We are in a world today that is highly driven in knowledge where knowledge is more an assets rather than physical assets and natural assets are considered more relevant in creating competitive and differential advantages.
Undergraduate projects are usually the first major piece of independent research that a student will undertake. Project work at the undergraduate level is an undertaking usually at the last lap of a journey of four or five years programme depending on the choice of course or academic pursuit/career. It is therefore a point where and when a student leaves a statement as a foot print on the part that he/she traversed over a period of time. The statement or the content of the project may be a building block for the future students or humanity at large. When students are at the point of entry into the university they ought to know that they will leave a footprint by way of project, for this, they ought to read widely and get focused early enough.
Therefore, because it is a building block for the future as well as an increase to already existing knowledge, for this reason, attempts are made at micro and macro levels to increase the stock of knowledge assets as a strategic choice for increasing development at diverse levels. Early development is always a better choice, in any form of development, so as to earn the best fruit of input or labour. This means that students’ project work in their undergraduate curriculum is aimed at meeting the knowledge needs of the students, society and the world at the level and stage when the body and mind are willing and receptive to knowledge.
Therefore, it is important that students get abreast with how to write undergraduate project, not just writing but knowing all that is involved in an excellent undergraduate project. As an undergraduate, there are some certain factors that will convince you to know you are ready to undertake your undergraduate project and some of these factors are discussed below.
Undergraduate research is an inquiry or investigation conducted by an undergraduate that makes an original intellectual or creative contribution to the discipline. Undergraduate project is an academic assignment (or research) undertaken by a student towards the completion of his/her academic pursuit of a first degree as stated in his first degree curriculum.
Undergraduate research projects can be designed to fit a variety of class constructs and to promote student learning at all levels of undergraduate education. It is also a task undertaken by student(s) within a given period of time in a given subject area aimed at making the student have independent capacity for inquiries and to supplement and as well complement formal teaching in his area of study. This enables the student hone-in the theoretical course work in the university. There is no doubt that the exercise will reveal to the lecturer who is assigned to supervise the student, the student’s area of strength and weaknesses. When these weaknesses are corrected during lecturer – student interaction, the student comes out to be the pride of the university – the alma mater.
Undergraduate research projects can be student or faculty initiated, and students can either participate in a work in progress or enter a project at its start. Undergraduate research is the exploration of a specific topic within a field by an undergraduate student that makes an original contribution to the discipline.
HOW TO KNOW IF YOU ARE READY
A) YOU CAN CHOOSE A PROJECT TOPIC
One of the ways to know if you are ready is the ability to choose a project topic. As an undergraduate who is preparing to write an undergraduate project, it is important that you understand how to choose a project topic even before your get to final year. Choosing a project topic is beyond just writing anything as a topic you want to research on, you must understand that your project topic must contain two or more variables; it should be a researchable topic and one you can confidently research and defend at the end of the day. When you understand all that there is in choosing a project topic, then you can be sure that you are ready to undertake undergraduate project research.
B) YOU ARE ABLE TO IDENTIFY THE PROBLEM IN THE TOPIC YOU CHOOSE
Another point to note in determining if you are ready to undertake undergraduate project is the ability to identify the research problem in the project topic you have chosen.
You must understand that one the reasons why research are been carried out is because of problem identification. You must have identified a problem to prompt your research. Therefore, as an undergraduate, you must be able to identify the research problem in the project topic you have chosen and research to find solution and make appropriate recommendation.
C) YOU CAN FORM OBJECTIVES FROM THE PROBLEM YOU IDENTIFIED
To know if you are ready to undertake an undergraduate project is to form objectives from the problem you identified in your research topic. Undergraduate students must understand that beyond problem identification in a research which of course prompted the research in the first place, is also the ability to form objectives of the research from the problem you’ve identified in your research topic. Objectives in a research tell your audience what you intend to research or find out about. That is it is very important that you understand your variables in your research topic.
D) UNDERSTAND THE CONCEPTS OF THE VARIABLE ON YOUR TOPIC
Understanding the concepts of the variable on your project topic is another way to finding out if you are ready to undertake an undergraduate project. You already know that your undergraduate project topic must have in it two or more variables. Therefore, another thing you must know is to understand the concepts of those variables because it is the understanding of these variables that will enable you write an excellent project as well as not derail from the main point in the research. The understanding of your variables will also help you in forming your research objectives as you will not only be researching on one variable but the whole variables in your research topic must be researched on and you can only achieve this if you have a proper understand ding of the concepts in the variables in your project topic.
E) YOU CAN DERIVE A METHODOLOGY
The knowledge on how to derive and identify the right methodology to use in your undergraduate project is another way to know if you are ready to undertake your undergraduate project. In every research, it is either you use the primary or secondary data. However, knowing which one to use in your research project is a plus to you and shows you are ready to undertake the undergraduate project.
F) FINALLY YOU CAN ANALYZE YOUR DATA
Lastly, you must have the knowledge of data analysis. Some undergraduate students neglect this aspect because they feel they can hire a data analyst to do that aspect for them. In as much as getting a data analyst is not a bad idea; it is also advisable that students have the full knowledge of data analysis because it will help them in their undergraduate project.
Conclusively, undergraduate students must get themselves ready for their undergraduate project even before they get to final year. They can either learn from their predecessors or get a project coach. They must know all it takes to write an undergraduate project, it is a way of getting them ready and well prepared for their undergraduate project.