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 cycle is OPEN October 1, 2021, and all EOI are due November 19, 2021.

Approval/Decline to proceed with full application provided by December 20, 2021.

Completed PRF proposals are due on February 14, 2022, 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 December 20, 2021 as to whether 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).

Priority Research Grant Reports

All PRF awardees are required to keep OPSRS and other campus administrators informed of the project's progress by submitted reports throughout the funding cycle. Providing timely progress reports and final report is essential and funding is contingent on these reports. Funding may not be continued if a document is not received or if progress is not judged to be satisfactory.

    DUE FEBRUARY 14: Scope of Work for Summer Research
Grantees must provide a scope of work for their upcoming summer research plan if they plan to receive a summer research stipend.

    DUE MARCH 15: Progress Report (for second and third year)
The progress report should include a detailed account of progress towards objectives and timelines. Describe any major problems encountered in the implementation of these objectives. The reports will be reviewed by OSPRS and a campus panel.

    DUE SEPTEMBER 15: End of Summer Research Report
The report should include the outcome of the summer work -- a narrative or reflective statement explaining how the funding enabled the researcher to meet goals, along with the research timeline.

    DUE SEPTEMBER 15: Revised Budget Report (for second year)
The revised budget report should have a summary of a revised budget report for the next fiscal year.

     DUE OCTOBER 30: Final Report  
The final report should be sent to the fund officer no later than 30 days following the end of the grant. Eligibility for future Priority Grants is contingent upon receipt of a final report. A narrative should be provided that outlines the study's objectives that have been met throughout the entirety of the grant period, accomplishments during the grant period, and the how the applicant is proceeding with external funding opportunities; the final report should identify the agency and funding opportunity targeted and the timeline.


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

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




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