Faculty Fellowship Awards Application Guidelines

Applications are invited from full-time, tenured or tenure-track U of I faculty members for selection as IPRH Faculty Fellows for the 2020–21 academic year.

The fellowship will enable Fellows to develop research projects related to the broad theme of “The Global and Its Worlds” (visit the IPRH website for the theme description) and to participate in the year’s activities, including the yearlong interdisciplinary Fellows Seminar and other related programming.

IPRH welcomes applications from scholars in all disciplines and departments with an interest in humanities and humanities-inflected research. IPRH is especially interested in fostering interdisciplinary work, both within the humanistic disciplines, and between the humanities and the arts.

Eligibility and Terms

Only full-time tenured and tenure-track Urbana campus faculty are eligible to apply for the awards. Faculty members who have previously held an IPRH fellowship may not reapply to IPRH for five years following the award year.

All IPRH Fellows are required to maintain residency on the Illinois campus during the award year and to attend the Fellows Seminar. Recipients of IPRH Faculty Fellowships may not also hold a Center for Advanced Study, or other campus release-time, award (such as from the Campus Research Board) in the same academic year as their IPRH Fellowship. Applicants should make certain that their teaching and research obligations do not prevent them from participating fully in IPRH activities, and should identify in the narrative statement any other applications being made for either sabbatical leave or for other campus or external grants and fellowships.

The fellowship provides release time for one semester in residence, and $2,000 in research funds, deposited to the faculty member’s departmental research account. The faculty member’s department(s) will be compensated $12,000 ($6K per course) for releasing the faculty member. In the case of faculty members with two or more percentage appointments, these funds will be distributed in accordance with the department that holds the course offering/s.

IPRH fellowships are intended to provide a release from teaching, not from service and continued engagement in the shared governance of the home unit. However, it is hoped that departments will keep service obligations for fellowship recipients—beyond dissertation, thesis, and other necessary forms of graduate advising—to a minimum, thus making service expectations compatible with the goal of maximizing the scholars’ ability to make excellent progress on their research projects during the semester of teaching release.

Application Guidelines

Applications must be submitted at the online application portal.

Applicants will be asked to create a password-protected account, to which they can return multiple times. The application system opens in September 2019. No paper or emailed applications will be accepted. The online application must be completed and submitted no later than 5 p.m. on December 6, 2019. Referees must submit their letters of reference by 9 a.m. on the following Monday, December 9, 2019. Please note that IPRH staff will not be available for trouble-shooting after the close of business on December 6, so IPRH strongly recommends applicants and referees submit their materials well before 4:30 p.m. on the 6th.

In addition to completing the online application form, applicants must submit the following materials through the online system (documents should be double-spaced, and in 12-point Times New Roman font, with one-inch margins; materials that exceed the required length will not be considered):

  • A 100-word abstract with project title. [Upload under “Abstract.”]
  • A current curriculum vitae (maximum 10 pages; this need not be double-spaced, but please spare a thought for the review committee in rendering it legible). [Upload under “Curriculum Vitae.”]
  • A statement of 2,000 words describing the faculty member’s research on the proposed project. The word count is exclusive of notes or bibliography, but in deference to the selection committee, a minimalist restraint should be applied to any citational apparatus. [Upload under “Research Statement.”]
  • A pdf of a signed EO Approval Form (Download PDF). Applicants should complete their portion, print for the EO(s) to complete and sign, then scan. It is the applicant’s responsibility to upload the form to the application. [Upload under “Other Supporting Document.”] Executive officers who are applying for a fellowship must include instead a pdf of a signed letter from the dean of their college, approving the application and any release time that would result from a successful proposal.
  • Two (2) letters of recommendation to be uploaded by the applicant’s referees.

IPRH recommends entering recommenders’ names and emails early in the online application process. The application system will generate an email request for letters to those whose names and emails the applicant submits, and the email will provide a link for uploading the letter. Please note that applicants must enter their personal contact information first before they can proceed to entering references. Doing so enables the system to insert the applicant’s name in the email request to referees. In order for the system to generate those emails, however, the applicant must click “continue” after entering referees’ names and emails—even if nothing else is to be done in the application at that time. Applications for which both letters of recommendation have not been uploaded by 9 a.m. on December 9, 2019 will be deemed incomplete and will not be considered. All letters must be uploaded through the application portal. No paper or emailed copies will be accepted.

In the narrative statement, the applicant should describe his or her research in reasonable detail, elucidating its relationship to the theme as well as its significance to the broader scholarly community at Illinois and elsewhere, and addressing the applicant’s readiness to undertake the project. The statement should also indicate the applicant’s willingness to participate in IPRH activities, especially the Fellows Seminar.


Online applications must be complete and submitted by 5 p.m. on December 6, 2019, after which the application portal closes. Letters of support must be uploaded by 9 a.m. on December 9, 2019, or applications will be deemed incomplete and will not be forwarded for review.

Visit the application system.

Deadline extensions will not be granted. The review committee will consider only complete applications. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that all documentation is complete, and that referees submit their letters before their deadline. Applicants should be sure that the application documents are complete and should proofread all materials carefully, as no changes are possible once one clicks “submit.” Note that one must click through the final section of the application portal, and hit “continue” in order to have the option to “submit.” Merely uploading all required documents does not constitute “submission.” Applicants must actively submit their applications. The portal will automatically generate an email acknowledgment of your submission. If you do not receive such an email within a reasonable time after clicking “submit,” and do not find one in your spam/junk folders, please touch base with IPRH. IPRH strongly recommends submissions be made prior to 4:30 p.m. on the day of the application deadline, as IPRH staff will not be available to assist with troubleshooting after close of business on Friday, December 6.

Selection Criteria

The applications will be reviewed by the IPRH Advisory Committee and representatives of the International Area Studies Centers and Thematic Programs, who will make their award recommendations to IPRH; the IPRH Director and Deputy Director serve on the committee in an ex officio capacity. Submissions will be evaluated on the following criteria: the scholarly excellence and promise of the project, the applicant’s preparation/readiness to undertake the proposed research, the quality of the narrative proposal, the relationship to the annual theme, the case made for how the IPRH experience/seminar would be beneficial to the project, and the letters of support.


All applications will be acknowledged via e-mail, and all applicants will be notified in the latter part of the spring 2020 semester, when the search has concluded. Please do not contact IPRH about the status of an application, unless you are having difficulties with online submission; because of the volume of applications IPRH receives, we are unable to answer questions about the suitability of particular research topics or the progress of the review and selection process.

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To submit your application, go to the application system where you will be asked to create an account. The system opens September 1, 2019.

Questions about these fellowships may be addressed to Nancy Castro at ncastro@illinois.edu or 244-7913.

Application Deadline: December 6, 2019 5 p.m.