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Awards for Faculty at Historically Black Colleges and Universities

Awards to USA Faculty Affiliated with Historically
Black IHEs for Humanities Research

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National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) - Division of Research Programs

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Deadline Date:

04/10/19 11:59 PM ET Receipt


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Awards of up to $60,000 to USA faculty and staff affiliated with Historically Black IHEs for humanities research projects. Applicants must create or verify the required registrations prior to applying. This program supports humanities research of value to humanities scholars, general audiences, or students. Expected output includes books; articles; digital material and publications; archaeological reports; translation; editions; other scholarly resource; basic research leading to improvement of existing course; and basic research related to the goals and interests of the institution or community.

Common to all projects must be humanities research. Eligible projects include:
- Humanities research in primary and secondary materials leading to the development of books, monographs, peer-reviewed articles, e-books, digital materials, translations with annotations or a critical apparatus, critical editions, or other scholarly resources;
- Humanities research related to institutional or community goals or interests, such as projects that draw on institutional or community archival collections; and
- Humanities research leading to the improvement of an existing undergraduate course, including the development of humanities resources (for example, oral histories, identification of previously unavailable primary sources, historical or literary collections).

NEH encourages projects that promote a deeper understanding of American history and culture, as well as projects that advance civic education and knowledge of America’s core principles of government. NEH also invites projects related to its Standing Together initiative, which encourages projects related to war and military service. In response to the destruction of cultural heritage materials worldwide, NEH encourages applications for projects that study, document, or create digital representations of lost or imperiled cultural heritage materials.

As the 250th anniversary of American Independence draws near, NEH is offering a special encouragement to applicants to the Fellowships program to consider the impact—both immediate and long term—of the momentous events of 1776. NEH especially invites applications that explore the role of the Declaration of Independence and other foundational documents in the making of U.S. history. In addition, applications are welcome that explore the experiences of states and communities beyond the original colonies in joining the nation, since they have their own stories of becoming part of the United States. Applications examining the stories and contributions of under-represented communities in the nation’s history are also invited.

Evaluators are asked to apply the following five criteria when judging the quality of applications:
1. The intellectual significance of the proposed project, including its value to scholars, students, or general audiences in the humanities.
2. The quality or promise of quality of the applicant as a humanities researcher and (for course revision projects) as a teacher.
3. The quality of the conception, definition, organization, and description of the project and the clarity of expression in the application.
4. The feasibility and appropriateness of the proposed plan of work, including, when relevant, the soundness of the dissemination and access plans for the proposed audience or audiences.
5. The likelihood that the applicant will complete the project. This program supports projects at any stage of development.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 164801

Estimated Size of Grant:

The amount of the award is $5,000 per full-time month. Thus an award to support eight months of half-time work would be $20,000 equivalent to four months of full-time work at $5,000 per month). The maximum stipend is $60,000 for the equivalent of twelve full-time months.

Term of Contract:

The period of performance can be full time, part time, or in combination, between two and twelve months full-time equivalent. The award period (period of performance) must be continuous.

Projects can begin as early as February 1, 2020 and as late as September 1, 2021.

The minimum period of performance is the equivalent of two months of full-time work; the maximum is the equivalent of twelve months of full-time work. The length of support requested should be determined by the complexity of the project, the amount of work to be completed, and the commitment of the institution to the project. Requesting an award period shorter than the equivalent of twelve full-time months will not improve an applicant’s chances of receiving an award.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Within the parameters listed below, this program accepts applications from full-time, part-time, adjunct, and retired faculty members and staff members affiliated with Historically Black Colleges and Universities. If you are uncertain about the status of your institution, please check the Department of Education’s list of HBCUs:

Citizenship: U.S. citizens who teach at, serve on the staff of, or have retired from Historically Black Colleges and Universities are eligible to apply. Foreign nationals who take up permanent residence outside the United States any time between the application deadline and the end of the period of performance will forfeit their eligibility to hold an award. (Leaving the U.S. on a temporary basis is permitted.)

Currently Enrolled Students: While applicants need not have advanced degrees, individuals currently enrolled in a degree- granting program are ineligible to apply. Applicants who have satisfied all the requirements for a degree and are awaiting its conferral are eligible for NEH Awards for Faculty; but such applicants need a letter from the dean of the conferring school or their department chair attesting to the applicant’s status as of April 10, 2019.

Dissertation Revisions: Applicants may seek funding for projects based on completed dissertations. You must state in your application narrative that the proposal is to revise a dissertation, and you must explain how the new project moves beyond the original dissertation.

Projects Previously Supported by NEH Awards: Applicants may not apply for funding for a project previously supported by an NEH Fellowship, an NEH-Mellon Fellowship for Digital Publication, a Public Scholar award, or an Award for Faculty. Applicants may, however, apply for funding for a project previously supported by a two- month NEH Summer Stipend. In such a case NEH will ask evaluators to review the accomplishments from the previous award to determine whether the project warrants additional funding.

An NEH grant for one stage of a project does not commit NEH to continued support for the project. Applications for each stage of a project are evaluated independently.

Concurrent Grants from Other Organizations: Recipients of these awards may simultaneously hold fellowships or grants from institutions other than NEH—including sabbaticals and grants from their own institutions—in support of the same project during their period of performance.

Collaborative Projects: This program is designed primarily for individual researchers. Awards may not be divided. If you are seeking funding for more than one participant in a collaborative project, each person seeking funding must submit a separate application. Panelists will be asked to evaluate each application on its own merits. Each application should clearly explain how the work will be divided and the extent to which each collaborator’s contribution depends on that of the other(s). Applicants who are seeking funding only for themselves but who are working as part of a collaborative team are also eligible. In this case, too, the application should clearly explain how the work will be divided and the extent to which each collaborator’s contribution depends on that of the other(s). Applicants proposing to work together may wish to apply instead or in addition for an NEH Collaborative Research grant or for an appropriate Humanities Initiatives grant.

Applicants may apply to only one of the following research programs for individuals in a given year:
- Fellowships, or
- NEH-Mellon Fellowships for Digital Publications, or
- Fellowships for Advanced Social Science Research on Japan, or
- Awards for Faculty at Hispanic-Serving Institutions, or
- Awards for Faculty at Historically Black Colleges and Universities, or
- Awards for Faculty at Tribal Colleges and Universities.

Applicants may hold or accept only one NEH individual award in a given federal fiscal year. (The fiscal year runs from October 1 to September 30.) Applicants may not participate in a project supported by an NEH institutional award while holding an NEH individual award that requires continuous, full-time work.

NEH Awards for Faculty may not be used for
-Promotion of a particular political, religious, or ideological point of view;
-Advocacy of a particular program of social or political action;
-Support of specific public policies or legislation;
-Projects that fall outside of the humanities (including the creation or performance of art; creative writing, autobiographies, memoirs, and creative nonfiction; and empirically based social science research or policy studies);
-Research by students enrolled in a degree program, including research for doctoral dissertations or theses;
-Research leading to the improvement of graduate courses;
-The preparation or revision of text books;
-The development of teaching methods or theories;
-Educational or technical impact assessments;
-Inventories of collections; or
-The writing of guidebooks, how-to books, and self-help books.
-The writing of books for children or young adults
- The writing of graphic nonfiction.

Pre-proposal Conference:

Please register for the NEH Division of Research Programs Webinar: Awards for Faculty at HBCUs, HSIs, and TCUs grant program (overview and Q&A) on Mar 14, 2019 12:00 PM EDT at:

This Q&A-based Awards for Faculty webinar provides a brief overview of the grant program, eligibility, application format, and submission process, in advance of the deadline. Please feel free to submit questions!

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Pre-Application Information:

Applicants may submit by email a draft of the narrative section of the proposal. Put “Draft Narrative” in the subject line of the message. Draft proposals should be submitted no later than March 8, 2019. Staff members will read only one draft per individual. The comments provided by staff are not part of the formal review process and have no bearing on the evaluation of the proposal, but previous applicants have found them helpful in strengthening their applications. Applicants are not required to submit a draft application.

Applicants must register or verify registration with by March 27, 2019. Prospective applicants who have questions are encouraged to contact the program staff. Application deadline is April 10, 2019, 11:59 PM.

-Before the April 10, 2019 deadline: Contact Division of Research program officers with questions and for advice (optional)
-March 8, 2019: Submit draft application (optional)
-March 27, 2019: Register or verify your registration with by this date
-April 10, 2019: Application must be submitted through and validated by by 11:59 P.M. Eastern Time on this date
-Mid April 2019: NEH prompts recommenders to submit letters of reference
-May 10, 2019: Deadline for receipt of letters of reference
-Summer 2019: Peer review panels take place
-December 2019: Meeting of the National Council on the Humanities, followed by funding decisions
-Late December 2019: Applicants are notified of the funding decisions
-Late December 2019/early January 2020: Successful applicants receive offer documents from the NEH Office of Grant Management by e-mail
-No later than February 1, 2020: Successful applicants must submit the Awards for Faculty Acceptance Form
-February 1, 2020: Successful applicants may begin work on their projects on this date
-September 1, 2021: Successful applicants must begin work on their projects no later than this date

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Applicant training:

Standing Together:

Protecting Cultural Heritage:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

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If you have problems registering with, contact the help desk at 1-800-518-4726 or

If you have questions about the program, contact:

Division of Research Programs
National Endowment for the Humanities
400 Seventh Street, SW
Washington, DC 20506

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Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Arkansas;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maryland;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   North Carolina;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Pennsylvania;   South Carolina;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   West Virginia

USA Territories: Virgin Islands (USA)