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Community Based Undergraduate Research Grant (CBURG)

The application portal is closed

Applications were due by 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday, March 23rd, 2021.


Community Based Undergraduate Research Grants provide the opportunity for pairs or teams of students to develop research projects that apply their academic skills, experiences, ideas, and humility to community-based issues within and beyond the Commonwealth of Virginia. Projects from all disciplines that address real world problems are eligible for consideration, and interdisciplinary work is encouraged. CBURG student teams will propose a substantial research project that addresses a public need or issue under the supervision of a UVA faculty mentor and in collaboration with a community organization. These research projects are expected to be carried out in the summer and subsequent academic year following application for the award.

Faculty Mentor and Community Organization Liaison

Interested students should discuss the proposed project with a faculty mentor who will advise them in their work early in the process of developing their proposal. The students and faculty mentor should also identify and partner with a community organization in pursuit of their goal(s). Both the faculty mentor and the community organization liaison will be asked to submit forms in support of the project proposal as a part of the application. Upon completion the faculty mentor will submit a brief narrative assessment of the students’ project.


CBURG teams may be granted up to $10,000 to pursue their objectives, and faculty mentors will receive research support in the amount of $500. Faculty who do not wish to claim these funds should indicate this at the time of the application.


Current first-, second-, and third-year undergraduate students are eligible to apply for the CBURG, and teams may include one graduate student from UVA. Applicants must be fulltime students at UVA and must remain enrolled at the university through the completion of their project. The program welcomes proposals from all subject areas and schools at the university.

Application Process

Students should designate an undergraduate student to be the team leader, who will fill out the application for the team. The team leader will submit a single project proposal and budget request, as well as resumes and unofficial transcripts for each student on the project. The team leader will be asked to provide the contact information for their faculty mentor, who will complete the Research Mentor Support Form, and for the community organization liaison, who will complete the Community Organization Liaison Support Form.

Faculty reviewers will assess each application based on merit, taking into account such considerations as clarity of the research question, appropriateness of methodology, the project’s feasibility, the applicants’ preparation for undertaking the project, and the level of engagement with the community.

The project proposal is expected to be written in the style of a grant application and should clearly identify the community issue being addressed. Proposals should not exceed 2 pages (single-spaced, 12 point font, with 1-inch margins) and should include the following sections: background and question(s), methods, anticipated outcomes, and the significance of the work. Proposals should be uniformly cited using a citation style appropriate to the field of the project, and a bibliography should be included (though this will not count towards the page limit).

Final Product

Recipients are expected to carry out their projects in a professional manner and hold themselves accountable to the responsibilities outlined by the Office of Undergraduate Research. These include (1) tracking expenses while conducting work and submitting a final expense report which clearly details how funds were used in the spring of 2022; (2) submitting an abstract and presenting at the Undergraduate Research Symposium in April of 2022; and (3) completing an outcomes and reflections form in the spring of 2022. Recipients may also be asked to complete brief project updates at one or more points between when funds are available and the spring following term.

Student Projects Abroad Travel Form

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and university policy, students will not be permitted to travel abroad on the Community Based Undergraduate Research Grant this year. We are sorry for the inconvenience and frustration that this may cause.

Institutional Review Board Approval

Many research projects require approval by one of the University’s Institutional Review Boards. If your project works with human subjects, participants, their data, or animals, you may need IRB approval. You can learn more here about the IRB here. Approval is not required at the time of application but is required before the project begins.

CBURG Recipient Projects

Selected Resources on Community Based Research