As an undergraduate, I was fortunate to have a fabulous mentor, anthropologist Ralph Bolton. For my senior thesis project, Professor Bolton gave me free rein to analyze extensive data he had collected in Peru on folk classification of potato varieties. It was the perfect project for me because it involved learning statistics and mathematical modeling in order to understand patterns in the data. I wish all undergraduates could have a similarly engaging research experience.
Most of the undergraduate research projects I direct involve collection of survey or interview data on social network processes, such as organizational recruitment, formation of teams, or the process of social influence.