Research-inspired learning

Maker Lab
English professor Jentery Sayers heads the Maker Lab in the Humanities, which encourages hands-on learning about technology and culture.

Your UVic advantage

Whether it’s through your formal coursework, in a work-study or co-op experience, or as a student volunteer, you’ll discover many ways to participate in research.

Along the way, you’ll have access to state-of-the-art libraries, laboratories, fine arts studios and computing centres to help you develop your own research interests and collaborate with others. 

Learn more about student research opportunities.

Read about how students are getting involved in research

Dylan Collins

As BC’s 2014 Rhodes Scholar, Dylan Collins headed for Britain’s famed University of Oxford with a freshly minted UVic degree in biochemistry. But his bulging academic résumé at UVic spans much more than the pure sciences.

“I went into biochemistry because I was interested in medicine and health,” he says. “I quickly realized that if I want to make big changes in terms of helping people, then I’d need to shift more toward the social determinants of health.”

So, he completed a series of research internships that exposed him to many different aspects of health care.  “These experiences have been key to my success as an undergraduate and with the Rhodes Scholarship,” he says, “because they’ve given me a local and global perspective.”

Amy Becker

Long before settler culture attached names to the mountains, rivers and landscape we now call Vancouver Island, the traditional names used by First Nations carried a wealth of information about those places.

Supported by a Jamie Cassels Undergraduate Research Award, Amy Becker worked with the Stz’umnius First Nation and Project: Reel Life to make a digital atlas of about 20 Hul’q’umi’num’ language place names in Ladysmith using videos of elders’ stories.

The project gave Becker renewed confidence in her research skills and added real-life work experience to the mix. And wherever life takes her next, she’ll continue to listen for the names of the places she goes.


A team of UVic engineering students isn’t just getting hands-on research experience while they study—they’re getting their hands dirty.

Since 2011, close to 60 students in mechanical, electrical, computer and software engineering, and business have been hard at work redesigning and retrofitting a Chevrolet Malibu Eco into a next-generation plug-in hybrid electric vehicle.

They’re participants in the EcoCAR challenge, an elite student competition supported by GM, the US Department of Energy, Natural Resources Canada and 28 other industrial and government sponsors.

UVic is one of 15 universities in North America, and one of only two in Canada, invited to participate.

Hands-on scholarship

Students get to do a lot of tinkering, 3D printing, programming, crafting and experimenting in UVic’s English department, thanks to an innovative research lab called the Maker Lab in the Humanities.

Led by English prof Jentery Sayers, the lab is inspired by experimental art and literature, interactive design and an emerging do-it-yourself (DIY) culture where people collaborate and learn by designing and making things themselves.

“The Maker Lab brings students in as co-researchers,” says UVic humanities professor Ray Siemens. “They’re learning by doing, with leaders in the field. When you walk into the lab, you can feel their excitement and witness a new, very important kind of academic collaboration.”