Research & Creative Opportunities for Undergraduates

The objective of this program isto provide encouragement for undergraduate students to engage in scholarly/creative work in their disciplines and to provide funds which may make it possible for them to do so. The program budget is $15,000, divided equally among the three quarters.

  1. Eligibility: Competition is open to any registered undergraduate student in good standing. Preference will be given to new applicants. This program is designed to support individual student proposals. Collaborative (Team) proposals are allowed. The proposal narrative should define the individual contributions of the collaborators and the project description should focus on the applicant's role. Separately authored proposals must be submitted for each student seeking funding within the collaborative. No sections of two proposals should be identical.
  2. Award Amounts: Grants will normally be awarded in the range of $100 - $500 per individual proposal.
  3. Solicitation of Proposals: The Vice Provost for Research will solicit proposals for consideration in early Fall, Winter and Spring quarters of every year. Awards will be available upon approval.
  4. Applying: The application should include a proposal no more than two pages in length. The narrative must outline appropriate background material so that the project proposed is placed in context and its significance can be assessed. Please see the following section: Research and Creative Opportunities for Undergraduates Proposal Guidelines for the proper format.
  5. Use of funds:

    Funds may be used for expenditures as outlined in the project budget. Any deviation from the budget must be approved by RSP. Funds must be expended before the awardee graduates.

    However, funds may not be used for the following:
    • compensation for students or faculty members engaged in the work
    • fees and/or tuition for classes at WWU or other institutions
    • creative workshops brought to WWU
    • travel to present results of the work or attendant a conference/workshop
    • food and/or beverages
    • mileage reimbursement or use of university vehicles, however funds may be used for gasoline
    • projects that are completed
    Funding is for the duration of the project, but no longer than a year. A two year project could be proposed with a continuation request required for the second year whose merit would be evaluated in part upon documented progress made in the first.

    Any additional source of support for the work proposed should be indicated.

    Any impact on campus equipment or other resources should be noted.

    Reimbursement for expendable project materials must be supported by receipts/purchase orders and must be submitted to departments.

    Any non-expendable items and equipment (cameras, tablets, glassware, cables, costumes, etc.) acquired using award funds remains the property of the university.

    Non-expendable items must be purchased entirely with grant funds or non-grant funds.
  6. Faculty Advisor: The student proposal must be accompanied by the "Faculty Advisor Assessment of Undergraduate Work" form. This form is completed by a faculty mentor who agrees to provide appropriate direction to the applicant.
  7. Review: Proposals will be reviewed by a multi-disciplinary faculty committee appointed by the Vice Provost for Research with final determination to be made by the Vice Provost for Research. The proposals will be evaluated using the rubric at: ( and upon the likelihood that the student proposing the project can complete it.
  8. Dissemination: The proposal must contain a plan for disseminating the results of the work. Some examples include: a Scholar's Week poster presentation, workshop, presentation at a conference, publication in conference proceedings or a journal, a performance, creation of literature, display at a gallery or other venue. The Faculty Advisor will review the work prior to dissemination.

Proposal Guidelines

These guidelines will help you prepare a good proposal. Your faculty advisor may help you by reviewing drafts. It is your responsibility to write the proposal.

A proposal narrative must convince the multi-disciplinary members of the review committee that the proposed project is:

Worthwhile and relevant. You need to pose the research question or creative project in the context of background information on the topic. This must include a brief review or survey of resources pertinent to the project. Be sure to include a bibliography (not counted in the 2-page proposal limit) citing the sources of the background material. Discuss your topic with your advisor and ask for help defining the proposal and finding the appropriate background information before writing the proposal. You need to justify why the proposed work should be performed.

Feasible. The project must be do-able given the resources and expertise available. The proposal should convince the review committee that the student researcher will be able to conduct the proposed research within the suggested timeline and with the resources available to the student.

Suggested proposal format:

  1. Project Narrative: (2 page limit)
    • Abstract: The abstract should contain a brief statement of objectives, methods to be employed, and the significance of the proposed activity to the field of study (one paragraph).
    • Introduction: How does the proposed project benefit the existing body of knowledge about the field or contribute to your field of study? How does the proposed project affect the greater community? How does the work relate to your educational goals?
    • Background: literature review. How well is the project supported by the background knowledge on the subject? The literature cited indicates how well you are aware of the previous work in your field of study.
    • Proposed work: Convince the review committee why the work should be done. Clearly state your individual research or creative activity objectives. If applicable, define the individual contributions of the collaborators and/or team members.
    • Plan of action: How will you conduct the proposed work? You should provide a clearly defined set of tasks which will accomplish your objectives. Describe procedures, experiments, and the design of appropriate items needed for your individual project. A timeline or project schedule for your individual proposed work is required.
    • Dissemination: how will the results of the proposed work be disseminated? Who will be responsible for reviewing your work?
  2. Bibliography (on a separate page): Make sure you include the complete citations for the literature sources referenced.
  3. Budget (on a separate single page): Provide an itemized list of supplies and equipment requested for your proposed individual project, including the cost, supplier, and catalogue number (when available) of each item and proposed funding source. In a separate paragraph, describe how each requested item will be used for your project. It should, especially, include clear indication of the need for the funding requested, equipment, why any travel is essential, etc. Requests for travel funds must support direct research efforts.

Application Form

Application Form (will work with Apple/Macs)

Calendar of Deadlines


Page Updated 11.13.2017