I was thinking about this earlier today: The last 10 years or so has seen a steady increase in undergraduate research activity and the prevalence of undergraduates contributing to published research articles. I think inevitably this will lead to publications being required, at least informally, for admittance into the top graduate programs. I myself do not see this a problem (though prospective graduate students might ). But this got me thinking - what are the potential long-term impacts of increasingly prevalent undergad research? I can identify a large number of benefits (increased research output and collaborative projects, more experienced students entering workforce/grad school, etc), but does anybody know of any drawbacks this may have, especially from the point of view of the researchers, funding, and/or the functionality of science in general? May seem like an odd question, but I'm keen to hear your thoughts on this.