Research Opportunities for Undergraduates

Research helps students apply lessons from the classroom to real life international issues, providing a more holistic, hands-on approach to their studies. Participating in research deepens their knowledge of a topic that interests them while also helping them build a skill set that will prepare them for their future academic or professional goals.

The following online tutorials, fellowship opportunities, and conferences are opportunities for undergraduates to participate in research in a variety of different ways and complement their core curricular experience.  

Skills Based Learning Trainings
Learn specific software skills through this collated list of relevant online tutorials about building research skills for a variety of projects, from photojournalism to coding data. Available to all Georgetown University students with their NetID and password.

Georgetown Library Workshops
Georgetown Library workshops are free to all members of the Georgetown community interested in learning various research and technology skills and applications, including citation management, digital mapping, video and audio production, data visualization, social media marketing, and more.

Keep an eye out for these workshops the library has conducted in the past that may be especially useful for research.

  • Minding the Gap: Conducting a Thorough Literature Review for Capstones and Master Essays
  • Working with Data in R
  • Data Cleanup and Analysis Tools in Excel
  • Introduction to Digital Mapping: teaches the fundamentals of digital mapping, a method of preparing maps in which the data is stored in the computer. These tutorials explore Geographic Information Systems (GIS) as well as spatial analysis.
  • Introduction to Tableau: Tableau Public allows users to upload their own data sets to create complex, interactive visualizations and charts. In order to host and share their interactive charts, users need to create a free account with Tableau Public.

Mortara Center Workshops
Powerpoint Presentation Rules (Kate McNamara, former Director, Mortara Center)
Professor McNamara outlines best practices for Powerpoint presentations to effectively convey information.

How to Write a Literature Review (Abe Newman, Director, Mortara Center) (Audio recording)
Professor Newman explains literature reviews and how to conduct one. This workshop also highlights tools and resources students may use to assist them in a research for a literature review.


SFS Research Opportunities and Funding

BSFS Dean’s Undergraduate Fund
(SFS Undergraduates)

The School of Foreign Service Undergraduate Dean’s Fund offers academic year grants for either thesis projects or other academic research. All School of Foreign Service students, first year through fourth year, are encouraged to apply. Students may apply for up to one grant per semester with a maximum of two grants per year. Students may apply in groups or individually. To apply, please fill out the application form. The committee reviews applications on a bi-monthly basis and the committee will not consider last minute requests. For questions please email Shelby Roller at The Dean’s Fund is currently accepting applications for the 2018-2019 academic year.

Carroll Fellows Initiative
(First year Georgetown students)

The Carroll Fellows Initiative helps its Fellows organize and support their pursuit of excellence in a community of like-minded peers. Carroll Fellows value hard work, patience, honesty, rationality, curiosity and learning. They treat their college years as a laboratory in leadership and define themselves as thinkers who do. Fellows also receive structured research training as part of the CFI Forum. Students apply to the Carroll Fellows in the fall of their first year.

Center Scholars
(SFS Undergraduates)

The School of Foreign Service Scholars Program will place SFS undergraduate students in different research centers, often tied to master’s programs, throughout the School. Students interested in national security might work with the Center for Security Studies, those interested in Asia with the Asian Studies Program, and so on. Scholars will work on professional projects, conduct advanced research, get to know graduate faculty and master’s students, and engage the intellectual life of the programs. The particulars will vary: some scholars might conduct research in teams for an international organization or corporation. Others would assist Georgetown scholars in their research. Still others might do independent work under the supervision of a graduate student and professor. All scholars, however, will be part of a small group focused on cutting-edge research and important issues in the world today. Scholars will be with the centers and programs for at least a year.An information session for interested students will be held in February, and the application process will be announced in March. If you have any questions please Shelby Roller at

Georgetown Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (GUROP)
(All undergraduates)

GUROP offers all students the opportunity to conduct research with a faculty member in their discipline.  Students are matched with faculty doing research within an area of interest and commit 60 hours/semester to the specific project.

ISD Fellowship in Diplomacy
(SFS Junior Undergraduate and Graduate students)

The ISD Fellows in Diplomacy program provides academic credit and non-service stipends or merit-based tuition scholarships ($3,000 each) to selected BSFS and graduate SFS students who wish to pursue independent research projects that focus on ongoing and emerging diplomatic issues.  The Institute pairs students with advisers drawn from ISD senior staff, Georgetown University faculty and Washington-based practitioners. The research project begins in the fall semester and culminates in a substantial (30-page) study that is presented during the spring semester. Fellows also have the opportunity to participate in other ISD activities.

Undergraduate School of Foreign Service (BSFS): Two juniors are selected each spring as the Ambassador Ellsworth Bunker and John Humes ISD fellows in support of work proposed for their senior year (minimum GPA 3.5).

BSFS Fellows receive three credits and a non-service stipend or merit-based tuition scholarship.  Students taking the course for credit should register for spring INAF-912.

Mortara Undergraduate Research Fellows (MURFS)
(Selected first year SFS undergraduate students)

The Mortara Undergraduate Research Fellows is a four-year research apprenticeship program. Five first-year School of Foreign Service (SFS) students are selected in the spring semester and paired with a faculty mentor to gain hands on experience as a research assistant working on advanced research methods and projects. By supporting faculty research initiatives, students gain the necessary skills to carry-out their own independent research in their third and fourth year.

Pelosi Scholars Initiative (Formerly Walsh)
(SFS Sophomore and Junior undergrads)

The mission of the Walsh Scholars Initiative is to provide exceptional SFS undergraduate students with the professional skillset and network of practitioners and scholars necessary to address the most pressing international challenges of our time.  In keeping with the school’s century-long tradition of preparing students for public service and global leadership, WSI enables students to complement their rigorous academic coursework with mentorship and professional experience in order to recognize their full potential as women and men for others.


These conferences are open to any undergraduates from any university.

Carroll Round
The Carroll Round is an annual international economics conference at Georgetown University that provides a unique forum for research and discussion among the world’s top undergraduates. The goal of the Carroll Round is to foster the exchange of ideas among leading undergraduate international economics and political economy students by encouraging and supporting the pursuit of scholarly innovation in the field.

The conference encourages an informed and productive dialogue about global economic issues by bringing together participants and prominent members of the academic and policy-making communities through presentations, discussions, and lectures.

As an academic conference, the Carroll Round revolves around the presentation and discussion of original research by undergraduates. Students present their findings in journal-length articles and summarize their project in discussion panels moderated by economics professors and practitioners.

Walsh Exchange
The Walsh Exchange is an undergraduate international relations research conference held in April.  Focusing on the three broad themes of international institutions, international politics, and security and area studies, the Exchange affords top undergraduate students from across the world the ability to gain greater exposure for their research by presenting in a formal conference setting.

Other Resources

Are you an SFS student looking for funding for a research project? The SFS offers several grants and scholarships for independent research.

For more research opportunities, check out the Georgetown Office of Fellowships, Awards, and Resources (GOFAR).