Need a Research Question?

The following topics have been identified in partnership with University operational departments and faculty from various academic departments to assist students in identifying potential JP, Senior Thesis and graduate research topics using the campus itself as a living laboratory for sustainability problem-solving.

Please browse below, or use the sorting options to the right to narrow your search by topic or discipline. Contact the Campus as Lab team, Caroline Savage and Gina Talt '15, for more information or questions!

If you have a campus as lab research question that should be included on this list you can submit it using our contact form.

Improve the campus energy Heatmap by adding features to increase engagement with the app.

Disciplines: engineering

Collect baseline data on dorm waste left behind during move-out, both through empirical analysis of the waste, and qualitative surveys, to greater clarify and inform the need for a more reliable, less economically challenging avenue of dorm item management.

Disciplines: social sciences

Investigate the relationship between fuel prices and transportation-mode choice of University faculty, staff, and commuting students.

Disciplines: social sciences

Evaluate the feasibility of use of water recovery from sewage for irrigation purposes (regulations, permits, etc).

Topics: landscape, water
Disciplines: engineering, natural sciences

Collect baseline data on water clarity, oxygen levels, and organic carbon in Lake Carnegie to determine the effect of gasoline loads on water quality

Topics: water
Disciplines: natural sciences

Sample catch basins from surface water monitoring to identify higher levels of surface water pollution

Topics: landscape, water
Disciplines: engineering, natural sciences

Perform a micro-level waste audit in outdoor dumpsters or common buildings (e.g., Frist) to find out which types of materials are being sent to the landfill.

Topics: waste reduction
Disciplines: natural sciences, social sciences

Design several recycling signs with different messaging. Which most effectively reduces contamination in recycling bins and reduces landfill waste?

Disciplines: humanities and arts, social sciences