FAQ

We are happy to answer questions that prospective applicants to our REU Site may have.  However, please check the following for answers to frequently asked questions before contacting us.

When will you start accepting applications for the Summer 2020 program?
August 24, 2019.

When applications due for the Summer 2020 program?
ALL application materials (this completed survey, requested documents, and 2 letters of recommendation) must be received by January 06, 2020

How many students are supported in this REU Human Factors Research Site?
We typically have funding to support up to 7 students per year.

When will I hear about the decision on my application?
Finalists are typically selected by February 18 and applicants must make their decision to accept the offer by March 1 of each year.
Please check the REU website after February 15 to find out when decisions have been made. Only those who are selected will be sent notification emails.

If I graduate in Spring 2020, am I eligible to participate in the REU program in Summer 2020?
Unfortunately, no.  NSF stipulates that all REU participants must be current undergraduates.

The application asks for two reference letters from academic faculty.  If I do not have close relationships with academic faculty, is it OK if one of the letters comes from my employer or a graduate teaching assistant/postdoc?
Yes, although letters from faculty are preferred when possible.

Can I receive academic credit for the summer experience?
Yes.  Students may work with either their home institution or Rice University to pursue academic credit for the experience.  Often this is in the form of internship credit, undergraduate research credit, capstone course credit, or similar.

Is this REU opportunity open to students at Rice?
Students from Rice University will receive low priority on admissions because the National Science Foundation requires that a significant fraction of REU participants must come from outside Rice University and at least half must be recruited from academic institutions where research opportunities in STEM are limited.

Is the list of projects from previous years or are they the topics of research for this year’s REU program?  
The projects listed represent topics for this year but they are flexible, depending on mutual interests of faculty mentors and REU students. There will be a different project for each student/mentor.

How are my letters of recommendation submitted?
When you have completed and submitted your application, an email is sent to each letter writer (using the email addresses you provided in the application) that provides them with information on how to send the letter of recommendation. They will need to write a letter of recommendation on official letter head, scan it into the computer, and attach it using the link that we provide to them.