American Fellowships Postdoctoral Research Leave Fellowships Application Instructions

Program Purpose

AAUW’s American Fellowships program has been in existence since 1888, making it the oldest noninstitutional source of graduate funding for women in the United States. The program provides fellowships for women pursuing full-time study to complete dissertations, conducting postdoctoral research full time, or preparing research for publication for eight consecutive weeks.

The primary purpose of the Postdoctoral Research Leave Fellowship is to increase the number of women in tenure-track faculty positions and to promote equality for women in higher education. This fellowship is designed to assist the candidate in obtaining tenure and further promotions by enabling her to spend a year pursuing independent research.

Applications are open August 1–November 15
For questions or technical support,
please e-mail aauw@applyists.com.

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Award Amount

Award Amount: $30,000

Time Line

November 15, 2016, by 11:59 p.m. Central Time
Deadline for online submission of application, recommendations, and supporting documents

April 15, 2017
Notification of decision e-mailed to all applicants. AAUW is not able to honor requests for earlier notification.

July 1, 2017–June 30, 2018
Fellowship year

  • American Fellowships are not open to previous recipients of any AAUW national fellowship or grant (not including branch or local awards or Community Action Grants). Members and officers of the AAUW Board of Directors are not eligible to apply for fellowships and grant awards. AAUW staff or volunteers with decision-making authority who wish to apply for an award must recuse themselves from the decision-making process.
  • American Fellowship candidates must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents of the United States as of November 15, 2016.
  • American Fellowships are open to women scholars in all fields of study.
  • American Postdoctoral Research Leave Fellowship applicants must hold a doctorate classified as a research degree (e.g., Ph.D., Ed.D., D.B.A., D.M.) or an M.F.A at the time of application.
  • Tenured professors are not eligible.
  • Applicants may not apply for both a Postdoctoral Research Leave Fellowship and a Summer/Short-Term Research Publication Grant in the same fellowship year.
  • Distance learning/online programs: American Fellowships support traditional classroom-based courses of study. This fellowship program does not provide funding for distance learning programs or for degrees heavily dependent on distance learning components. Final decisions about what constitutes distance learning under these fellowships will be made by AAUW.

Criteria for Selection and Application Review

The American Fellowships panel meets once a year to review applications for funding. Awards are based on the selection criteria outlined here. The panel’s recommendations are subject to final approval by the AAUW Board of Directors. Fellowships are awarded on a competitive basis according to funds available in a given fiscal year. To ensure a fair and objective review process, AAUW does not comment on the deliberations of its award panels. No provisions exist for reconsidering fellowship proposals after the board has acted. AAUW does not provide evaluations of successful or unsuccessful applications.

Applications and supporting documents become the sole property of AAUW and will not be returned or held for another year.

In selecting fellowship recipients, the following criteria will be considered:

  • Applicant’s scholarly excellence
  • Quality of project design
  • Originality of project
  • Scholarly significance of project to the discipline
  • Feasibility of project and proposed schedule
  • Qualifications of applicant
  • Applicant’s commitment to women’s issues in the profession/community
  • Applicant’s mentoring of other women
  • Applicant’s teaching experience
  • Potential of applicant to make a significant contribution to the field

The primary criterion for fellowship awards is scholarly excellence. When comparing proposals of equal merit for Postdoctoral Research Leave Fellowships, the review panel will give special consideration to women holding junior academic appointments who are seeking research leave, women who have held the doctorate for at least three years, and women whose educational careers have been interrupted. For Postdoctoral Research Leave Fellowships, preference will also be given to projects that are not simply a revision of the doctoral dissertation. Applications are reviewed by distinguished scholars and should be prepared accordingly.

Regulations

American Postdoctoral Fellowships funds are available for

  • Educational expenses
  • Living expenses
  • Dependent child care
  • Travel to professional meetings, conferences, or seminars, as long as it does not exceed 10 percent of the fellowship

American Postdoctoral Fellowships funds are not available for

  • Purchase of equipment
  • Indirect costs
  • Research assistants
  • Previous expenditures, deficits, or repayment of loans
  • Publication costs
  • Institutional (overhead) costs
  • Tuition for dependent’s education
  • Tuition for additional coursework

AAUW regards the acceptance of a fellowship as a contract requiring fulfillment of the following terms:

  • All American Fellowship recipients are required to sign a contract as acceptance of the award. Retain these instructions as they will become part of the fellowship contract if the applicant is awarded a fellowship.
  • An AAUW American Fellow is expected to pursue her project full time during the funding period (July 1–June 30). No partial fellowships are awarded. Fellowships may not be deferred.
  • Fellows may work up to 15 hours per week, or teach one section of one course per semester or term, with prior written approval from AAUW.
  • The AAUW American Fellowships stipend must be larger than any other single award or remunerative position (excluding sabbatical support or support from a program that is the functional equivalent of sabbatical leave) received during the fellowship year and must be acknowledged as the major award. Acceptance of concurrent funds of a lesser amount than the AAUW award is permitted but requires prior written approval from AAUW.
  • Any major changes in plans for the fellowship year must have prior written approval from AAUW.
  • AAUW must be notified promptly of any change in the status of an application resulting from acceptance of another award.
  • Stipend checks are made payable to fellows, not to institutions.
  • Fellows are responsible for reporting the fellowship as income to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service.

Application Components and Instructions

Please follow the directions carefully and complete all sections of the application for successful submission of your application. Only completed online applications will be reviewed by the selection panel.

Required Components*

Start the application process by clicking on the link to access the application and create an account through our vendor site. Complete all required components in the following tabs.

  1. Eligibility
    • Applicants must pass the eligibility quiz to be reviewed by the selection panel.
  1. Applicant
  1. Recommendations*
    • Provide three recommenders who are the applicant’s advisers, colleagues, or others well acquainted with her project or work. Standardized or form letter recommendations are discouraged.
  1. Academics
  1. C.V./Résumé
  1. Narratives
  1. Budget
  1. Uploads
    • Transcript(s)*/proof of degree*: Submit official transcript(s)* or original letter showing proof of doctorate classified as a research degree (e.g. Ph.D., Ed.D., D.B.A., or D.M.) or M.F.A.
    • Project institution letter*: If you will conduct your project at an institution other than your own during any part of the fellowship year, submit letter indicating permission from, invitation by, or arrangements with institution or other location where study will be carried out and the authority with whom the work will be done as well as verification that you will receive laboratory or office space, library privileges, and institutional affiliation during the fellowship year.
  1. Payment
    • The $45 filing fee is required to cover the cost of administering the application process. Payment will be accepted through PayPal.

*A certified English translation is required for all documents provided in a foreign language, including transcripts, letters, and diplomas. Translations must bear a mark of certification or official signature that the translation is true and complete.

Tips for Proposal Preparation

  1. Read and follow all guidelines.
    Many proposals are disqualified each year because applicants omit a key step in the guidelines or ignore instructions. If you are unsure whether you are qualified to apply, e-mail aauw@applyists.com for assistance.
  1. Proofread all work thoroughly.
    Proposals that are unclear or contain numerous mistakes distract the reviewer from focusing on the content and reflect poorly on your ability to produce a high-quality product. Check to be sure that sentences are complete, clear, and grammatically correct.
  1. Have someone else read the completed proposal.
    An objective reader can often identify areas that need more explanation and may find errors you have overlooked.
  1. Be concise.
    Reviewers must read dozens of proposals. Proposals that are clear and concise are more compelling.

 

Applications are open August 1–November 15
For questions or technical support,
please e-mail aauw@applyists.com.