Road to Discovery: A Guide to Research

Deciding what to research can be a difficult task, but the Honors College can help you engage in quality research in any field of interest.You want to be certain that the opportunity is in alignment with your academic and career goals.

Browse the links below to view information on available departments.

Locating a mentor is a key component of the research process. Faculty mentors will serve as guides and your main resource for questions and advice. Most credit-based opportunities require a mentor; therefore, it is advantageous for you to locate one early.

You can use the following resources to help you find a faculty mentor:

  • Browse departmental websites for information on the individual research experience and expertise of various faculty members. This is usually located in faculty profiles, curriculum vitae, personal web pages, and publications.
  • Use the campus directory to locate contact information
  • Visit the Georgia State Research webpage to get inspired by the innovative research being conducted on campus
  • Access ScholarWorks to browse published undergraduate theses.

We find that an email is the best way for communication with a potential faculty mentor. We recommend using the following details in your message to ensure a professional introduction.

  • Use your Georgia State student email account
  • Begin your message with, Dear Professor or Dr.
  • Include:
    • Your name
    • Expected graduation term
    • Reason for your message
    • Your interest in the faculty’s research ( Note: It is expected that you have reviewed and are familiar with the professor’s body of work)
  • Request to meet and available days and time (availability for the week is acceptable)


  • DO NOT send a blanket message to the department.
  • DO email your potential faculty mentors separately.
  • DO remain persistent and follow up with a potential faculty mentor.

Once you have secured an appointment with a potential faculty mentor conduct yourself in the following manner:

  • Be on time. If you are going to be late or have to cancel the appointment, communicate this well in advance.
  • Place your cell phone on silent.
  • Greet faculty with a firm hand shake and make eye contact throughout the meeting.
  • Be prepared to ask questions in regards to his or her research.
  • Be prepared to explain your academic and professional goals and how undergraduate research will help you achieve those goals.
  • Bring paper, pen, iPad, etc. in order to take notes.
  • Ask about expectations for undergraduate researchers.
  • Be sure that the potential mentor’s philosophy is in alignment with your future goals.

Download a Printable Version of the Road to Discovery