Graduate Arts Research Grants

All materials, including the faculty evaluation must be received by 5 p.m. on Friday, April 10, 2020.

Important: Applicants must address each of the noted criteria in their proposals. Proposals missing information will not be reviewed.

Notifications will be made by May 1, 2020.

Due to changes related to COVID-19, especially as it relates to travel, we will not be supporting most applications that include travel at this time. We invite you to submit creative proposals for using the funds for responsible research purposes that would allow expenditure in the midst of this pandemic.

Funding of up to $3000 available for graduate arts research projects. Funds are limited and proposals will be competitive. Sponsored by the BU Arts Initiative and the Associate Provost for Graduate Affairs.

The research may be traditional research of the arts (e.g., musicology, art history, study of performance or literature of any kind), practice based research, or research from any discipline on the impact of the arts.

Full-time students in good academic standing in either a master’s or doctoral program are eligible. Students who hold staff positions are not eligible for this funding. BS/MS or BA/MA students who clearly will be in the graduate portion of their degree program during the period of proposed support are eligible. The project should be directly related to the applicant’s completion of degree requirements (e.g., thesis or dissertation work, independent study or directed research, a capstone requirement in the program, etc). A student may receive this form of support only once.

Funds may be used for travel to attend performances or exhibits, conduct archival research or other research related activities.

Funds may not be used as a stipend for the researcher or transcription.

Applicants must have a faculty sponsor who will be expected to provide a confidential review of the proposal, including comments on the student’s need.

Please note, all awards and fellowships of this nature are run through financial aid, which may affect your total financial aid package. It is the applicant’s responsibility to confirm and coordinate this information with their financial aid office.


A standing committee from the Provost’s Arts Council will evaluate applicants according to the following criteria (address each criteria in your proposal):

  • Feasibility of the project
  • Whether the proposed project can be completed in the allotted time frame
  • Clarity
  • The potential impact of the research
  • The importance of the project for the completion of the students degree

How to apply:

The applicant must complete and submit the Arts Research Grant Proposal Cover Sheet along with a formal proposal (no more than 750 words) to the BU Arts Initiative at with the subject “Grad Arts Research Grant Proposal”. In addition, you must send a separate, detailed budget including the requested grant amount and specific projected costs. Proposals are due by Friday, April 10, 2020 and notification will be made by May 1. Incomplete applications, including those without signatures, will not be considered.

Once the project is completed, grant recipients must submit a one to two page summary of the research results and impact to the BU Arts Initiative.