NSF Graduate Research Fellowship

The National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program (NSF GRFP) is one of the most prestigious fellowships for graduate students. Fellows receive a three year annual stipend of $34,000, a $12,000 cost of education allowance for tuition and fees, professional development opportunities, and more!

The NSF GRFP recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students who are pursuing research-based master's and doctoral degrees in science, engineering, and social science. Students with a strong academic background and demonstrated excellence and leadership in research are encouraged to apply.


  • Applicants must be a U.S. citizen, national, or permanent resident.
  • Applicants must be an undergraduate senior, a college graduate preparing to enter graduate school, a 1st year graduate student or 2nd year graduate student.
  • NOTE: Graduate students are limited to only one application to the GRFP, submitted in the first or second year of graduate school.
  • Individuals who have earned a masters or professional degree in any field are ineligible, unless they are returning to graduate study after an interruption of two (2) or more consecutive years immediately preceding the application deadline, and; (ii) are not enrolled in a graduate degree program at the application deadline.

Please, review the full eligibility criteria in the NSF GRFP program solicitation and confirm your eligibility using the NSF GRFP Eligibility Questionnaire.

 Eligible Fields

  • Chemistry
  • Computer and Information Science and Engineering
  • Engineering
  • Geosciences
  • Life Sciences
  • Materials Research
  • Mathematical Sciences
  • Physics and Astronomy
  • Psychology (except clinical/counseling)
  • Social Sciences
  • STEM Education and Learning Research

NOTE: Individuals seeking a professional degree or joint professional degree-science program (MD-PhD) or are conducting clinical research are not eligible. Please, consider applying for NIH fellowships instead.

See full list of eligible fields in the Appendix of the Program Solicitation.

Application Materials

  • Personal, Relevant Background and Future Goals Statement (3 pages)
  • Graduate Research Statement (2 pages)
  • Transcripts
  • Three letters of reference

Application Deadline: Typically end of October.

2022 GRFP Application Deadline(s) (received by 5 p.m. local time of applicant’s mailing address):

October xx, 2022 - Life Sciences
October xx, 2022 - Computer and Information Science and Engineering, Materials Research, Psychology, Social Sciences, STEM Education and Learning
October xx, 2022 - Engineering
October xx, 2022 - Chemistry, Geosciences, Mathematical Sciences, Physics and Astronomy

Please read program solicitation published each year on the NSF GRFP website


NSF GRF Application Advising at USF

The Office of National Scholarship and the Office of Graduate Studies have partnered to support student applications for the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program.

NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Information Sessions

An information session will be held every year in April/May. This session will provide a high-level overview of the NSF GRF, including eligibility and review criteria, as well as discuss strategies for crafting a competitive application. If you intend to apply, your attendance at this information session is recommended.

Information Session Recording
Request access at

NSF GRF Application Advising

Advisors will give specific feedback and direction on your GRF application by helping you to develop an application strategy and revising advanced drafts of your essays. Limited slots are available for NSF GRF advising. If you would like to be considered for the GRF Advising Program and intend to apply in the fall 2021, please fill out this form no later than June 1, 2021.

NSF GRF Application Advising Deadline: June 1, 2021
NSF GRF Application Advising Interest Form

Application Timeline

  • PLAN (April - May): Learn about the GRF, attend information sessions, work through NSF-GRF guidance sheets, apply to work with a GRF Advisor
  • CREATE (June - August): Solidify research question, conduct literature review, complete drafts of the personal statement and research plan
  • REFINE & APPLY (September - October): Obtain feedback, refine and revise essays, request references, and submit your application.


Dr. Tracy Costello
Director, Office of Graduate Studies

Dr. Sayandeb Basu
Director, Office of National Scholars