Projects will be evaluated by two faculty members for your discipline group. Excellent proposals will be concise, clear, descriptive, persuasive, and easy to follow. The grants are awarded to high quality projects. An excellent proposal describes and justifies a project.
The full set of proposal documents includes the following:
In the sciences and in engineering, excellent proposals will: (a) orient reviewers to the greater body of relevant literature and convey why the project is important and significant, (b) present the objectives or hypotheses for the project that are related to the previous literature, (c) include a clear and descriptive methodology section that directly shows how the project objectives and/or hypotheses will be achieved, and (d) detail expected results and their significance.
In the arts and humanities, excellent proposals contain a description of the idea or question that the student will be exploring, the planned approach or line of thought, and the significance of the proposed work and the contribution that it will make to the arts and/or humanities.
The narrative portion of the proposal must not exceed 2,500 words (5 single-spaced pages, with 12-point font and 1″ margins, excluding references).
- IRB/IACUC review (if necessary);
- A month-by-month proposal of work, a reporting date; and
- A target date and location for presentation of the work.
All proposals must include a detailed budget (using this form) outlining where the money will be spent. All GRCO awards are a maximum of $1,000.
The letter should:
- Outline the qualifications of the applicant to complete the project.
- Outline the nature of the project as “an inquiry or investigation conducted by a graduate student that makes an original intellectual or creative contribution to the discipline.”
- Provide a statement of support for the project, its feasibility, timeline, and potential educational outcomes.
Arts & Humanities- Includes programs such as Music, Theater, Religious Studies, English, History, Liberal Arts, etc.
Life Sciences- Includes programs such as Biology, Plants, Watershed Sciences, Environment and Society, etc.
Physical Sciences & Math- Includes programs such as Geology, Math, Physics, Dietetics, etc.
Engineering- Includes programs such as Biological Engineering, Computer Science, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, etc.
Social Sciences & Education- Includes programs such as Political Science, Management, JComm, Economics and Finance, Accountancy, Psychology, etc.
Projects will be evaluated using the following criteria:
Project ratings will make up 75% of the total score upon which funding decisions are made.
- Significance: Does the proposal orient the project to the greater body of literature and convey why the project is important? Is it easy to follow, concise, clear, descriptive and persuasive?
- Methodology: Is the methodology clear and descriptive? Has the author conveyed how these actions will lead to the desired result? Are there few flaws?
- Anticipated Outcome: Has the author presented hypotheses or anticipated outcomes for the project? Have they related these to the significance statement?
- Feasibility: Is the project well-planned, feasible, and clear? Can it be accomplished within the timeline proposed
Student qualifications will make up 25% of the total score. Students are assessed by their CV and their mentor’s letter of support.
- Experience: Experience predicts success in URCO projects; more experience should receive higher scores. Experience can include outputs (e.g., presentations, publications) or effort (e.g., time in a lab, work on projects with faculty).
- Mentor Support: Does the mentor make a compelling case in recommending the student(s)? Does the mentor indicate their own willingness to invest in the student’s (or students’) success?.