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NSF GRFP 2016

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Does anyone know of any successful essays written by people studying STEM education? I haven't been able to find anything like this online so far (maybe I just haven't looked hard enough?)

 

I am applying this year, but would love to read an example before writing. Thanks!!

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Quick question. I'm currently a first year in my PhD program and looking to apply for this award. I was a tech. for 3 years and took 2 grad classes online because my job paid for them. Does this make me ineligible for this award?

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Does anyone know of any successful essays written by people studying STEM education? I haven't been able to find anything like this online so far (maybe I just haven't looked hard enough?)

 

I am applying this year, but would love to read an example before writing. Thanks!!

Songbird, 

If you can't find an example online, try looking at last years recipients in your field and emailing a few directly. Perhaps explain what you're doing and ask them to share as little or as much as they wish. In my experience, people are more than happy to share something. 

 

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Quick question. I'm currently a first year in my PhD program and looking to apply for this award. I was a tech. for 3 years and took 2 grad classes online because my job paid for them. Does this make me ineligible for this award?

"To be eligible for the NSF GRFP, you must:

  • be a US citizen, US national, or permanent resident
  • intend to pursue a research-based Master's or Ph.D. program in an NSF-supported field
  • be enrolled in an eligible program at an accredited United States graduate institution, with a US campus, by fall 2016
  • have completed no more than twelve months of full-time graduate study (or the equivalent) as of August 1, 2015
  • meet all other eligibility requirements as set forth in the current Program Solicitation"

They won't count this year's classes against you (assuming you started after August 1), which would only leave your 2 online grad classes. No matter how they can spin it, two classes in a non-degree program would never be considered full-time for 1+ years. So apply away!

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Songbird, 

If you can't find an example online, try looking at last years recipients in your field and emailing a few directly. Perhaps explain what you're doing and ask them to share as little or as much as they wish. In my experience, people are more than happy to share something. 

 

Thank you! I've emailed a few past recipients, and they have agreed to share some materials with me, so this has been helpful.

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Songbird, 

If you can't find an example online, try looking at last years recipients in your field and emailing a few directly. Perhaps explain what you're doing and ask them to share as little or as much as they wish. In my experience, people are more than happy to share something. 

 

Great tip! I never thought of that. So some general advice for finding useful examples:

  1. Google
  2. I've put together a table with all the examples I found. I also have given my general advice on applying.
  3. @coffee_grad's email tip (past winners here)
  4. Local resources at your college. Most schools have some writing / application advisors. Or you can start with the experienced person list

Good luck everyone

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Great tip! I never thought of that. So some general advice for finding useful examples:

  1. Google
  2. I've put together a table with all the examples I found. I also have given my general advice on applying.
  3. @coffee_grad's email tip (past winners here)
  4. Local resources at your college. Most schools have some writing / application advisors. Or you can start with the experienced person list

Good luck everyone

Number 4 is underutilized! I used the experienced person list to find a past winner, currently director of a large group on campus. He provided excellent advise and also reviewed my statements, meeting with me multiple times.

Edited by littlemoondragon
Wording was off.

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This will be my second and final time applying for the GRFP. I would really like to use a lot of what I wrote last year for my personal statement. Is it frowned upon if I re-use some of the material from my previous statement?

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This will be my second and final time applying for the GRFP. I would really like to use a lot of what I wrote last year for my personal statement. Is it frowned upon if I re-use some of the material from my previous statement?

Nope, they will not know what you did last year, so knock yourself out.

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This will be my second and final time applying for the GRFP. I would really like to use a lot of what I wrote last year for my personal statement. Is it frowned upon if I re-use some of the material from my previous statement?

I definitely know winners that took multiple chance to get the fellowship and for each application, it was very strongly based on the previous application.

So while I'm assuming NSF has some plagarism software to make sure you don't copy someone else, you won't get rejected for self plagarism :D

And to echo @gellert, the reviewers know nothing about your previous applications.

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Checking in here as I'm finally hunkering down on my application materials. I feel like I'm a zillion light years behind on this at this point. But I have a successfully funded NIH proposal I helped my PI with as the topic of my research, and I'll be recycling much of a personal statement I wrote last year for other stuff. I've still got almost 3 weeks to get this done!

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Checking in here as I'm finally hunkering down on my application materials. I feel like I'm a zillion light years behind on this at this point. But I have a successfully funded NIH proposal I helped my PI with as the topic of my research, and I'll be recycling much of a personal statement I wrote last year for other stuff. I've still got almost 3 weeks to get this done!

You're not alone! I'm about half way through both personal statement and research proposal drafts. They are shaping up nicely but still need much work (and revisions!)

Does anyone have any statistics they would like to share regarding success rate in the various fields?

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Hi all,

I was awarded  in 2012 and recall GradCafe was such a fantastic resource. Now, I'm graduating this upcoming June! To pay it forward, I'm adding my own NSF GRF advice to the existing resources here: http://ltse1.bol.ucla.edu/nsf.html.

It includes examples of awarded essays as well as advice on content. Also, if you are truly in need of a proofreader, let me know and I'll try to be prompt though no promises. Hope it is useful, and good luck everyone!

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Hey everyone, checking in here. I'm also working on drafts for the life sciences so a little more than 2 weeks left until this is due. I'm on the quarter system so I pretty much just joined a lab and started working on an idea. The NSF deadline seems to be pushing itself up more and more each year. I remember student had until November last year

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You're not alone! I'm about half way through both personal statement and research proposal drafts. They are shaping up nicely but still need much work (and revisions!)

Does anyone have any statistics they would like to share regarding success rate in the various fields?

I don't have any solid evidence, but I discussed this some with another winner over the summer. She said that while biology and engineering have the highest percentage of winners over the 2,000 awarded, it is representative of the percent of incoming applications. This means the smallest categories like statistics, the proportion of those who won in statistics out of those who didn't is the same as biology. Again, this was a discussion and I have no proof.

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There seems to be a lot of resources offered on the thread. For those who do not want to comb through the posts, here is what I remember (in order of appearance):

Edited by littlemoondragon

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I'm currently a research technician in a hematology/oncology lab at a research hospital, and I have a question specifically about the research proposal. As a research technician, I work closely with an MD/PhD fellow and a graduate student on two separate projects. I'm especially interested in the project I'm in the midst of with the grad student. I'm trying to be as original as possible with my proposal, but would it be fine to have one of my aims be finishing up the project we're currently working on? I would need to build off of this part of the project in order to carry out any other aims, since we are trying to establish a model of a specific disease. To what extent is the proposal just an exercise in grant writing?

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I'm currently a research technician in a hematology/oncology lab at a research hospital, and I have a question specifically about the research proposal. As a research technician, I work closely with an MD/PhD fellow and a graduate student on two separate projects. I'm especially interested in the project I'm in the midst of with the grad student. I'm trying to be as original as possible with my proposal, but would it be fine to have one of my aims be finishing up the project we're currently working on? I would need to build off of this part of the project in order to carry out any other aims, since we are trying to establish a model of a specific disease. To what extent is the proposal just an exercise in grant writing?

I would say that this research proposal is 100% an exercise in grant writing. 

For those of you that haven't seen how a grant is written, here is the process I have witnessed.

Step 1: Do a bunch of research.

Step 2: Write a grant. These usually have three aims. Aim 1 was definitely already accomplished. Aim 2 is started. Aim 3 is actually about the future.

So I think when writing the research proposal it is more than reasonable to include something in the "proposal" that is actually actively being researched.

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I don't have any solid evidence, but I discussed this some with another winner over the summer. She said that while biology and engineering have the highest percentage of winners over the 2,000 awarded, it is representative of the percent of incoming applications. This means the smallest categories like statistics, the proportion of those who won in statistics out of those who didn't is the same as biology. Again, this was a discussion and I have no proof.

I also can't find a specific link, but I recall seeing multiple references that the percentage of winners is very closely proportional to the number of applicants for a given category. So since last year, 2000 fellowships were awarded out of around 16000 applicants, the success rate was about 12% per category. The number of applicants is definitely going up every year, so if I had to guess, there will be 17-18,000 applicants, so a success rate closer to 11% (unless funding increases).

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I also can't find a specific link, but I recall seeing multiple references that the percentage of winners is very closely proportional to the number of applicants for a given category. So since last year, 2000 fellowships were awarded out of around 16000 applicants, the success rate was about 12% per category. The number of applicants is definitely going up every year, so if I had to guess, there will be 17-18,000 applicants, so a success rate closer to 11% (unless funding increases).

Just by my judgement, I'm intrigued by the winner's list from last year relative to my sub-field of Social Psychology. More of us must have applied because the winners for Social are way out of proportion with other subfields.

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I'm a second year graduate student, and found out a paper I helped with a year ago has a "revise and resubmit" status. Should I list this on my application if this is my only publication so far?

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I'm a second year graduate student, and found out a paper I helped with a year ago has a "revise and resubmit" status. Should I list this on my application if this is my only publication so far?

I have the same question! I'm most likely going to list it, though.

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I'm a second year graduate student, and found out a paper I helped with a year ago has a "revise and resubmit" status. Should I list this on my application if this is my only publication so far?

I would certainly include it. You can listed it as In Review. This will still how that you are actively trying to publish articles. I put several like this on my application.

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