Research paper outlines (submitted in the initial application) are reviewed by a Fellowship Committee in a process that may take up to four weeks. Applicants whose outlines are approved are notified by email, with instructions on submitting the research paper itself. Applicants whose outlines are denied are also notified by email, and more details on the denial are explained, including feedback on the outline if that was an area needing improvement.
The same Fellowship Committee reviews the submitted research papers. Each reviewer uses the same grading rubric to evaluate a research paper, awarding points based on the following criteria:
- Introduction - States topic/thesis with clarity, interests reader quickly
- Quality of Research - Cites several reliable, relevant sources appropriately and correctly
- Content Knowledge - Uses logical arguments to support thesis and demonstrates expertise and critical thinking with all examples, diction, etc.
- Conclusion - Provides impactful/motivating summary of arguments and thesis
- Writing - Offers a logical flow with smooth transitions and exhibits professionalism in being free from spelling or grammatical errors
Research paper scores are averaged from all reviewers, and applicants whose papers receive an average of 80% or higher are accepted as Fellows and notified by email, within six weeks of submission. Applicants whose research papers do not meet this standard also receive notification by email, with further details of what areas in their research paper could be improved.
Those who receive feedback, whether in response to a denied outline or research paper, are encouraged to rework their submission and reapply.