Independent Student Research Grants | Mount Allison

Deadline: January 31

Value: $7,500

Mount Allison's ISRG program provides students entering their final year with an intensive research or creative activity experience from May to August.

Students receive a research grant to conduct their own, independent research or creative activity projects. Projects may be completed on campus, in various communities, or overseas, depending on the nature of the approved project.

Many students use this as an opportunity to gather data for their honours thesis, while others use this as an opportunity to explore if research or research-creation is something of interest as their academic career unfolds.


Am I eligible?

The grant program is focused on students who:

  • are entering their final year of their degree program
  • intend to graduate the following May

Research grants will be given to qualified students meeting this criteria first. Research grants will only be made to other students if there are not enough qualified students with third year standing.

To be eligible for consideration

To be eligible for consideration, students must:

  • have a cumulative GPA of 3.5, including the GPA from the fall term in the year of application
  • your application must achieve a minimum score of 70% against the ISRG Evaluation Criteria

If your cumulative GPA is less than 3.5 and you still wish to be considered for an award, you may explain in your statement of preparation any medical or family issues which negatively affected your academic performance.

ISRG Evaluation Criteria

The ISRG committee will use the following criteria to evaluate application:

The individual 60%

  • Academic excellence (20%) — based on cumulative GPA from the most recent three semesters or equivalent (45 credits)
  • Research potential (20%) — based on the quality of analytical skills, ability to think critically, and ability to apply skills and knowledge
  • Academic preparation for the project and fit with the longer term goals of the student (20%) — based on relevant courses completed, relevant co-curricular activities, relevant extracurricular activities, and improvement in GPA over time

The research proposal 40%

  • Quality of the proposal (30%) — based on clarity, depth, and logic of the project, strength of research design and demonstrated facility with methodologies, originality and innovation, clear statement of the output and anticipated outcome, quality of the written material submitted, and student's independence
  • Advisor/Mentor (10%) — based on evidence of an appropriate mentoring/training environment

    How do I apply?

    Before you submit your application, you must find an advisor. Meet with them to discuss your interests, their interests, and their willingness to be your advisor. You should also share a draft of your proposal with them to get feedback.

    Step 1. Prepare your application package

    A one-page proposal

    A one-page proposal should include:

    • the research question, objectives, rationale for the project
    • relevant theory, methodology or creative approach to be used
    • anticipated results (if appropriate,) and implications of the research

    You are encouraged to use in-text citations, if appropriate. A bibliography or ‘works cited’ list is not required and will not be accepted if submitted.

    Formatting requirements: minimum 3/4 inch margins all around, minimum 11pt font, Calibri or Times New Roman (or equivalent) preferred.

    Tips for a good proposal

    Must be a true research or creative practice experience.

    • Not solely literature review/technical role.
    • You are responsible for addressing a research question.

    Research proposals must be sound and do-able.

    • Ensure rationale is clear/identify the gap in knowledge
    • Avoid casual and conditional language (e.g. my name is..., hope to...)
    • Use active voice, first person
    • Be realistic
    • Be sure to state what the outcome/product will be
    A one-page statement

    A one-page statement of preparation of your academic preparation, qualifications, and related experience for this project:

    • courses
    • research experience/employment
    • other employment
    • extra/co-curricular activities
    • other

    How this project fits with longer term plans, if appropriate:

    • honours
    • graduate studies
    • employment

    Formatting requirements: minimum 3/4 inch margins all around, minimum 11pt font, Calibri or Times New Roman (or equivalent) preferred.

    Your unofficial transcript(s)

    Your unofficial transcript(s): access your Mount Allison transcript in Connect.

    Attach transcripts from any other university or program for courses that will be counted towards your degree (transfer credits from another university, exchange program credits, summer program credits, etc.).

    For research-creation activities

    If your proposed project involves a creative output (such as poetry, a musical score, artwork, a play, etc.) you must have a research component that clearly explains how it will inform the creative output.

    "An approach to research that combines creative and academic research practices, and supports the development of knowledge and innovation through artistic expression, scholarly investigation, and experimentation. The creation process is situated within the research activity and produces critically informed work in a variety of media (art forms)."  — SSHRC definition

    When submitting your application, please check 'yes' for research-creation. Option: include a weblink to any supporting materials that you might wish the committee to see as part of your application. We cannot accept additional hard copies of materials.

    Step 2: Submit your application package

    Submit your application package in the ROMEO Research Portal — please upload in a single attachment (proposal, statement of preparation, and unofficial transcript(s) as a single combined PDF file).

    If you're not already registered with ROMEO, self-register as a new user.

    How to submit through ROMEO

    COMPLETE THE APPLICATION FORM

    1. In ROMEO, select Apply New (upper right hand corner)
    2. In the Student Internal Grants & Scholarships section, select Independent Student Research Grants
    3. Anything marked with a red * is a mandatory field

    NOTE: You should regularly 'Save' your work by clicking on Save in the upper left corner. You can exit any time and your saved work will be saved, and then return at a later time to work on the application.

    Project info tab

    1. Title: Provide a title for your research/research-creation project
    2. Start Date: May 1 (current year)
    3. End Date: August 31 (current year)
    4. Keywords: this is optional; do not feel obliged
    5. Related Certifications:
      • If your research involves animals, check Add New, choose Animal Care, then Save. No “notes” are required. It is just an administrative placeholder/reminder.
      • If your research involves human participants, check Add New, choose Human Ethics, then Save. No “notes” are required. It is just an administrative placeholder/reminder.

    Project team info tab

    1. Principal Investigator: This will automatically pre-populate with your information.
    2. Other Project Member Info: Scroll down to this section and select Add New.
      • Do NOT type any information in any of the boxes.
      • Choose Search Profiles.
      • Type in the last name of your proposed advisor.
      • Select Search.
      • When the name(s) appear, choose Select for your advisor. All of their information will automatically pre-populate.
      • For Role in Project, change the setting to Supervisor.
      • Save.
    3. If you will have a co-supervisor, repeat to add a second faculty member. For Role in Project, change the setting to Co-Supervisor.
    4. If your Advisor is not in the ROMEO system list of profiles, they will need to register with ROMEO, first. (All tenured and tenure-track faculty members should already be registered in the system.)

    Project sponsor tab

    1. Select Add New
    2. Agency: Type in Mount Allison in the name, and search, then select Mount Allison
    3. Program: Select Independent Student Research Grant
    4. Start Date: May 1 (current year)
    5. End Date: August 31 (current year)
    6. Scroll down to “Generate New Disbursement table...”.
      • Select “Generate”
      • Start Date: May 1 (current year)
      • End Date: August 31 (current year)
      • Requested Cash: type in 7200
      • Save.
    7. Save.

    Independent student research grant tab

    Academic Background sub-tab

    1. Total credits: refers to all credits from year one to end of April current year, for most people this should be 90
    2. Graduation: for most people this will be May 17, 2021
    3. Degree program: if a joint program, select the individual degree program most closely associated with the project
    4. Academic disciplines: at a minimum, include your major; anything else is optional

    Eligibility sub-tab

    1. Research-creation: for most people this will be No
    2. Weblink: only if you checked Yes for research-creation

    Acknowledgement and Checklist sub-tab

    1. Please read and then check Yes once all of your materials are uploaded.

    Attachments tab

    There is only one attachment (consisting of three files combined into one), read the formatting instructions carefully — maximum one page for each of proposal and statement of preparation (a two-page document, combined). Minimum 3/4 inch margins all around. Minimum 11pt font, Calibri or Times New Roman (or equivalent) preferred. Save as PDF.

    1. Prepare your proposal and statement of preparation document(s) first. Combine into a single file and save/export/scan to PDF.
    2. Assemble your unofficial transcript(s). For most of you, this will be only your MTA unofficial transcript, simply download from Connect, save/export/scan to PDF.
      • If you have academic credits that will be counted towards your degree from any other university (transfer credits from another university, exchange program credits, summer program credits, etc.), you MUSTalso attach those. (These can be unofficial as well.)
      • Add them to your MTA unofficial transcript and combine into a single PDF
      • If for some reason you exceed the allowable file size, attach as separate documents, or come to the Office of Research Services for assistance
    3. Combine everything into a single file, in this order: proposal, statement of preparation, transcripts.
      • Browse and upload
      • Doc agreement: Select ISRG Proposal
      • Add attachment

    Submission

    1. Save
    2. Submit
      • If you get an Error message, check the Error Tab to see what needs to be fixed.
    3. A “Submit” dialog box will appear to complete the process. Type in the word “complete” in the box, and press Submit.
    4. You will receive an auto-message from the system confirming that you successfully submitted your application.

    Step 3: Advisor's form and reference letter

    One signed copy of the Advisor's Certification Form and Reference Letter must be submitted directly by your faculty advisor either by campus mail or email.

    This form must be completed electronically, handwritten forms will not be accepted.


    Once you're approved

    If approved, you will receive a letter for the Provost and vice-president, academic and research. This letter will name any specific funds you have been awarded (including NSERC USRA).

    Approval from Mount Allison's Research Ethics Board (REB) or Animal Care Committee (ACC) may be required.

    Meet with your advisor ASAP! Discuss the details about how to project will be implemented and performed. Go over timelines, deliverables, workspace, etc.

    Grant payments are released in four equal installments. Research grants are not employment income and are not subject to deductions. Students will be issued a T4A for income tax purposes.

    Key dates

    March-April Preparation, responsible conduct of research, EDI in research information sessions
    Early May Commence project
    Sept. 15 Final report submission online
    Mid-Sept. Summer Undergraduate Research Fair (SURF)

    For international travel

    If your research requires international travel, make sure to get any approvals and requirements (REB or ACC) done before your go.

    As a student researcher through Mount Allison, you are also responsible for completing the appropriate pre-departure tasks to ensure your international travel is safe and successful.

    It's important to start planning early! If you have any questions or concerns before you go, please contact the International Centre at studyabroad@mta.ca.

    ISRG Program FAQ

    Can I do a project that is less than 15 weeks?
    Yes, but it must be a meaningful project and well-justified, and agreed to by the advisor. The value of the grant will be pro-rated accordingly.

    Can a sessional instructor be my advisor?
    No, only those people who have a continuing appointment over the time of the grant period may be an advisor.

    Can I do my project at another university?
    Maybe. It depends. You need an advisor from MtA. There needs to be a full justification for why you need to do the project at another university, and the advisor must agree. Sometimes, some of the work can/needs to be done at another university (access to lab resources, special resources, etc.).

    What are the start and end dates?
    This is up to you and your advisor, but the level of effort should be equivalent to 15 weeks of full-time activity doing this project. You should start no earlier than May 1 and end no later than Aug. 31. You can schedule your time as you see fit, in agreement with your advisor.

    J.E.A. Crake Student Summer Fellowship for Creative and/or Research Projects

    The Crake Foundation, established by the late J.E.A. Crake, Josiah Wood Professor of Classics and Head of the Classics Department from 1946 to 1976, offers Fellowships to enable Mount Allison students to engage in creative and/or research projects in the Humanities during the May–August period.

    Terms and conditions

    1. The Fellowships will be awarded by the Senate Committee on Research and Creative Activity following established policies and procedures for such fellowships.
    2. The student must be registered in a program in the Humanities which is understood by the Foundation to include Canadian Studies, Classics, Drama, English, Fine Arts, History, Modern Languages, and Literatures, Music, Philosophy, Religious Studies and Women's and Gender Studies.
    3. Other terms and conditions for the Fellowships will be consistent with those set by the Senate Committee on Research and Creative Activity for such awards.
    4. Each fellowship holder will be supplied with a copy of the biographical information available at jeacrakefoundation.org/
    5. The Fellows are required to acknowledge the J.E.A. Crake Foundation in any publications or other works (including art works, musical compositions, plays, conference presentations, lectures, etc.) arising from the award received. In addition the Foundation would appreciate being informed a week in advance of any public presentation/performance resulting from the award.

    Procedures

    1. The Provost will by May 31 provide the Foundation with the following information which has been received from the Senate Committee on Research and Creative Activity and the Controller, for each Fellow:

    With regard to projects completed the previous summer

    1.1. The name of the student, with a statement from the Financial Aid office of the degree program (including major area of study), the course load in the previous academic year, the session GPA, the cumulative GPA.

    1.2. A brief outline of project

    1.3. The name of supervising faculty

    1.4. A one-page summary by each Fellowship holder of work undertaken with the aid of the grant. The report should include information concerning how to gain access to the outcome of the grant.

    1.5. A statement from the Controller verifying that the funds in this account were spent in accordance with the terms and conditions stated, and the status of the account as of May 1.

    2. The Foundation will inform the University by January 2 of the amount of funding that will be provided for the J.E.A. Crake Student Fellowships for Creative and/or Research projects for the period beginning May 1.

    Value of the grant for five student fellowships, 2020: $37,500