UROP is a paid employment scheme designed to give Victorian undergraduate students an early opportunity to experience real-life research and gain insight into careers in research.

Students undertake a project which is part of the research program of a research laboratory, are supervised by a research scientist and work alongside other research staff and students in the team.

A wide variety of project areas are available to UROP students including basic biochemistry, molecular biology, cell biology, physiology, bioengineering and bioinformatics. UROP also offers research projects for computational science, engineering and mathematics students, among others.

Benefits for students

As a student, you will:

  • experience being part of a research team
  • develop expertise in laboratory techniques and experimental design
  • develop skillsets for future employment
  • potentially contribute to scientific publications, patents and presentations
  • create a professional network
  • participate in career development workshops and events

Benefits for supervisors

As a UROP supervisor, you will:

  • have access to exceptional and highly capable undergraduate students
  • get a custom-matched student that best fits with your research project and team
  • support workforce development with many UROP alumni pursuing research careers in industry or academia via pathways such as Honours, Masters and PhDs
  • potentially connect and collaborate within the UROP community

Pay and conditions

UROP students are employed by the host laboratory as casual staff, at a rate approximately equivalent to universities’ HEW 2 level (approx. $34/hour). Student employment contracts are with the organisation in which they are placed.

Payment is managed through each research organisation’s Human Resources unit. Throughout placements, students are covered by all regulations and conditions governing the research organisation, including occupational health and safety, good scientific practice, ethics, intellectual property and confidentiality.

Timeframe of placements

UROP is designed to allow students to become integrated into the research group – students are expected to hold their positions for a minimum of six months.

UROP students must work full-time during some or all of their university vacation periods (approx. two weeks during the winter recess and four weeks during the summer recess) and around eight hours a week during semester. It is recommended that during semester, students work at least one eight hour day, or two half days per week.

UROP students must be available to commence work in laboratories during the university’s vacation periods (June-July and November-February). Actual start dates are arranged by the supervisor and student.

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