Summer Education Research Program (SERP)

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Program Goals

The SERP program is sponsored by the School of Education and the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Graduate School. The program provides minority and other traditionally underrepresented undergraduate students interested in pursuing graduate studies in the academic fields within the School of Education a valuable opportunity to engage in independent research guided by a faculty mentor in the School of Education.

SERP aims to challenge each undergraduate scholar to weave issues of equity and diversity within his/her/their research topic. The program encourages undergraduate researchers to investigate how these issues impact various aspects of education found across nine departments in the School of Education. 

Art Education (a division in the Art Dept.)
Counseling Psychology
Curriculum & Instruction
Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis
Educational Policy Studies
Educational Psychology
Rehabilitation Psychology and Special Education
Theatre and Drama

Specific areas of research might include: Educational Leadership, Policy Development, Urban Education, Curriculum Development, Teacher Education, Multicultural Education, English as a Second Language, Bilingual Education, Math and Science Education, Human Development and Learning, Counseling Psychology, Educational Psychology, Special Education, Rehabilitation Psychology, Testing and Evaluation, and Art Education, Theatre and Drama and Dance.

Program Components

The SERP program is a ten-week summer program. During the ​ten-week session, from ​May 28 – August 3, 2019, each SERP participant receives guidance from a faculty mentor on his/her/their chosen research topic, engages in weekly seminars and activities with other students and mentors, and prepares and presents a paper on their research topic at the end of the program. Students submit their final paper and presentation to their faculty mentor and SERP staff.  In addition, SERP covers participants' room and board and each participant receives a stipend up to $3000.00. For out-of-state participants, travel arrangements are also covered by SERP. The SERP participants live on campus, attend a cultural field trip, have access to University facilities such as libraries, computer labs, writing labs, and recreational facilities, as well as interact with other UW-Madison summer research opportunity program students for various social and professional activities such as the Graduate Fair/Panel and Picnic.

Deadline and Important Documents
If you are interested in participating in the SERP program for the Summer of 201​9, the rolling application process for SERP begins November 1, 201​​​8, and ends February 1​5, 201​9. ​ SERP encourages application submissions by February 1, 201​9, prior to the Summer Research Opportunity Program (SROP) application deadline of February 15, 2019, to facilitate matching with SERP faculty mentors. 

There are eleven SROP programs at UW-Madison, including the Summer Education Research Program (SERP) in the School of Education, and all use the Summer Research Opportunities Programs (SROP) application portal.  Students specify which SROP programs they are applying to in the SROP application, such as SERP, and complete the SROP application by February 15, 2019.

You can access the online application to apply to SERP here

In the online SROP application, students submit three written statements (each with 3900 character limit) and upload relevant documents:

a) Future Goals and Career Plans ​statement;
b) Research Area(s) statement; ​
c) Research Experience description;
d) upload two signed letters of recommendations from faculty or staff members whom you have had as instructors and/or research mentors; and
e) official transcript(s).  ​

Once SROP applications are submitted, the Summer Education Research Program Admissions Committee reviews ​SERP applicants and works with Education departments to match applicants' research interests with available faculty in each Education department. 

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