What is an RA?

What is a research assistant?

Undergraduate research assistants are students who are interested learning more about and participating in the research process.  That is, research assistants in our lab will have the opportunity participate in almost every aspect of the research experience.  It is not unusual for our research assistants to be involved study design, the creation of surveys, data collection, and presenting projects that they have been involved in at  local and national conferences.

What are the benefits of becoming a research assistant?

Being a research assistant in any psychology lab can be a very rewarding experience both academically and socially.  Particularly in the online social influence lab, as a research assistant you will have the opportunity learn how research is conducted in an intimate environment that will allow you to both broaden your skills as a psychologist and also give you a head start if you plan to practice psychology at any level.

If graduate school is in your future than becoming a research assistant will not only increase your chances of acceptance but also give you a head start once in a graduate program.  Graduate schools routinely look to see if their applicants have research experience or have presented their own research at psychology conferences.  If you have done one or both of these things you will have significantly increased your odds of gaining acceptance to graduate school.  Once in graduate school you will be able to use the skills that you have learned as a research assistant to give you a leg up in the game.

How do you become a research assistant?

Research assistants receive class credit for their lab participation.  Research assistants are expected to spend 3 hours in the lab for every 1 hour of class credit they sign up for (minimum of 2 credits which is equivalent to 6 hours a week in the lab).  You will have a set schedule of times that you will be required to be in the lab (will work around your existing course schedule).

If you interested in becoming a research assistant, have any questions about the process or would like further information do not hesitate to contact Dr. Wirth via email at wirth.48@osu.edu.