The Catherine J. Randall Research Scholars Program is a nationally recognized interdisciplinary, undergraduate research program that pairs exceptional, highly motivated students directly with leading research professors and cutting-edge information management technology to complete scholarly research projects in diverse fields of study. Regardless of the field that students intend to pursue, the skills they develop in applying research methods, project management and problem-solving techniques will contribute to their success in any academic pursuit or future career.
Founded in 1968 as the Computer-Based Honors Program, the Randall Research Scholars Program (RRSP) was the nation's first interdisciplinary undergraduate research program and has been cited as one of the six most intriguing research programs in the country by the National Institute of Education. After 50 years of tradition and excellence, the RRSP continues to be an innovative leader in connecting undergraduate students to research opportunities.
Students whose careers will be defined through their research endeavors are accepted into the program during their final year of high school through a highly selective application process. During their freshman year, this cohort of RRSP students complete an intensive series of courses on problem-solving techniques, information technology fundamentals, project management principles, and research fundamentals. These essential skills enable students to quickly learn and adapt to the new knowledge domains and technical environments required for faculty-directed research projects. Throughout their sophomore to senior years, the RRSP students will select research projects to work on with a faculty member who will serve as project director. Students will typically work on projects in areas related to their academic discipline; however, they may elect to work in an unrelated field to challenge themselves and broaden their exposure to academic disciplines and research.
The RRSP accepts up to 40 incoming freshman students each year through a competitive selection process. All interested Honors College-eligible incoming freshmen should apply to the Honors College and complete the Randall Research Scholars application on the Honors College website. Applicants should be prepared to respond to an essay prompt to complete the RRSP application. The deadline to apply each year is mid-December.
The RRSP selection committee will consider each applicant's academic record and extracurricular, service and leadership achievements along with the application essay to identify a select group of finalists for program consideration. The finalists are invited to an on-campus visit which includes interviews and other activities.
RRSP Minor Graduation Requirements
To complete the requirements for the Randall Research Scholars minor, students must complete a total of 20 RRS designated course credit hours and maintain an overall GPA of 3.30. Students are required to successfully complete both RRS 101 (4 credit hours) and RRS 102 (4 credit hours) before advancing to the research project seminars. The remaining 12 hours for completion of the minor may be accomplished by taking RRS 201 (3 credit hours), RRS 202 (3 credit hours) and any combination of the remaining RRS research seminars. These research seminars consist of research project work (9 to 12 hours per week) combined with a research methods, project management, and professional development component.
Randall Research Scholars courses count toward the 12-hour Honors College Elective requirement.
RRS 101 fulfills the Honors Year One requirement.
For more information, contact The University of Alabama Honors College, Randall Research Scholars Program, Box 870169, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0169; (205) 348-5500; honors.ua.edu.
Randall Research Scholars Program Course List
|Freshman Seminars: 8 Hours Required|
|RRS 101||RRS Freshman 1||4|
|RRS 102||RRS Freshman 2||4|
|Sophomore Seminars: 6 Hours Required|
|RRS 201||RRS Sophomore Seminar 1||3|
|RRS 202||RRS Sophomore Seminar 2||3|
|Junior/Senior Research Seminars: 6 Hours Required - May be any combination of the remaining courses|
|RRS 301||RRS Junior Research Seminar 1||3|
|RRS 302||RRS Junior Research Seminar 2||3|
|RRS 451||RRS Senior Research Seminar 1||3|
|RRS 452||RRS Senior Research Seminar 2||3|
|RRS 425||RRS Research Project||1-6|