The Fulbright Visiting Scholar Program for Nepali Post-Doctoral Researchers and Senior Artists

Instructions

 

FIRST STEPS IN PREPARING THE APPLICATION

  • Planning ahead – Advance planning will allow you to put together a thoughtful and compelling application. Applicant review and final selection are based upon the actual application and accompanying materials.
  • Consulting with colleagues – You are encouraged to consult with current or former Fulbright Scholars from your own country or the United States. Fulbright alumni and current participants can provide valuable guidance in formulating a competitive project statement.


GENERAL APPLICATION GUIDELINES

  • In your application, you must submit: (a) application form; (b) detailed project statement; (c) detailed curriculum vitae – (see format guidelines); (d) three references and (e) letter of invitation.
  • To ensure correct completion of the application, read carefully the detailed instructions provided in these guidelines.
  • All items must be in English.
  • Proofread the entire application before submitting it to the Nepal Fulbright Commission. The application should be free of grammatical and spelling errors.
  • Treat the application as a unitary whole, with all parts reinforcing the project statement. The flow should be orderly: your capabilities should be listed in the application, further documented in the curriculum vitae and confirmed in the references. Use the project statement to make the parts interact by referring to items in the curriculum vitae or research bibliography. Without being redundant or simplistic, you should make it easier for the reviewer to find the key pieces of information you wish to convey.


INSTRUCTIONS FOR COMPLETING THE APPLICATION FORM

Please read the instructions carefully before completing each item.

Item 1. Category of Grant
  • Choose the type of grant you are seeking: artist or research.
    Artist: If the primary purpose of your project is to undertake an art-related project
    Researcher: If the primary purpose of your project is to conduct research. (Note: You will be required to submit a research bibliography.)
Item 3. Full Name
  • Enter your name exactly as it appears on your passport. This spelling will be used on all documents related to your grant and immigration paperwork.
Item 6. U.S. Permanent Residency
  • If you have or are applying for U.S. permanent residency, you are ineligible for the Fulbright Program.
Item 9. Current Position and Start Date, Department/Office, Institution
  • List the name of your department/office and home institution in English.
Item 11. Academic Credentials
  • State the degree earned and its equivalent in English (Masters, Doctorate, etc.). Enter highest degree obtained first. You may list up to three completed degrees.
Item 12. Significant Professional Accomplishments and Publications (500 characters max.)
  • Include no more than a total of five accomplishments and publications. With those five, no more than three publications.
  • Professional accomplishments may include teaching and research awards, compositions and exhibitions, etc.
  • Do not write "See curriculum vitae." List accomplishments and publications as instructed below. Do not attach additional pages.
  • Please number each entry. Start a new line for each entry.
  • For post-doctoral researchers: List up to three principal publications with the title, publication date and publisher’s name. (A listing of publications should be included in your curriculum vitae.) Use the following format for bibliographic citation and distinguish between books and articles: for books, give title (underlined), publisher and date; for articles, give title (in quotation marks), journal or collection (underlined) and date.
  • For artists: List up to three of your most significant artist works and exhibitions with the date and place of exhibition.
Item13. Professional Travel and/or Residence Abroad During the Last Five Years
  • List all professional travel and/or residence abroad during the last five years.
  • Be sure to include residence in the United States during the last five years. If you entered the United States on a J visa, please indicate the J category (professor, research scholar, student, specialist, short-term scholar, etc.) and provide copies of your previous DS-2019, if available.
Item 15. Project Title
  • The project title should succinctly describe the focus of the award activity (for example, "Evaluating Fundamental Tax Reforms in a Globalizing World" or "Crashworthiness and Rollover Stability of Heavy-Duty Tanker Trucks"). Avoid broad titles such as "Women and Development."
Item 16. Summary of Project Statement
  • In a few sentences, provide a concise overview that easily allows non-specialists to appreciate the significance of the project and any potential contributions to the field.
  • The summary of your proposed research and/or artistic project should fit within the space provided.
Item 17. Proposed Program Length and Dates
  • Indicate as precisely as possible the period during which you intend to carry out your proposed program in the United States. It is recommended that you plan your program during the U.S. academic year (September through May), when your U.S. colleagues are more likely to be available.
Item 18. Major Academic Discipline
  • Select one discipline from the list below that best describes your Fulbright project, and enter it exactly as it appears in the list.
    AgricultureDanceMathematics
    American HistoryEconomicsMedical Sciences
    American LiteratureEducationMusic
    American StudiesEngineeringPhilosophy
    AnthropologyEnvironmental SciencesPhysics/Astronomy
    ArchaeologyFilm StudiesPolitical Science
    ArchitectureGeographyPsychology
    ArtGeologyPublic Administration
    Art HistoryHistory (non-U.S.)Public/Global Health
    Biological SciencesInformation SciencesReligious Studies
    Business AdministrationJournalismSocial Work
    ChemistryLanguage/Literature (non-U.S.)Sociology
    CommunicationsLawTEFL/Applied Linguistics
    Computer ScienceLibrary ScienceTheater
    Creative WritingLinguisticsUrban Planning
Item 19. Specialization(s)
  • List subfields within the broad academic discipline you selected in item 18 in which you specialize (for example, environmental law, history of modern cinema, class and ethnicity in politics, women and social policies in African societies, Chinese religion and philosophy).
Item 20. Identification of Referees
  • List the names and contact information of three persons from whom you have requested a letter of reference.
  • Download "Reference Reports" by pressing the "download" button on the tab.
Item 21. Self-Assessment of English Proficiency
  • Indicate your personal assessment of your level of competence in English.
Item 22. Host Institution(s)
  • You must upload a copy of your letter of affiliation with your application (go to "upload documents" page).
  • Both the Nepal Fulbright Commission and CIES strongly encourage affiliating with only one institution for the duration of your grant period. If the program you propose requires affiliation with more than one institution, please justify and indicate the approximate length of time needed at each. CIES advises against dual or multiple affiliations unless absolutely necessary.
Item 25. Marital Status
  • Choose from the following options: divorced, engaged, married, separated, single or widowed.
Item 26. Dependents
  • Please list all dependents (defined as spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21) who may accompany you on your grant. List names as they appear on their passports. If you intend to have family members join you for part of your grant, but you are not yet sure if they will accompany you, please list them on the application and keep the Nepal Fulbright Commission informed of any changes. Those selected for a Fulbright grant will be required to submit copies of accompanying dependent’s passport data pages and information about any residence in the United States for the 12 months immediately preceding the grant start date to the Nepal Fulbright Commission in order to confirm eligibility and facilitate the issuance of forms required for visa application. Dependents who are U.S. citizens will not be issued J-2 visas and must travel on a U.S. passport.
  • Note: Visa eligibility alone does not guarantee that a visa will be issued. That decision is made by the Consular Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy in Kathmandu.
Item 27. Alternate Funding
  • Please list all non-Fulbright funding you expect to receive during your grant (sabbatical funding or other paid leave from your university, personal savings, etc.). Please list funding amounts in U.S. dollars and include supporting documentation.


THE PROJECT STATEMENT

The project statement is the most important component of the Fulbright application. Scholars/artists with the most compelling, theoretically sound, well-written, feasible proposals are generally recommended for awards. Sometimes those with outstanding professional achievements assume that a brief, general project statement will be sufficient. It is not. To ensure a competitive application, your proposed project, as well as the strategy for completing it, should be thoroughly explained in three to five single-spaced pages.

Format

  • The project statement itself must be three to five single-spaced typed pages (3,500 words). Do not exceed the page limit of the proposal. Including irrelevant or extraneous material may divert attention from the project statement.
  • Begin the project statement with your name, country and the project title at the top of page one. At the top of each subsequent page, type your name and country.
  • Number each page.
  • In addition, attach a select bibliography of no more than three pages (2,100 words), if appropriate, to your proposed research.
  • Organize your proposal in order of the following sections, which appear in bold print, and use them as headings for sections of text in your statement.

For a Research Project

Background: Introduce the research topic. Place the project in academic or professional context by referring to major works by others on the subject. Explain very clearly what has been done on this topic and what needs to be done. This is extremely important.

Objectives: Clearly define the aims of the project. Consider listing your objectives for clarity.

Methodology: Describe the project. Explain the approach, methods and plan you will use (for example, interviews, library or archival research, or laboratory experiments). Indicate whether the proposed research is quantitative or qualitative. Again, consider a list of methods.

Significance: Explain the importance of the project for your home country, your field, and your own professional development. Showing your work’s import for your country is extremely important. Indicate what effect you expect the opportunity to have on your teaching or professional work in your home country. (For example: new approaches to curriculum planning, student advising or pedagogy; expanding knowledge in the field through collaboration with U.S. colleagues). Describe briefly the expected impact of your participation on your home institution, community or professional field.

Evaluation and Dissemination: Describe plans for assessment and distribution of research results in your home country and elsewhere.

Justification for Residence in the United States for the Proposed Project: 1) Indicate why it is necessary for the accomplishment of the project to conduct research in the United States and 2) why the university you proposed is appropriate for your study.

Duration: Explain how the project can be completed within the time period proposed. Outline the schedule for completing your project.

English Proficiency: Describe your level of competence in speaking, reading and writing. Explain your assessment.

Other: If applicable, indicate the quantity, format and transportation requirements for any botanical, zoological or mineral samples that you will need to bring to the United States for analysis.


For an Artistic Project

Artistic Experience: Describe your background as an artist. Explain how your experience will be relevant to your proposed project in the United States.

Proposed Project: Explain what activity (i.e., learning a new skill, apprenticeship with an American expert, teaching or sharing one’s own particular skill, establishing or deepening a collaborative relationship, etc.) you propose to undertake in the United States.

English Proficiency: Describe your level of competence in speaking, reading and writing. Explain your assessment. Expected Outcomes: Indicate what effect you expect the opportunity to have on your professional work in your home country. Describe briefly the expected impact of your participation on your home institution, community or professional field.


Tips for an Excellent Statement (for Researchers and Artists)

In addition to following the format carefully, the following advice has been passed on from former Fulbright Scholars, review committees and CIES staff.

  • Type a clear and complete project statement that introduces you professionally to the Selection Committee in Nepal and to your colleagues in the United States. The best applications are those that well reflect the applicant’s purpose and intent.
  • Make sure that your qualifications and expertise match the objectives in your project statement. Show that you are qualified to accomplish what you are proposing to do.
  • Show how your work is important to your country.
  • Emphasize how your project will benefit the host institution or other scholars/artists in your field both in your country and in the United States. Address in your project statement the ways in which you will use the experience upon your return. What is the likely impact of your experience abroad? To whom? How will you use what you learned upon your return, professionally and personally?
  • Connect your past experience to what you are preparing to do if you receive an award. Explain the project’s significance and its importance to the field.
  • Show a track record of relevant work. Do not assume that your suitability for the endeavor is self-evident. Your standing in your field may not be well known to reviewers. You need to make a case for yourself based on your past experience and current scholarly endeavors.
  • Use language that will be understood by reviewers from outside your field. This is especially important if you work in the Sciences.
  • Do not stress how a Fulbright grant will benefit only you or your career. Remember that the program is intended to foster mutual understanding between cultures and nations.
  • Be specific in laying out the nature of your proposed Fulbright activity. Show a step by step plan. A frequent failing in applications is that the proposal is underdeveloped or too imprecise to give reviewers a clear sense of the endeavor. Focus on what can be reasonably accomplished during the period of the grant.
  • Discuss any preparatory steps you have taken or will take before starting your grant. For example, if you plan to bring samples of plants, chemicals, human tissue, etc., indicate that you have discussed your plans with the U.S. Embassy and your prospective host, if known, in order to determine what clearance and approval processes are needed.

Style
  • Clear, concise, and compelling writing matters. Make each word count.
  • Emphasize key points in the first paragraph of the proposal. Reviewers examine many Fulbright applications, and having to search for the main points of the proposed activity is not helpful. You should grab the reviewer’s attention quickly and state clearly what you want to do, why it is important and how you will do it. You should use the rest of the proposal to support your statements in the opening paragraphs.
  • You may want to use the first person, but you should avoid flooding your proposal with "I’s" or referring to yourself in the third person.
  • The first sentence of each paragraph helps readers understand that paragraph’s main point.
  • Selective use of lists can be very effective. For example: I have three main objectives. First, to develop A and B. Second, to test C and D. Third, to publish my results in E and F.
  • Wordiness can significantly undermine the effectiveness of proposals. Make each word count; cut the rest.
  • Avoid jargon. Make sure general readers will understand your proposal. Keep your proposal simple and straightforward so that an educated reader from another discipline can understand it.
  • Avoid the passive voice.
  • Eliminate vague, unspecific language. Give clear and concrete details.


THE CURRICULUM VITAE


The CV is very important. Please see the sample CVs on the USEF website for effective formatting. The curriculum vitae describes academic/artistic credentials and demonstrates a record of achievements. When composing a curriculum vitae, it is important to include:

  • education (universities attended, degrees earned and dates received)
  • positions held
  • courses taught and other services provided to students and the home institution
  • publications (provide full citations and list them starting with the most recent. Please identify peer-reviewed publications.
  • other professional activities, such as workshops, seminars and consultations
  • membership and activities in professional associations
  • professional honors, awards and fellowships
  • community service

The application asks for similar information, but provides limited space for answers. In the curriculum vitae, you should expand upon these topics to display more completely your accomplishments.



SUPPLEMENTAL MATERIALS


Letters of Invitation

These letters are extremely important. They often separate average candidate and excellent candidates. You want to show that the university and program are an excellent fit for your interests, one of the best places in the U.S. for your topic.

  • Letters of invitation should be typed on institutional letterhead and signed.
  • Invitations do not ensure selection for an award.

Bibliography

For research proposals, provide a list of one to three pages of references relevant to the proposed research. Please use proper formatting.



REFERENCE REPORTS

It is your responsibility to ensure that reference reports are submitted by the deadline. Applications that do not have the required three reference reports in the proper format will be disqualified.

Reference reports or letters of reference help reviewers place your artistic/research or lecturing proposal within your home institution’s current conditions and plans for growth. References also provide evidence of your reputation within your discipline. The Reference Report Form in the application packet provides topics that your referees should address.

  • You must submit three references. Do not submit more than three references.
  • A copy of your project statement should be given to each referee.
  • References should be from people qualified to evaluate your professional work, the abilities you bring to the proposed project, your ability to adapt to another country and culture, and the merits of the project itself.
  • References can come from your home institution, but at least one of the references should be from a colleague in your field outside your home institution.
  • If you have recently moved to a new home institution, one of the reference letters should be from your previous institution.
  • Choose your referees carefully and contact them early. You want detailed, enthusiastic, clearly written letters, not short vague ones.
  • Do not ask someone for a letter of reference unless the person is well acquainted with your qualifications. A pro forma letter from a well-known scholar, a contact abroad or a prominent government official will carry less weight than a detailed and informed assessment of your abilities from someone who knows you and your work well.
  • References must be written in English.
  • Reference letters should be attached to the Reference Report Forms provided for this purpose and should be sent by the evaluators directly to the Fulbright Commission.