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Frequently Asked Questions


How many awards are offered?

The number of awards varies from six to ten awards each year. The $1,000 awards are given in three categories: Upper Division Thesis, Upper Division Non-Thesis, and Lower Division. Honorable mention awards of $500 may also be given. You may also apply for an optional Population Health Award of $250 that is available for innovative, interdisciplinary or well-written research papers relevant to population health.

I have a course project I want to submit for the research award, but it won’t be completed by the deadline. Can I submit an incomplete project? How about a first draft?

You may submit a completed first draft if you feel confident enough with it.  However, this will put you at a disadvantage as you compete with completed final projects.


My project was completed for a course that took place before the eligibility period.  Can you make an exception and consider my project for this year's award?

Unfortunately, we cannot consider projects completed before the quarters specified.

I co-authored a paper with my professor.  Is my project eligible?

Your project is eligible for submission, but it will be very important for you to explicitly distinguish which parts of the project you completed, and which parts your professor completed.  Your project will be judged on the parts that you created.

Project Criteria

What do you mean by library resources?

Library resources may be print or online books and journals; databases; primary resources such as those found in the Libraries Special Collections; and library materials in any media. Note that an applicant can use any library anywhere, so items requested through interlibrary borrowing are acceptable, as are items found in the online collections of any library.

Is there a length requirement or maximum for a project?

No. Projects should follow the length guidelines given by your instructor.

Application Procedure

May I submit multiple projects for the award in the same year?

Yes, you may submit multiple projects, but you may receive only one award.  Please submit separate forms and letters to accompany each essay and project.

I won an award last year.  May I submit another project this year?


How do I know my class standing when the project was completed?

To answer this, you can count up the college-level credits you have completed at the time you turned in this assignment. You should count both credits you've earned at UW and credits you've transferred from other institutions.

Here's the official UW breakdown: 0-44 Freshman; 45-89 Sophomore; 90-134 Junior; 135+ Senior. So, if you have under 90 completed credits, then you would be eligible for the lower division category.

What if my course project is a DVD, a piece of art, or a speech?

That's acceptable! Projects in all media are encouraged. You must provide a written version of the speech, plus the other required elements. A video of the speech is not required but is welcomed. Email libaward@uw.edu for instructions on where to bring your course project when it is an artifact that cannot be submitted online.

The person who knows the most about my research is not the faculty instructor, but a teaching or research assistant. Must the support letter come from the faculty in charge of the course?

You may submit a letter of support from either the course instructor, or the teaching or research assistant who you feel knows the most about your research.

Are there any guidelines for the instructor letter of support?

The form has specific questions about the applicant and their project. If students are submitting as a group, one letter can be written for the whole group.

Notification & Prize Disbursement

How is the award disbursed?

The money will be deposited directly into your UW account.

If I receive an Award, will it impact my financial aid?

YES! The award may affect your financial aid.
Please consult your financial aid advisor:
Phone: 206-543-6101
Web: http://www.washington.edu/students/osfa/

When are Research Award winners notified?

All applicants will be notified by the first week in June whether or not they received a Research Award.

When are the financial awards distributed?

The awards will be distributed at the end of Spring quarter.