Frequently Asked Questions - Students

What is community-based research?

Community-based research is an approach to research that involves participation of community organizations (and/or members they represent) whose lives are affected by the issue being studied. CBR is relationship-based, collaborative research where university and community representatives become partners and work together on the projects. 

The CERC’s mandate is to facilitate connections between the U of R and our communities, and to be responsive to community needs. This means that all of our community-based research (CBR) projects are community-initiated and community-driven: they generally come from the community, not the university. There may be exceptions to this: for example, when a university-originated idea is responsive to a community need and finds support and partnerships with community groups.

How can I get involved in community-based research through the CERC?

Students can connect with research projects in a few different ways:

  1. Apply to be a Research Assistant for an independent community-based research project. Please note: If you are hired by one of our community partners to work on a community-based research project, you will be a temporary contract employee for that organization, not the university. Often the Faculty Advisor and/or the CERC Community Director may be asked by the community partner for input into your work plan. However, your employer is the community partner, NOT the university. You will be paid directly from the community partner, who will also be in charge of developing your work plan and for issues related to supervision and performance management.

Please talk to the CERC Community Director, Lynn Gidluck, for details on current and future opportunities. 

  1. Consider doing an Arts Internship through the CERC where you will work 8-10 hours per week for a semester and receive 3 credit hours towards your degree.

How much will I get paid for being a research assistant?

We encourage our community partners to pay similar rates to students as the collective agreement with CUPE 2419 that the university has signed.  However, decisions on the rate of pay ultimately rests in the hands of the community partner who will be handling all aspects of payroll, supervision and performance management related to the project.