Research work of students represents one of the most important means of improving specialists’ training quality.
An important indicator of the student research activity at university is students’ participation in scientific and practical conferences, Olympic Games and contests of various levels. In 2015 the university students gave 2032 reports at scientific events (conferences, Olympic Games, forums, etc.), of them 373 — in the events held outside USU, including 1779 reports at conferences of various level, of them 165 — at the conferences held outside USU. Annually in April-May at Ulyanovsk State University scientific and practical conference of young scientists is held. The XXV conference was held in 2015. Traditionally it is held in several steps: section, plenary faculty meetings and all-university conference. 890 students gave reports in 2015 on 57 sections, the best of whom were awarded with diplomas. The greatest number of reports has been made by humanitarian and natural-science divisions: Institute of Economics and Business (249) and Faculty of Humanities and Social Technologies (160).
A number of student events is held at the university more than 5 successive years, for example, the Language Olympic Games for students of USU organized at the Institute of International Relations. In 2015 more than 200 people participated in 5 Olympic Games held by IIR for USU students of various programs. The Internet Olympic Games on Latin and bases of medical terminology which has had the status of international for 6 years are annually held by the Institute of Medicine, Ecology and Physical Culture. For the tenth time the Olympic Games on Russian for USU international students are held at the Faculty of Culture and Arts. There such were traditional events as the Regional Olympic Games concerning the electoral law among students of higher educational institutions of the Ulyanovsk region organized under the auspices of the Electoral commission of the Ulyanovsk region by employees of Faculty of Transfer Specialities; the Festival of National cultures «Friendship without borders» held at Faculty of Humanities and Social Technologies (FHST).
Faculty of Culture and Arts has been the leader for many years in the number of arranged exhibitions and quantity of exhibits provided at exhibitions with participation of students. (5 exhibitions of various level have been organized at faculty within a year, 210 exhibits were provided). Holding exhibitions is supported at FHST, at IMEPC, at IIR and in the Inzensky branch. Similar events allow students to increase skills of work performance and to share experience not only to students of creative specialties.
Another important form of research activity organization at the university is work of students in scientific circles. Today in USU divisions 64 student scientific circles are run the membership of which amounts to 1003 people. Extracurricular activity of students within student scientific circles — essentially an important form of involvement of students in scientific process. Forming a necessary outlook and skills of conducting research work in students is the result of this activity.
28 students who attended scientific circles were enrolled in 2015 for postgraduate courses. Active participation of students in conferences, seminars, Olympic Games allows graduates of the university to create an essential pool for doing a postgraduate course. In total 441 works have been published in collections of scientific works of young scientists in a year. In view of the content of DP-2-05–11 «The organization of postgraduate students enrollment» publications in the journals’ list recommended by the State Commission for Academic Degrees and Titles have a special value. In 2015 92 publications with participation of students have been made in the journals of similar level.
Traditionally, most often students of technical specialties — students of the Faculty of Mathematics, Information science and Aviation Technologies and Engineering and Physics Faculty are involved in the research projects performed within grants and contracts. Research projects with participation of USU students were conducted within grants of the Russian Fund of Basic Researches, Russian Humanitarian Scientific Fund, a project part of the state assignment in the sphere of scientific activities for the order of the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation, the State program of the Russian Federation "Development of science and technologies" for 2013–2020, the Federal Purpose-oriented Program «Researches and developments in the priority areas of developing the scientific and technological complex of Russia for 2014-2020», on programs of Bortnik Fund, and also under economic contracts with Volga-Dnieper Group. In total 28 students participate in these projects.
In 2015 together with OAC, the Russian Engineering Union, JSC Aviastar-SP with assistance of the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation All-Russian Student Forum “IT Avia. Idea, project, decision” was held. Within the forum the contest of projects performed by the student scientific associations for the entities of the aviation industry took place. Projects of Irkutsk State Technical University, Ufa State Aviation Technical University, Moscow Aviation Institute, Orenburg State University, Ulyanovsk State University won prizes in the contest.
Course papers are performed on the subjects that bear a research nature and which are of practical interest to the enterprise. Topics of projects are formed and graduation projects are performed under the direct guidance of leading specialists of JSC Aviastar-SP, Design Bureau “Irkut”. The defense procedure of graduation projects takes place at the plant JSC Aviastar-SP. The state examination board is composed of the representatives of JSC Aviastar-SP, UFKB "Tupolev", SSAU, RSTU. About 30% of graduates continue the researches of graduation projects in postgraduate study.
There is positive dynamics at university of patent granting for the objects of intellectual property (OIP) students being the authors. For the accounting period 11 applications for patents have been submitted and 5 patent protecting documents have been received with participation of students of EPF.
Most successfully student research work is performed by doctors and candidates of science who are eligible for advising graduate students and are heads of scientific student circles (Zabbarova O. A., Baranets N. G., Mashin B.B., Gening T.P., Saenko Yu.V. Gening., Svetukhin V. V., Churakov B. P., Uchaykin V. V., Andreyev A. S., Zhuravlev V. M.). The main evaluation criterion is participation of students in external conferences, contests and Olympic Games, and also publication in the journals recommended by the SCADT.
In 2015, as well as in the previous two years, funding of research work has considerably increased owing to participation of the university research associations in the Development program of student associations activities of “Ulyanovsk State University”. The total amount of funding of the Science and Innovations field in 2015 reached 5,5 million rubles.
Thus, all traditional forms and methods of student involvement in research activity and stimulation of these activities are being implemented at USU.