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School of Graduate Studies and Research

Master's Research or Creative Activity Fellowship


The Master's Research or Creative Activity Fellowship is one of two competitive graduate student research fellowships offered by the School of Graduate Studies and Research. This fellowship provides up to $1,000 for travel, supplies, services, equipment, and other materials for research projects or creative activities that contribute to a graduate student's thesis or project.


Any CWU graduate student who is pursuing the thesis, project, or portfolio review option as partial fulfillment of master's degree requirements may apply for a Master's Research or Creative Activity Fellowship. To be eligible, applicants must have filed an approved Graduate Committee and Option Approval Form with the graduate office prior to application for the fellowship. Please feel free to contact our office if you need to confirm that we have your form on file.

Award amount

The maximum amount of the master's fellowship is $1,000. Graduate students may qualify for this fellowship only once (unless they pursue a second master's in a different field and elect the thesis, project, or portfolio review option). If your research involves humans or animals, you will have to submit a protocol for approval by the Human Subjects Review committee, HSR; or Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee, IACUC.


Payment of expenses for approved projects will be coordinated by the staff in the graduate office.

These fellowships may be used for:

  • Supplies, services, materials and equipment needed to conduct research related to the thesis or project.
  • Travel justified by the nature of the thesis or project.
  • Maps, graphs, and other specialized graphics required for the thesis or project.

These fellowships may not be used for:

  • Page charges or other costs associated with publication.
  • Salaries and benefits.
  • Ordinary thesis preparation costs, including cotton paper, typing, and binding.

All items (equipment, books, supplies, etc.) purchased by the fellowship funds become the property of the university. All purchased equipment must be placed on inventory and may be required to receive a CWU account number according to regular university procedures before it can be used on a project. The disposition of equipment after the completion of the project is negotiated by the department chair and school/college dean.

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The Application

Each applicant must obtain the application form,complete it, and return it with one complete application packet (paper copy) to the Graduate School and email a PDF attachment of the complete application packet to the graduate school at  by the established deadlines. Late submissions will not be considered.
Each application must be reviewed by the applicant's graduate committee and all requested expenditures approved prior to submission of the application. The applicant's graduate committee chair must sign the application, certifying that the requested amounts are reasonable and justified.

The application must include:

COVER SIGNATURE PAGE: The cover page must be complete with all signatures before submission, including approval by your thesis chair.  It is a courtesy to submit the application to your graduate committee chair for signature at least a week before the deadline.

ABSTRACT: After the cover page, attach a typed description of your project using double spacing and 12-point, Times New Roman font. This attachment must be no longer than 150 words and should summarize your project.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION: After the abstract, attach a typed description of your project using double spacing and 12-point, Times New Roman font. This attachment must be no longer than 5 single-sided pages (1" margins), including references and budget, which may be single spaced. There is no restriction on the use of figures or tables in your application narrative; however, they must be included in the 5 single-sided page limitation for the proposal and follow the double-spacing and 12-point, Times New Roman font requirements for all the accompanying captions.

Organize the project description using the following headings.

1. Scholarly/Artistic Significance—objectives and expected significance of the project; relation to present state of knowledge in the field, and to related work by others.

2. Action Plan/Methods—outline of the general plan of work, including the methodology, experimental methods, or procedures to be followed.

3. Budget Justification—explanation of supplies, equipment, travel costs, etc., in light of your project needs.   Include a budget table, such as that provided on page 4. If your budget includes travel expenses, you should notify your department secretary/administrator of your travel plans. Some types of travel require completion of an online travel authorization prior to traveling. Be sure to keep all receipts for travel and/or items purchased.

4. References Cited—relevant literature must be cited and listed in a reference section at the end.

After the full project description, attach a letter of support from faculty advisor.

Please note: Applicants applying for both the spring quarter Master’s Research Fellowship and the Graduate Student Summer Research Fellowship need to clarify how they are tied together. If the applicant has received a prior fellowship from the FDRC for which a final report was required, a copy of the final report should be submitted with the application.


Applications for the Master's Research or Creative Activity Fellowship may be secured from and returned to the School of Graduate Studies and Research at any time. Deadlines for submitting applications to the Faculty Development and Research Council for review and recommendation will be November 23 and April 15. The Council will review the proposals and notification of applications will generally occur within one month following each announced deadline date.

Review and Evaluation of Applications

Review and Evaluation of Applications
The Faculty Development and Research Council (FDRC) of the Graduate School will review each proposal and provide recommendation as to funding. Criteria for the evaluation of the proposals include the following:
1. Abstract/summary (10 points)
2. Scholarly/Artistic significance (40 points)
3. Action plan/methods (40 points)
4. Budget justification (10 points)

Recommendations on proposals are made by a vote of the council. The council may take one of four actions:
1. Not to fund
2. Request further information or clarification
3. Partially fund
4. Fund in full

All comments by the graduate committee chair and discussions of the applications are considered confidential. The text and approved budget of funded proposals are available to the public.

Notification of FDRC Decision
Following the FDRC's review and recommendations, the applicant will be notified of the final outcome with copies to the graduate committee chair.

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