Research Intensive (RI) and Directed Independent Research (DIR) Designations

Research Intensive (RI) and Directed Independent Research (DIR) course designations were created to expand the practice of curricular-based research opportunities for students and to allow documentation of student engagement in research on their transcripts. These courses are coordinated through the Undergraduate Curriculum Committee (URCC), a subcommittee of the University Undergraduate Programs Committee (UUPC). Courses are evaluated monthly at URCC meetings.

Undergraduate Research Curriculum Committee (URCC)

For more on the URCC, please click  here.

Research Intensive (RI) Designation

RI designated courses are ones in which undergraduate students actively engage in the process of research and inquiry at the intensive level through projects and assignments. These projects should count for a significant portion of the course grade.

RI courses must include specific language to address how students are engaging in the six Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) and standardized RI language in their syllabi.

To facilitate the inclusion of the Ethics and Communication SLOs in your syllabus, recommended language is provided for your consideration.

Please consult your College Liaison for assistance in preparing RI designation materials.

How to submit your course for RI Designation

Faculty Support for RI Courses

Directed Independent Research (DIR) Designation

Directed Independent Research (DIR) courses serve as an alternative/addition to the existing DIS (Directed Independent Study) for undergraduate research documentation on student transcripts. Departments may also include a zero-credit option for DIR students, which would have no additional tuition charge.

DIR New Course Procedures

The Directed Independent Research (DIR) numbering system is being proposed specifically for students engaged in research and inquiry mentored by a faculty member as defined by the departments and colleges. These courses can have a variable credit option including a zero credit option (S/U grade only). The DIR specific course numbering system includes the following: (course prefixes to be determined by the departments)

  • XXX2915 (lower division for grade)
  • XXX2916 (lower division for S/U)
  • XXX4915 (upper division for grade)
  • XXX4916 (upper division for S/U)

Please note all zero credit offerings for DIR must be for S/U grade.

Departments interested in establishing DIR courses will require the completion of a new course form (here) for each new course being proposed, using the DIR course numbering system provided above. No syllabus is required for DIR courses.

Once the new course forms are approved at the department and college level, faculty can work with the OURI liaisons and submit the new course form directly to the University Undergraduate Programs Committee, UUPC.

For colleges interested in establishing DIR for several departments within a program, chairs can work with your college OURI Liaison (liaisons) to complete a comprehensive proposal to be submitted on behalf of the college

RI and DIR Courses Approved List by College (here)