Research and Dissertation Grants Overview

2015 Research and Dissertation Grant Program

Call for Applications is Closed

Important Dates

• Application deadline - March 24, 2015 - 11:59 PM (EDT).
• Grant decisions announced to applicants via email - May 4, 2015.
• Funding and project period begins - June 3, 2015.


With support from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the Association for Institutional Research (AIR) operates a grant program that supports research on a wide range of issues of critical importance to U.S. higher education.

NSF and NCES support grants aimed to increase the number of researchers using national datasets and demonstrate the contribution that these datasets make to the national base of knowledge on higher education policy, theory, and practice.

To qualify for funding, proposal submissions must use data from one or more of the national datasets of NCES or NSF listed in the grant guidelines (See the 2015 NSF/NCES Datasets (PDF) for more information).  Additional large-scale, nationally representative datasets may be used in conjunction with the obligatory NSF or NCES dataset. Research topics may cover a wide range of policy- or practice-related issues. For a list of previously funded topics visit the Funded Grants page.

Two levels of grants are supported:

  • Research Grants: Faculty and practitioners are eligible for research grants of up to $40,000 for one year of independent research. (Note: These research grants are not available to students). All grant recipients must be affiliated with a U.S. postsecondary institution or relevant non-profit higher education organization.

For more detailed information, view the 2015 Research Grants Guidelines (PDF)

  • Dissertation Grants: Doctoral students are eligible for dissertation grants of up to $20,000 for one year to support dissertation research and writing under the guidance of a faculty dissertation advisor. 

For more detailed information, view the 2015 Dissertation Grants Guidelines (PDF)

Proposals may only be submitted electronically. Assistance is available from the AIR grant staff at or 850-385-4155 x200.