ASH Scholars

Overview of Undergraduate Research, Artistry & Design Teams

The Honors College and the Office of Undergraduate Research jointly sponsor and support undergraduate teams of students in the arts, humanities, or social science disciplines, who work as members of a faculty-led research or design team.  Any student, regardless of class year, is eligible to apply so long as you are in good standing at MU.

The ASH Scholars Program employs the Team Approach of research, scholarship, design, and/or artistry, in academic areas where teams may not be the typical mode of scholarly work. It seeks to integrate undergraduates into the professional processes and creates a model for faculty-undergraduate research teams at MU. We take a broad view of ‘research’ and embrace all scholarly work appropriate to the disciplinary norms in the arts, humanities, and social sciences.


The following projects are supported and ongoing:

Documenting Luyia Together

Rylan Batten presents findings on Bukusu verb tone patterns from the Documenting Luyia Together project.

Professors: Michael Marlo (Linguistics in the Department of English) • Rebecca Grollemund (Linguistics in the Department of English)

This project conducts original research on the Luyia language cluster of western Kenya and eastern Uganda. This project started in fall 2016.

Close Relationships

Professors: Amanda Rose (Psychological Sciences) • Ashley Groh (Psychological Sciences)

This project focuses on early parent-child relationships, friendships, and romantic/co-parenting relationships, relationship challenges that are important for positive relationship outcomes and how relationship partners respond, on emotional and physiological levels, to stress and conflict. This project started in fall 2017.

The Art of Death

The Art of Death project team meeting.

Professors: Jamie Arndt (Psychological Sciences) • Katina Bitsicas (School of Visual Studies) • Benton Kidd (Museum of Art and Archaeology)

Death and the awareness of mortality is a fundamental challenge for the human condition. This interdisciplinary project explores confronting the reality of death through contemporary and historical artistic expression, and how such expressions influence psychological attitudes and anxiety. The project may involve producing creative projects, reviewing historical art and archaeology, and designing psychological studies. This project started in fall 2017.

Minority-Focused News as a Locus of Empowerment

Professors: Chris Josey (Communications) • Andrea Figueroa-Caballero (Communications)

This project is an investigation into the content and effects of minority-focused news. The research will result in the construction of an archive and a longitudinal analysis of minority-focused news outlets. This project will start in fall 2019.

Our previous projects, no longer operating, ended with a demonstration of outstanding success:

Visualizing Abolition: A Digital History of the Suppression of the African Slave Trade, 1808-1900, under the direction of Dr. Daniel B. Domingues da Silva and Dr. Linda Reeder, Department of History (2016-2017).


Students and faculty mentors are expected to meet regularly (at least weekly) as a group and are encouraged to meet with subgroups of students as well.

Student team members are expected to devote a minimum of 8 hrs/week to the project, in addition to the weekly team meeting. The ASH Team experience is designed to be a co-curricular experience and does not carry academic credit.

Undergraduate Team members will be expected to present their work at the Spring Undergraduate Research & Creative Achievements Forum (April). Presentations may be individual or with small groups.

Students will be expected to attend a limited number of special workshops/presentations appropriate to the needs of the students and team project. At least one workshop/discussion will include Responsible Conduct of Research issues.


Students who are selected to be members of a team will receive a scholarship for the duration of the academic year in the amount of $2,000.00. Participants are advised that these scholarships could have an impact on their existing aid packages and should seek advice from the Financial Aid Office before agreeing to accept the award and participate.


Any student, regardless of class year, is eligible to apply so long as you are in good standing at MU.  Although the proposed project will be based in artistry, social sciences, and/or humanities, student participants need not be limited to majoring in these areas. Preference will be given to Honors College students.

Applications for the 2019-20 academic year are now closed.  Applications for the 2020-2021 academic year will open in the summer of 2020.