Upcoming Deadlines for NSF Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Grants

by Noreen Balos, Funding Peer
Thursday, May 23, 2019 8:00 AM

The National Science Foundation (NSF) Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Grants (DDRIG) are grant awards for doctoral students to improve the quality of dissertation research. These grants provide funds for items not normally available through the student's university. Additionally, these grants allow doctoral students to undertake significant data-gathering projects and to conduct field research in settings away from their campus that would not otherwise be possible.

Awards are usually on average $12,000 for one year. But in some cases can be up to $20,000 for two years. Depending on NSF division or program some allow for $15,000 a year or a $20,000 maximum request.

NOTE: Because this is not a fellowship directly paid to the student or student’s account, citizenship status is not a consideration in the grant application. This is a grant application from the university and Faculty-PI and awarded to the university and Faculty-PI for support in dissertation research. Funds are held in a university or department account.

The Faculty-PI and the student would submit a proposal with the support of the UCSB Office of Research. Application materials usually include project description, faculty (and student) biography, budget. Some examples of expenses that may be included in the budget:

  • Costs associated with travel and related expenses to conduct research at field sites, archives, specialized collections, and/or facilities away from the student's campus.
  • Costs for data-collection activities, including the conduct of experiments, surveys and/or questionnaires.
  • Costs for securing data and for archiving data.
  • Costs for equipment necessary for the conduct of the project that will be devoted to the project over the duration of the award. (Note that any equipment purchased with NSF funds becomes property of the awardee organization.)
  • Costs for payments to research subjects and/or language informants
  • Costs for materials and supplies required for the conduct of the project.
  • Costs for travel to one domestic professional meeting to present preliminary research results and obtain feedback to further improve the project. (Note budgetary limitations specified in specific grant solicitation. Note also that NSF will not recommend a DDRIG solely to provide support to share research results at conferences.)