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Undergraduate Research


Coastal's Undergraduate Research initiative (UGR) is a resource for support and promotion of undergraduate learning and faculty/student collaboration through research experiences and the dissemination of research outcomes.

Research is a process of careful inquiry, methodology and outcomes leading to the discovery of new information. Although there are some differences in how research is conducted across disciplines, research is not restricted to certain disciplines and occurs in all programs at the University. Undergraduate students are currently working on numerous and diverse projects. 

CCU's 2014 Undergraduate Research Competition winners announced

Sixty-nine presentations were delivered by Coastal Carolina University students from 20 majors representing all five colleges at the Undergraduate Research Competition held recently. The awards will be formally presented at the Honors Convocation on Friday, May 9, at 3 p.m. in Wheelwright Auditorium.

In most cases, students presented on projects completed under the mentorship of CCU faculty, but some completed projects through off-campus internships, as well. Students presented alone or in teams, and a few presented their work on more than one project, sometimes in very different disciplines.  For example, Nathan Grimes, who won first place in the Humanities and Business category, managed to combine his two majors of marine science and economics into a business presentation on externalities and incentives controlling shark fin markets, but he also presented a poster on a physics project examining sources of error in radar wave propagation related to meteorological studies.  “Every year, I am blown away by the breadth and talent of our student researchers,” said Director of Undergraduate Research, Rob Young. “These kinds of hands-on experiences are invaluable for landing jobs and getting into graduate schools after graduation.” Following the competition, several students headed to the University of Kentucky to present their research at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research, as well.

Presentations at the CCU Undergraduate Research Competition were judged by more than 30 faculty judges representing all colleges and the library. Award categories and the number of awards in each category were determined based on the presentation submissions, and directly reflect the numerical distribution of topics and presentation formats, oral or poster. The following students placed first or second in their respective categories:

Oral Presentations (awards in three categories)

First Place, Humanities and Business: Nathaniel Grimes, Institutions of the Shark Fin Market: Roles of Externalities and Incentives (Economics and Marine Science major, Mentor: Rob Salvino)

First Place, Social and Political Sciences: Ashleigh Simons, Blame attribution as a function of sexual assault victim characteristics (Psychology major, Mentor: Linda Palm)

First Place, Physical, Biological, and Health Sciences: Janel Reeves, Call a Vegetable a Vegetable: Perceptions and Taste Ratings (Biology major, Mentor:  Sharon Thompson)

Second Place, Physical, Biological, and Health Sciences: Mary Anderson, Effectiveness of Gaming Systems on Balance in Older Individuals (Biology major, Mentors: Greg Martel and Karen Aguirre)

Poster Presentations (all categories combined)

Tie for First Place: Anthony Carrone, Tatoos and Risk Taking Behavior in College Students (Psychology major, Mentor: Miranda Brenneman); and Valerie Hartigan, Stable Isotope Analysis in Deep Sea Cephalopods of the Bear Seamount (Marine Science major, Mentor: Juli Harding)

Second Place: Joseph Griswold, Prevalence and Intensity of Ectoparasites on Fundulus heteroclitus as a Function of Size in Two Marsh Systems in South Carolina, USA (Marine Science major, Mentor: Erin Burge)

Save the Date

29th Annual
National Council for Undergraduate Research (NCUR)

April 16-18, 2015
Eastern Washington University
Cheney, Washington

  Call for Papers:
  September 8, 2014

  Deadline for Abstract 
  December 2, 2014

For more information, visit

Big South
Undergraduate Research
Symposium 2015

April 10-11, 2015
Campbell University
Buies Creek, North Carolina


Office Location

Office for Undergraduate Research
Sands Hall 111

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