Humanities Division

What does it mean to be human, to analyze and construct the human experience? These are the fundamental questions that guide and unite the learning, teaching and scholarship conducted in UC Santa Cruz’s Humanities Division. The exploration and discussion of this query has culminated in some of humanity’s most deeply and widely valued beliefs and teachings about ourselves and the world in which we live. (from About the Humanities Division)

Undergraduates participate in research in sophisticated projects that address fundamental questions in the field. The Humanities Undergraduate Research Award (HUGRA) provides support for students to pursue research.  Visit the HUGRA Recipients site for inspiring examples.

Select a topic below to learn how you can become involved.

                        Select one of the topics:

Preparing for Undergraduate Research

Finding an Opportunity

The Independent Project Option

Funding Your Project 

Presentation Opportunities

Student Organizations 

Finding an Opportunity

Undergraduates in the Humanities pursue research in classes, by assisting a professor, and by conducting an Independent Project with a professor to extend or develop a topic from a class. 

Finding an opportunity is a process that can take a considerable amount of time and commitment.  The suggestions below can help.

Consider your interests

  • What classes have engaged your imagination?
  • What causes or topics are you passionate about?

Evaluate your goals and consider practical issues

  • What do you hope to gain from undergraduate research?
  • Do you need a position to help you get a job after you graduate? To help you get into graduate school?
  • Do you need a paid position? Do you need academic credit? (You can't get paid and get credit for a position.)
  • Does the position require transportation?

Explore your options

UCSC sites

Additional sites

Use your resources

  • Talk to other students, including graduate students, who are doing research and ask how they got started
  • Go to office hours and ask your instructors about their work
  • Visit your Department's or Division's Academic Adviser
  • Visit the Career Center
  • Join a student group

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Funding Your Project

Check with the UCSC Financial Aid Office to see if you qualify for specific funding opportunities.

There are many options to help fund your project, including external funding, funding for UC students, and departmental and college grants.

External Funding

Grant Database- Pivot

The University of California at Santa Cruz has a license to Pivot, a grant database that includes grants for undergraduate research, including for research in the Humanities.  You need to register using your UCSC email the first time you use it, but the service is free.

National Organizations and Clubs/Societies

Check the funding opportunities for undergraduates at any organization you belong to. You should also ask your mentor and graduate students in your field what conferences students go to frequently. Conferences and meetings often provide travel grants for students.

UCSC Sources

The Nancy Pascal Field Study Scholarship is open to any undergraduate student who is planning a field study through a campus department or program. The deadline for applications is in late February. For more information, contact Veronica Lopez-Duran at 459-2371.

The Humanities Division, the Department, and your Professor

The Dean's office may provide funding for some projects- contact them for more information. Some departments also provide funding, so check with the department manager, the department webpage, and your academic adviser. If you are working with a professor, ask if there is funding for research expenses, conference travel, or other costs before starting your project. 

Some funding options are listed below:

UCSC Colleges

Below are some links to college pages that list funding opportunities for undergraduates in that college.  Be sure to check with your college adviser, since not all opportunities are posted online.

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Presentation Opportunities

Start by asking your mentor for suggestions.  Also check

Listed below are some opportunities to present your research at UCSC.  Please note the list is not comprehensive.

  • Chinquapin Literary Magazine including poetry, photography, illustration, short fiction, prose
  • Crown College Social Fiction Conference
  • Humanities Undergraduate Research Awards Poster Presentations
  • The Linguistics Undergraduate Research Conference
  • Literature Undergraduate Colloquium
  • Matchbox Magazine is an UC-wide collaborative creative writing project. The magazine publishes prose, poetry, and art created by students throughout the UC system, and distributes copies of their magazine to the literature departments at each UC School.
  • The Red Wheelbarrow including poetry, fiction, nonfiction, art, photography
  • TWANAS (Third World and Native American Student Press Collective) including writers, illustrators, photographers, and graphic designers
  • UCSC Annual History Colloquium
  • UCSC undergraduate research History Annals Research Journal

Journals that Accept Papers Authored by Undergraduates

If the journal is open-access (provided to all readers with no fee), the UCSC library may be able to help with publication fees.  Click here for more information.

Sites that list journals that accept undergraduate papers in all disciplines:

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Student Organizations

Chinquapin Literary Magazine- poetry, photography, illustration, short fiction, prose
Contact: chinquapin@gmail.com

Matchbox Magazine-prose, poetry, and artwork by UC students
Contact: matchboxmagazine@gmail.com

The Red Wheelbarrow including poetry, fiction, nonfiction, art, photography
Contact:ucscredwheelbarrow@gmail.com

TWANAS (Third World and Native American Student Press Collective)

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