National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates (NSF REU)

Nature of Research/Program Description: 

The National Science Foundation (NSF) Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program supports undergraduate research with REU Site grants and REU Supplemental grants. REU Site grants are regular summer programs, while Supplementals grants are awarded to individual researchers who already have an NSF grant.  Positions funded by Supplemental grants can be any time during the year.

REU Site Programs

NSF funds a large number of research opportunities for undergraduate students through the REU Site program. Each site, typically at a university, has a group of 6-10 undergraduates who work on specific research projects under the mentorship of faculty and other researchers. Students are granted stipends and, in many cases, assistance with housing and travel. Additional activities, including professional development workshops, tours, and social activities, provide students with opportunities to network and to learn about the culture of science.  An REU Site may be at either a US or foreign location.

To see current REU Sites at UCSC, go to the datbase and search "UCSC REU." UCSC students are not given preference for these programs, and each program can take only a few students from the host university, so you should alse apply to other REU site programs at other location.

Finding an opportunity at an REU site

By using the web page, Search for an REU Site, you may examine opportunities in the subject areas supported by various NSF units. Also, you may search by keywords to identify sites in particular research areas or with certain features, such as a particular location.

Students must contact the individual sites for information and application materials. NSF does not have application materials and does not select student participants. A contact person and contact information is listed for each site.

REU Supplemental Program

The REU Supplemental grants are awarded to researchers who have an NSF grant to support an undergraduate researcher. The position with an individual researcher can be at any time during the year and the terms and conditions of the position are worked out directly with the researcher.  

Research Experience for Undergraduates Symposium

The Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) sponsors an annual national symposium for undergraduates and faculty involved in the REU program to present their results and network.

Keywords: NSF; REU; stipend; site; undergraduate research; national science foundation, summer; Astronomical Sciences; Atmospheric and Geospace Sciences; Biological Sciences; Chemistry; Computer and Information Science and Engineering; Cyberinfrastructure; Department of Defense (DoD); Earth Sciences; Education and Human Resources; Engineering; Ethics and Values Studies; International Science and Engineering; Materials Research; Mathematical Sciences; Ocean Sciences; Physics; Polar Programs; Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences

Targeted Students: 
Undergraduate student participants in either REU Sites or REU Supplements must be U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals, or permanent residents of the United States.
Program Time Period: 
Academic Year
Time Period Details: 
Site- in summer; Supplemental- arranged with researcher
Travel assistance and housing may be provided.
Applied Physics
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Business Management Economics
Cognitive Science
Computer Engineering
Computer Science
Computer Science: Computer Game Design
Earth Sciences
Ecology and Evolution
Education and Teaching
Electrical Engineering
Environmental Studies
Global Economics
Human Biology
Legal Studies
Marine Biology
Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology
Network and Digital Technology
Physics (Astrophysics)
Physics Education
Plant Sciences
Robotics Engineering
Technology and Information Management