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FYS101 Research Exercises - 2022/23

This guide contains the 6 research exercises for SNHU's First Year Seminar class, FYS101, for the 2022-23 academic year.

First Year Seminar Sample Syllabus

Check your Brightspace course for your course syllabus. This is only the generic outline for the course.

Undergraduate Research Day

Wednesday, April 5, 2023

All students (individually or in teams) are encouraged to submit research projects to SNHU's Undergraduate Research Day (URD) held the first Wednesday of April every year celebrating student work across campus including independent and course-based research projects, posters, video/online games, films, artwork, engineering projects, Makerspace projects, etc. Your FYS Final Team Project is an ideal one to share at Undergraduate Research day in April!

  • To participate, click on the link below and fill out the form.
  • Explain your research project in 250 words or less where asked in the form.
  • On URD on April 5th, you and your FYS group may present your research in one of two ways: Do a 15 minute presentation about your FYS research to other students and faculty who attend OR create a Poster and share it at the Poster Session with anyone who stops to ask you questions about it.
  • Each year that you participate you will be given colored cords to wear on your graduation day, unless you participate three or more years in which you will be given a stole to wear at graduation.
  • You may present class-based, internship-based, or original independent research projects in any discipline at Undergraduate Research Day.
  • You will need to select a "mentor" which for FYS might best be your instructor, so be sure to ask them before you submit to the proposal link below.

We look forward to your participation in this special day celebrating students sharing their learning across campus!

2023 UGR Day Proposal Link: 

Submit Your Proposal


  • Early Acceptance: Friday, December 9, 2022
  • Regular Admission: Friday, March 3, 2023

Research & Learning Librarian 

The Director of First Year Seminar works with a librarian to develop and revise the curriculum for First Year Seminar. Please feel free to ask the librarian questions about the content of this guide, or finding and evaluating sources for the research project. The Shapiro Library Reference staff is also available to help students using the chat box, phone number or email in the upper right corner of this guide.

Profile Photo
Karin Heffernan
 WLLC 222A

Welcome to First Year Seminar (FYS101)
Research Exercises for 2022/23!

First-Year Seminar Book 

Photo of book, "never caught" and author erica armstrong dunbar

   Author of FYS book, Never Caught & author Erica Armstrong Dunbar

This year's First Year Seminar book is Never Caught: The Washingtons' Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge, which was a Finalist for the National Book award for Nonfiction in 2017 and a winner of the Frederick Douglass Book Prize.

Author Dr. Erica Armstrong Dunbar is Charles and Mary Beard Professor of History at Rutgers University and National Director of the Association of Black Women Historians. She is also the author of A Fragile Freedom: African American Women and Emancipation in the Antebellum City.


Finding hidden heroes while connecting hard histories to current issues

The six research exercises in this series are a companion to your classes in First Year Seminar designed to help hone your research and information literacy skills to build your final "Expert Panel Presentation" for the course. You will be learning how to search, find, evaluate, and use information from a variety of perspectives.

Links to each of the Research Exercises will be in your Brightspace course shell, but if you find yourself on this page, you may easily click on the Exercise you need using the buttons on the left navigation menu.

FYS101 Team Expert Panel Presentation Project 

First Year Seminar Final Team Project – “Facing Hard Histories. Discovering Hidden Heroes”

Challenge Statement: With a team, research three historical primary sources and one current statistic about one aspect of the African American experience and create & present your findings of how they connect and what efforts have been made at raising awareness or addressing the injustices involved.

Skills: This assignment is intended to help you:

  • Select, analyze, & cite credible sources from our library databases and the internet to develop insights & ideas
  • Analyze ways in which history may continue to inform our struggles for justice today
  • Synthesize research & analyses into a shareable, educational experience
  • Collaborate with teammates to present your findings


Click on the link below to see a description of the Expert Panel Presentation and how it will be structured. Be sure to view this in your own Brightspace course as it applies to your class.

Expert Panel Presentation This link opens in a new window

Primary Source Collections

Nine (9) Primary Source Collections have been curated for you to discover, explore, and analyze ways in which the past influences the present.  Click the link below to review the complete options of Primary Source Collections:

Primary Source Collections (Spring 2023)This link opens in a new window

Your goal, as a team, is to work both independently and together to figure out ways in which your primary sources may connect to each other (the three historical primary sources and the current statistic) and how they connect to the theme described at the top of your Collection Card.  Additionally, you will research and describe efforts that have been made in the past or currently to raise awareness of the problem or address the injustices involved.

*Note:  Language changes as culture changes.  Words such as "negro" used in the past are no longer used today, however primary sources reflect the language of the time in which they were created. 

Due Dates & Grading

This Team Project unfolds over the second half of the term & is worth 30% of your grade.  You will be graded individually and as a team. See the syllabus for project pacing & due dates. 

Never Caught - Accessing the book

Copies of the required First Year Seminar book, Never Caught, by Dr. Erica Armstrong Dunbar are available in a variety of formats for free through the library, as well as to be purchased through the SNHU Bookstore.

Print Book

Two copies are available On Reserve at the Information Desk in Shapiro Library. Bring your ID card to borrow the book overnight for one night at a time.

Two more print copies are available in the library stacks on the 3rd floor. Look for Call number E444 .D86 2017. You may request to get on the waitlist for them if they are already checked out by looking them up in the Library Catalog, clicking on the title in the results list, and clicking the red Request button at the top of the page.

Audiobook & eBook via Libby (Overdrive)


A copy of Never Caught is available here This link opens in a new window. Please do not download it, instead just use the EPUB Full Text link and read the book online. Downloading requires check-out and makes the book unavailable to others for several weeks. Any number of people may read the book online at the same time. No limit.

"EPUB full text" is circled in red, while the "Full Download" has a big, red X across it