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Defining Research

Defining research is as difficult as explaining how gravity works. We are aware of its tremendous effects, yet it’s hard to begin explaining all its complexities.

Webster defines research: Middle French recerche, to go about seeking

  1. careful or diligent search
  2. studious inquiry or examination; especially investigation or experimentation aimed at the discovery and interpretation of facts, revision of accepted theories or laws in the light of new facts, or practical application of such new or revised theories or laws
  3. the collecting of information about a particular subject

Research is not a short term endeavor. Research is a process. Research takes time to do well–it can be a powerful tool to solve problems and change the course of our world.

Students at Cornell get involved in research in many ways. Some get excited by what they learn in courses, others have well-defined interests and others are learning skills they will need in their future careers.