Arts Undergraduate Research Scholarship Application Instructions


STOP!  If you are applying for graduation with distinction you must complete the Arts Distinction Application first! 

This competition is for students who are pursuing a degree in the arts, and completing an arts-based creative or research project by autumn semester of the last year of their major program.

Application Checklist

  • Completed application form, including budget
  • Project proposal
  • Recommendation from Arts supervising faculty advisor

Submission Deadline(s)

  • Fall Deadline: Friday, October 15, 2021
  • Spring Deadline: The deadline for AURS applications for the spring 2022 competition has been extended to Monday, March 21 (5 p.m.).

Your application for an Arts Undergraduate Research Scholarship must be accompanied by a project proposal, a budget, a recommendation letter from the Arts and Sciences supervising faculty advisor and the signature of the department/school faculty honors advisor.

If applicants would like to submit photos, videos, or other supporting materials in support of their application, further instructions on how to do so will be sent out after you have submitted your application and/or after the deadline.  Additional materials are not required but they are welcome if they relate to your intended project.

For students who desire to apply for graduation with distinction, applicants must complete the Arts Graduation with Distinction Application Form first.

  • You must be enrolled in a major in the Arts (Art, AAEP, Dance, Design, History of Art, Moving-Image Production, Music or Theatre).
  • You must have attained junior standing at the time of the award.

The amount of the award varies and is paid toward any University fees from the Office of Student Financial Aid. The amount of the award may be modified for those recipients who also receive funding from other sources.


By federal law, no student can be awarded aid in an amount which exceeds the estimated cost of education as established by the Office of Student Financial Aid. Therefore, for example, if you are already receiving a complete financial aid package, the research scholarship will substitute for some portion of that aid with no net increase of funds to you. An exception to this rule is allowable only for items legitimately listed on the budget, the amount of which can be awarded to you regardless of other aid. Applicants should list all expenses associated with the project, since such costs represent a financial commitment to the research, and it is that commitment which justifies additional assistance to students currently receiving other scholarships and/or loans. (Lost income and tuition/fees are not expenses that can be included in the budget.)


Recipients generally must be enrolled as full-time students (12 credit hours) during the semester in which they receive scholarship funding. Recipients must also be in compliance with the Satisfactory Progress Policy of the Office of Student Financial Aid.


Applications, proposals and letters of recommendation are reviewed by the Arts Undergraduate Research Scholarship Committee. The number of scholarships awarded will be determined by the amount of funds available and the quality of proposals submitted.


One copy of the thesis is to be electronically filed with the University Knowledge Bank.


The Project Advisor must be a faculty member with the rank of Assistant, Associate or Full Professor in the Arts.


Because most applicants are of comparable promise and ability, the quality and significance of the research project are decisive factors. Consequently, please pay close attention to the following project proposal guidelines.

Creative Activity

Creative Activity and Research in the context of a project in the Arts shall mean any endeavor which seeks to apply, extend or refine concepts and methods pertinent to enrollment units in the Arts. For example, projects may utilize established methodologies employed by education or the social or natural sciences; they may utilize historical, reflective, critical or analytic modes of inquiry drawn from the humanities; or they may be focused in the creative processes which culminate in works of art and/or performance.

Research Topic

Select a research topic which you and your faculty project advisor believe can be completed within the time in which the scholarship is tendered. Elaborate proposals with questionable timetables will not be viewed upon favorably.

Project Proposal

Prepare a project proposal of not more than 5 double-spaced typewritten pages, using 12 pt Times New Roman font with 1-inch page margins. Any proposal not conforming to these requirements will not be considered.

Proposals must include the following headings in the suggested order:

  1. ABSTRACT: Provide a brief description of the project (25 words or less).
  2. THESIS STATEMENT: Explain the purpose of the project, the problem in which you are addressing and any research questions that will help guide you in your process.
  3. METHODOLOGY/PROCESS: Explain the method in which you plan to conduct this project. Please mention how the methodology relates to the project’s budget.
  4. SIGNIFICANCE: Explain the relevance of the project, how it will extend the field or bring forward new knowledge in the field.
  5. RESEARCH EXPERIENCE: Provide a brief background of how you have prepared for this project and/or why you are qualified to conduct this activity.
  6. APPLICANT’S STATEMENT: Address your current artistic emphasis and overall orientation to the field.
  7. BUDGET (not included in the 5-page proposal): The committee will carefully review the budget in terms of its relationship to the overall research/creative project. Applicants should list all costs associated with the project, since those costs, whether to the student, the advisor, or the department/school, represent a financial commitment to the research.

    NOTE: The budget will be used to justify increased University aid to those students already receiving aid from any other source. While your budget will be considered on its merit, the committee awards dollar amounts on merit rather than need basis.

    Applicants should list all costs (in-kind, departmental, or other incurred expenses) associated with the project, since those costs, whether to the student, the advisor, or the department, represent a financial commitment to the research, and it is that demonstrated commitment which justifies additional assistance to students currently receiving other scholarships and/or loans. If you have no budget, this information should be stated.

Arts Faculty Advisor Recommendation

The recommendation should address the student’s ability in the suggested order:

  • Is the project feasible? Please address the student’s methodology and budget aspects of the proposal.
  • Is this student prepared to carry out the project? As students of high ability, most applicants will present evidence of excellence, academic aptitude, and achievement. Therefore, the committee will need to base its decision on the potential educational value of the project for the student. The interest and concern of the faculty member and his or her assessment of the student and the project often will be decisive.
  • Is this part of the faculty member’s own scholarship? Address the issue of the degree of project independence involved.
  • What is the significance of the proposed project? Please address the project’s importance to the field.


IMPORTANT! Please use the information below to find your Department Honors Advisor and Chair/Director before you start the form! You are not required to be enrolled in the Arts Honors Program to apply for the scholarship.

Honors Advisor and Chair/Director by Unit

Department Honors Advisor: Richard Fletcher (
Chair or Director: Shari Savage (

Department Honors Advisor: George Rush (
Chair or Director: Laura Lisbon (

Department Honors Advisor: Crystal Michelle Perkins (
Chair or Director: Susan Van Pelt Petry (

Department Honors Advisor: Matt Lewis (
Chair or Director: Mary Anne Beecher (

Film Studies
Department Honors Advisor: Janet Parrott (
Chair or Director: Janet Parrott (

History of Art
Department Honors Advisor: Kris Paulsen (
Chair or Director: Karl Whittington (

Department Honors Advisor: Daryl Kinney (
Chair or Director: Eugenia Costa-Giomi (

Theatre, Film, and Media Arts
Department Honors Advisor: Janet Parrott (
Chair or Director: E.J. Westlake (

When you have gathered all required material, please apply using the link below: