ACU Internal Grants

Student Grants

ACU students may earn stipends for research or creative work conducted under the guidance of a faculty mentor as part of a grant from the Office of Undergraduate Research or the Honors College. To be eligible for a research stipend, the student must make arrangements with a faculty member and be listed as a Research Assistant on that faculty member’s grant application. See below for specific requirements on faculty grant opportunities.

Faculty Grants

ACU offers a number of grant opportunities to faculty who do scholarly research or creative work. Faculty members may submit one internal grant proposal per year.

Cullen Grants
Cullen Grants are designed to provide summer support for faculty to pursue scholarly research or creative activity. Eligible faculty include all full-time faculty except for those in the Physical Sciences and Mathematics.

Math-Science Grants
Math-Science Grants are designed to provide summer support for faculty to pursue scholarly research or creative activity. Eligible faculty include all full-time faculty in the Physical Sciences and Mathematics.

SEED Awards 
The SEED Award for Scholarly Excellence and Extramural Determination is a highly competitive grant designed to fund an investigator over 2 years in the conduct of studies aimed at providing preliminary data for an external funding application. The award requires the submission of an external application within 9 months following the end of the 2 year grant period.

Undergraduate Research Grants
The purpose of this grant is to encourage participation of undergraduate students in faculty-mentored summer research projects. Any faculty member may apply for student stipend support during both the semesters and summer, faculty summer stipends, course release, development fund and other research costs as part of the overall internal grants application process. Student stipends are at the following rates. For summer work: $400/week for a student working full time. $300/week for 3/4 time, $200/week for 1/2 time, and $100/week for 1/4 time. During the Fall/Spring semester up to $500/semester. Faculty summer stipends are at the rate of two summer courses: $6,000 for full professor, $5,500 for associate professor, and $5,000 for assistant professor.

Faculty Enrichment Summer Stipends
The goal of the summer stipend program is to encourage teaching excellence at Abilene Christian University.

Presidential Fund for Professional Development
These are travel funds for conference attendance.


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New in Reasearch

Dr. Ryan Jessup, Assistant Professor of Marketing

Dr. Jessup is interested in decisions.  What causes people to choose poorly?  How do learning and contextual factors influence choice?  In seeking to answer these questions, his research uses psychological models of motivation to distill the computational properties of decision making.  Computational modeling enhances research by requiring precision in theory formulation and constraining predictions.

One of Dr. Jessup’s primary streams of research concerns the behavioral differences between decisions when options are completely described vs. decisions when options must be learned about via experience.  Prior research found that individuals choose quite differently between the two paradigms but the reasons underlying the difference are poorly understood.  One of Dr. Jessup’s studies demonstrated that the reception of feedback overwhelms descriptive information, driving the behavioral differences between paradigms.  This work has led him and his colleagues (including Dr. John Homer and undergraduate researcher Allison Phillips) to build a new model that merges sophisticated decision making mechanisms with reinforcement learning in order to successfully predict behavior in both paradigms better than existing models. Dr. Jessup has previously received Cullen awards for this work and is currently seeking external funding to continue this fascinating line of research.

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