This section should answer the question, “What do you intend to do?” You should begin with a concise statement of the general purpose or major objectives and goals of the proposed project. This statement, often in combination with the limited objectives or specific aims, should describe the research/scholarly/artistic issue or problem to be addressed, product to be developed, work to be created, external funding opportunity, etc. (If a hypothesis is appropriate for your proposed project, it should be presented as part of this discussion.) The committee will review your proposal to determine the extent to which you have chosen your purpose and goals carefully and logically, and stated them clearly and concisely. Be specific about the results, products, or consequences of your project’s purpose or objectives.
This section should address the broad importance of the project in the field and its potential to generate quality publications, professional presentation, public exhibit, and/or external funding. For example, will the project address a gap in your field or discipline, make a contribution to an important or noteworthy scholarly or aesthetic issue, advance the understanding of your area of work, have immediate or eventual practical value (e.g., enhance opportunities for students, provide a stepping stone for your interest area, or lead to proposal for outside funding or public exhibit), produce new data and concepts, or test existing hypotheses and assumptions? Will the projects develop a pool of pilot data relevant to an identified funding source or contact base? Document the significance and originality of your project’s approach. Specify likely outlets for dissemination of your results (e.g., journals or other publications, conferences, associations, exhibits, museums, societies, or potential user groups). This section should convince the Committee of the overall merit of your project.
Keep in mind that, while your project may fit in a long term line of research, reasonable objectives for your summer project need to be stated, and will be evaluated.
3. Procedures/Process/Work plan/Methodology/Method of Analysis
This section should describe project activities in detail; describe the sequence, flow, and interrelationship of activities; and present a reasonable scope of activities. If appropriate, a schedule or timetable may be incorporated within the narrative or included as a separate attachment. The case should be made in this section that the methods and procedures are familiar to the applicant and are appropriate for the purpose or objectives already described. If established methods or procedures cannot serve the project, describe how modifications will enable you to overcome shortcomings in existing approaches. Methods of analysis should be clearly explained.
For the entire project, demonstrate an understanding of the linkages between your process or methodology, the activities to be undertaken, the project aims, the limitations on what can be produced or concluded, and the plan for evaluating whether the project has been accomplished.
4. Methods of Evaluation
Indicate what evidence will be collected and reported to describe the project outcomes. Describe how you will determine if the project objectives have been met.
Provide a description of the strategic advantage to the university if this project is completed.
5. Intended Outcome
Be specific about what you intend to produce and what the intended distribution of that product will be. You should be able to identify a deliverable to be supplied at the end of your funded period. Stipend funds will not be paid until the deliverable is provided.
The Committee uses cross-disciplinary criteria to evaluate proposals and to establish funding priorities. You are strongly encouraged; therefore, to keep these criteria in mind as you prepare your proposal. Careful editing and proofreading are essential. As appropriate, you are expected to incorporate references to pertinent literature throughout your narrative.
Intrinsic Merit of the Project
This criterion considers the likelihood that the project will lead to discoveries or advances within its field or discipline, or have substantial impact on progress in that field or discipline. The concern is that the project is soundly conceived in terms of current work in the field, existing literature on the subject, and appropriateness of procedures for the task. (The term “project” as used in this and the following contexts refers to the central concern of the proposed activity – for example, this may be a current or emerging issue in a discipline such as chemistry or economics, a question of interpretation of an artistic creation or historical event, the technical or procedural choices in the production of an artistic or other creative work, or an assessment of current or alternative social policies or programs.)
Proposer’s ability to carry out the project
This criterion considers the capability of the applicant in terms of his/her past training, publication activity, and other scholarly or creative accomplishments. The adequacy of the resources available including ability to complete the work within the award period is also considered. As appropriate, the applicant should include details on recent research/scholarly/creative projects. Beginning researchers may include their student work.
Strategic benefit to the University of the proposed outcome
This criterion considers the nature of the benefit to the university if the proposed outcomes are achieved. This can include for instance, advancement to the reputation of the university through high profile publications.