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Established in 2011 to increase the number of undergraduates completing their own research projects or collaborating with faculty on their research, the annual Undergraduate Research, Scholarship, and Arts (URSA) symposium provides an on-campus venue for Benedictine students to present work they have done as part of their university careers.

While undergraduate research is often most associated with the natural and social sciences, URSA interprets the category of scholarship in the broadest possible terms and strongly encourages participation by undergraduates who have undertaken significant research in a humanities discipline. Students working in the fine arts are also urged to take part by, for instance, displaying artwork or preparing a presentation on a musical composition.

A secondary goal of URSA is to encourage students to expand their participation in similar off-campus events, such as the ACCA Student Symposium. Presenting at URSA offers students an excellent opportunity to do a "dry-run" for larger, regional conferences they may plan to attend.


URSA 2020 [rescheduled]

online from Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Benedictine has suspended all on-campus events and programming, including URSA, for the remainder of the spring 2020 semester. This means that it will not be able to hold oral presentations or the poster session in person.

However, as part of the University’s transition to a “virtual campus,” URSA will also move online—specifically into a dedicated Desire2Learn (D2L) site. Student projects will go “live” on D2L on Tuesday, April 21, and be viewable through the end of the semester.

To access the URSA D2L site:
Visit and log in using your Benedictine credentials. Under "My Courses," select "Ongoing," then click on the link for "Undergraduate Research, Scholarship, and Arts."

The constellation Ursa Major

The constellation Ursa Major, or "the Great Bear," as illustrated by Sidney Hall (plate 9 in "Urania's Mirror"; hand-colored etching, 1825).