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NSF CAREER Writing Resources

A collaborative project with Jennifer Karlin at Minnesota State University Mankato (EEC 1837808/1837805) focused on the National Science Foundation's CAREER award as a particular indicator of early success in engineering education. We used a collaborative inquiry cycle along with interviews of successful NSF CAREER awardees. A larger survey was also sent out to the engineering education community about the perceptions, existing supports, and barriers in the process of writing NSF CAREER proposals. These data were used to develop a framework of areas essential for succesful career proposals and a self-diagnostic worksheet for individuals writing NSF CAREER proposals to assess their readiness and quality of the proposal. We also compiled a set of helpful resources shared by the community. These products and resources are documented below as a way to provide all members of the engineering education research and engineerign community more broadly with support in this application process.


We developed the 5 I's framework of CAREER proposal readiness. A short video describing effective practices for positioning your CAREER proposal from a 2020 American Society for Engineering Education workshop and products are below.

5 I's Framework Summary

5 I's Diagnostic Tool


Members of the engineering education research community also shared helpful resources in writing CAREER proposals. This is a living repository, so if there are other resources you'd recommend, please email Allison Godwin.

NSF CAREER Proposal Writing Tips

 This is a book that has contributions from NSF Program Officers and CAREER awardees with tips on writing CAREER proposals.

NSF CAREER Proposal Primer

A helpful guide written by fomer program officer, Aditya Johri.

Understanding the NSF CAREER Genre

A summary of a dissertation focused on identifying the features of successful CAREER proposals.

What no one tells you about writing a CAREER proposal: Advice from a former program officer

Link to ASEE paper by former program officer, Julie Martin.