What is the UIC Global Research Competition?
Every year since 2013, Underwood International College has granted its undergraduates a precious opportunity to carry out their self-directed research projects with topics of their interest and passion. In other words, UIC holds an annual global research competition in which accomplished UIC faculty judges select one to two (possibly three) research proposals submitted by its students. The evaluation process usually takes around 2 weeks. After notification, the winning teams are awarded with research funding up to KRW3,500,000 per individual and mentorship from UIC professors for them to systematically prepare and effectively conduct their research over the summer break. After successfully completing the research, the students will receive one credit under ‘UIC Research Project’, a pass/non-pass elective summer course.
All UIC students are allowed to participate in the competition either individually or as a team of up to four students. If students participate as a team, it is highly encouraged that the team is comprised of students from different disciplines, from the hard sciences to the humanities, as a means to integrate two or more academic disciplines within the research. Unfortunately, students in their final semesters are not eligible for the program. Thus, the sooner one participates, the more beneficial it will be as there will be more time for one to develop a stronger proposal even if one is not selected at his or her first attempt. Students are allowed to submit their proposals (hopefully the improved versions of their initial proposals) again in the following years if they are not selected as the grand recipients for the current year.
There is no particular restriction for the research topic as long as the subject enhances the knowledge students have acquired during class. Since the research does not necessarily have to be scientific, students are able to take a creative approach and intellectually challenge themselves. Furthermore, students can freely choose the location, whether it be a region in Korea or a foreign country (possibly multiple countries), that they will be visiting to conduct their research. The more specific plans (i.e. particular universities, government institutions, non-profit organizations, religious communities, smart cities…etc.) noted in the application of the competition, the better. Although assistance may be asked for in certain circumstances, students are fully responsible for making any necessary arrangements or contacts prior to their visit. Regarding the overseas research period, there is a restriction that students must finish their field research work over a span of no more than two weeks. A specific date, usually mid-July, will be set for the students to submit the first draft of their research paper. Another month will be given for the students to further edit their research paper and to produce a brochure to be published on the official UIC website.
Applying for the UIC Global Research Competition
In order for UIC students to participate in the competition, they will have to submit a total of four crucial documents. First of all, they should fill out the competition entry form uploaded under the [Announcements – Academic Affairs] section of the UIC homepage. Each team must have a Research Advisor (any Yonsei faculty member) who will be in charge of supervising the research process. The research advisor, however, does not have to accompany the students when they conduct field research. Students should also write and submit a research proposal explaining the topic/focus, methodology, and significance of the research. The proposal does not have to be long and should be around 300 words. Moreover, a detailed itinerary of the trip and a budget plan must be submitted along with the entry form and the research proposal.
Don’t make the research topic too broad or too complicated since there is a limited amount of time to conduct research over the summer. It is recommended to visit a single country over the given span of two weeks. Since students are required to conduct research, write a research paper (approx. more than 20 pages), to make a brochure, and give a formal presentation, it is a good idea to choose a specific topic of appropriate scope. Approaching the subject with multiple perspectives is recommended. A variety of stakeholders should be addressed.
If collecting qualitative data through interviews make sure to contact the potential interviewees in advance (at least a month) in order to check whether or not the interviewee will be available during the specific time period. In fact, there are a lot of cases in which credible figures go on vacation to other countries during the summer, it is highly crucial to make appointments as soon as possible.
It is recommended to divide specific roles amongst group members in order to efficiently organize the required work and prevent possible conflicts during the research process. Make sure each member is responsible for their own portion and always keep in mind that communication is crucial.
Previously Selected Research Topics from 2016-2018
*All research brochures from 2013 to 2018 are available on the UIC website.
2018 Emergence of Smart Cities: Tallinn and Songdo
2018 The Coexistence and Interplay of Ethnic and Situational Identity in Hawaii
2018 An Analytical Study on the Kopino Phenomenon
2017 How to Innovate Border-Bound Work Environment
2017 Application of Robotics in Caring the Aging Population
2016 A Comparative Study on Gender Equality in Iceland and South Korea
2016 Canada: Winter is Coming (2018 PyeongChang Olympics)
2016 Development of Elderly Alzheimer Care in Japan