Priority Research Fund (PRF): Information

The Priority Research Fund (PRF) provides seed funds for a duration of no more than three years to support activities advancing competitive research proposals, such as preliminary work and facilitating collaboration. It is expected that the research project will be submitted to an external funding organization within a year of the time that research seed funding ends. 

Topics must have a clear connection to the research priorities of the University. PRF funds can cover such expenses as hiring student researchers, subject payments, course time release, and travel expenses for the purpose of collecting data. The funds CANNOT apply to training, curriculum development studies, and other development studies. For more information, see Gallaudet Internal Funding Policies and Procedures


  • Up to $35,000 for a duration of no more than three years



Full-time Gallaudet faculty, professional staff, and Clerc Center personnel are eligible to apply for a PRF to conduct high quality research on Gallaudet's priority areas. The research awards are intended for studies that:

  1. Have a clear connection to the research priorities of the University.
  2. Are technically sound, including clear articulation of a research purpose that can be accomplished within 1-3 years, significance within the field, and methods that have a high likelihood of achieving the specified purpose.
  3. Increase the occurrence or likelihood of external funding (e.g., acts as 'seed money').
  4. Yield findings that have the potential to improve the lives of deaf and hard of hearing people in the United States and around the world.

The intent of the fund is to support campus researchers conducting both basic and applied research on important issues using a wide range of methods. Basic research is undertaken primarily to acquire new knowledge without a particular application or use in mind. Applied research is conducted to gain knowledge or understanding to meet a specific, recognized need.

A PRF award may be used as a cost sharing or supplemental measure for larger, externally funded studies. In such instances, PRF applicants are urged to consult with their department and the PRF officer before submitting a proposal. Finally, although the PRF has had steady funding since its inception, Research Services can make no assurances about the availability of funds in future years.

Please note that prior PRF awardees are expected to apply for external funding, and a history of doing so creates a favorable impression with the PRF review panel and the University administration.


The grant period runs from October 1 to September 30 (fiscal year); all funds must be spent within the fiscal year of the award.


An Expression of Interest to Apply is due December 15.

Completed PRF proposals are due on February 15, by 5 p.m. If February 15 falls on a weekend, the proposal will be due the next business day by 5 p.m.


A PRF applicant's Expression of Interest form will be reviewed by the fund's committee to verify that the proposed study idea meets eligibility requirements. The committee will contact the applicant by January 5 only if there is a concern; otherwise, they can proceed with their proposal preparations.

Reviewing a complete proposal may take up to three months, perhaps longer if the researcher is asked to respond to feedback from the reviewers. Reviews are undertaken with the advice of faculty, staff, and others who are specialists in the field of the proposal's study. The PRF committee also hires external reviewers who are experts in the field of study to review and evaluate applications.

The Priority Research Fund cannot be used for:

  • Curriculum development.
  • Capital projects (i.e., construction or renovation of research facilities).
  • Non-research training grants.
  • Development (the production of materials, digital archives for preservation, devices, systems, or methods, including the design and development of prototypes and processes), although data collection instrument adaptation and development in high priority areas may be considered.
  • Establishment of an academic or extracurricular program.
  • Dissertation studies, pre-dissertation studies, or master's theses.
  • Presentations and/or conference fees.
  • Cost of travel to present research findings.
  • Cost of preparing research reports or other charges related to publication.
  • Institutional research (internal or department studies).


To access all documents and links, please LOG IN using your Gallaudet credentials. 

  1. One-page Expression of Interest to Apply by December 15.
  2. Completed PRF Application
  3. Completed Scope of Work
  4. Completed PRF Cover Sheet




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