Ball State University's Aspire Internal Grant Program provides funding to faculty, professional staff, and students to support projects in the areas of research, scholarly studies, and creative endeavors.

Aspire awards advance the goal of ultimately seeking sponsorship from external funding agencies. Learn more by reviewing the guidelines for our multiple opportunities, checking out our FAQs, or you can contact Aspire staff below.

All applications should be submitted via the InfoReady portal and opportunities are available one month prior to due date.

Contact Us  Aspire FAQs

Available Grants

Faculty

NEW* Proposal Enhancement Grant

Supports preliminary research or scholarly projects to enhance the expertise needed to be successful in seeking funding from an external agency. The expected outcome is the submission OR resubmission of a competitive grant proposal to an external funding agency. Deadlines for this program: November 1 (Early Career) February 1 (Tenured).

NEW* Arts & Humanities Emerging Scholarship Grant

Support the professional advancement of faculty engaged in scholarly and creative pursuits that use humanistic or any creative discipline. Projects must result in the presentation of a public forum (gallery exhibition, screenings, performances, etc.) or publicly available printed material (monograph, edited collection, journal article). Deadlines for this program: November 1 (Early Career) February 1 (Tenured)

Alpha Support

Aspire Alpha support aims to support new tenure-track faculty members jumpstart their research and creative arts agenda. Alpha Support assists new faculty in purchasing supplies, research-related items, and to assist in travel by offering a one-time SEET grant. The deadline for this program is September 20.

Individual Development Support (Non-tenure line)

This pilot opportunity, sponsored by the Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs, will enable NTL faculty at Ball State to apply for funding to support activities undertaken to advance their development as scholars, including, but not limited to, workshops or conference travel for excellence in teaching, scholarly presentations/performances, and/or for professional development. The deadline for this competition is the 15th of every month beginning July 2024.

Published Scholarship Support

Provides support to aid in expenses associated with publication, reprints, article processing or open access charges, page charges, and subventions. Work must be accepted for publication or published in a refereed or other scholarly journal. Support can be used for open access, peer-reviewed publications listed in the Directory of Open Access Journals or for publication in subscription journals that allow some articles to become available openly based on a published fee schedule (sometimes known as hybrid open access). The deadline for this competition is the 15th of every month.

Domestic Travel

The Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs has developed a one-year pilot program to award tenure-line faculty members funds for the purpose of presenting their research and scholarship at professional regional or national meetings or to perform or exhibit creative works.  This funding is designed to supplement travel funds provided by the faculty member's college and department and cannot be used as research funds. A maximum award of $500 is available per faculty member. The deadline for this competition will be the 15th of every month.

International Travel

For tenured and tenure-track faculty members looking to travel abroad for academic or creative activity Aspire offers the International Travel Program. The deadline is bi-monthly and the first of each month.

Supports preliminary research or scholarly projects to enhance the expertise needed to be successful in seeking funding from an external agency. The expected outcome is the submission OR resubmission of a competitive grant proposal to an external funding agency. Deadlines for this program: November 1 (Early Career), February 1 (Tenured).

Joseph and Marcella Hollis Award

Faculty members and graduate students who plan to conduct psychology-based research projects may apply for the Aspire Joseph and Marcella Hollis Award Competition. Proposals from any department may be submitted as long as the research is psychology based. The deadline for this competition is October 1 and April 1.

Student Research 

Projects submitted to the research competition involve a process of study or discovery that will produce new insights, theories, or will apply such knowledge to problem-solving within the discipline or in society. 

Student Creative Arts 

The Student Creative Arts program supports those projects that propose the creation and/or presentation of original works of creative art. Eligible creative arts projects include Arts Education, Dance, Literature, Media Arts, Music, and many more.

Student Travel

The Student Travel Program is available for currently enrolled students at either Ball State, Burris Laboratory School or Indiana Academy to present works at a professional meeting, or perform or exhibit creative works. The maximum award is $700 for graduate students and $300 for undergraduate/high school students. This competition is limited to invited presentations of papers, posters, creative works, or performances. The deadline is the 15th of every month.

Joseph and Marcella Hollis Award

Faculty members and graduate students who plan to conduct psychology-based research projects may apply for the Aspire Joseph and Marcella Hollis Award Competition. Proposals from any department may be submitted as long as the research is psychology based. The deadline for this competition is October 1 and April 1.

Acknowledging Aspire-Supported Activities

Your notice of award outlines requirements for acknowledging Aspire funding in your work, including:

  • Publications
  • Press releases and other public statements
  • Presentations at conferences, symposia, or other forums
  • Other publications or documents about research/creative activity that is funded by Aspire
  • Other documents describing projects or programs funded in whole or in part with Aspire support
  • Grant applications for external funding

How to Write Acknowledgments:

Research reported in this [publication/presentation type] was supported by Aspire [name of grant/program] through Ball State University, Muncie Indiana. 

[publication/presentation type] has been jointly sponsored by Ball State University’s Aspire program and [name of other funding program/dept].