Study of Religion

CSRCS Scholar Development Grants

Designed for first- and second-year students just embarking on the process of understanding the role of religion in society, Scholar Development Grants introduce students to the research process in their individual disciplines, help them conceive a research topic, and prepare them to write research proposals for Elon’s signature research programs or for external funding.

Grant Requirements

During the second half of the spring semester, students in the first or second year who have not yet registered for undergraduate research or applied for a Scholar Development project will work with a faculty mentor to conceive a new research project. Only faculty in full-time, ongoing appointments are eligible to serve as mentors. Faculty mentors will guide students to conduct the bibliographic research necessary to articulate the scope, aims, and hypothesis of such a project. Applications for Scholar Development grants are due to the Director of the Center for the Study of Religion, Culture, and Society by Monday, March 27, 2017. Appropriate final assignments, which could include an annotated bibliography and/or a draft of a grant or thesis proposal, will be due to the faculty mentor by May 31, 2017 and copied to the Director of the CSRCS.

Grant Disbursement

On returning to Elon in the Fall of 2017, students will consult with the same mentor about undergraduate research proposals for which their preliminary work could be submitted or further developed. Within two weeks of the beginning of classes in the fall semester the student and mentor will submit a Plan for Further Research, which could include registration for 498/499 undergraduate research credits or submission of a proposal for Honors Thesis, the SURE or Lumen programs, or external grants such as the Boren Scholarship. Plans for Further Research are due Monday Sept. 11, 2017. Upon submission of the Plan for Further Research, students will have access to a $1000 expense account to support further research in their chosen topic. These research grants can cover supplies, travel to conferences, archives, or museums, or other approved costs. Faculty will have access to a $1000 faculty mentor draw account that can be used for their own or the student’s research or to supplement their annual conference travel budget.

Information sessions for interested students and faculty will be held in the second week of the spring term.


• Scholar Development research stipends are available to full-time students in all disciplines.
• Students receive a research grant of at least $1,000 upon completion of program requirements
• To be eligible for a Scholar Development Grant, students must have first- or second-year standing, must have completed one semester at Elon, and should have a cumulative GPA of 3.0.

Selection Criteria

Proposals will be ranked according to quality on each of the following criteria (not listed in order of importance).

For students:

• Past academic performance
• Suitability of the student for the project
• Educational value of the project

For faculty:

• Please review the Scholar Development Grants mentor guidelines posted here prior to applying.
• Collaborative nature of the project.
• Potential for fostering student/mentor relationship and ongoing student research.
• The match between project and mentor's area of expertise.
• Availability of the mentor to the student during the grant period.


• Completion of Scholar Development Grants cannot count towards fulfillment of Elon’s ELR
• Grants cannot support international travel unless the student is accompanied and supervised by his or her faculty mentor
• Grants are for research expenses only; they cannot be applied towards tuition
• Grant funds must be used in the academic year in which they are awarded

2017 Application forms are available here!

2017 Plan for Further Research forms here