The Faculty Advancement Fund Grant (FAFG) supports the scholarly and creative activities of the full‐time tenured and tenure-track faculty members. The Fund was established to enable the professional work of Emerson’s faculty in its efforts to sustain academic excellence in teaching, research/creative activity, and service. The Faculty Advancement Fund Grant supports proposals deemed likely to substantially improve the quality of research, publication, creative activities, teaching, and service that advance the mission of the College and the careers of its faculty.

Awards are administered according to the guidelines of the Faculty Development and Research Council (FDRC) in the Faculty Assembly By-Laws.


Upcoming Grant Period

Grants awarded for FY2023 must be conducted between July 1, 2022 and June 30, 2023. The application and selection period is as follows:

  • Pre-Approval Form due: November 1, 2021
  • Final Applications due to ORCS: December 1, 2021
  • FDRC Review of Applications: December 2, 2021 through January 10, 2022
  • FDRC Recommendations submitted to Provost: By January 31, 2022
  • Applicants Notified of Funding Decisions: By second week of February 2022

Current FAFG Period

Grants awarded for FY2022 must be conducted between July 1, 2021 and June 30, 2022.

A Note About COVID-19

While restrictions continue for on-campus and in-person activities due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Emerson College remains committed to supporting faculty research, scholarship, and creative work through its internal grant programs. Nonetheless, applicants are reminded that FAFG funds are not transferable from one year to the next, and the College can make no guarantees about providing exceptions to awardees who do not utilize the entirety of their grant by project cycle end date (June 30, 2022). Proposals that include travel or other in-person scheduled activities should thus be carefully considered. Proposals for projects with planned on-campus activities will be subject to the College’s current limitations in this area. Projects that can be conducted remotely, or with a minimum of in-person contact, are strongly encouraged.

FAFG Funding

The Faculty Advancement Fund Grant will provide support for approved projects for amounts between $1,000 and $10,000. Applicants may request monetary support or (in rare instances) support in the form of a single course release (see “Eligible Projects” for more information). The exact type and amount of award will be determined by the project budget request, availability of funds, and recommendations made by the FDRC and the school deans to the Provost.

The FDRC reviews all FAFG applications, and makes formal funding recommendations to the Provost. The final decision for funding and determination of awards is made by the Provost.

Note: For smaller projects, faculty members should utilize the Faculty Development Fund.

Internal Pre-Approval Form and Application Form

Please submit your Internal Funding Proposal - Pre-Approval Form to the Office of Research and Creative Scholarship by November 1, 2021. For information and instructions on using ORCS’s electronic pre-approval system, please see here.

Once your request has been approved by your Department Chair and/or School Dean, ORCS will provide you with the FAFG application form. Completed application forms must be submitted to orcs [at] by 11:59 p.m. EST on December 1, 2021.


  • All tenured and tenure-track members of the full‐time faculty and Bargaining Unit of ECCAAUP are eligible to apply for the FAFG. 
  • Applicants who received an FAFG award in the year preceding their current proposal must submit a progress report with the new proposal. The progress report must inform their school dean, FDRC committee, and the Provost on the status of the previous FAFG project.
  • IMPORTANT: Faculty will not be eligible to apply if they have received two or more FAFG’s in the immediate three (3) years prior. Please contact ORCS if you require further information on FAFG awards you have received previously.

Eligible Projects

  • Research, travel, and expenses leading to scholarly, refereed publications
  • Research, travel, and expenses leading to creative and artistic works such as media productions, creative writing, performances, screenplays, exhibitions, etc.
  • Seed funding to develop research or creative scholarship that might lead to external funding.
  • Bridge funding for an ongoing project that was previously supported by external awards, while the faculty member applies for new external support (Please contact ORCS for further details).
  • Refereed conference presentations of scholarly and creative activities
  • Research staff or graduate‐student assistance for approved projects
  • Computer software, hardware, and peripheral equipment needed for teaching or research
  • Technical support for the development of new media applications in teaching
  • Projects with significant community impact
  • Projects that enhance student life
  • Faculty leadership designed to impart new knowledge and skills to colleagues
  • Attending seminars and conferences related to new course development
  • Development of new courses including instruction materials
  • Revision or innovations in existing courses with at least 1/3 substantially new content
  • Creation of innovative faculty seminar series
  • Attending faculty development seminars and conferences to improve teaching skills
  • Course releases: teaching remains a College priority for full-time faculty; course releases will rarely be awarded, except when an extraordinary need is demonstrated.

Ineligible Projects and Expenses

  • Activities already defined as part of a faculty member's expected duties and responsibilities (i.e. teaching of established courses, service and committee work, etc).
  • Activities for which the faculty member is already receiving compensation, course release, or some other form of College support.
  • Proposals from faculty members who have received two FAFG awards in the previous three years (2017-18, 2018-19, 2019-2020).
  • Additional faculty compensation during the academic year; honoraria and stipends to Emerson faculty. The use of FAFG funds for faculty summer salary is strongly discouraged.

Criteria and Considerations


  • Applications must be complete, clearly written, compelling, well defined, and easily understood by all reviewers: write clearly and concisely, and avoid jargon that may not be readily known by an educated lay reader.
  • Upon request, ORCS can provide an applicant with an example of a previously funded FAFG proposal, to aid in the development of their own proposal. 
  • Applications that are incomplete and do not follow directions may be disqualified.
  • Budgets should be reasonable and allocable to the proposed project. Costs that are deemed by the FDRC to not be relevant or essential to the proposed work will not be considered.
  • Applicants should include information about their professional background, qualifications, scholarly/creative agenda, and how the project might positively impact their career, their field, and/or the mission of the College.
  • If possible, applications should include a timeline describing the project activities and estimated dates of completion for each activity.
  • While applicants may apply for consecutive year awards, the FDRC will carefully review proposals that are a continuation of any previously funded projects to determine if funding is appropriate.

Additional Considerations

  • Priority consideration will be given to applicants who have not previously received an FAFG award.
  • The FDRC will give additional consideration to applicants who have not yet received first, second, or third-year tenure review, or who are under consideration for promotion to Full Professor.
  • Priority consideration will be given to applications that involve Emerson students as research or teaching assistants, and/or proposals that link the conduct and results of the proposed work to tangible changes and/or improvements to curricula, pedagogy, or student involvement.

FY2023 Calendar

Note: Due dates that fall on a weekend or holiday will be deferred to the following business day. 

November 1, 2021

  • Internal Pre-Approval Form due via the Emerson K2 portal (Click here for instructions)
  • FAFG Standard Application Form will be sent to recipients who have received pre-approval authorization from their cognizant dean and/or department chair.

Before December 1, 2021

  • Applicants should consult with their department chair and school dean to determine eligibility and appropriateness of their FAFG proposal idea to their research/scholarly/creative goals and the department, school, and institution's priorities.
  • The Executive Director for Research and Creative Scholarship will meet with eligible faculty members who have questions about preparing an FAFG application.

December 1, 2021

  • Completed application is due by 11:59 p.m. EST.
  • Final reports from previously funded and completed FAFG projects must be submitted in order for applicants to be eligible for a new project award.
  • Progress reports for any ongoing FAFG award projects must be submitted in order for applicants to be eligible for a continuing or new project award.

December 2, 2021 through January 20, 2022

The FDRC will evaluate all proposals and make recommendations to the Provost, within the funding amount available, regarding proposal support and level of funding.

By January 31, 2022

The Provost, in consideration of the recommendations provided by the FDRC, will make final selections and award determinations. The Provost will notify the FDRC in writing about the final awards.

By the second week of February 2022

The Executive Director for Research and Creative Scholarship will notify all of the applicants in writing about their applications.

July 1, 2022 through June 30, 2023

Approved projects conducted.

June 15, 2023

All receipts for project expenses must be submitted via an expense report in Workday by this date, in order to ensure reimbursement by June 30.

November 1, 2023

Final online report due for projects conducted during FY2023.

Post-Award Management

FAFG funds awarded in this cycle can only be utilized between July 1, 2022 and June 15, 2023. Expense reports for reimbursement must be initiated by the award recipient in Workday. ORCS will provide guidance on this and other processes as needed, and can also assist with vendor contracts, student hiring, and Workday Marketplace purchases.

Expense reports and purchases must be initiated by June 15, 2022, in order to receive payment by the end of the fiscal year (June 30). Any funds unused after June 30 shall revert to the College.

All publications resulting from the FAFG should contain the following acknowledgement: "This research [or project] was supported in part by a grant from the Emerson College Faculty Advancement Fund."

All capital equipment purchased with FAFG funds are property of the College, and shall remain at the College if a faculty member leaves.

Applicants should consult the Academic Affairs guidance on Faculty Travel and Research Spending before expenditures are made, in order to ensure proper procedures and criteria are met. You may also contact ORCS with questions about allowable costs. It is the applicant’s responsibility to know and follow the College’s financial policies. A list of common budget items and whether they are allowed will be provided with your award letter.

Final Progress Report Requirement

Recipients of Faculty Advancement Fund Grants must submit a final progress report, found below, by November 1st of the year their grant period ends.

Historical Proposal Funding Trends

  • Historically, ORCS has received between 15 and 20 FAFG applications each year. 
  • The total amount requested by all applicants has ranged between $92k and $150k per year.
  • On average, 60% of FAFG funds are awarded to tenure-track faculty, and 40% to tenured faculty.