ICPSR Research Paper Competition
ICPSR invites submissions for our 2014 Research Paper Competition from undergraduates and master’s students at member institutions. The purpose of the competitions is to highlight exemplary research papers based on quantitative analysis. We are holding three contests this year:
- The RCMD Research Paper Competition, for papers on issues relating to minorities in the United States, including immigrants, using data from the Resource Center for Minority Data.
- The IFSS Research Paper Competition, for papers on any topic using data from the Integrated Fertility Survey Series.
- The ICPSR Research Paper Competition, for papers on any topic using data from the ICPSR General Archive or Thematic Collections.
All competitions are open to students currently pursuing or who recently received undergraduate or master’s degrees.
The awards are $1,000 for first place and $750 for second place in each category.
All entries must meet the following criteria:
- Author is an undergraduate or graduate student or recent grad
- Only one paper entered by author
- Only one competition entered by author
- Only student authored papers are eligible
- Paper is original and author’s work
- Paper includes analysis of ICPSR data
- Paper is work completed toward degree
- Paper adheres to preparation requirements
- Entry form is completed
- Paper and entry form are received by deadline
All undergraduates and master’s students or those who have graduated after April 1, 2013 are eligible. The competition is open to both U.S. and non-U.S. students. Students who graduated before April 1, 2013 are not eligible.
Students may submit only one paper, whether as sole author or one of the coauthors.
Students may enter only one competition.
Papers written by more than one student are permitted. Coauthored or multiple authored winners will share the specified monetary awards. Papers coauthored with faculty are not eligible.
Each paper must be an original analysis and must be the author's own work. Papers previously published are not eligible.
The paper must analyze data held in the ICPSR archive or one of the Thematic Collections. Students may use a dataset accessed from another source as long as ICPSR also holds a copy of the same dataset.
Papers submitted shall be the product of work towards completion of an undergraduate or master’s degree.
Paper Preparation Requirements
The paper must be written in English and adhere to the following guidelines:
The paper should be no longer than 20 pages for undergraduate entries, and up to 30 pages for master’s entries. Both page limits include all charts/graphs, references, and any appendices.
- Font should be Times New Roman - point size 12
- Margins of 1 inch (2.5 cm) all around
- Double spacing
Charts and citations
- Charts and graphs should be “stylized”; that is, exhibits should be developed, formatted, and inserted into the document appropriately. Cutting and pasting direct output from statistical software into the document is not satisfactory.
- Datasets, publications, and other documentation must be properly cited. See ICPSR's FAQ, Why and how should I cite data?; see American Psychological Association Bibliographic Style, 6th Edition (PDF 128K) or MLA Bibliographic Style, 7th Edition, 2009 or American Sociological Association (ASA) Style Guide, 4th edition for guides on citing publications. (Linked content provided by Purdue University’s library site.)
Title page and abstract
- The title page must include the author’s name, faculty advisor’s name, institutional affiliation, expected degree and graduation date (month/year), and email address.
- An abstract of no more than 150 words must follow the title page. Title and abstract pages are not included in page limits.
- Page headers and/or footers should contain page numbers and a shortened title of the paper. They are not to include the author’s name or the name of his or her institution. This ensures anonymous review by the judges.
Papers must be submitted electronically along with the Entry/Publication Release Form to the following address: firstname.lastname@example.org, for undergraduate entries, and email@example.com for master's entries. A complete entry includes the research paper and the Undergraduate Entry and Publication Release Form (Word 24K) and the Graduate Entry and Publication Release Form (Word 24K) in ONE email. The email must copy the faculty advisor listed on the application form and any coauthors listed on page 4 of the application form.
Please complete all information and save the files using the following file-naming scheme:
ICPSR or RCMD or IFSS Undergraduate or Master's Competition - LAST NAME
Please use only the name of the contest (ICPSR, RCMD, or IFSS) that you are entering. Please follow this naming scheme for the entry and paper file names and email subject line.
The content of the email must also include:
Title of Paper:
Competition Entered (i.e., ICPSR, IFSS, or RCMD):
Paper format. The attached paper must be in MSWord or Adobe Acrobat format.
Deadline. Electronic submissions must be received by midnight Pacific Standard Time, January 31, 2014.
Questions. For information and questions, please contact Sue Hodge, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Confirmation. Once all materials have been received, a confirmation email will be sent to the author(s) and to the academic advisor/mentor listed on the application form.
All papers and corresponding entry forms must be submitted by January 31, 2014.
- Awards will be announced in April 2014.
- Cash prizes will be awarded in each competition as described above.
- The first-place papers will be published in a special edition of the ICPSR Bulletin and all winning papers will be published on the ICPSR Web site.
- Each winner will receive a plaque and certificate in recognition of the award. Letters of achievement will be written to the student, and to the faculty, departments, and deans at the student's institution, upon request.
Papers will be judged by panels of at least three judges drawn from the ICPSR staff and member institutions.
Papers will be judged according to scholarly criteria including statement of purpose, thesis development, quality of analysis, and supporting documentation.
The judges will not know the student’s name or school.
Promoting the Competition
ICPSR encourages the early promotion of this competition. Please share the materials below with your campus community.
- The flyer (PDF 129K) is appropriate for sharing and posting to make student authors aware of the competition.