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Graduate Summer Research Awards

Deadline: Monday, February 5, 2018 11:59pm


The Graduate Summer Research Awards offer summer support for graduate students engaged in humanistic dissertation research and writing. The goal of these awards is to make possible full time dissertation work for the months of June and July. Students will also have the opportunity to organize a series of Interdisciplinary Graduate Student Research Workshops during the academic year following the summer of support, where they will present their own work and recruit colleages to present. The Graduate Summer Research Awards are made possible by the generous support of the Friends of the Hall Center.



Hall Center Graduate Summer Research Awards provide $4,000 of summer support to up to four KU graduate students.



Eligible applicants will:

1. Be currently enrolled KU graduate students engaged in humanistic dissertation research who will have successfully completed all required coursework for the PhD by the end of the semester in which they are applying;

2. Demonstrate a high level of motivation, including the ability to establish and achieve academic goals;

3. Have not already received a Hall Center Graduate Summer Research Award; and

4. Are not in receipt of significant summer funding from any other source (such as a GTA/GRA-ship or another major summer award).



Graduate Summer Research Award recipients are required to:

1. Devote full time effort to dissertation work during June and July and may not engage in any teaching or other employment, at KU or elsewhere, during the award period;

2. Submit a brief report on the progress made during the award period and its relationship to the overall dissertation project.  This report is due no later than August 31 immediately following the award period.

3. Be in residence at KU during both fall and spring semesters following the summer of research; and

4. Work with other awardees during the academic year following the award to organize and run the Interdisciplinary Graduate Summer Research Workshop, and present their work at one of these workshops.



All application materials must be submitted through the Hall Center Competitions Portal.  Paper submissions will not be accepted.  For an application to be verified as complete, and thus forwarded for committee review, applicants must:

1. Create an account or log in to an existing account.

2. Select the Apply Now button next to this competition. 

3. Complete the Applicant Information form in the Portal.

4. Upload the following materials as 4 separate PDF or Word files:

a. Curriculum Vitae, not to exceed two pages;

b. Project Description not to exceed four double-spaced pages, with one-inch margins and twelve-point type.  Describe the dissertation project, including information on the current stage of research/writing and estimated degree completion date; an indication of the work plan for the term of the award; and an assessment of how the award will assist in completion of the degree.

c. Bibliography (optional). The optional bibliography does not count towards the four-page Project Description limit and should be uploaded separately from the Project Description.

d. Degree Progress Report.  Ensure that this report provides sufficient detail on completed coursework and other departmental requirements for degree progress (thesis defense, comprehensive exams, etc.) Copies of transcripts from other institutions are not required.

5. Ensure the receipt of two original letters of recommendation in English, one of which must be from your dissertation advisor.  Request letters from individuals who can discuss the general quality of your work and your ability to carry out the work proposed for the summer research award period.

Reference letters should discuss the proposed work's importance to the overall project, the general quality of the applicant's work, and the applicant's ability to complete the proposed work and the dissertation project.  Your advisor's letter must also confirm that you have satisfied all coursework requirements for the PhD.

All reference letters must be submitted via the Hall Center Competitions Portal prior to the application deadline.  Applicants will submit the names and email addresses of referees via the portal. This submission will generate notifications and instructions for the referees, allowing them to submit their reference letters electronically.  Applicants will receive a notification email when a referee has completed a reference.  Applicants may also log into the system at any time to see if a reference letter has been submitted.  The letter itself will not be visible to the applicant.

Applicants should submit the names of their references well before the application deadline to allow sufficient time for the preparation and submission of the letters.  References will not be allowed to submit letters after the application deadline has passed.

No extraneous materials will be considered.



A committee of humanities graduate faculty, chaired by the Hall Center Director, will select the Graduate Summer Research Award recipients according to the following criteria:

1. The quality of the conception, definition, and organization of the project as presented in the project description;

2. Significance of the contribution that the completed dissertation will make to thought and knowledge in the pertinent genre, tradition, or field, and to the humanities generally;

3. Importance of the proposed summer work plan to the dissertation; and

4. Likelihood that the applicant will complete the work proposed.



An interdisciplinary panel of KU faculty with successful grant and publishing track records select awardees.  The Hall Center Director brings together a unique panel for each competition.  Reviewers are asked to read the applications and enter their comments and rankings for each applicant in the online portal. Reviewers then meet to discuss individual applications and determine awardees. All applicants can view reviewer comments in the online portal. While these reflect only an individual reviewer's comments and not the final consensus of the group, they are offered to applicants as input that may help improve their applications for future competitions.  


Applicants should direct all questions about the Graduate Summer Research Awards to Hall Center Interim Director Clarence Lang (4-3054; celang@ku.edu) or to Interim Associate Director Sarah Bishop (4-7823; sarahbishop@ku.edu).

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