Summer Policy Research Institute Offers Research Experience for Students

Four students from diverse backgrounds studying together

The Summer Policy Research Institute (SPRI) is a 6-week program for University of Iowa undergraduate and graduate students with an interest in policy research. The mission of SPRI is to expose students to academic research through a mentored, team-based experience. The institute is intended to enhance the research experience for students who are currently working with a faculty member on a research project and/or in a research lab, and supplement their experience by working with a cohort. Students who are not currently working in research, but want to, are also welcome to participate. 

Participation in the Institute includes: 

  • An appointment at the Public Policy Center as an Undergraduate or Graduate Research Fellow; 
  • A weekly 1-hour seminar on introductory, policy research-related topics, plus discussion of assigned reading; 
  • Instructor guided, 1-hour weekly sharing of research activities among student peers to provide feedback and ideas; 
  • Opportunities to meet with UI Leadership about their own introduction to and experiences in research; 
  • Development of a policy brief that will be published via the PPC’s website and network of collaborators (for those who have an interest and a qualifying project) 

As evidence of research activity, participation in SPRI will be noted on the student’s transcript. Students will register for either URES:3992 (no semester hours and no tuition or fees, but with a notation on their transcript) or URES:3993 (one semester hour and tuition or fees may apply depending on enrollment in other summer courses). Scholarships may be available based on student’s request and need. 

If you’re interested in more information about SPRI 2021, please email

SPRI is part of IowaRISE, which is partially funded by the University of Iowa’s P3 investment funding to support initiatives that bolster student success. 

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