NSF FAQ

When is the NSF GRFP application deadline?

November 4, 2014 (The 2015 program solicitation, i.e. the handbook, will be posted in August 2015.)

How many parts are there to the application?

1. Fastlane application module
2. Transcripts from ALL institutions listed on Fastlane (for the IPN, since it is ongoing when you apply, you can upload an unofficial transcript; see questions below!)
3. Three glowing, gushing, but truthful letters of recommendations (LOR) from mentors and/or professors. We typically recommend at least 1 letter from an IPN affiliate, and 1 letter from your previous science life. This can be tricky since you will have only been at GU for ~ 4 months, so start thinking of who you might ask early on to give them a heads up! Some potential IPN letter writers could include:: rotation advisor, summer course instructor, IPN admission faculty, program director
4. One fabulously crafted personal statement that is three pages long (any charts/graphics/references you need to make your case are included in this page limit). This should show that you understand the NSF’s mission, that you are already doing your part to advance it, and that you have great potential to continue doing it in the future.
5. One cutting-edge, crazy but doable, thoughtful, and urgently needed research proposal that is 2 pages long (any charts/graphics/references you need to make your case are included in this page limit)

REMEMBER: you can not propose to cure any diseases with your proposal. This is not an NIH application!

When should I start thinking about/completing my application?

You have already started! By checking out this FAQ page, you are learning about the structure of the application and likely starting a mental checklist about eligibility, application materials, and why you deserve a GRF. Start actively preparing (see “How do I start?” below) the day you get on campus, July 1!

How do I start?

1. Attend the "In-Depth NSF GRFP Information Session" on July 2 2015, location and time TBD.
In this 60 minute info session, we will:

  • go over the FAQ page content and answer your questions
  • introduce you to a very useful "checklist" to get you going

2. Attend the “Unpacking the Review Criteria/Tips to make writing easier” session on July 30 2015, location and time TBD:

  • 15 minute introduction to the Review Criteria, focusing on understanding Broader Impacts
  • 30 minutes to brainstorm/work on what to highlight and how from your past, present, and future using some sample questions that a reviewer might use.
  • 15 minutes to go over some writing tips, goals for the next workshop and answer questions.

3. Come to our hands-on writing workshops, location and times TBD! We will start with a 5-15 minute refresher on the goal of the workshop, then have 60 minutes of free time to write, ask questions, get feedback and guidance, and wrap it up with 15 minutes of asking “Did you achieve your goal?” and talking about what to do next time.

 

Click here for a schedule of workshops.