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Attention to undergraduate research (UGR) is not surprising given its widespread appeal and evidence of educational benefit. Tracking participation and identifying equity gaps in UGR are important markers of access to and equity in educationally beneficial experiences. Information about students’ exposure to elements of quality in UGR and how this corresponds to faculty perspectives and instructional practice can help inform efforts to advance and improve UGR. In this article, we use 7 years of data from the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) to explore the national landscape of UGR by examining the responses of 972,088 1st-year students who reported that they planned to participate in UGR before they graduated and the responses of 1,248,854 senior students who reported that they had done or were currently involved in a UGR experience. To complement our student perspectives, we present perspectives on faculty importance of and instructional practice in UGR with data from NSSE’s companion survey, the Faculty Survey of Student Engagement, by examining the experiences of 106,000 faculty respondents. Our presentation of descriptive statistics provides a national overview of UGR participation by a variety of salient institutional and student characteristics, a broad summary of faculty involvement in UGR, and baseline data about students’ exposure to elements of high-impact UGR.
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