How does SURE work?

All undergraduate students conducting course-based or faculty-led research projects at the University of Saskatchewan (or interested in doing research now or in the future) are welcome to take part in SURE: Student Undergraduate Research Experience. Students taking co-op or internship positions are also welcome to join. 

Note: all students at USask conducting research must be supervised, and all research must be pre-approved (if required) by the relevant ethics committee.  Do not start a research project or conduct any research unless you are approved and supported to do so. Scholarly and artistic projects may be completed independently if they meet ethics standards for that discipline.

Students who register in SURE will be eligible to receive co-curricular credit by completing a minimum ten hours of training, webinars, or events supported or delivered through SURE each term (fall, winter, or summer). Students keep their own record of which webinars, training or events they attend. At the end of each term, they submit their hours and, if qualified, SURE is added to their co-curricular record.

SURE also partners with the College of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies for the annual Summer Symposium, and with the USSU to support the Undergraduate Research Symposium.

Fall 2021 registration can be found here. Registration ends September 17th 2021.

Students in SURE must complete 10 hours of training, from the following categories: 
Communication: 2 hours minimum
Research ethics, safety, management and analysis: 2 hours minimum
Professional Development/Entrepreneurship: 2 hours minimum
The remaining 4 hours can be chosen to respond to the student's experiences, disciplinary needs, and to focus on any areas with need support or improvement. 
Remember: all research conducted at USask must be supported via a supervisor or within a course-based research experience. Scholarly and artistic projects may be completed independently if they meet the ethics criteria of that discipline. 

Webinars, Training and Events

The SURE program pulls from multiple units across campus to offer a wide range of suitable options for your SURE co-curricular credit. Some of these events are organized by the Undergraduate Research Intiative. Others (see below) are offered by USask library, Canadian Hub for Applied and Social Research (CHASR), USask Safety Services, USask Ethics, Tri-Council Ethics (TCPS Core 2), Research Excellence and Innovation, Career Services, and many more! 

Upcoming Fall 2021 SURE events (dates and times TBD). 

Event Time Category Registration
SURE fall 2021 Kickoff event Friday September 17th 3pm Information Register
How does research work at USask? Thursday September 23rd 3:30pm Professional Development Register
Landing an undergraduate research job Wednesday September 29th at 3:30pm Professional Development Register
Science Communication - guest Jay Whetter (an SRS presentation) Friday October 1st at 12:30pm Communication Register
Roundtable: USask faculty on why they support undergraduate research Thursday October 7th at 3pm Professional development Register
Roundtable: USask undergraduate student researchers chat about their experiences Thursday October 14th at 3:30pm Professional Development Register
Faculty-student meetup -- speed 'dating' for undergraduate research connections Late October/early November Professional Development
Research Skill Development Framework October 28th Professional Development Register
How to Write a Research Proposal (for undergraduate research) November Communications
How to Write an NSERC USRA proposal November Communications
Indigenous student NSERC USRA proposals November Professional Development
Christmas Symposium Late November Communications

Upcoming USask Library webinars (SURE-credit approved) Note: SURE students are welcome to register/attend both undergraduate and graduate level workshops at the library. Choose according to your interests, skill level, needs and available time.

Event Library link
Undergraduate writing workshops UG writing workshops
Undergraduate research workshops UG research workshops
Undergraduate citation workshops UG citation workshops
Graduate writing workshops Grad writing workshops
Graduate research workshops Grad research workshops
Graduate citation workshops Grad citation software workshops

 

USask Safety Services training is eligible for SURE credit. The most common safety training for students includes: Covid-19 training, Biosafety training, Laboratory Safety, WHMIS 2015, and Safety Orientiation for Employees. All Safety courses qualify for SURE credit.

Go to Safety Services training

 

Research Ethics: both human and animal research ethics training is eligible for SURE credit. Students actively working in human or animal research must take training. 

Training

Category

Link

Tri-Agency TCPSCore2 course on research ethics. 

Research management

Link to Tri-Agency TCPS Core2 Ethics

USask Animal Care and Research Support: Animal User Training

Research management

Link to Animal Care and Research Support - includes links to ethics training

USask library course on academic integrity

Research management

Link to Library course on academic integrity

USask Behavioural Research Ethics webinar

Research management

Link to USask Behavioural Research Ethics webinar

 

Canadian Hub for Applied and Social Research- CHASR. If you're conducting social science research, past webinars offered by CHASR may help! Training in mixed methods design, survey design, NVIVO, triangulation, program evaluation, GIS, social network analysis, SPSS, and more. Any of these past recorded webinars can count towards your SURE credit, under Research Management.

CHASR YouTube Site

 

USask Career Services offers many student-focused services, from career assessment (knowing your strengths/personality type to career readiness competencies) to one-on-one career planning (resumes, cover letters, practice interviews), through to professionalism in your online persona (LinkedIn and more) and career fairs, to connect you with potential employers. All USask Career Services events and activities qualify toward your SURE co-curricular credit under Professional Development. Take advantage today!

Go to Career Services website. 

List of summer 2021 SURE events with links to recordings

EVENT DESCRIPTION Category Video Recording
Welcome to SURE Join Merle Massie to learn about the summer SURE program and how it can support your summer research!  General Video
Comprehensive Searching for your Literature Review Join USask librarian Susan Murphy for excellent tips on getting the most out of your library search. Communication Recorded Video
Developing Good Habits Join USask skills genius Gina Koehn to learn some good habits to get you through your summer research. Professional development Recorded Video
How to organize and analyze your literature review Join USask graduate writing lead Jill McMillan to learn about effective ways to organize and analyze a literature review.  Communication Recorded Video
How to Read a Journal Article Merle Massie will host a workshop on how to read a journal article quickly and efficiently Communication Recorded Video
How to Write a Literature Review Join USask graduate writing lead Jill McMillan for good practices in writing your literature review Communication Recorded Video
Managing your References with Zotero You have read a lot of articles; now learn how to manage all of those references efficiently, with science librarian Helen Power. Research management Recorded Video
Research Data Management Possibly the most important webinar you can take: best practices for managing your research data. Bring your supervisor -- everyone learns on this one!  Research management Recorded Video
Safety Training Courses and training from USask Safety Services on lab safety, WHMIS, Covid-19, and more.  Research management Link to USask Safety Services
Human and Animal Research Ethics 

Tri-Agency TCPSCore2 course on research ethics. 

 

USask Animal Care and Research Support: Animal User Training

 

 

USask library course on academic integrity

Research management

Link to Tri-Agency TCPS Core2 Ethics

 

Link to Animal Care and Research Support - includes links to ethics training

 

Link to Library course on academic integrity

Research Data Analysis or Collection Students may choose any of the existing webinar videos created by CHASR Canadian Hub for Applied and Social Research: NVivo, SPSS, survey design, triangulation, mixed methods, program analysis, GIS and many more. Research management Link to CHASR YouTube
Open Publishing Join librarian DeDe Dawson to understand how and where you can publish your research so that more people can find and read it!  Communication Recorded Video
Open Science Join open science specialist Kevin Read to understand how, where and why you and your team can share not just your finished findings, but your raw data.  Research management Recorded Video
Picture a Scientist Documentary The ROCO documentary about gender bias in science, STEM disciplines and the academy. Invite your colleagues and supervisor -- everyone should watch this.  Professional Development This event was only offered live and was not recorded. This documentary is now on Netflix. HIGH RECOMMEND.
Research Commercialization How does a research product get to market or to providing value in the world outside of the lab? With Chris Bowman, REI Tech Transfer Manager

Professional Development/

Entrepreneurship

Recorded video
Business as a Force for Good -- the Obstacle is the Opportunity

Is the opportunity in the obstacle? Can the opportunity be used to create a business that benefits the people and the planet? Can consumers really influence business? Guest Speaker: Jeremy Lang of Pela

Professional Development/

Entrepreneurship

Recorded Video
Tech Startups 101

What does it take to build the next Skip the Dishes, Grammarly, or Zoom? Learn the fundamentals of a tech startup and what you need to be thinking about as you start building a company. Guest speaker: Aditi Chadha of Co.Labs

Professional Development/

Entrepreneurship

Recorded Video on Panopto (USask NSID required to view)
Startup Financing

What is Venture Capital? How do startup founders get money to build their ideas? What makes a Seed round different from a Series A? 

Tune in to this session to learn the basics of startup financing with Graeme Jobe, Finance & Partnerships Lead at Co.Labs.

 Professional Development/

Entrepreneurship

Recorded video (Panopto - USask NSID required)
EDI: Equity Diversity and Inclusion in Research Join College of Medicine EDI specialist Erin Prosser-Loose to discuss issues of EDI in research. Professional Development Recorded Video
Lean Startup Business Plan Business Model Canvas is a lean startup tool that can replace a formal business plan in order to allow you to iterate quickly on aspects of your business idea. With Chris Bowman (REI Tech Transfer Manager) and Erin Kulhawy (REI Tech Transfer Officer) Professional Development/ Entrepreneurship Recorded Video
How to Write a Grad School Application Join Marc Usunier of the College of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies to look at good practices for your grad school application Professional Development/ Communication Recorded Video
Establishing online identity and tracking scholarly impact Join USask library lead Candice Dahl to look at how scholars develop their online identity and impact. Professional Development Recorded Video
Check Your Business Idea/ Market Validation and Consumer Conversations How do you know if your business idea is good? How long should you keep it a secret? How do you know when your product is good enough to show to potential customers? With REI Associate Director Alix Hayden Professional Development/ Entrepreneurship Recorded Video
Networking and LinkedIn Join USask SECC lead Brock Egeto to understand how you can put the power of networking to your advantage, as well as tips to shine your LinkedIn profile.  Professional Development Recorded video
Writing a Scholarship Proposal Join graduate library writing specialist Jill McMillan to work on crafting an excellent scholarship proposal.  Communication Recorded Video
Understand the Market How to understand your market and where your product fits. Learn about the NABC model that will help you quickly develop a value proposition for your product. With Waine Noble (REI Intellectual property Specialist) and Erin Kulhawy (REI Tech Transfer Officer) Professional Development/ Entrepreneurship Recorded Video
Writing a Journal Article Join USask writing centre and USURJ coordinator Liv Marken to learn about good pratices in writing a journal article.  Communication Recorded Video
Intellectual Property and Licensing Primer What is intellectual property and how is it used and transferred in commercial settings? John Mapletoft (REI Tech Transfer Manager) Waine Noble (REI Intellectual Property Specialist) Professional Development/ Entrepreneurship Recorded Video
Graduate Student Roundtable: what is it really like in grad school? Join USask masters students for a roundtable and discussion forum on the ups and downs of graduate school Professional Development Recorded Video
Publishing with USURJ Join USask writing centre and USURJ coordinator Liv Marken and USURJ editors to learn the ins and outs of publishing with the USask Undergraduate Research Journal Communication Recorded Video
Business Pitching 101

How do you pitch your business or idea to advance toward your goals – whether it’s a pitch to a potential co-founder, an accelerator program, or to investors? With guest speaker Serese Selanders. 

Professional Development/ Entrepreneurship Recorded Video
Plain Language: how to make your writing clear and understandable Join USask graduate writing lead Jill McMillan for an overview of plain language. How to write so that people understand what you've written, the first time they read it.  Communication Recorded Video
Pitching your Science/Research Story to Media Do you think you have breaking research news, a research story, or an opinion that you think everyone should know about? Then join us to learn about how to pitch your science/research story to media! Hosted by Vaidehee Lanke of The Sheaf, Brooke Kleiboer of Research Profile and Impact, and Merle Massie, freelance journalist and author. *NOTE This session is paired with a session on Friday July 30th where you can pitch your ideas to a read editor!  Communication Recorded Video
Scientific Writing: Expressing Difficult Ideas Clearly Join USask graduate writing lead Jill McMillan for a deep dive into science writing: how to take difficult ideas and make them clear. Communication Recorded Video
UN Sustainable Development Goals and Research: A Road Map Join Senior UN SDG specialist Yasmine Wafa to learn about the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals and to talk about how you and your research fit into the larger picture Professional Development Recorded Video
Data Visualization and Infographics

One challenge in communicating findings from research is to translate your analysis into a form that supports interpretation, understanding, decision making, and action. Data visualization is a category of techniques used for data analysis and the communication of quantitative findings using informative graphics. Good data visualization should help the viewer understand the underlying data, appreciate the information contained in the analysis, grasp the complexity of the system, and take informed action. Infographics are collated visual representations of information and data that combine data visualizations, graphical cues, and explanatory text for presenting information in a visual form to a generalist audience and in an appealing, easily understandable way. 

Communication/

Professional Development

Recorded Video
How to Create a Research Poster Join undergraduate coordinator Merle Massie for some thoughts on how to build a research poster through organization, revision, and visuals.  Communication Recorded Video
Creating top cover letters and writing an effective resume Join Brock Egeto of the Student Employment and Career Centre to learn the latest techniques for top cover letters and resumes. Professional Development Recorded Video
Writing Retreat Join graduate writing specialist Jill McMillan and author Merle Massie for our writing retreat. It combines focused writing time with style spotlight writing workshops to address common issues in writing (old-new information technique, signposting, parallelism, and reducing wordiness) Communication Register
Acing the Interview Join Brock Egeto of the Student Employment and Career Centre to learn great tips and tricks to ace your interviews.  Professional Development Recorded video
Effective Oral Presentations Join Rebekah Bennetch of the Ron and Jane Graham School of Professional Development for a workshop in giving effective oral presentations.  Communication Recorded Video
Summer SURE Symposium 2021 Online symposium with judges and prizes to celebrate and share your summer research work. Communication and/or Professional Development Visit the online Symposium

 

SURE previously recorded webinars are all available for viewing. Viewing past webinars can count equally toward your SURE 10 hours for co-curricular credit. Follow these links to SURE playlists on YouTube, where you can also subscribe and be notified when we add new videos. Note: all summer 2021 past webinars have direct links, above.

Student Connection

The SURE program sponsors the Science, Research & Society Club.

Open to SURE participants and the wider campus community, this club aims to engage students in STEM and research across campus in two ways:

  • to create a safe space for students to discuss, analyze and question research articles, science concepts and ideas;
  • to explore the human aspects of science by having conversations about topics like imposter syndrome, representation in STEM and research and EDI (Equity, Diversity and Inclusion).

SRS will restart October 1st 2021at 12:30pm with a special guest event: Jay Whetter, editor of the Canadian Canola Digest and member of Science Writers and Communicators of Canada, will talk about science communication for the public, and why it's important. REGISTER HERE

All registered SURE students will recieve updates, and events will be posted on PAWS. 

SURE supports a number of student social events throughout the year, including movie screenings, lab crawls, journal clubs, supervisor-student social events, and a student-led Discord channel amongst other ideas. Access to these spaces is via registration with SURE (see above). If you have missed the deadline for registration, send an email to undergraduate.research@usask.ca and ask to be added to that term's email list!

SURE Summer Symposium

SURE Symposium 2021 August 25th-27th online

Visit the Symposium Here! (You must have a USask NSID to view)

We just announced our SURE Symposium 2021 winners! 

1st place Memphis Long

An Analysis of the Quality of YouTube™ Content About Nutrition and Dental Caries Category: Health Sciences Supervisor: Dr. Jessica Lieffers

 

2nd place Nicholas Bauer

Activators and Organizers: Characterization of the cytosolic regulators of NADPH Oxidase enzymes in the gestational myometrium  Category: Health Sciences Supervisor: Dr. Daniel MacPhee

 

3rd place: Todd Stang 

Exploring the Role of Nucleocytoplasmic Transport Changes in Neuronal Cell Damage in Models of Nervous System Disease Category: Health Sciences Supervisor: Dr. Michael Levin

Honourable mentions:

Cindy Li, Jordan Bairos, Alina Sami and Katie Sofko

Congratulations to all the winners, and to their supervisors for some outstanding work! Big thanks to all our judges who gave their time, energy, and curiosity to the students, and their feedback!

 

Announcement of dates for SURE Symposium 2021