Conducting Research within University Schools

Thank you for your interest in conducting research with University Schools. We look forward to supporting innovative research as a collaborative partner.

To schedule an observation or visit to a University School, a service learning partnership, a course-based partnership, or an internship/volunteer experience, please contact University Schools at universityschools@memphis.edu 

Approval to conduct research:
For students, faculty, or staff seeking approval to conduct any research activities in the University Schools, such as for a thesis or dissertation, or faculty with new or existing projects, all researchers must submit an application. University Schools will review your proposal and provide a decision and/or feedback regarding school-level approval for your research. Researcher(s) will be also be asked to meet to discuss the application. To discuss a potential research project seeking input from the schools or still under development, please contact University Schools. 

Research will be approved on a one-year basis.  Multi-year projects must seek renewal.  Researcher(s) should reach out to University Schools for their renewal at least one month prior to the expiration of their current approval.


University Schools Research Priorities

While we would love to participate in every research project, we want to keep the integrity of our strong academic program. We have asked each director to identify top priorities of focus with research. Please see the priorities for each campus below.


Effects of the Pandemic on Child Development and Early Childhood/Strategies to Mitigate Effects 
Nature-Based Early Childhood Experiences
Self-Regulation Strategies for Preschoolers

Campus School 
STEM Programs and the Impact on Student Engagement
Literacy in Early Childhood Programs
Social Emotional Learning and Trauma Informed Practices

University Middle 
Makerspaces and Real-World Thinkers/Attitudes Towards Learning
Project Based Learning Curriculum Development & Effectiveness
Social-Emotional Curriculum Impact on Student Development

High School
School culture/climate
Human development- longitudinal study over 4 years at U-High
Evaluation of the prep academy model


Application Process & Timeline:

The research application process is separate from any submissions that are applicable to your research (ex: submission to the University’s Office of Sponsored Programs, IRB for Human Subjects Research and grant agencies).

For new research proposals, researchers are encouraged to complete the research application process prior to submitting a formal full proposal to other agencies (e.g., OSP, IRB, grant agencies). However, if the research is in a collaborative planning stage or other preliminary processes, such as a Letter of Intent or initial proposal application prior to an invitation for full proposal submission, researchers should wait to submit a formal research application until they are prepared with a full proposal submission. In these initial development stages of a proposal, you are also welcome to reach out to University Schools directly. 

If research requests exceed current capacity at the school(s), projects that align to any of the University Schools’ priorities will be given the strongest consideration.


1. When you are prepared to submit your full research proposal, please use the link below to complete the application:

        Complete University Schools Research Project Application >

2. University Schools Director of Professional Practice will review your research application and make a decision regarding school-level approval. The review process may involve a meeting, questions or clarification, and/or feedback regarding your proposal. Please allow sufficient time to complete this process. Proposals will be reviewed and a decision will be provided within a two week period.

3. Researchers may submit an IRB determination form during the University Schools application process. As feedback or potential revisions may be requested from University Schools, researchers may prefer to wait for a decision prior to submitting to other units, such as the UofM Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP), full IRB application, or granting agencies. For questions about these steps, please contact the appropriate office:

       Office of Sponsored Programs >
       IRB >

4. After submitting an application, researcher(s) will be asked to schedule a meeting with University Schools to confirm the timeline for conducting the research. Research can only begin after an application is received and by formal email confirmation from the School Director (or designee). 


Questions? Contact University Schools at universityschools@memphis.edu