REU Site Summer Research Program

Program Overview

This project establishes a Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) site in Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) at the University of Louisville (UofL) specifically focusing on computer systems research. This site hosts 8 students in 8-week summer sessions every year for the project duration of three years with the ultimate goal of encouraging 24 undergraduate students to pursue graduate study and careers in computer systems. The activities include training in computer systems concepts and tools, introducing computer systems research, multi-level mentoring model through weekly meetings with the PIs, regular meetings with the mentors and graduate students, as well as field trips and social events. Five faculty from the CSE Department with diverse expertise in computer systems research mentor the students and involve them in their research labs and ongoing projects. Specialized computer systems training provides the students with theoretical, technical, and analytical skills in general computer systems concepts including computer architecture fundamentals, operating systems basics, crucial systems programming methods, Linux command line, and python scripting. In addition, provided research training introduces the general computer science research process including literature review, understanding prior work, formulating new problems, designing and conducting experiments, and preparing presentations and publications of results. At the end, the students prepare a final technical report and a poster about their research projects, present their poster, and are encouraged to publish their work in a professional conference.

Computer Systems Research

The research focus of this REU Site is Computer Systems Research (CSR), which broadly encompasses the design and development of both hardware and software required to create platforms that fulfill users’ computing needs. Within the NSF, CSR constitutes its own cluster under the CISE’s CNS division, with a broad scope that includes embedded and multicore systems and accelerators, mobile and extensible distributed systems, cloud and data-intensive processing systems, as well as memory, storage, and file systems. In alignment with NSF’s definition, our CSR focus is primarily structured around the following research pillars: Operating Systems, Parallel and Distributed Systems, Embedded Systems, Mobile Systems, and Computer Architecture. Nevertheless, it is important to note that all research projects within this REU site will necessitate students to possess a foundational understanding of computer systems architecture, its interplay with software, and the evaluation of performance and/or energy efficiency. This will not only enable students to comprehend each other’s work but also foster collaborative research efforts and expand their perspectives on diverse computer systems. Within the scope of CSR, the overarching research objectives of our site are directed towards the advancement of energy efficiency, performance, as well as the predictability and scalability of computer systems.

Detailed REU Site Activities




May 19, 2024

Students arrive on campus.

May 20- May 24, 2024 (Week 1)

  1. All REU students, faculty mentors and their graduate assistants, and PIs will join the orientation on the first day to meet each other.
  2. The PIs will teach research ethics, Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR), code of conduct, and set expectations for the REU participants.
  3. Tutorial sessions on computer systems concepts and tools will be provided to prepare the REU students to actively conduct their research.
  4. The PIs will provide training on the general computer systems research process including literature review, understanding prior work, formulating new problems, designing and conducting experiments, and preparing presentations and publications of results.
  5. Welcome lunch during the first day of orientation.
  6. Students will get their temporary guest ID cards. They will be introduced to the UofL library, CSE labs, computing facilities, dining centers, and other facilities and logistics.
  7. The pre-program survey will be conducted for both the students and mentors.
  8. REU students will meet their faculty and graduate student mentors to get more details on their projects as well as the project-specific training.
  9. A tour to the UofL’s Miller IT Data Center.

May 27 – 31, 2024 (Week 2)

  1. Students will work on their research projects under the guidance of their mentors. Each student will have regular meetings with his/her faculty mentor and/or graduate student mentor.
  2. The PIs will meet all REU students weekly to discuss their projects and experiences.
  3. The weekly seminar on different topics of computer systems research begins.
  4. The PIs will coordinate with all faculty and students to assess whether any specific need arises regarding research, training, or other activities. If there is a need, the PIs will take prompt actions to solve the problem and enhance the program.

June 3 – July 5, 2024 (Weeks 3-7)

Same as Week 2, plus a tour to the Speed Art Museum in Week 3, a mid-program student survey and a mid-term progress report in Week 4, and a field trip to Micro/Nano Technology Center (MNTC) in Week 5.

July 8 – 12, 2024 (Week 8)

Final Research Poster Competition Week: Same as Week 2, plus a final technical report and a final research presentation that are required for every student. All REU students will be required to participate in the poster competition, and to join the REU banquet after that. End-of-program survey for both students and mentors. Exit interviews for students. A final dinner/banquet with REU students and faculty mentors.

Research Projects and Mentors

Important Dates

Application DeadlineSunday, April 7, 2024
Notification of Acceptance BeginsMonday, April 15, 2024
Notification of Declined ApplicantsMonday, April 29, 2024
REU Program StartsMonday, May 20, 2024
Final Day of REU ProgramFriday, July 12, 2024

Eligibility & Deadlines

Application Materials

  • Official College Transcript(s)
  • Resume (2-page limit)
  • Personal Statement (1-page limit), indicating your career objectives, research interests, relevant experiences, if any, and justifying why you are a good match for this program and the selected project(s);
  • Two letters of recommendations


This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 2349076.

Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

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