Skip to main content

Summer Student Research Fellowships

Augustana Summer Student Research Fellowships are available to students of all disciplines. This funding is intended to support independent student projects under the supervision of an Augustana faculty member and is designed to encourage students to engage in research early in their academic career.

Funding for Senior Inquiry (SI) research will be considered separately from non-SI independent research. At least one non-SI summer fellowship will be reserved for a qualified rising sophomore while the remaining proposals will be evaluated equally based on merit.

Students may apply for $300 per week for 5-10 weeks of the summer for a total of $1,500-$3,000 stipend, plus up to $500 in expenses. Students should discuss the project timeline in their proposals and justify the number of weeks being proposed. If the fellowship is funded, the faculty mentor will receive $500 (added to their professional development fund).  

Augie Choice funds will be applied to the fellowship if a student has not used these funds and is not intending to use Augie Choice for other experiences. (Projects that require large expense budgets, such as expensive travel, etc., will be funded if the funds are available.)

Project proposals and letter of support must be submitted by Feb. 23, 2024.

You will submit your application for the Summer Research Fellowship using the application at the end of this page. Proposals for Senior Inquiry (SI) research will be considered separately from non-SI research. Make sure you are ready to complete your online application before you begin. 

When you are ready to begin, you will upload one document that should include the following subsections: 

I. Detailed description of the project (2,500 words maximum)

A. What is your research question/objective?

B. Why does it matter?

C. What is your plan for answering your question or accomplishing your objective?

II. Budget (stipend + supplies/travel)

III. Significance and impact

Expectations for each section are outlined below.

Detailed description of the project

This is the largest and most important section of your proposal (2,500 words maximum). Your description should focus on the following:

• What is your research question/objective? Although disciplines vary, we all begin our scholarly activity with curiosity. The purpose of your research explains what you are curious about, and what you hope to learn. A social scientist might ask "How do economic factors contribute to the expression of racial prejudice?" An artist may have questions about techniques or materials and a historian ask why a struggling political movement suddenly caught on at a specific point in time. So... what are you hoping to understand as a result of your project?  Make sure this question/objective is clearly stated in your proposal. 

• Why does it matter? Within academic disciplines, scholars contribute to a body of knowledge, techniques, or beliefs that grow or change over time. This is represented in the published journals, books and works of art. Provide rationale for your proposed project by describing the relationship of your project to current issues in your chosen field of study.  Reference previous work in the field that this project will be built upon (show the committee your knowledge of the academic literature in your field by including references/citations).

• What is your plan for answering your question or accomplishing your objective? Please provide an explanation of your plan. It does not have to be so detailed that someone could read your proposal and then go complete your project exactly as you would. However, it is absolutely essential that someone can read your proposal and understand how it will achieve your stated purpose. You should clearly describe the general methods or techniques you will use. This might be an experimental procedure, a performance method, an approach to literary criticism, etc.  Be sure your plan will actually address your question/objective.

Budget: This section should include:

Your proposed stipend and supporting detailed timeline

A stipend is money that covers normal summer living expenses (food, housing, utilities) to allow you to devote yourself full-time to research. 

How many hours per week and how many weeks will you need to work on the project? Summer Fellowships typically provide 5-10 weeks of funding with students working up to 40 hours per week on the project.

To determine your requested stipend, estimate the number of hours you will spend on the project each week x the number of weeks (up to a maximum of 10 weeks). Then multiply the total number of hours x $11.25 for your total requested stipend. All student stipends are subject to Social Security, Medicare and federal and state income tax withholding.

Your total requested hours should be supported by a detailed timeline that includes a list of proposed dates and specific work/tasks to be completed each week.

If you are completing the proposed research as part of your Senior Inquiry project, please explain why the research cannot be conducted during the academic year and/or why a stipend is necessary to allow successful completion of the project. 

List of expenses for research supplies, equipment, and travel

List any expendable equipment/supplies that will be used only for this project. 

List any new equipment required for the project that you plan to purchase that will be available for future use on campus.

All supplies and equipment purchased with these funds will be property of Augustana College. 

List travel expenses essential to the proposed research project.  Mileage is reimbursed at the rate of $0.24/mile.

Supply/travel money cannot be used to purchase food. 

Do not include expenses to present results at conferences, since those funds are available through a separate funding program of the Student Research Committee. 

While we expect that for most projects these expenses will not exceed $500, projects that require larger expense budgets (such as expensive travel, etc.) will be funded if the funds are available.

Significance and impact: this section should include:

• Reflection on the meaning/importance of the project in connection to your educational goals and how the project is related to the liberal arts.

• A description of what are you hoping to learn and how will you define success (or failure) of the project.

• A statement of how and when the project results will be reported and how this research may lead to future projects. Summer Fellows will be expected to present their work at the Student Research Symposium: A Celebration of Learning during Spring Semester — among other venues — as well as write a short reflection paper after completion of their projects.

Recommendation from a faculty member

Ask the faculty member overseeing the project to fill out this recommendation form and email it directly to Dr. Kimberly Murphy.

This recommendation form will not be uploaded through the online application since the faculty member will email it to Dr. Murphy, but you will be asked to confirm that you have requested the recommendation and you will be asked to provide the name of the faculty member who is filling out the form.

Requirements for a competitive proposal

All successful proposals will:

  • Demonstrate a sophisticated understanding of the topic, a clear question/goal, and appropriate methods to address the question/goal.
  • Articulate a specific plan for completing your project.
  • Clearly describe any field-specific jargon, theories or methods so they can be understood by readers across academic disciplines.
  • Demonstrate care in preparing and proofreading final materials.
  • Include all requested information.


Access the application.

If you have any questions, contact Dr. Shara Stough, 309-794-3376, or Dr. Kimberly Murphy, 309-794-3444, co-chairs, Augustana Student Research Committee.