Title: Evaluation Criteria for Undergraduate Research Grant Proposals


The evaluation criteria for undergraduate research grant proposals are paramount in the selection process of recipients. These criteria ensure that the proposals demonstrate strong academic merit, feasibility, and potential impact. By carefully reviewing and understanding these criteria, students can enhance their chances of receiving funding for their research projects. This document provides an in-depth analysis of the evaluation criteria typically used to assess undergraduate research grant proposals.

1. Research Proposal

The research proposal is the central component of an undergraduate research grant application. It outlines the objectives, methods, and significance of the proposed research project. The evaluation of the research proposal considers the following elements:

1.1 Significant Research Question: The research question should be well-defined, original, and clearly stated. It should address a gap in the current literature or provide a novel perspective on an existing problem.

1.2 Research Background and Rationale: The proposal should provide a thorough literature review that demonstrates a solid understanding of the subject area. It should also articulate the rationale for the research, explaining why it is important and timely.

1.3 Research Objectives and Hypotheses: The proposal should articulate clear and specific research objectives. It should also propose testable hypotheses that can be addressed through the proposed research.

1.4 Methodology: The proposed methodology should be suitable for addressing the research objectives and hypotheses. It should be rigorous, well-designed, and feasible within the time and resource constraints of the project.

1.5 Expected Results and Impact: The proposal should discuss the potential outcomes and impact of the research. It should explain how the results will contribute to existing knowledge, advance the field, or address a practical problem.

2. Academic Merit and Preparedness

The evaluation considers the academic credentials and preparedness of the applicant. This criterion aims to assess the applicant’s ability to successfully conduct the proposed research project. The following aspects are considered:

2.1 Academic Record: The applicants’ academic record, including GPA and relevant coursework, is evaluated. A strong academic track record demonstrates the ability to excel in the proposed research area.

2.2 Letters of Recommendation: Letters of recommendation from faculty members who are familiar with the applicant’s academic abilities and research potential are considered. These letters should provide insights into the student’s intellectual curiosity, work ethic, and potential for success in the proposed research project.

2.3 Research Experience: Previous research experience, such as participation in research projects, internships, or independent studies, is evaluated. Such experience demonstrates the applicant’s familiarity with research methods and their ability to conduct independent research.

2.4 Relevance of Coursework: The evaluation considers the relevance of the applicant’s coursework to the proposed research project. Relevant coursework helps demonstrate the applicant’s preparedness and knowledge in the field.

3. Feasibility

The feasibility criterion evaluates the practicality of the proposed research project. It assesses whether the project can be successfully completed within the proposed timeframe and with the available resources. The following factors are considered:

3.1 Research Plan and Timeline: The proposal should outline a well-structured research plan that includes an appropriate timeline for completing the project’s different stages. A clear plan demonstrates the applicant’s organization and ability to manage the project effectively.

3.2 Required Resources: The evaluation considers the availability and accessibility of the necessary resources, such as equipment, materials, facilities, and access to research participants. The proposal should demonstrate that these resources can be obtained or accessed within the proposed project timeframe.

3.3 Budget: The feasibility of the proposed research project is also evaluated based on the budget allocation. The budget should be reasonable, justifiable, and align with the needs of the research project.


The evaluation criteria for undergraduate research grant proposals play a crucial role in determining the recipients of funding. By understanding these criteria, students can tailor their proposals to meet the expected standards. The research proposal, academic merit and preparedness, and feasibility are the key areas that evaluators assess. Addressing these criteria with a strong and well-structured proposal increases the chances of obtaining funding for an undergraduate research project.