University Research Council



Grants may be used for research-related travel, equipment, supplies, software, and other direct expenses. The award limit is $15,000.


Only one proposal may be submitted per proposal cycle and a faculty member is limited to one travel or research grant per year. Endowed chair holders and administrators with access to other funds are not eligible for these awards. Grants are available only to tenured and tenure-track faculty and research active faculty emeriti. Student support is not allowed unless it can be demonstrated that the work of the student is essential to the project. Funding is not available for computer equipment and/or accessories, unless they are essential for the research. Funds must be expended within 12 months of the award. Summer salary is disallowed. In your proposal, please articulate the originality and significance of your research to committee members outside of your field of study.

*Faculty who received URC funding, either travel or research, may not apply in the following URC funding cycle (e.g., the next semester) to ensure fair distribution of resources among all faculty.  (i.e., faculty are not eligible to receive URC funding two semesters in a row).   

The URC will look at the applicant's restricted accounts to access the applicant’s ability to help support the proposed research.  Please justify the amount of your contribution or match in your proposal.


Spring - March 6, 2023 at 5:00 pm

Fall - October 11, 2023 at 5:00 pm


Notification of Action

Spring - Week of  April 24, 2023 (for March 6 submissions) 

Fall - Week of Nov 13, 2023 (for October 11 submissions)



How to Apply

All URC Grant applications are now online. Please submit all supporting documents as a single PDF file through the online application, including a brief proposal (see format below) and a short curriculum vitae. The entire application should not exceed ten pages including appendices, if any. If you need assistance combining your documents into a single PDF, please contact the Help Desk (8-HELP).

Apply for a Grant 

The applicant should arrange for a confidential letter of support to be written by the Department Chair or the Dean and email to, March 6 by 5:00pm (Spring Submission) or October 11 by 5:00pm (Fall submission) addressed to Suku Nair, Vice Provost for Research and Chief Innovation Officer.

Proposal Text Format (The proposal must not exceed five pages within the PDF application.)

  • A detailed budget (Budgets should be very detailed with sources for expenses, e.g., airfare, hotels, conference fee, Per Diem & equipment)
  • Research Objectives
  • Research Plan and Schedule (Please state IRB approval status, if applicable
  • Significance and relevance of faculty member’s research program
  • Benefit to the University (i.e. contribution to current literature or research in your field)
  • Summary of prior URC funded projects and their impact on your research (i.e. outcomes, resulting proposals, publications, and progress)

*Please remember that the URC committee will not fund a research project repeatedly, and applicants are expected to apply for funding from other sources, including from the department and/or school.

*Applications should adhere to the standards in that field in terms of evidence and terminology, but they should also be well-written and accessible.

*Be sure to make clear how the project will benefit SMU in terms of future outside grants and/or publications.   For faculty in the arts, will the research lead to exhibitions, performances, participation in film festivals, etc.

*Budgets should be as detailed as possible.  Be sure to provide the source for the costs of airfare, hotels, Per Diem, and equipment.   If  assistants will be used, be clear about what their duties and hourly wages will be.

Post-Award Reporting Requirements

A report summarizing how the funds were spent and what products were produced must be reported (as detailed in the original award letter) by using this

DocuSignLink  (Please note that we have reconstructed the application form to a DocuSign; the process and the form remain the same)

Submissions by email or hard copy will not be accepted.

The application is now closed