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Community-Based Research

Community-Based Research project

CBR Fellow Matt Schneider, '14, captured this moment from his 2013 project with Full Circle Farm.

Community-Based Research (CBR) is a powerful model of engaged scholarship in which students, faculty, and community members collaborate on research to solve pressing community problems or effect social change. CBR attributes include:

  • Cooperation and communication between all research partners
  • Multiple sources of knowledge
  • Multiple methods of discovery
  • Diverse means for disseminating research findings
  • A commitment to some level of social action

The Haas Center encourages both faculty and students to pursue CBR projects, supporting their efforts by helping identify potential community partners, developing productive relationships with these partners, and disseminating project results to the community. Haas Center programs are described below.

Faculty are encouraged to consult with the Haas Center about ways to connect students to these programs or to serve as an advisor or mentor. Students are encouraged to explore programs that fit their academic and career interests.

For more information on any of the CBR programs or to set up one-on-one or group consultation, please contact Joanne Tien.

Preparatory Coursework in Community Based Research 

Students interested in CBR can enroll in courses to ensure they are fully prepared for their research experience. The winter quarter course, Urban Studies 123 (CSRE 146A): Approaching Research in the Community, focuses on the principles and practices of community-based research  and is highly recommended for students applying for CBR fellowships through the Haas Center for Public Service or the Center for Comparative Studies on Race and Ethnicity (CSRE). In the spring quarter, Urban Studies 123B (CSRE 146B): Approaching Research in the Community - Design and Methods, emphasizes issues of research design and how to select specific methodological strategies to ensure ethical and effective partnership-based research. This course is required for students who are awarded CBR fellowships through the Haas Center or CSRE. 

Community Based Research Fellowship Program

The Community-Based Research Fellowship Program is a Cardinal Quarter program in which teams of faculty, undergraduate students, and community partners jointly conduct research that addresses community-identified needs. Funded jointly by the Haas Center and the Office of the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, the CBR Fellows program offers stipends of $1000 for community partners, while student fellows are eligible for up to $7000 for ten weeks of full time research during the summer.

Public Service Scholars Program

The Public Service Scholars Program (PSSP) is a year-round program that supports students’ efforts to write an academically rigorous thesis that is informed by and useful to specific community organizations or public interest constituencies. Students participate during their senior or co-term year, concurrently with the honors program in their major academic department or interdisciplinary program of study. Students from all majors are welcome to apply for admission to PSSP.

By request, PSSP students can be matched with a Stanford staff, faculty or community member who serves as a mentor. The mentor relationship is highly individualized, but mentors typically provide advice and support to foster the public service dimension of the thesis research and to pursue larger questions of how this work relates to students’ lives and career goals.

Public Scholarship Postgraduate Summer Fellowship

Through the Public Scholarship Postgraduate Summer Fellowship, a graduating senior or co-term student can follow through on an outreach or service component of a significant research project, such as a senior honors thesis or other academically-integrated capstone experience. In most cases, this activity is the continuation of the student’s public dissemination plan in a manner that directly serves the interests of specific community partners or public constituencies.

The selected fellow may receive up to $5,000 to support travel, living and project-related expenses during the summer.

Andrea Naomi Leiderman Fellowship

Andrea Naomi Leiderman Fellowship recipients are Stanford undergraduates who conduct research on an issue centering on youth and education in California. The research may be for an honors thesis, a Chappell Lougee grant, a Community-Based Research Fellow project, or an independent project supervised by a faculty member. Leiderman Fellows receive a grant of $4,500 over an academic year and present their research results in May.