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Office of Sponsored Programs

Butler Awards Committee

Butler concrete sign

The BAC provides internal grants within the fine arts, humanities, and social sciences (qualitative research methods). The committee promotes faculty research in all disciplines within these areas, and while it recognizes that scholarly activity can take different forms across disciplines, it assumes that scholarship is work that advances knowledge. The committee considers basic or applied research within a discipline, reflective analysis of another's research, and other approaches and scholarly products.

Eligible scholarly activities can include, but not limited to: music composition and performance; dance choreography; theater production and performance; literature criticism and creative writing; educational research on curriculum and pedagogy; human subjects research; basic or applied research in business, economics, or communication; and all artistic media.

Methods may involve the collection of original data (through interviews, surveys, or other methods); the analysis of data; reviewing, analyzing, and/or translating/interpreting original texts or objects of art or antiquity; or the creation of an original work.

Proposals must be clear to reviewers both within and outside the discipline, and are expected to include a statement of need, artistic opportunity, gap in the literature, or research question; a description of the scholar's approach and project rationale; and outcomes of the activity.

Types of BAC Grants


Due to budgetary constraints, BAC is unable to offer mini-grants at this time.

Short Course/Workshop Attendance

Due to budgetary constraints, BAC is unable to offer short course/workshop grants at this time.

Travel to Present

Due to current travel restrictions in place due from the Covid-19 pandemic, BAC is not currently offering travel to present funding. 

Please continue to check the website for future updates.


Instructional Development


Provides up to $1,000 in support for the development of new courses or the revision of existing courses, including Core courses and "topics" courses. The applicant is expected to teach the course supported by the grant during the following academic year.

Application Process

Your application must consist of a program statement:

  • A description of the nature of the course, the need for development and how work will be accomplished. It should also describe how the proposed course meets the guidelines for BAC grant applications (see Butler Awards Committee overview).
  • A budget narrative that lists and justifies all requested expenditures. Requests for materials readily available from the library or through interlibrary loan must be explicitly justified. It is the responsibility of the applicant to check on the availability of requested books and materials with the university library.
  • Proposals that do not conform to these guidelines will be returned without evaluation.

Instructional Development Grant application 

The application format includes the following specifications:

  • No more than two pages typed and spaced at 1.5 line spacing
  • Times New Roman font, size 11 or 12 with one inch margins
  • Should be signed by the applicant, department chair and dean

Due Date

Applications are accepted annually and due by 5:00 PM on the first Friday in February. Applications must be signed, scanned and emailed to

Grant Period

The grant period is from May 1 to May 31 of the following year. In exceptional circumstances, an extension of the grant period (for annual grants) is permitted. If an awardee requires additional time to complete his/her project, a request for an extension should be submitted for committee consideration no later than one month prior to the end of the grant period. No new grant money will be released until the first project, including the final report, is completed.


A report describing the final design of the new course or how the existing course has been improved is due to OSP no later than 60 days after the end of the grant period. Failure to submit this report will jeopardize chances for future BAC funding.

Faculty Research


Provides up to $6,000 (or $7,000 with justification) in support of original, creative, and scholarly projects for qualitative or quantitative research.

Please Note: The grant only provides funding for one fiscal year.


Faculty who are in a tenure-track or tenured position at the time of the grant award.

Due Date

Faculty research grant applications have a deadline of the first Friday of February, by 5:00 PM. Signed, scanned applications should be sent to

Application Process

Your application must include:

  • Program Statement—Your proposal must include a program statement. Please attach a description of the proposed project following the outline listed below. Proposals will be evaluated by readers who are not necessarily experts in the specific field of the proposal. The application should be written for a general audience to understand.
    • Background—The background for the project including the problem or need, related work and the underlying rationale.
    • Objectives—The objective(s) of the project.
    • Significance—The importance or significance of the research and the relation of the research to the applicant's previous and future work. State how the project contributes to scholarship within the field.
    • Methods—Describe the methods applicant will use to achieve his/her objectives including any of the following that apply: the creative procedures or experimental methods, equipment required, data gathering and analysis, time schedule, evaluation and reporting of results.
    • Analysis—Describe information to be collected and how it will be used or analyzed.
    • Timeline—An anticipated timeline for the proposed project should detail how the work will be completed over the granting period.
    • If appropriate, suggest how research completed through this grant will create opportunities for future external funding.
    • References and bibliography—In this section, applicants must include all relevant references cited in the application and may include a complete bibliography. This section is not part of the Program Statement and is not included in the five page limit.
  • Budget—The budget is an important part of the application and care should be taken to ensure the budget is clearly defined and the proposed expenditures are justified. A budget justification narrative must be included with the application that carefully details all expenditures and how they are related to the proposed work.  Expenditures not fully justified will not be funded. Use the budget form from the online application.
    • Summer stipends—A faculty summer stipend up to $4000 gross (pre-FICA and TIAA Cref deductions) is permitted to compensate the applicant for the extensive time invested in conducting scholarship, creating art, writing a play, or creating a proposal for a book. Faculty should indicate any other grant that funds this work during the summer months.
    • Gross hourly wages for other personnel, including students, are also permitted up to $4000 per person (pre-FICA deductions). It is expected that all other personnel/students will be paid by the hour. Summer payments to undergraduate students not enrolled in at least six hours must include funds to pay FICA. Students' work need not be limited to the summer. Butler students may not receive Butler funding from more than one source.
    • Multiple collaborators—The gross $4000 maximum faculty stipend (pre-FICA and TIAA Cref deductions) may be divided among several colleagues. Two or more faculty members may submit multiple proposals for the same project, but limited resources make it unlikely that more than one grant would be funded in any one given year.  
    • Total stipends/wages to all faculty and other personnel, including students, may not exceed $6000 gross.
    • Travel/conferences—Allowable travel costs include food and incidentals, actual lodging costs, actual travel fares and mileage. The BAC committee will not fund food per diem for more than 14 days. Faculty members are encouraged to use college or department funds for other travel expenses or to apply for a BAC travel-to-present award. Travel within a 50 mile radius of Indianapolis will not be supported.
    • Books—Generally speaking, applicants should be careful in their request for the purchase of books and other texts. Applicants must justify the  purchase of books not otherwise available in the library in their budget narrative. 
    • Computer hardware and software will be supported only if they are essential to the unique requirements of the research project
    • Exclusions—These awards are not to be used to support the completion of a graduate degree program. In addition, proposals will not be accepted for projects for which the faculty member is already being compensated, such as writing a book for which there is anything more than a nominal honorarium already being paid by the publisher to the author.
    • Supplemental funds—The maximum amount of the award is ordinarily $6000. Proposals up to $7000 will be considered in the case of extraordinary travel or equipment needs. In such cases, however, it is the responsibility of the applicant to justify the extra expenses. In no case, however, may the gross faculty stipend request exceed $4000.
  • Curriculum vitae—Include a two-page curriculum vitae that includes education, skills and experience.  In addition to the basics, the CV  should include research and teaching experience, publications relevant to the project, grants and fellowships, professional associations and licenses, awards and other information relevant to the funding for which you are applying.  Make sure dates are on all publications included. 
  • Appendix A (report on previous BAC-funded research)—Applicants who have previously received a faculty research grant must include a report on the results of work funded by the most recent BAC grant, and (if applicable) how the new work relates to the previous project. If not already previously submitted to the OSP office, reports should also be sent to
  • Appendix B (report on extramural grant applications)—Applicants who have received two or more faculty research grants must provide evidence that they have attempted to secure extramural funding to support their research.

The proposal should be signed by the applicant, the chair of the department or program, and the dean of the college or library.

Faculty Research  Application

The application format includes the following specifications:

  • No more than five pages typed and spaced at 1.5 line spacing
  • Times New Roman font, size 11 or 12 with one inch margins
  • Should be signed by the applicant, department chair and dean.

BAC research grant scoring rubric (used by the Butler Awards Committee during review process)


The grant period is from May 1 to May 31 of the following year. In exceptional circumstances, an extension of the grant period (for annual grants) is permitted. If an awardee requires additional time to complete his/her project, a request for an extension should be submitted no later than one month prior to the end of the grant period. No new grant money will be released until the first project, including the final report, is completed.


A report detailing exactly what was accomplished and the results of the project is due to OSP via no more than 60 days following the end of the grant period. This report can be a paper that has been submitted for publication. Failure to submit this report will jeopardize chances for future BAC funding.

NOTE: Mixed methods research is a research design with philosophical assumptions as well as methods of inquiry. As a methodology, it involves philosophical assumptions that guide the direction of the collection and analysis of data and the mixture of qualitative and quantitative approaches in many phases in the research process. As a method, it focuses on collecting, analyzing, and mixing both quantitative and qualitative data in a single study or series of studies. Its central premise is that the use of quantitative and qualitative approaches in combination provides a better understanding of research problems than either approach alone. (Source)

Submission and Approval

Each BAC grant mechanism has its own submission requirements and deadlines. All applications require signatures by the applicant, department head/program chair, and dean of the college. Complete submission criteria and forms are available online for each mechanism. Procedural questions may be directed to .

Upon submission, applications are reviewed by OSP and sent to the appropriate committee for review and approval. OSP staff and committees may engage in dialogue with the applicant if questions arise. (Failure to complete follow-up requests may result in an application's denial.) Notification of approval or denial is sent by OSP to the applicant along with the appropriate correspondence from the committee.

For annual grant opportunities like Instructional Development and Faculty Research, the grant application will be submitted to the respective committee. Applications are then reviewed for completion and remitted to the committee. The committee will review and score the applications during a closed review session where funding recommendations will be approved. Application notifications (either approval or denial) will be submitted by the OSP office to the applicant.

For all grant applications, the applicant will have 30 days from receipt of the notification to appeal a decision of denied funding. All appeals will be sent to the OSP director. The OSP director and the applicant will discuss any issues with the application or decision. After 30 days, the application will be closed to further review or discussion. 

Post-Award Administration and Reporting

Each approved application will receive two award notifications—one from OSP and one from OBGA. The letters will outline the award amount and expenditure information. Each grant mechanism has an expenditure or project period, ranging from one month to a fiscal year, which governs the allowable time for funds expenditure and project completion. If the applicant is unable to complete the project and/or spend the funds by the end of the period, an extension may be requested. Each grant also requires post-award reporting, where applicable. The report outlines project results as well as how funds were spent. Most reports are due no more than 60 days after the grant period has ended. Details on project periods and post-award reporting requirements are provided online under each grant mechanism—one from OSP and one from the Office of Budgets and Grants Administration (OBGA-Kathy Hankins).

Committee Members

The Butler Awards Committee (BAC) considers proposals for the fine arts, humanities, and social sciences (qualitative research methods).  Committee members serve for a three-year term, and cannot serve for more than two consecutive terms. The expiration date of each member's term is noted in parentheses. Committee chairs are elected by committee members. Chairs serve a one-year term and are eligible to be re-elected.

  • Chris Forhan (August 2022)
  • Rob Koharchik (August 2021)
  • Tatsiana Karaliova (August 2022)
  • Josh Petrusa (August 2021)
  • Ryan Flessner  (August 2020)
  • Zachary Scarlett (August 2020)
  • Irune Gabiola (August 2021)
  • Chad Bauman (August 2022)
  • Sakthi Mahenthiran (August 2020)