redesign undergraduate education by involving undergraduate students in the research process. It included ten key recommendations "to change undergraduate education:"

  1. "Make research-based learning the standard" (p. 15). In their discussion of this recommendation, the commission sought a mentor for each undergraduate student as well as the inclusion of undergraduate students in research. To implement this recommendation, the commission suggested involving college freshmen in research efforts and teaching students at all levels to communicate the results of their research orally and in writing.
  2. "Conduct an inquiry-based freshman year" (p. 19) where students are introduced to research as a part of college life.
  3. "Build on freshman foundation" (p. 21): The commission recommended that institutions of higher education encourage student participation in mentored research experiences throughout college life.
  4. "Remove barriers to interdisciplinary education" (p. 23).
  5. "Link communication skills and course work" (p. 24).
  6. "Use information technology creatively" (p. 25).
  7. "Culminate with a capstone experience" that "focuses on a major project and utilize to the fullest the research and communication skills learned in the previous semesters" (p. 27).
  8. "Educate graduate students as apprentice teachers" (p. 28).
  9. "Change faculty reward systems" (p. 31) to recognize and reward faculty for their contributions to the research process that recognizes a "synergy of teaching and research" (p. 32).
  10. "Cultivate a sense of community" . . . "of learners" (p. 34).

Kinkead, J. (2010). Advancing Undergraduate Research: Marketing, Communications, and Fundraising. Washington, DC: Council for Undergraduate Research.

This document "is designed to share successful models and strategies for promoting and funding undergraduate research programs. . . . [This publication is divided into three sections, each focusing on different aspects of undergraduate research promotion:] how to market undergraduate research; how to engage in strategic communications; and how to raise funds and also serve as stewards of those funds for donors." (CUR, 2011).

Kinkead, J. & Blockus, L. (Eds.). (2012). Undergraduate Research Offices & Programs: Models & Practices. Washington, DC: Council for Undergraduate Research.

This document provides practical "advice on assessment, special programs, and summer experiences on campuses and at research centers. . . [as it showcases undergraduate research] offices and programs at a variety of institutional types and at various points of maturity." Each chapter in this text "is devoted to an institutional type and follows a template . . . [with] a particular theme: mission, resources, events, publications, and even challenges" (CUR, 2012).

Klos, N.Y., Shanahan, J.O., & Young, Y. (2011). Creative inquiry in the arts & humanities: Models of undergraduate research. Washington, DC: Council for Undergraduate Research.

This publication "assist[s] faculty and administrators of any academic discipline who are creating undergraduate research opportunities that move beyond the natural and social sciences, as well as those working to sustain well-established, multidisciplinary programs. It offers examples of successful programs, assignments, curricula, journals, and conferences that support the research, scholarship, and creative activity of students in arts and humanities disciplines" (CUR, 2011).

Lopatto, D. Science in solution: The impact of undergraduate research on student learning. Tuscon, AZ: Research Corporation for Science Advancement.

This text advances undergraduate research as a means to increase the number of scientists from diverse backgrounds in a variety of disciplines. Mentoring is the focus of the fifth chapter as it is considered one of the "characteristic features that enable[s] success" in undergraduate research (CUR, 2011).

McNary-Zak, B. & Peters, R.T. (Eds.). (2011). Teaching undergraduate research in religious studies (AAR teaching religious studies). New York, NY: Oxford Press.

Although written for an audience in religious studies, this readable text includes principles associated with mentoring applicable to mentoring in other areas of the humanities and elsewhere. The reader may find the chapters discussing theoretical and methodological considerations associated with mentoring undergraduate researchers especially helpful.

National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. (1997). Adviser, teacher, role model, friend: On being a mentor to students in science and engineering. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

Available free online using the link provided above, this book provides helpful information for mentors throughout the mentoring process irrespective of the mentors' content area. Text includes information for mentors of undergraduate and graduate students.

Neal,L, Militz-Frielink, S., Moore, A., Avila, K., Colompos, M., & Walter, S.  (2016, February).  Borders, bras and battles:  A practical guide to mentor undergraduate women to achieve career success.  Baltimore, MD:  Apprentice House Press.

Text highlights the experiences of undergraduate students and includes suggestions to help students from diverse backgrounds achieve success as undergraduate researchers.

Reinarz, A. & White, E. (Eds.). (2001, Spring). Beyond teaching to mentoring: New directions for teaching and learning, (Vol. 85).Ann Arbor, MI: Jossey Bass.

Written for an audience of faculty and administrators in higher education, this edited volume includes several chapters focusing on the role of and possibilities associated with mentoring undergraduate students in a variety of disciplines. Mentoring undergraduate research is a concomitant, rather than direct, focus of this volume.

Saddler, T.N. (2012, March 1). Mentoring and African American undergraduates' perceptions of academic success. In T.L. Strayhorn & M.C. Terrell (Eds.), The evolving challenge of black college students: New insights for practice and research (pp. 179-200). Sterling, VA: Stylus.

This chapter in the edited volume dedicated to working with African American students, highlights Saddler's research related to the undergraduate mentoring experiences of mentors and undergraduate (seven senior and two junior science and social science in science and social science) mentees involved in the process.

Temple, L., Sibley, T., & Orr, A. (2010). "How to mentor undergraduate researchers." Washington, DC: Council for Undergraduate Research.

This text was written for faculty and other mentors of undergraduate researchers as a part of CUR's "How To" series. It is considered a handbook for mentoring and, according to CUR, "reflects many changes over the last decade in the scope and extent of research opportunities for undergraduates in the United States. . . [and] the current expansion of CUR into all undergraduate disciplines."Although interdisciplinary in nature, it includes a segment specifically dedicated to the social sciences as an outgrowth of its consideration of mentoring as a social process.

Zachary, L. & Fischler, L.  (2014, October).  Starting strong:  A mentoring fable.  San Francisco, CA:  Jossey-Boss.

Text traces the first 90 days of a fictional mentoring relationship between Cynthia and Rafa and provides questions for reflection on the experiences shared.  Part 2 includes a "conversational playbook," "a guide to establishing a trust-based relationship [during the mentoring experience] and keeping it strong" (p. x).