Alfred Research Grants for Undergraduate Students (ARGUS)

ARGUS is an Alfred University Program operated by the Provost and Chief Operating Officer to provide funding for research and scholarly activities of current Alfred University students in all fields. It is operated by a committee of faculty who are recommended by Alfred Deans and appointed by the Provost and Chief Operating Officer.

Important Links:

Note: If your project involves the use of human subjects, your project must be approved by the Human Subjects Research Committee prior to submitting your proposal to the ARGUS committee. Your proposal should include a clear indication of this approval and a copy of the approval letter from the Human Subjects Research Committee. It may take as much as three weeks to obtain that approval, so please plan accordingly. Your project sponsor will be able to tell you how to submit your project idea to this committee.

Application procedures and review criteria

Application Procedures

The application procedure for requesting ARGUS funding is fairly straightforward. You will submit an application that consists of a cover sheet, a brief proposal, and the names of 2 persons who have agreed to write confidential letters of recommendation (one letter should be from your project advisor) . The proposal will be evaluated by the ARGUS Committee (see below) and other faculty members against a common rubric. The rubric evaluates proposal quality in each of the required proposal elements as well as asking faculty referees to estimate the likelihood of your project being successful and assesses the impacts of funding the work. When all proposals for a given funding cycle (fall, spring, summer) have been evaluated, you will be notified whether the committee elected to fund your proposal.

Proposal deadlines during the 2023/2024 academic year for ARGUS funding are as follows:

  • Spring/Summer Project Start: December 1, 2023
  • Fall/Winter Project Start: April 19, 2024

The review process will take several weeks or longer...remember that our faculty reviewers are volunteers. Proposals should be submitted electronically via email to the ARGUS account with your last name and the desired funding period as the subject (ex. Smith Summer 2017). Please ask your faculty recommenders to submit their letters of recommendation to the same email with your last name, the word "recommendation", and the funding period (ex. Smith Recommendation Summer 2017).

The ARGUS Committee consists of faculty members representing all units of the University. Questions about proposal submission or review should be directed to the chair of the ARGUS Committee Dr. Desmond Wallace. The other members of the committee are:

  • Robert Reginio, English
  • Grzegorz Pac, Business
  • Anthony Wren, Engineering

The various steps involved in submitting and evaluating an ARGUS proposal are outlined below.

For Students
  • Find a topic and choose a sponsor.
  • Request two letters of recommendation. One should be from your research sponsor. Recommenders should be asked to submit letters electronically via email by the appropriate deadline.
  • Prepare your proposal according to the criteria found on the proposal guidelines page. Submit your proposal by the appropriate deadline. Submission instruction summary
  • Upon approval, perform research/creative activity under the guidance of your faculty sponsor.
  • Present the project at the undergraduate research fair in April.

What happens after a proposal is submitted?

  1. The Chair of the ARGUS Committee will collate proposals and recommendations and notify the student if materials are missing.
  2. ARGUS Committee member(s) in the unit in which the research is to be done will solicit reviewers from among the faculty, based on faculty expertise and the topic of the research. Reviewers will evaluate proposals according to a fixed set of criteria.
  3. Once reviews are complete, the ARGUS Committee will discuss reviews and determine which proposals will be funded.
  4. The student will be notified if the project will be funded. If the project will not be funded, the student will be notified and given an opportunity to review committee/reviewer comments.