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How many hours of research did you do a week(undergrad)

  1. Oct 10, 2015 #1
    I work 20 hours a week and take on average 15+ units a semester and while this is so far fine it is hard while also managing free time and personal relationships. I want to get into research but I'm unsure how many hours I can realistically do while maintaining a healthy balanced life. How did you manage doing research with full time school and part time work?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 10, 2015 #2


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    It's not clear what kind of research you are doing.

    Is it for coursework? Is it something separate from your studies?

    If you are working 20 hours a week and taking 15+ credits during the semester, your plate is about full. If you bomb out of your undergraduate program, your research problem will have solved itself. Is that what you want?
  4. Oct 10, 2015 #3
    As of right now I'm not doing any research. The research I want to do will involve singing up with a lab and it will be separate from my classes. Yes right now I work two full days friday and saturday and a half day shift sunday. I do most of my studying during the week at night and this still leaves me friday and saturday night plus sunday for myself or to catch up.

    For those of you who did research during undergrad did you have to cut back on classes or do it mainly in the summer? I want to get into research to see if grad school will be an option for me(if I enjoy research) but I'm not sure how others who have done it managed it with classes.
  5. Oct 10, 2015 #4
    I'm presently a senior in undergrad, been working with the same group since I was a freshy.

    It's quite a tough balance. I decided to do a 4-year instead of 3-year undergrad so that I could take fewer credits per semester and do more research. I average 13 (barely a full-time student) but I also do research for 25-30 hours a week (~15 meeting with advisors, the rest independent work).

    If you're already working 20 hours a week, you will have serious difficulty fitting enough research into your schedule to become a productive member of the group. Is staying for an extra semester or two and taking fewer credits an option? Have you sought out opportunities to get paid for research? At most schools (I believe), honors students have the ability to apply for research mentorships/scholarships/fellowships.
  6. Oct 10, 2015 #5
    I am going to look into any paid research, if I can get paid even minimum wage that will be a minor pay cut but enough for me to quit my job. Do you by any chance get paid for the hours you put in? I mean 30 hours with no pay would be tough. Thanks for the suggestion if getting paid is out of the question I will potentially talk to my advisor to take an extra year to finish so I can do research. I can also potentially cut back on my work schedule but not completely in order to pay my bills(financial aid only covers so much).

    How many hours minimum would you expect from someone looking to join your lab in order to be productive?
  7. Oct 10, 2015 #6


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    Can you get academic credit for your research? At the college where I work, students who do research supervised by a faculty member can register for a certain number of credit hours (depending on how much work they're expected to do) of a special "Research" course. If so, would this allow you to reduce your course load?
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