McMaster Research Shadowing Program

What is the McMaster Research Shadowing Program?

The McMaster Research Shadowing Program, previously known as Job Shadowing, is an annual event hosted the McMaster Undergraduate Research in Science Association (MURSA). Each year, we look to provide qualified undergraduate students with an opportunity to gain first-hand laboratory or clinical research experience under the guidance of the professors and/or physicians in the fields of science at McMaster University.


MURSA Research Shadowing Program, originally termed as “Job Shadowing”, was founded in 2013. In the last 3 years, this program has grown from four research shadowers to over 80 successful applicants and 40 professors involved in 2015-2016. Also, we have reached out to a more diverse range of departments, such as immunology, medicine, engineering, physics, biochemistry, pediatrics, respiratory illness and many more. Though MURSA oversees the shadowing period of about one to 3 weeks, over 45% of our shadowers go on to acquiring a permanent research position with the assigned professor either during the summer or the academic year. We hope to expand even further this year!

Selection Criteria

We are looking for dedicated McMaster undergraduate students who are interested in the Sciences and want to apply their knowledge to real life problems. Several of the characteristics we look for during application and interview include:

  • An ideal balance between teamwork and leadership
  • A perfect blend of professionalism and creativity
  • Persistent passion for research in sciences
  • Motivation for further improvement

Duration of Job Shadowing

The Job Shadowing event with MURSA will go on from January through March. However, the duration of your shadowing can vary from one day to several months, depending on the availability of your professor and your persistence in communicating with your prof. Many students have continued shadowing with their professor long after the event finishes on their own, and some professors go on to become supervisors for these students.

  • Application Released: Nov 26th, 2016
  • Application Due Date: December 26, 11:59:50 pm
  • Interview Invites Sent: before January 4
  • Interview Date: January 8
  • Final Decisions Release Date: before January 16
  • Orientation Date: TBD
  • Shadowing Duration: months/weeks/days between late January to early April

Shadowing Positions:

  • Astronomy and Physics
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics
  • Epidemiology
  • Genetics: Pediatric (one prof from last year)
  • Geography
  • Kinesiology
  • Internal Medicine (Clinical)
  • Medicine (Research)
  • Nephrology (Clinical)
  • Pediatrics (Clinical)
  • Pediatrics (Research)
  • Phrenology (Clinical)
  • Psychology
  • Respirology (Research)
  • Rheumatology (Clinical)
  • Cardiac and Vascular
  • Neuroscience and trauma
  • Population Health Research Institute
  • Emergency Hematology Oncolodgy Medicine
  • Surgery, Oncology, Critical Care and Ambulatory Services
  • Perioperative Services
  • Rehabilitation
  • Diagnostic Imaging
  • Emergency Medicine
  • General Pediatrics
  • Neonatology
  • Infectious Disease Department
  • Rehabilitation Centre

Research is:

“Research is the joy of discovering something no one knew before.” -Stephen Hawking

“Research is to investigate something you do not know or understand.” -Neil Armstrong

“Research is formalized curiosity. It is poking and prying with a purpose.” -Zora Neale Hurston

“Research is creating new knowledge.” -Neil Armstrong

“The more important reason is that the research itself provides an important long-run perspective on the issues that we face on a day-to-day basis.” -Ben Bernanke


Contact Information:

Please contact one of the following regarding any questions or concerns:

MURSA Email:

Supervision: Muskaan Sachdeva, BHSc Level IV. Email:

McMaster Research Shadowing Program Reps: